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Costs of learning

Higher tuition fees may not deter many students from applying to university, but they might affect grades once they get there.

How are students affected when university costs more? This question was thrust into the limelight by the 2012 university tuition fee rise in England, then by the UK general election campaigns of 2010 (when the Liberal Democrats promised to scrap tuition fees) and 2015 (when the Lib Dems were punished by voters for failing to scrap fees) and most recently by Labour’s 2017 manifesto, which promised to abolish fees.

Although the prospect of higher debt could deter some from going to university, graduates enjoy a substantial pay premium. The Institute for Fiscal Studies recently found that median earnings of male graduates in England 10 years after leaving university were twice those of men without a degree.

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