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Analysts review tough financial choices ahead for HE

Policy-makers and higher education leaders will need to make difficult financial choices if universities are to satisfy unmet demand for places, a study of the funding challenges facing the sector suggests.

Raising the interest rate on student loans or lowering the threshold at which repayments are made are among a wide range of options reviewed by the Institute for Fiscal Studies in a report published by Universities UK.

The report says there is clear evidence that increasing student numbers could help the UK meet its long-term economic needs. But to do so will require a significant injection of funding from the public purse, students, institutions, or investors. The government may need to look abroad for answers, such as in Hungary, where the student loans scheme is self-financing.

Get the clear spin-free picture from HEi-know: Briefing Report 110