Universities Spend Thousands on error compensation

    December 29th 2010, 4:48am - Posted by Administrator

  • It's really a tough task for the government and universities to justify the recent increase in tuition fee when they have done almost nothing to plug the holes through those universities' funds are leaking out, because of their inefficient staff and management.

    An article published in Guardian today has enough to bring the matter into spotlight and leaves students and parents in an awe, especially, after the government has used a massive amount of power to quell students protest on the announced raise in tuition fees across the country. According to the article, universities pay students hundreds of thousands of pounds every year directly and wave their tuition fees as compensation for universities’ error such as in quality of teaching.

    The data was obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, and showed that £346, 505 was paid out last year to students at 60 universities against their grievances. The data comprised of figures from only 60 universities in UK. These universities also waved full and partial fee of 101 students for one reason or other. The Guardian claims to be the first that made such data public thus exploring the universities which offer the highest compensation. The complaints filed by students have reached a point where they had to be resolved by an adjudicator. It’s been revealed that Thames Valley University paid a total of £55,437 to students. The University of East Anglia and Cardiff University dished out £39,445 and £39,100 to students in compensation.

    The top universities of the university even compensated to those who were “not satisfied” with the education standard. Tens of thousands of pounds were given to such students. Among them are Exeter University with a total of £21,500, Cambridge with £16,200, Newcastle with £15,200, Leads with £15,000 and Oxford with £13,260 awarded to students to indemnify for multiple errors on universities’ end. Kingston University paid out 19,881 and Queen Marry, University of London and Goldsmiths gave £15,300 and £15,148 respectively.

    This data has been made public at a time when the government is busy giving the last touch to the new tuition fee policy. The England and Wales head-person of the students complaints adjudicator, Rob Behrens has expressed his grave concern over an escalation of students complaints after the new fee policy becomes effective in 2011. Mr. Behrens said most complaints students have are regarding their academic results and dissatisfaction towards the quality of teaching and other university’s services like libraries and computer labs. Mr. Behrens runs a set up that works as an alternative to the courts that cost university around £163,000 only last year.

    Universities that responded to the newspaper’s request to share the date with the daily, were also asked about the people who received such heavy pay outs which they subsequently refused to disclose as a measure to protect the privacy of students who received the payments. However, without mentioning the students names, many universities shared the reasons behind the compensation payments. Oxford is one of the universities that paid a high total in compensation, £49,584. Loughborough released 37,300 to students to compensate for complaints like loss of privacy and noise due to construction work near their bedrooms.

    The president of the National Union of Students, Aaron Porter said that no improvement in the quality of education and services has been witnessed in spite of a 200 percent raise in the tuition fee. He urged universities to offer students the right value of their money as it is students’ right to ask for a better quality education against for the steep tuition they will be charged by universities under the new policy.

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4 Comments

  • Shaun | March 28th 2013, 9:02am

  • this is shazad's testing

  • Feroz | March 28th 2013, 10:03am

  • Why don't we read it again...

  • Feroz | March 28th 2013, 10:04am

  • I could disagree with half the things written in the article...

  • Feroz | March 28th 2013, 10:05am

  • I wonder if there is anyone else who agrees with this post?