University hikes up tuition charge

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PROSPECTIVE students at the University of Hull Scarborough Campus face a huge hike in tuition fees.

Bosses have announced the university, which has a campus in Filey Road, will charge the maximum £9,000 yearly figure from 2012.

Students currently pay £3,375 on tuition fees.

The move comes after the Government last year voted to raise fees to £6,000 – with universities given the option to charge the £9,000 threshold in “exceptional circumstances”.

However, the changes will not affect students already at the university or those planning on entering in September this year.

Loans will only be repaid after graduation and when a student’s earnings reach more than £21,000 a year.

The moves brought huge criticism from current Scarborough campus students last year, with more than 70 travelling to London to join national protests against the increases.

However, Professor Calie Pistorius, the university’s vice-chancellor, said the increase was a necessity in the current economic climate.

He said: “Our aim is that the university remains academically viable and students will see value from this. This will come not only during the time they spend with us but the time afterwards.

“We will send them out into the world with a degree from the Scarborough campus which will be academically valuable and help them get into employment.

“The fees should not deter any students coming to the university because the loan system will help them.”

The decision follows a number of other English universities who have set fees to the £9,000 price ceiling, including Leeds University, Newcastle University and Sheffield University.

York St John University yesterday confirmed it would be charging £8,500 yearly fees.

Prof Pistorius acknowledged the decision to lift tuition fees may put off future students but said the university remained committed to providing a quality education provision.

He added: “Students who choose the University of Hull Scarborough Campus know that they are going to have an excellent experience and will reap the benefits of graduating from a university with a recognised stature on the global stage.”

However, Matthew Brown, vice president of the Scarborough Campus University Union, hit out at the “draconian” measures. He said: “The financial measures imposed by the Government are unfair, unsustainable and does not serve students’ best interests.

“Never before has something been so ill-conceived and we are disappointed with the level of tuition fees.

“Last year our students voted to keep the tuition fee cap and took part in unprecedented activism.

“An increase in funding will only increase the need for the union to increase provision to students.

“That is why we are calling on the university to recognise this and give extra funding to help with that.”