A number of tuition colleges in Oxford are reporting an increase in students taking Easter revision courses to ensure that they pass their exams.
An undergraduate course this September will cost £10,000, but if students do not make the grade the same course next year could cost as much as £27,000.
Oxford Brookes had 23% more applications in 2011, numbers at Oxford University were basically unchanged.
But nationally more people applied for UK university places than ever before.
Joel Rodderick, principal of Oxford Tutorial College, thought the reason his college was so busy was because of an increase in state students applying for Easter revision courses.
"They'd rather spend a smaller amount of money now than face the consequences of not getting into university this year," he said.
Cherwell College in Oxford also reported an increase in the number of enquires about revision courses and its vice principal, Rob Butler, said he thought there was an increased pressure on students this year.
Student Georgie Oleson said: "I need this revision course just to make sure I get the grades because I don't want to have to repeat any exams and not get in, and have to pay the higher fees."