Lincoln University believes the country’s first fee-setting agreement for domestic students will ensure more are attracted and retained on its campus.
As of next year, the university near Christchurch will become the first in the country to offer domestic students a set price for the duration of their degree. Most universities increase fees by the maximum four per cent each year.
It has been commended by the sector and students’ associations.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor of international and business development Jeremy Baker said more students would consider enrolling because of the increased security and no surprises.
“It’s basically a contract, if you come to Lincoln, we won’t increase the price on you whilst you’re at Lincoln.”
“As long as they make good academic progress, students will pay the same set tuition fee for the degree programme they enrol in, with the fee remaining the same each year for the minimum time it takes to complete the qualification.”
The university – with 3500 students currently – had been planning the idea for about three years.
The set price introduced for international students in 2014 was well-received – with their numbers rising 46 per cent this year – and it was decided domestic students should benefit too.
“What we have been doing is trying to fund a way of still sticking within the rules but giving more flexibility and security for students.”
“We think it’s a good deal for both parties.”
The university was “pretty confident” it would not cause too many issues financially, he said.
“We will lose some money, but we will also gain the certainty of having those students.”
That’s a smart move by Lincoln, and may put pressure on other universities to do the same. Offering a fixed fee for the duration of a degree will attract students, but also incentivise them to pass, as if they fail then their fees may increase to the level set for new students.