Readers' reactions

April 9, 1999

Last week in The THESI. Rick Audas and Peter Dolton argued that tuition fees and loss of grants could limit poorer students' choice of employment.

Counselling.

TONY WATTS. Director. National Institute for Careers Education and The logic of the way in which this was presented was that we need a system of student support that expands the opportunities open to people on limited resources. The implications are serious. But it depends how far you take it. In the end, most people are constrained by the resources available to them in one way or another.

ANDREW PAKES. President. National Union of Students. Ham Khan.

NUS supports the Newcastle research's central point - that studying away from home is central to a student's personal development. Our own evidence concurs - that tuition fees and the rising cost of student living often deters students from moving away.

The Newcastle research is alarming in the clear link it has unearthed between how well students at home perform once they graduate, financially and career-wise.

NUS also believes that studying at home can lead a student to choosing the wrong course - a second-best course - which contributes to escalating dropout rates. If the government brought a halt to tuition fees and provided students with a decent support package this would ensure any student who studies near to home does so for all the right reasons and not for expediency.

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