London Metropolitan University has apologised for failing to tell its part-time students about huge fee hikes
Part-time students recently discovered they had been left in the lurch after the university was forced to double the amount of money it charges them each module from £205 to £420.
Jason Bolger, a final year part-time architecture student at the university, complained the increase happened with ‘immediate and unannounced effect’ and claimed part-timers were now facing a ‘huge financial dilemma’.
He said: ‘We all fully understand the new situation universities find themselves in and the inevitable increase in fees that this will lead to, however, we as part time students are not being given the same consideration that has been afforded to full time students.
‘We’ve already invested three years of our time and money towards this degree, only to be held at ransom to a sudden and unannounced hike in fees which, should we not be able to pay, would render all our prior investment to date a complete waste.’
A statement from the university confirmed it had failed to notify a ‘considerable proportion of students’ of the fee changes.
Vice-chancellor Malcolm Gillies said: ‘In January 2011 the London Metropolitan University determined that, for 2011/12 and onwards, part-time fees needed to be adjusted to be pro rata with prevailing full-time fees.
‘Until this time, full-time domestic students have been paying considerably more per module than most part-time students. Unfortunately, that decision was not communicated to all continuing students within the University at that time.
‘The University will now implement that pro rata decision regarding continuing part-time fees only for the academic year 2012/13, and apologises for any distress caused.’
Continuing part-time students will pay an ‘inflation-indexed fee’ for this academic year while part time students commencing courses this autumn will pay a full pro rata full-time rate of £420.
The new fee levels will be invoiced to students in the coming weeks with a letter concerning next year’s fees (2012/13) sent to all students during term time.