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Cost Of A Degree Thanks To Nu Labour


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I don't think you can do an Engineering degree or a medical degree at the OU.

Er, my mother did (around the same time I did my degree).

Or, more precisely, she did a degree including a high proportion of engineering. OU degrees are more modular than traditional ones.

The OU is a great thing. But neither it nor other mature-student options have been promoted as mainstream, let alone pushed like that "McDegrees for everyone" target.

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The point is - students are supposed to be studying hard to get a worthwile Degree

If they are spending most of their time trying to find a job or working it becomes a totally pointless exercise

They might as well not have gone to Uni in the first place.

Studying Engineering my son has lectures and labs every day and is expected to do many hours of study in his spare time.

Perhaps a 2:2 would be ok but I suspect that when he graduates the jobs market will be so tough that he will really need a 1st or a 2:1 to stand any chance of getting a decent job.

This is the reality of the situation IMO.

I'll try to dig it out if I have time, but I'm sure there was an article a year or two ago proving how detrimental working whilst studying has become.

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Problem is my son is working class and he is studying engineering.

:blink:

Your son isn't working class. No one in the UK is working class by any definition other than thinking themselves hard working. One of the things that would define the working class 'should it exist' of the UK would be lack of access to University.

As to the cost of a degree. I protested against tuition fees while at University, and have my own chunk of student loan to repay. I'm not normally one for defending labour, although the fact that no one is seriously proposing dropping tuition fees means I don't blame them for the changes. Government spending was increasing (including on University education) and they either cut something or raised tax. The fact that the conservatives and Libs are now in power and have no intention to drop the tax shows they were happy enough to bash labour for introducing them but don't disagree with the idea.

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TBH, I have no idea why you are even arguing with me - apart from the fact you can't seem to admit when you are wrong.

:)

You surprised me when you quoted numbers: a £4.9k grant is much more than I realised was available to today's students from the taxpayer.

I *know* figures like the BBC are VI spin[1] - I just hadn't realised quite how much they're discounting (as in, £15k over three years). We had that in my day too, when the likes of the Beeb would publish figures showing how it was impossible to live on a student grant. Even a full grant, which you basically wouldn't get if you had one or more working parent, no matter whether they could or would actually pay "their" contribution in reality. It was nonsense then too.

[1] The press may not be VIs, but they're reporting figures calculated by people with a VI.

Edited by porca misèria
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Your son isn't working class. No one in the UK is working class by any definition other than thinking themselves hard working. One of the things that would define the working class 'should it exist' of the UK would be lack of access to University.

As to the cost of a degree. I protested against tuition fees while at University, and have my own chunk of student loan to repay. I'm not normally one for defending labour, although the fact that no one is seriously proposing dropping tuition fees means I don't blame them for the changes. Government spending was increasing (including on University education) and they either cut something or raised tax. The fact that the conservatives and Libs are now in power and have no intention to drop the tax shows they were happy enough to bash labour for introducing them but don't disagree with the idea.

Well someone has to pay for the massive expansion of higher education no one asked for.

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..one minute we are hearing there is a shortage of university places, not enough for all those that want a place....the next minute we hear there is a record number of overseas students this year.

...it seems like a complete farce this university business...good for some, but a money making machine for others. ;)

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..one minute we are hearing there is a shortage of university places, not enough for all those that want a place....the next minute we hear there is a record number of overseas students this year.

...it seems like a complete farce this university business...good for some, but a money making machine for others. ;)

Yep, an excess of demand over supply. They must be undercharging. Oh, wait ... :blink:

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The plight of the modern graduate: 200,000 NEW graduates every year ... fighting for a few thousand graduate jobs! How many of them will end up in Starbucks and Maccy D's? I've seen 2.1 graduates in "battery hen" style call centres .....

As somebody mentioned earlier, Unis are money motivated. I enquired about doing a postgrad course ... and the university sent me a brochure that was comparable to a CAR BROCHURE!

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The plight of the modern graduate: 200,000 NEW graduates every year ... fighting for a few thousand graduate jobs! How many of them will end up in Starbucks and Maccy D's? I've seen 2.1 graduates in "battery hen" style call centres .....

As somebody mentioned earlier, Unis are money motivated. I enquired about doing a postgrad course ... and the university sent me a brochure that was comparable to a CAR BROCHURE!

A postgrad course is a slightly strange concept. Once you're at postgrad level, you should be more research- than course-oriented, and at least in part self-driven. A lot of courses are more about training for a job/career than education, and so have a clear commercial value.

If you'd enquired about signing up to do a PhD, whether on a thesis of your own choosing or as a researcher's lackey (an RA on a funded project), I expect you'd've got a different response.

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Er, my mother did (around the same time I did my degree).

Or, more precisely, she did a degree including a high proportion of engineering. OU degrees are more modular than traditional ones.

The OU is a great thing. But neither it nor other mature-student options have been promoted as mainstream, let alone pushed like that "McDegrees for everyone" target.

See, you're doing it again.

What 'a high proportion of engineering' means I have no idea

Was her degree accredited by the relevant professional engineering body and did it give her chartered engineer status

Because if it didn't it wasn't an engineering degree - it was just a degree with some engineering in it

:blink:

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A postgrad course is a slightly strange concept. Once you're at postgrad level, you should be more research- than course-oriented, and at least in part self-driven. A lot of courses are more about training for a job/career than education, and so have a clear commercial value.

If you'd enquired about signing up to do a PhD, whether on a thesis of your own choosing or as a researcher's lackey (an RA on a funded project), I expect you'd've got a different response.

I agree. The Educonomy is taking over!

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Was her degree accredited by the relevant professional engineering body and did it give her chartered engineer status

Because if it didn't it wasn't an engineering degree - it was just a degree with some engineering in it

:blink:

Strawman. Last I looked, no degree gives you a chartered engineer status. Or any other (meaningful) chartered status.

A degree is a step on the way to chartered status. It is followed by (I forget how many) years of qualifying industrial experience on the way to chartered status. Any exceptions to that would have to be ... exceptional.

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Guest Elephant_In_The_Room

Has anybody cottoned on yet that Uni is a TOTAL waste of time in this day and age?

Sure, back in the 70s and 80s a degree was worth something but the world has movd on.

Not only has the standard been watered down to 'O' level but nobody gives a toss abotu grads any more.

Best advice for any young person - LEARN A TRADE. 1) You'll not waste thousands in both fees and opportunity costs at Uni. 2) You'll never be out of work.

Wish to god I had.

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Guest Elephant_In_The_Room

I could be wrong, but I think that changed about 30 years ago.

I think you're right

As **** as they are, the benefits agency seemed much more on the ball in the past. It was quite tricky to claim benefits in between course years.

Contrast to now where you can practically somersault into the office, sit down and fill out an application form for disability benefit.

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You surprised me when you quoted numbers: a £4.9k grant is much more than I realised was available to today's students from the taxpayer.

I *know* figures like the BBC are VI spin[1] - I just hadn't realised quite how much they're discounting (as in, £15k over three years). We had that in my day too, when the likes of the Beeb would publish figures showing how it was impossible to live on a student grant. Even a full grant, which you basically wouldn't get if you had one or more working parent, no matter whether they could or would actually pay "their" contribution in reality. It was nonsense then too.

[1] The press may not be VIs, but they're reporting figures calculated by people with a VI.

The figures quoted by the BBC are not VI spin - they are the actual numbers

Currently over 5K a year debt for students in England

As it is clear you are not going to apologise, perhaps you could at least stop digging yourself into an even bigger hole.

:)

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There are no degree courses in what I do (music industry), which includes complex contract negotiation, sales and marketing, accounting, IT and ultimate people skills. Doesn't stop job ads requesting a degree does it?

I am trying to transfer my skills (not many jobs left in the music bizz) but I am also facing being on the scrap heap at the age of 40, regardless of the years of experience it takes to learn this trade.

In so many ways I did everything right by not going to uni, getting into the industry at 19, but in the last five years, that's when I have seen all the job ads ask for a degree. It's ridiculous.

I started as a receptionist and worked up, and worked hard, harder than anyone I know at uni.

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Guest Elephant_In_The_Room

The point is - students are supposed to be studying hard to get a worthwile Degree

If they are spending most of their time trying to find a job or working it becomes a totally pointless exercise

They might as well not have gone to Uni in the first place.

Studying Engineering my son has lectures and labs every day and is expected to do many hours of study in his spare time.

Perhaps a 2:2 would be ok but I suspect that when he graduates the jobs market will be so tough that he will really need a 1st or a 2:1 to stand any chance of getting a decent job.

This is the reality of the situation IMO.

You've highlighted another thing that ticks me off.

The focus on degree classifications. It's ridiculous. A levels are blind marked (or they were when my father marked papers). Degrees are internally marked and can be manipulated by making friends/sleeping with the lecturer.

I look back to mine and realise what a total farce it was. People were getting higher degrees by skipping all the 'hard' options. I came out with a 2:2 and saw 1 or 2 individuals getting 2:1's who I wouldn't employ! At the same time I saw 2:2's who should have got 2:1's (me included!)

In fact I'd better stop typing now, I've got a real downer on education. Waste of time, waste of money.

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You've highlighted another thing that ticks me off.

The focus on degree classifications. It's ridiculous. A levels are blind marked (or they were when my father marked papers). Degrees are internally marked and can be manipulated by making friends/sleeping with the lecturer.

I look back to mine and realise what a total farce it was. People were getting higher degrees by skipping all the 'hard' options. I came out with a 2:2 and saw 1 or 2 individuals getting 2:1's who I wouldn't employ! At the same time I saw 2:2's who should have got 2:1's (me included!)

In fact I'd better stop typing now, I've got a real downer on education. Waste of time, waste of money.

Sorry - I am obsessed with education at the moment as I have one kid at Uni, one just starting and one just starting A levels.

The system is a nightmare - it stinks actually and the whole process is doing my head in

But what can you do?

I should probably let the thread die now.

I only started it because I got annoyed by people telling me I don't know what I am talking about when I eat, sleep, live and breathe education at the moment.

I am obviously a know nothing idiot and should keep my ridiculous opinions to myself.

:blink:

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I'm not normally one for defending labour, although the fact that no one is seriously proposing dropping tuition fees means I don't blame them for the changes. Government spending was increasing (including on University education) and they either cut something or raised tax. The fact that the conservatives and Libs are now in power and have no intention to drop the tax shows they were happy enough to bash labour for introducing them but don't disagree with the idea.

Agree with this and add the current government has not rejected the Labour idea of more people attending university, they’ll simply stand back while it becomes more expensive and potential debt regulates applications rather than available places.

While the probability of huge post-qualification debt has changed over the last 10+ years, I’m unsure parental and school advice regarding university has kept pace, ie is it worthwhile to go to university? That would be fine if degrees were in subjects where there is a shortage of applicants and/or the previous government’s belief that a better educated workforce would be better equipped to meet the demands of the 21st century blah blah had helped to stimulate new employment opportunities.

As it is, studying engineering at a cost of £25k plus MAY be a worthwhile investment in the future but it’s a much harder calculation to make than it was even a few years ago.

For the photography, media studies and sport science graduates (replace with whatever course you personally have no time for), while the traditional argument that university education is more than a vocational exercise may still hold true, it would be enormously helpful to 18 year olds if they and their advisers had access to solid, contemporary data about graduate opportunities rather than glossy brochure blandishments about the esteem in which University X’s courses are held by employers.

Does it really cost £18k for a 3-year, £25k for a 4-year course? Well, my kids finished 2 and 4 years ago so our experience is slightly out of date but one had a total debt of £4k, the other £3k, all of which was overdraft/credit card rather than student loans (average debt for contemporaries is £9 - £12k). They managed to keep it down by a combination of about £7k cash for each from us (Mum and Dad), years of clothes and books for Christmas and birthday presents, living at home then working in any job they could find in holidays and learning how to use Excel!

What did surprise me – and no dig here at any previous poster – was the lack of straight talking that seemed to go on between parents and children. The view taken by my wife and I was that we were happy to use savings, forego holidays and major purchases so we could help the kids but only if they were prepared to do their bit by not p*****g their money away.

Was it worth it? Hard to say as neither really knew what they wanted to do at 18 and University helped to clarify that (one working directly with under and post graduate subject choice, the other doing something completely different but definitely using analytical skills learned in the degree course) but if they were starting this year or next, I’d find it much more difficult to advise them.

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What I don't understand is that technology and automation is making jobs easier and more accessible to more people (in effect deskilling jobs) Creativity is a luxury afforded only to those starting there own businesses and unemployed artists. So, with this in mind why are people encouraged to go to university to learn skills they probably don't and won't need?

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What I don't understand is that technology and automation is making jobs easier and more accessible to more people (in effect deskilling jobs) Creativity is a luxury afforded only to those starting there own businesses and unemployed artists. So, with this in mind why are people encouraged to go to university to learn skills they probably don't and won't need?

So that young people pay £20K to access an entry level job, barring the non graduate access. Pay to play.

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Agree with this and add the current government has not rejected the Labour idea of more people attending university, they’ll simply stand back while it becomes more expensive and potential debt regulates applications rather than available places.

While the probability of huge post-qualification debt has changed over the last 10+ years, I’m unsure parental and school advice regarding university has kept pace, ie is it worthwhile to go to university? That would be fine if degrees were in subjects where there is a shortage of applicants and/or the previous government’s belief that a better educated workforce would be better equipped to meet the demands of the 21st century blah blah had helped to stimulate new employment opportunities.

As it is, studying engineering at a cost of £25k plus MAY be a worthwhile investment in the future but it’s a much harder calculation to make than it was even a few years ago.

For the photography, media studies and sport science graduates (replace with whatever course you personally have no time for), while the traditional argument that university education is more than a vocational exercise may still hold true, it would be enormously helpful to 18 year olds if they and their advisers had access to solid, contemporary data about graduate opportunities rather than glossy brochure blandishments about the esteem in which University X’s courses are held by employers.

Does it really cost £18k for a 3-year, £25k for a 4-year course? Well, my kids finished 2 and 4 years ago so our experience is slightly out of date but one had a total debt of £4k, the other £3k, all of which was overdraft/credit card rather than student loans (average debt for contemporaries is £9 - £12k). They managed to keep it down by a combination of about £7k cash for each from us (Mum and Dad), years of clothes and books for Christmas and birthday presents, living at home then working in any job they could find in holidays and learning how to use Excel!

What did surprise me – and no dig here at any previous poster – was the lack of straight talking that seemed to go on between parents and children. The view taken by my wife and I was that we were happy to use savings, forego holidays and major purchases so we could help the kids but only if they were prepared to do their bit by not p*****g their money away.

Was it worth it? Hard to say as neither really knew what they wanted to do at 18 and University helped to clarify that (one working directly with under and post graduate subject choice, the other doing something completely different but definitely using analytical skills learned in the degree course) but if they were starting this year or next, I’d find it much more difficult to advise them.

Sorry to be rude, but this is a pretty pointless post because

Your kids lived at home and you gave them 7k each

So in the case of a 4 year course they saved at least 4*3k accommodation costs = 12k plus the 7K you gave them = 19k which comes almost exactly to the debt I estimated my son would have of around 20K

What if you do not have a decent university in commuting distance of your home?

If we lived 2 miles from a Russell Group Uni then I would have been quite happy for my kids to live at home while doing their degree but this was not possible

A degree from the Uni up the road from where we live is not worth the paper it is printed on.

:blink:

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So that young people pay £20K to access an entry level job, barring the non graduate access. Pay to play.

Sorry I didn't reply to your post - this is exactly what I was going to say but I thought it would be a bit insensitive to post this if you are struggling to find work because you don't have a degree.

BTW I am also unemployed and don't have a degree - hope things work out for us in the end.

:)

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