THE cost of a Welsh university education will fall next year under plans being introduced by the sector’s funding council.
Students will pay an average of £8,000 to study in Wales from September 2013 – down from this year’s figure of £8,800.
The first gives institutions a chance to increase their intake by meeting Welsh Government priorities on turnover, spinout companies, overseas recruitment and research income.
But costings are provisional and preferred fee levels are by no means assured with universities again required to submit fee plans. Vice-chancellors have until May 9 to justify charging students above the £4,000 basic rate.
Fee plans must provide evidence of engagement with students and the steps taken to ensure learners are aware of the new charges prior to enrolment. Institutions have to invest about 30% of their total fee income – above the basic £4,000 level – into specific priority areas.
The controversial system will see 12,687 “non-priority” places – 52% of the total annual intake – top-sliced and reallocated to universities in a two-part process.