University of Plymouth 'expects to charge £9,000 fees'

The University of Plymouth has said it expects to charge students £9,000 a year in tuition fees.

The establishment said students currently pay £3,375 a year, but this could increase from 2012.

The amount still has to be approved by the Office for Fair Access, which safeguards access to higher education.

The university said it had to increase tuition fees to replace the cut in state funding and maintain its quality of teaching.

A spokesperson said the decision followed research and close consultation with students, staff, key stakeholders and partners.

Deputy vice-chancellor Bill Rammell said: "Fees should be no barrier to our students and we have a generous package of support measures to help them before they come here, while they are here, and also once they graduate and move into their chosen careers.

"It is important to remember that tuition fees are paid off over many years once students have graduated and are in employment, earning more than £21,000 a year," he added.

The university has about 30,000 students.

President of the Students' Union Seena Shah said in a statement on the union's website: "The union is supporting the university in setting its fee levels with an explicit expectation that it will sustain and further enhance the student experience."

The university said on its website explaining the fees: "We are ambitious for our students and proud of the distinctive student experience that is Plymouth."

Almost three-quarters of universities in England say they want to charge £9,000 a year.

The Office for Fair Access said it had guidelines setting out its expectations of what institutions would need to do if they wished to charge tuition fees of more than £6,000.

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