Debt, not career prospects, weighs most heavily on students’ minds

Young people are more concerned about tuition fees and debt when thinking about university than they are about employment prospects, a new survey suggests.

September 12, 2011

Around 60 per cent of the 16- to 18-year-olds polled said their main worry about going into higher education was the near-trebling of the tuition fee cap to £9,000 in 2012.

Just forty-one per cent of the 75 young people surveyed by bestcourse4me.com said employment opportunities and career prospects were their top priority.

Data published by the Office for National Statistics last month showed graduates earn 85 per cent more than those with just GCSEs – an average of £16.10p an hour rather than £8.68p an hour. However, that differential has dropped from 95 per cent in 1993.

Statistics also showed graduates’ earning power was more likely to increase throughout their careers, while those leaving after A levels would be more likely to see their pay remain static.

Steve Edwards, owner of bestCourse4me, said: “The increase in fees is very important to students and this new understanding makes open access to information even more important."

jack.grove@tsleducation.com

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