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12 April 2011, 09:49
Southampton University has become the latest on the South Coast to announce an increase in its fees.
They have submitted an application to the Office for Fair Access to charge fees ranging from £6,000 to £9,000 (the new maximum the Government will allow them to charge).
They say under the proposals, over 20% of new undergraduate students will receive a fee waiver reducing the cost of their course to the minimum £6,000 a year. Overall more than a third of all new students will receive some form of fee relief from the £9,000 standard fee.
The University has introduced an ‘Access to Southampton Bursary’ programme, which will focus on supporting students from schools and colleges in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, as well as providing targeted support to students with particular needs.
Commenting on the proposals, Vice-Chancellor Professor Don Nutbeam said: “We want to ensure that the University of Southampton maintains its leading position as a place of opportunity for talented students regardless of their background. We recognise the genuine concerns about debt expressed by prospective students, especially those from households with lower income, and are offering some of the most generous fee waivers in the sector.
“Our fees have been set at a level that will enable us to secure the future of the University following government funding cuts, and invest in improvements in the quality of teaching and the overall experience of students at the University.”
The University says it is creating a teaching and support package that will benefit students, enabling them to customise their experience at Southampton. They are also introducing the Southampton Entitlement, a £300-per-year credit for all undergraduate students to spend on services such as sports membership, access to campus arts venues and public transport.
Commenting on the changes to teaching and student support, Pro Vice-Chancellor Professor Debra Humphris said: “We will offer our students an outstanding education in a world-class research university. Students can expect to be taught and supervised by researchers at the cutting edge of their discipline, with the opportunity to study in and with some of the latest research facilities and equipment.
“We will draw upon our extensive links into business both regionally and internationally to ensure that our students will be prepared to enter a highly competitive and increasingly global labour market.
“I have today written to over 370 schools and colleges that are part of our network to provide them with the latest information on our proposed fees and to invite them to a summit in June, where in keeping with our aim to increase access to higher education we will seek ways to encourage the continued participation of the most capable students, regardless of their background.”
The announcement from Southampton Uni comes after Portsmouth University raised its fees to £8,500 a year, while Southampton Solent's have gone up to £7,800.