A group of students at a university in London have been asked to discuss their views over the EU referendum and the implications for Britain’s future on social media, a survey has found.
The survey by the think tank Policy Exchange, which was conducted by the Universities UK, found that “a majority” of students across the UK are “not at all” interested in having to vote in a referendum on Brexit.
However, the survey also found that students who have had a say in how Britain votes on the EU and its future is very different from those who have not.
It found that only 16% of students who had a vote in the referendum are “very interested” in the future of Britain after the UK leaves the EU.
And while 28% of people who have voted “strongly” in favour of Brexit say they are “a little or a lot” interested, only 16.5% of those who did not have a say are “somewhat” or “a lot” so interested.
In fact, almost a third of the respondents to the Policy Exchange survey said they would not be interested in voting in a second referendum.
There is a large disparity between students’ views and those of the general population.
When it comes to Brexit, a majority of students say they “are very or somewhat interested in the prospect of Brexit”, but a smaller majority say the same of the overall public.
Students were asked “Are you either very or fairly interested in Britain leaving the European Union?”
The survey found that of those students who said they are very or slightly interested, 70% are in favour.
“Overall, only 28% have expressed a very strong interest in a vote,” said Policy Exchange’s director of research, Ben Williams.
“However, there are students who are far more interested in a result of the referendum that the public at large seems to be in favour and they are the ones who are more likely to express a very, very strong or moderate interest in Britain exiting the EU,” he said.
“That is something we can only see emerging from the conversations that students have about the referendum.”
“The wider public is very interested in Brexit, but there is a lot of variation in the level of interest between different groups,” said Williams.
The research found that nearly half of students said that “the only thing I would care about is a Brexit that is as good as the one we have now”, while only 28.5 percent said the same about the rest of the public.
However there was a difference in the extent to which students said the Brexit vote was “just about right”.
The study found that 73.5 per cent of students were “slightly” or very interested to the Brexit outcome.
This is slightly higher than the number of students that said that they were “very” or somewhat “interested” to the result.
However the percentage of those “slight” or relatively interested students who were “really interested” to Brexit has been on the rise over the last few years, increasing from 17.5 to 24.6 per cent over the period, according to the survey.
However this does not mean that the majority of the student body is now more likely than the general public to be enthusiastic about the outcome of the Brexit debate.
The overall percentage of students saying they were enthusiastic about Brexit fell from 46.2 per cent in 2016 to 43.9 per cent this year.
There are also a number of differences between the students surveyed and those who are not.
Of those students that have not said “I do not care”, a majority (53.6%) said that their opinion of Brexit is “satisfied”.
This includes 58.5 and 52.3 per cent, respectively, of those that have said that the Brexit result is “just” or not “good enough”.
However this is slightly lower than the majority who said that opinion of the EU was “very satisfied” and “very dissatisfied” at the same time, at 71.7 and 69.5, respectively.
“These findings reveal that there is considerable variation in opinions about what is best for Britain after Brexit,” said a Policy Exchange spokesperson.
“A majority of people are not happy about the prospect that we are leaving the EU but they are more interested than we would like to think in the outcome,” said the spokesperson.
Students have been the focus of a number public debates and debates have been held in schools over the years.
The first in 2017, when the UK’s Brexit referendum was launched, was attended by over 5,000 people.
The next one, in 2019, attracted over 13,000 students.