Why not ensure the educational benefits of top-up fees by making them performance-related? Students could see big debt reductions. For example, if a university considered attendance important, it could offer a 10 per cent fees reduction for 90 per cent attendance. A random sample of sessions would have registers taken.
Handing in coursework on time could earn a 1 per cent a year reduction. A first-class degree would offer a 50 per cent reduction, an upper-second 10 per cent. The government could set guidelines on the maximum numbers of the higher degree classifications awarded per institution.
Each institution would have to debate and quantify the educational value of each aspect of a course. But then this might remind them of their primary function. Students would also treat their education very differently.
City of Bath College