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    I'm Just wondering what the implications of the proposed fee increases will have on postgraduate studies?
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    Universities would be less inclined to charge extortionate fees if they can charge closer to the going rate for their undergraduate courses. I think we'd see lower fees on the postgrad stage in general. Maybe this is more hope than expectation though.
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    It won't really have a direct effect in a lot of cases because its not like postgraduate courses were getting heavy government subsidies. They were already being set at a market rate and it doesn't necessarily follow that they would gain by increasing the fees.

    They may decide to bring them all in line, ie charge £9k for the MScs as the standard rate of a year of tuition, the difficulty they will have in postgrad recruitment is persuading students who already have bigger debts, to do a Masters course, so they may need to bring the fees down or offer more in the way of incentives like discounts for their own alumni.
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    The Browne report did not really mention postgraduate education so there is no fear of tuition fees rising in line with potential rises in undergraduate fees. One of the reasons for this is that postgraduate fees are already higher than undergraduate fees; Edinburgh already charges £5100 for its taught masters programmes in the arts and humanities, for example.

    Other reasons fees are unlikely to rise includes cuts to research council funding and pure research funds, and to university's own budgets (in other areas), meaning universities cannot afford to raise fees if they do not have the scholarships to back them up, because students will not be able to afford to study. But the main reason is that postgraduate study is almost always self-funded. A increase in tuition fees would mean the government would have to make a deal with banks to increase the amount of money they give to students for a career development loan (currently £10,000 at the moment), which at the moment is not enough for some people so an increase in fees would be ridiculous. Part time study is not necessarily a solution either, because one in four Europeans under the age of 25 are unemployed at the moment.
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    I think this is the key to it: if you have serious debts from your undergrad course, you are going to be far less likely to continue to a postgrad degree. Mind you , this may fuel further the increase in demand for distance and part time courses to combine with work.

    TBD

    (Original post by MagicNMedicine)
    They were already being set at a market rate and it doesn't necessarily follow that they would gain by increasing the fees.
    ....
    the difficulty they will have in postgrad recruitment is persuading students who already have bigger debts, to do a Masters course, so they may need to bring the fees down ...
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    (Original post by TBD)
    I think this is the key to it: if you have serious debts from your undergrad course, you are going to be far less likely to continue to a postgrad degree. Mind you , this may fuel further the increase in demand for distance and part time courses to combine with work.

    TBD
    This is what will have to happen IMO. At the moment if you do part time MSc or MA courses it usually means you have to follow the full time timetable of modules, you just only do half the modules and then do the other half in the next year. So its suitable for people who have flexible jobs but not for the majority of people who work 9-5. Universities will need to look at the model of places like Birkbeck who do a good trade in running courses like MSc Economics for people who work in London.

    A lot of professionals have got the disposable income to spend on a Masters course but they would need to be able to do it in the evening, this presents timetabling issues so most unis don't do it at the moment, but when they find that nobody wants to do postgrad courses any more they will have to look at things like this.
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    I looked at many Masters courses over the last few months, trying to find one that would suit. Some of them are completely distance learning, which is good but you miss out on the interaction and networking. Some are modular - designed from the ground up- with nine or so modules of 4-5 days that can be run over several years (I did one like this and it took me four years). Others offer weekends or evenings which were no good to me as I live abroad.

    I agree the courses that will suffer are those trying to operate simply as a cheap to operate spread out version of the full time course.

    The key things , excluding content, I look for in a postgrad course is:
    a) how much attendance , how long in blocks, how frequent?
    b) how many times are the modules run in one year are they all available in any given year and do they clash ?
    c) what are the prerequisites for each module (which force an ordering which again impacts the flexibility) ?
    d) what are the assessment methods: coursework is more flexible than exam-prep.?
    e) are there stages of award cert/dipl/Masters just in case disaster strikes?
    f) how many choices of module are there?

    It is amazing how few of the universities cover this kind of issue in their prospectus. (See my other thread about this)

    The colleges or universities that get this right will thrive, those that don't bother will suffer as postgrads are more discerning and hardnosed about a higher degree.

    TBD


    (Original post by MagicNMedicine)
    This is what will have to happen IMO. At the moment if you do part time MSc or MA courses it usually means you have to follow the full time timetable of modules, you just only do half the modules and then do the other half in the next year. So its suitable for people who have flexible jobs but not for the majority of people who work 9-5. Universities will need to look at the model of places like Birkbeck who do a good trade in running courses like MSc Economics for people who work in London.

    A lot of professionals have got the disposable income to spend on a Masters course but they would need to be able to do it in the evening, this presents timetabling issues so most unis don't do it at the moment, but when they find that nobody wants to do postgrad courses any more they will have to look at things like this.
 
 
 
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