Tuition fees for science subjects might be rising to £13,500 a year

Fees for arts degrees could drop to £6,500

A review into the education system could see universities lower tuition fees for arts degrees, while raising them for science degrees.

The “Augar review”, led by former non-executive director of the Department for Education Philip Augar, could urge universities to “introduce differential tuition fees” of £6,500 for humanities subjects, and “up to £13,500” for sciences.

The proposed changes have raised concerns over accessibility, with NUS figures claiming it will discourage students from poor backgrounds from applying to STEM courses.

The review aims to make easier students’ transition for Further to Higher Education, and improve value for money “for both taxpayers and graduates,” and will also consider the “level, terms and duration of their contribution” of students’ contribution to their studies.

The review comes after growing concerns over British universities' value for money.

Education Secretary Damian Hinds said: “With a system where almost all institutions are charging the same price for courses – when some clearly cost more than others and some have higher returns to the student than others – it is right that we ask questions about choice and value for money.”

The NUS claims this would go against its mission to widen student participation. According to the Union, students from low-income backgrounds are less likely than those from a high-income background to sign up to courses which will rack up higher debts.

The Union also claims there are “substantial rumours” of a "general price cut" to £7,500. Members believe such a cut would damage the education sector if the government refuses to allocate additional funding.

Amatey Doku, Vice-President (Higher Education) is concerned about the proposition, and believes changing fees between courses will push universities “to the point of collapse.”

The National President, Shakira Martin, is hopeful the review will affect positive change. She said: "The Augar Review represents an incredibly exciting opportunity to fix the problems in student support and reduce student hardship.

"Philip Augar, please don’t let us down."

On April 1st 2019, The Tab published an April Fools’ article claiming tuition fees for humanities subjects were dropping to £6000. Over 150 people tagged friends in comments, with one reading: “Forgot it was April fools for a second and genuinely got happy about this for half a second.”

Related stories recommended by this writer:

Arts vs Sciences: Which is the easiest?

Everything people who are doing a Humanities degree are sick of hearing

75 per cent of Arts and Humanities students will never pay their loan back