Students will soon be able to fast-track to graduation by finishing off their degrees in just two years – but annual tuition fees would shoot up to over £12,000.
The government is lifting the financial obstacles to universities offering a quicker alternative to undergraduates keen to complete their studies in less than three years. Even if the length of the degree will be compressed, the workload will be the same as for the normal three-year degrees. Consequently, there will be shorter holidays for both students and lecturers, more pressure and less time for research.
University and College Union (UCU) said in a statement that they “feared ministers were prepared to sacrifice the UK’s global reputation for excellence in its latest attempt to force for-profit colleges into higher education”.
A spokesperson for Falmouth UCU said on behalf of the union that they would “be concerned that such degrees might cannibalize existing courses,” making the existing courses less viable and cost-effective.
They are also concerned for the load of work the staff may be exposed to, as they would have little time to do research in order to stay up to date with the development in their fields.
However, there are some students who may benefit from this opportunity:
• Students who may want to concentrate on their studies and who would like to get into the professional world quicker
• Mature students
• Students who want to cut down on accommodation costs
• Students who are not interested in the social aspect of university
Falmouth University has yet to release a statement about the future of the possibility to introduce the fast-track degrees.