Oxford fees for current home students set to rise

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Oxford University intends to increase fees from £9,000 to £9,250 for current home and EU students from 2017/18, according to an OUSU statement.

The university had already announced its intention to increase fees for new students, but has since decided to extend the proposed changes to include current students.

The proposed increase is reliant on the passing of the Higher Education Bill, which is being considered by the Public Bill Committee in parliament. The Bill would allow universities to make an inflation-linked rise in fees, to £9,250.

Oxford University press office said: "Like many other institutions, Oxford faces increasing costs to deliver our pre-eminent tutorial system of education. The increase in fee income will also go to fund our essential admissions outreach work."

If the changes go ahead, Oxford students will see their fee loan change to cover the increase – subsequently current students would also face an increase to their student debt as a result of the changes.

Cambridge has already ruled out a fee increase for current students. Birmingham, Leeds and York are amongst other universities that have guaranteed that fees will not change for those already enrolled.

The proposed changes at Oxford echo intended fee rises at Exeter, which are also set to impact on both current and new students. Durham, Kent and Royal Holloway have already been found to be advertising future courses at the increased rate – despite the fact that the increases have yet to be approved by parliament.

In its statement announcing the proposed rise, OUSU said: "Aside from the ethical issues, we have had major concerns over the legality of this implementation, and have been raising these concerns with the University for several months now. These concerns have not been addressed, and this is not good enough." OUSU has also launched a petition to challenge the university's decision.

The Public Bill Committee is expected to report to parliment on the Higher Education Bill in October.


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