Half of A-level students rule out university

A poll of 16 to 18-year-olds shows that university education is being shunned due to tuition fee rises.

A level students

Is a university education worth £9k a year on tuition fees? According to nearly half of students currently taking A-levels, the answer is no.

A recent survey has revealed that 47% of sixth formers are planning to go straight into employment after their A-levels, while a further 12% were unsure yet of their plans.

Of those who wanted to go straight to work, 11% said they wanted to ‘start earning straight away’ and 6% said that university just wasn’t for them. However, by far the most-cited reason was the cost of tuition fees, with 67% saying they ‘couldn’t afford university due to planned rises in tuition fees’.

Of the 39% who are planning to go to university after A-levels, a fifth were worried about the cost of higher education, agreeing that it ‘caused them concern’. 22% of respondents who were planning to attend university said they felt ‘pressured’ to do so by friends and family.

However, the survey also revealed that 71% of the sixth formers questioned did not have accurate knowledge of tuition fees, and could not say exactly how much they would be expected to pay.

A government spokesman said: ‘Ability to learn, not ability to pay will determine who studies at university in the future.

‘No student will be asked to pay upfront costs, there will be more financial support for poorer students and those who go on to earn the highest incomes will make the largest contributions after they have graduated’.

Indeed, the fact that students will not be expected to pay anything back until they earn at least £21k is often cited in defence of the tuition fees increases - but is just the idea of graduating with at least £27k of debt enough to put young people off uni? And do you think the benefits of higher education outweigh the ever-increasing costs? Let us know below!