Higher Education Funding

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2001-06-02

Postgraduate education should be equally accessible on the basis of merit. Financial difficulties are the primary reason why it is not. These should be overcome.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2002-02-23

Lack of postgraduate funding is restricting access to postgraduate education. It is in the interests of the country that all graduates academically capable of undertaking postgraduate study should be able to do so irrespective of financial matters.
The Career Development Loan is a dangerous and inadequate method of support for postgraduate study, as well as not being available for many postgraduates.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2002-02-23

All postgraduates whose fees are not paid for by sponsors should be entitled to an index-linked income-contingent loan to cover the costs of tuition fees, in preference to no funding.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2002-02-23

Institutions should not increase tuition fees for courses that are both postgraduate in time and level (but not including vocational courses such as the MBA). The Government should introduce effective legislation to stop institutions increasing tuition fees and phase out existing differential fees. If this is not forthcoming, loans for postgraduates should cover the cost of the increased fees.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2002-02-23

Institutions should not charge for additional academic costs on top of tuition fees. If institutions will not stop charging additional costs, they must clearly state to prospective students all costs that students will have to pay during their course. The Government should introduce and enforce effective anti-hidden course costs legislation at postgraduate level.

Passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2002-05-25

It is unfair to use international students to subsidise home students. Charging excessive premium fees to international students often encourages institutions to favour applicants paying high fees over home students, irrespective of academic ability. Whilst the Government should not be expected to support international students to the same level as home students, it would be beneficial to have reciprocal arrangements with other countries to support students at each other's institutions.

Passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2002-05-25

All self-funded postgraduates who are not in receipt of financial support should be entitled to an interest-free, income contingent loan to cover the full cost of living during the period of study, in preference to the current system of no funding. This level of this loan must be determined in such a way as to ensure that the additional end of year costs are taken into consideration. The loan entitlement for living costs should be at least the equivalent amount that an undergraduate on a 52-week course would be entitled to.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2002-05-25

All tuition fees for undergraduates should be abolished. There should be a student loan entitlement for undergraduates that covers their living expenses. Student loans at commercial rates should not be introduced.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2002-05-25

NPC's policy on premium fees and hidden course costs should apply to both part-time and full-time postgraduates. Some postgraduates (such as lone parents) study part-time because full-time study is impractical.
The Research Councils/AHRB should relax their rules against funding part-time postgraduates when there is a good reason why an individual would be better suited to part-time work.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2003-02-15

The NPC believes that successful research quality bears little relation to teaching or the training and equipping of research students. Research is a vital foundation to quality teaching in higher education where learning is complimented by cutting edge knowledge. Improved teaching standards are necessary in research intensive institutions. Postgraduates could be deprived of many opportunities without access to research.
The NPC opposes the over-concentration of research funding and supports access for students interested in pursuing postgraduate research in an institution suitable to their interests.
The NPC believes that endowment funds are a bonus to higher education and should be encouraged, but should not be treated as an essential source of income.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2003-06-07

NPC is opposed to tuition fees and top-up fees at undergraduate level as they both deter entry into higher education and lead to debt levels that are a deterrent to entering postgraduate study.

Policy passed at the Annual General Meeting 2003-08-16:

NPC opposes changes in higher education student funding that would increase the levels of student debt.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2003-11-15

NPC supports the proposals of a single stream of funding not at the expense of losing a suitable research environment.
NPC opposes plans to remove the number of postgraduate students from the QR volume measure.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2004-02-28

NPC opposes all tuition fees and variable rate fees and potential increases in fee levels at undergraduate level due to the deterrent effect such debt has on decisions to undertake postgraduate study.
Students from Accession Countries should be classified as home/EU students as of accession, charged at the home/EU rate from the accession date, and any difference, where already paid, should be rebated
Universities should use their autonomy if the DfES will not make the change.
NPC restates its opposition to concentration of research funding.

Policy passed at the Annual General Meeting 2004-08-14:

There should be fair provision of DSA for all research students.
DSA should be available to writing up students.
The government should review the funding available for postgraduates with disabilities.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2004-11-13

NPC is opposed to commercial rates of student loans for undergraduates, on the grounds that these debts, when carried over into postgraduate study, act as a deterrent. Real-terms interest on student loans could hit postgraduates harder than most students as interest will continue to accrue during postgraduate study.

Policy passed at the Ordinary General Meeting on 2004-11-13

NPC is opposed to commercial rates of student loans for undergraduates, on the grounds that these debts, when carried over into postgraduate study, act as a deterrent. Real-terms interest on student loans could hit postgraduates harder than most students as interest will continue to accrue during postgraduate study.
NPC will write to the political parties expressing our position on student funding.

Policy passed at the Annual General Meeting on 2005-08-13

That with English undergraduate fees being increased to 3,000 a year, many Universities may expect the market to tolerate increases in postgraduate fees. As a result the need for a comprehensive and fair system of postgraduate financial support is becoming more and more acute. It is a disgrace that whilst accepting the case for deferred undergraduate fees, the Government has taken no action to address the greater burden of up-front postgraduate fees. At the very least, postgraduate fees should be deferred using the same formula as that for undergraduate fees, for those not in receipt of Research Council or similar funding. Living expenses form the majority of the financial burden of most postgraduates, and as with undergraduates, low-interest loans should be made available to meet these costs for those without Research Council or similar funding.