A-Level Results: Can You Get a Degree for
Thursday, August 18,
London, UK- Today is
crunch time for thousands of students as they learn what grades they have
achieved at A level.
If they do well, their next step could be university
but with this year's graduates owing an average £41,000 and a new report
suggesting students' financial worries are causing depression and drink
problems, is a degree now too costly to contemplate?
These days, the average cost of three years'
tuition fees alone is £18,000.
It seems a huge sum to pay for a higher education
but undergraduates studying in England paid an average £6,000 in yearly tuition fees in the
2013-14 academic year according to the OECD, (Organisation for Economic
Co-operation and Development).
And now, some universities in England are
telling potential students their tuition fees will rise in 2017 - the first
increase since 2012.
Depressing enough but worse still, new graduates in
England face average debt levels of more than a third of the average mortgage,
according to research from The Money Charity. It says this
year's graduates will owe at least £41,000 when they start repaying their
maintenance and tuition loans.
Worryingly but perhaps not surprisingly, being in
debt is affecting students’ health. Research out this week from the University
of Southampton and the NHS reveals student debt worries are causing depression
and alcohol dependency.
So is there another way to get a degree - for free?
Here are five ways of doing just that.
1. Find a company who will pay for
Not as far-fetched as it might seem – such degrees are sometimes called
A new degree developed by The University of Chichester and Peter Symonds
College in Winchester has produced a BA (Hons) in Insurance. The academics
worked with Be Wiser Insurance to create the UK’s first degree in Insurance.
Schemes vary, but this particular programme offers undergraduates a salary of
£18,000 a year and covers tuition fees. Students are offered a management level
job on graduation.
2. Study abroad
Brexit might mean this option is not available for the full three years, but
currently there are opportunities to study free (or very low cost) in; Germany,
France, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Austria, Greece and more – visit topuniversities.com for more information.
3. Higher and Degree Apprenticeships
These are quite new and similar to sponsored degrees. Many universities are
working in collaboration with businesses to offer such apprenticeships –
covering all sorts of roles and industries. Early adopters include Airbus,
Morrisons and Barclays.
Sheffield Hallam University has been working with Nestlé to create the
‘Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship’, which will give young people the
chance to become the next generation of business leaders.
To find out more about Degree Apprenticeships visit The Student Room’s Apprenticeship Zone
4. A full fee scholarship
Such scholarships do exist, but they’re a bit like an albino tiger - rare. A
couple of examples include those offered by Newcastle University and London’s
This year Goldsmiths had ten full tuition fee waivers - worth £27,000 each for
Lewisham's brightest talent, covering fees for three years. Use http://www.scholarship-search.org.uk
to search for more of these.
Crowdfunding means you are relying on the generosity of others, be they
family, friends or absolute strangers to pay your fees. This radical route
seems to be most successful if you have a fabulous back-story, ask for smaller
sums of money and offer something tangible in return. One successful
crowdfunding student, Sarah Atayero from Luton managed to raise over £6000 from
210 ‘backers’ to help with her MSc at King’s College London – she starts this