Friday 07-10-2016 - 15:45
NUS Scotland is incredibly disappointed at a decision by the University of Edinburgh today to raise fees for undergraduate students from the Rest of the UK from £9,000 a year to £9,250 a year, beginning with students starting their studies in September 2017 (see note 1).
Edinburgh University has become the first university in Scotland to raise fees for RUK students since the UK government lifted the upper limit on tuition fees in England (see note 2).
Commenting on the rise, NUS Scotland President Vonnie Sandlan said:
“It’s worrying to see the University of Edinburgh engage in a race to the top, charging ever higher fees for students from the rest of the UK. Ultimately, we cannot forget these increases have been driven by the policies of the UK Government, and further increases in fees in England, but Scotland could have chosen to resist those moves. In Scotland, we’ve rightly rejected the very worst of the market driven approach to education that we see in other parts of the UK, but it is particularly disappointing to see Edinburgh not show any restraint, instead seizing the opportunity to charge students more.
“It’s important to remember that these rises potentially make Edinburgh the most expensive place to study in the UK, with students from outside Scotland paying fees over four years, rather than the three years they would spend studying in England, Wales, or Northern Ireland – and that’s without taking into consideration the high cost of living in the city. All of this comes without any of the protections and support that Scottish and other UK students who study in England see – around additional support and efforts to boost access. Instead, students from the rest of the UK coming to Scotland fall through a gap in the system.
“Ultimately, it will be the poorest and most marginalised students who will be worst hit by these fee rises. We hope that the University of Edinburgh reconsiders its decision to increase costs for future students, and other universities consider their position, before saddling their own students with further fee debt. We’re proud of Scotland’s commitment to widening access to our universities, but that commitment to fair access cannot stop at a border.”
Contact: Philip Whyte, NUS Scotland Policy and Influencing Manager
1. While the university hadn’t commented at the time of writing, the Students’ Association comment following the relevant meeting can be found here: https://www.eusa.ed.ac.uk/news/article/EUSA/Sabbatical-Officers-Condemn-University-of-Edinburgh-Fee-Increase/%20