Adverts aim to explain rise in tuition fees

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The Independent Online

After a winter of protests, the Government is attempting to win the hearts and minds of prospective students with a series of adverts explaining the increase in tuition fees.

Ministers claim the plan, which gives universities the option of charging up to £9,000 a year, is misunderstood and want to make their case more clearly. But campaigners called the campaign "inappropriate".

Mark Bergfeld, an anti-fees protest organiser, said: "The Government is telling us there is no money and is cutting budgets. But when they need it to sell their own unpopular policy, it is suddenly available."

A spokesman for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills confirmed that the Central Office of Information is searching for agencies to produce press, radio and online adverts on its behalf. The campaign is due to begin later this year and the spokesman could not say how much it would cost.

Yesterday, a BBC investigation revealed a degree could cost next year's students as much as £83,000 when living expenses and loan repayments are taken into account.