Combating Increased University Fees

Foreign Students's picture

With more and more universities revealing that from 2012 they are going to start charging the maximum amount of £9,000 per year for UK and EU students, there have been a number of suggestions of how to minimize the impact it has on the students. In the last few days two more alternatives have been put forward.

The Open University

Firstly, the Open University announced yesterday that it will be charging just £5,000 per year for full-time students, making it one of the cheapest universities in England. Similarly, part-time students (of which two thirds of Open University's students are) will be charged just £2,500 a year and will also benefit from new rules allowing them to take out loans to pay their fees.

The Open University has more students than any other Higher Education institution in Britain, and currently has 264,000 taking more than 600 undergraduate and postgraduate courses. Unlike any other university, it works almost solely on distance learning. Since its creation more than fifty years ago, the University has pioneered a number of different methods for distance learning, and now offers its services in more than 20 countries world wide.

Part-Time Study Loans

For the first time, part-time students will be allowed to apply for loans to cover their tuition fees from 2012 onwards. Introduced by the UK Department for Business, Skills and Innovation, they claim that:

"Our reforms extend tuition loan support to part-time students for the first time because we want a more diverse higher education sector that is open to all those with the ability and desire to study at a higher level".

Open University's vice chancellor, Martin Bean, welcomed the move, revealing that he believes that it represents the "beginning of a new era for part-time students".


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