In contrast to the extremely negative reaction from the UK’s student community, research conducted by Home Learning College, a provider of professional distance learning, shows that large sectors of the population see the benefit of increased tuition fees. Some 51% of the adults questioned believe higher fees will encourage more people into vocational study and 43% feel vocational qualifications are of greater value than degrees.


The survey revealed that 54% think that increasing the UK’s vocational skills base will have a positive impact on the country’s economy.


“The media has focused on how young people – and students in particular – have responded to proposals concerning higher education funding,” said Dave Snow, Academic Director at Home Learning College. “However, our research shows that vast swathes of the population are either in favour of these changes or can at least see potential benefits in the long run.


“The previous government has made the younger generation feel as though university is the only route to success. Increased tuition fees will encourage school leavers to consider their options more carefully and to place greater value of the benefit of a more vocational study path that broaden our skills base.”


Comment: This survey would appear to suggest that there’s a glimmer of light for us all. Higher tuition fees could prompt more young people to consider the vocational courses and qualifications which are vital to everyone’s quality of life (if you don’t think so, try getting a plumber or electrician to turn up whenever you need one). It could even benefit the young people – by ensuring them guaranteed careers and employment – and that could benefit the UK economy by boosting buying power. Could the Government – probably unwittingly – be actually doing something to benefit the UK people and our economy?