David Gilani

Ending International Fee Disparity

Following a campaign from SUSU, the University have agreed to end their system of increasing fees for international students. This means that incoming international students will not face increases between each year of study… and will know what their degree costs them!

As part of our campaign around ending student poverty, SUSU has been working with the University to develop a model that means that there isn’t an increasing fee for our international students. This has been a long campaign working with Oli Coles and David Mendoza Wolfson.

This is the current increase that a cross section of international students face.

The current system means that international students can face surprisingly high increases in their fee once they are already at Southampton. Our survey of 100 international students found that 50% had experienced an increase of over £1,000; with one student stating, “I probably wouldn’t have chosen Southampton uni if I knew how much they would increase the school fees by.” (You can see the full results of our Fee Survey Report here)

I’m very happy to say that after presenting at the University Executive Group meeting 2 weeks ago, they accepted our proposal, so for all students arriving from the 2015/16 year onwards, they will have fixed fees. This model doesn’t lose the University any money, as the fixed fee is calculated as an average of fees, however it means that each student has certainty over what their degree will cost them.

This change unfortunately can’t affect current students, however I will be working with the University to try and improve the communication about fees so that our current international students can better prepare for their increases.

This is a fantastic step forward for the University in terms of support of international students and a system that we can be very proud to hold – there are only a handful of other universities in the UK who have adopted this fixed fee system. Many thanks go to the University’s finance team for helping make this possible.

Cheers everyone for reading and if you have any questions about what this system means, feel free to comment below and I’ll do my best to answer.

David Gilani – Union President

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18 Comments on "Ending International Fee Disparity"

  1. David
    Cathy
    18/12/2013 at 7:48 pm Permalink

    Well done all of you, I think that’s one of the best things SUSU has achieved in the time I’ve been at Southampton. I’m not an international student but I’m so glad this change has been made as the former system was unfair.

  2. David
    David Gilani
    21/02/2014 at 6:11 pm Permalink

    Thanks so much for the lovely comment, Cathy. I love it when students who won’t even benefit from this change can still get behind it – because it’s just what’s fairest. Cheers again

  3. David
    Will
    23/12/2013 at 2:06 pm Permalink

    Your graph is terrible, Dr Bellamy would not be pleased with your lack of axis titles and meaningful figure legend.

  4. David
    David Gilani
    23/12/2013 at 2:17 pm Permalink

    I’m sorry, Will. I’ve let you down… I’ve let Dr. Bellamy down… but worst of all I’ve forgotten to include axis titles and meaningful figure legend.

  5. David
    Shabesh
    28/12/2013 at 2:32 pm Permalink

    Great work David! This is such huge benefit for international students that I would wish to have when I applied to Southampton!!!

  6. David
    David Gilani
    21/02/2014 at 6:12 pm Permalink

    Thanks, Shabesh. I’m sorry that this policy couldn’t be implemented sooner. If you do face any financial hardship whilst still here at Southampton because of the increasing fees, then make sure you educate yourself about the University’s Hardship Fund – http://www.southampton.ac.uk/sais/sfo/

    Cheers

  7. David
    Federico
    21/02/2014 at 12:26 pm Permalink

    It is good to remember that international students (non UK/EU) are already paying about twice the fee for UK/EU students… We actually subside UK/EU students.
    Rising their fee even more was like killing the golden eggs hen.

  8. David
    David Gilani
    21/02/2014 at 5:03 pm Permalink

    You’re absolutely right, Federico. Universities around the country are trying to attract more and more international students… but if they really want international students to feel welcomed in the UK, then they need to start treating them fairly! Ensuring that international fees are transparent is an important step… with plenty more to be made as well. Any thoughts from yourself would be greatly appreciated and well received.

  9. David
    Yasmina
    21/02/2014 at 4:15 pm Permalink

    Well-done on doing this! I think that is a great step.
    However, I’m so sorry that doesn’t affect current students. Let me share my experience with you:
    I’m doing a PhD and partly funded by the university. What I think is ridiculous tho, is every year the amount I have to pay increases by a grand while the bursary still covers the same amount that I have been told from the start. Mind you, I have not been informed of this increase from the start and that could have affected my decision on whether to do a PhD here due to financial reasons!
    I’m already thinking of what I gonna do next year…!!

  10. David
    David Gilani
    21/02/2014 at 5:07 pm Permalink

    Thanks very much, Yasmina.

    It’s a terrible situation – in our survey of international students over 1/4 said that the increases in fees simply meant that they had much higher pressure on their living costs. If financial support doesn’t rise, then this will squeeze students finances, causing many to drop out.

    I wish you best of luck for the rest of your PhD.

    Cheers

  11. David
    Dan
    21/02/2014 at 7:29 pm Permalink

    Great campaign, David

  12. David
    Hasan Cakiroglu
    22/08/2014 at 2:00 pm Permalink

    Dear Mr. Gilani,

    As the annual increase is very much above inflation rate, this is an open robbery. Through such increases the English and EU students have been financed by the international students. This is the most unfair educational system, I have ever seen and there is no such disparity in any European Union country except UK. Shame on the UK government and education institutions which see the international students as cash cows.

    Hasan Cakiroglu

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