Keele University is set to hike its fees for postgraduates by as much as half this year, to the fury of its students.
At a meeting yesterday, the university council approved proposals to increase postgraduate fees by up to 54 per cent.
A campaign called Hands off Postgraduate Fee”, which is backed by both the Keele student union and the Keele Postgraduate Association, has criticised the decision.
Writing to the university council, Victoria Taylor, president of KeeleSU, said that the proposed fee hike would have “significant repercussions on progression to postgraduate students”.
A petition has been set up by the campaigners, which calls for an open discussion on the matter of increased fees, and also urges Keele University to reconsider the increase. There have also been protests against increased fees today by students from the university.
Taylor continued: “We feel there is a real opportunity for Keele to distinguish itself from the rest of the sector and to make a really positive commitment to the future of postgraduate study, which both KeeleSU and the KPA could advocate on a national level. Keele would become a pioneer for the provision of postgraduate study and continue to be an exemplary champion of access to education.”
A spokesperson for Keele University confirmed that the university council has increased postgraduate fees, with an average increase of £850 per year. The increases are "essential to ensure Keele University continues to maintain the calibre and quality” of its postgraduate courses and facilities, and prices “remain highly competitive”.
The spokesperson added that Keele has “introduced several financial packages, in addition to the existing bursaries available for Keele students”.