Harper Adams University College latest to increase fees

Harper Adams University College has decided to charge the full £9,000 annual tuition fees from 2012.

The specialist agricultural institution in Edgmond, near Newport, will be increasing fees from £3,375 a year.

Principal David Llewellyn said the rise reflected the cost of maintaining the "highest academic standards".

The National Union of Students (NUS) said: "With no one to stop them, universities are rushing to charge the maximum £9,000."

'Outstanding investment'

The university college said it considered the high cost of its subject base and the impact of higher fees on students.

Mr Llewellyn highlighted a current demand for graduates in the sector.

"A degree from Harper Adams University College represents an outstanding investment for all of our students at a time when the land-based sector is addressing the global challenges of food security, water security and climate change", he added.

Aaron Porter from the NUS said the government's "ill-considered" claims of fees rising above £6,000 being an exception rather than rule was a "pipe dream".

He added: "Government ministers must take responsibility for the costly chaos they have created and take the entire scheme back to the drawing board before it causes irreparable damage to universities."

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