Gain Access to Higher Education; City of Westminster College Offers a Wide Range of Courses with Tuition Fees That Won't Break the Budget. by Sarah Richardson

Article excerpt

Byline: Sarah Richardson

[bar] FURTHER education colleges are increasingly positioning themselves as low-cost alternatives to traditional universities, taking advantage of Government reforms to offer degree courses for a fraction of the tuition fees.

City of Westminster College offers more than 250 study options, ranging from short courses to an exS panded range of higher education (HE) qualifications.

Current tuition fees for HE courses at City of Westminster College range from [pounds sterling]1,950 to [pounds sterling]4,250 a year, comparing favourably with university equivalents that can charge up to [pounds sterling]9,000 a year.

Adults (students aged 19 and over) who choose the college route rather than university are still eligible to apply for tuition fee loans provided this is their first HE course and they qualify as a "home" student (UK/EU citizen or resident status).

Courses are delivered from two central London campuses, including the award-winning new Paddington Green Campus.

The college's close links to London universities (including Middlesex and Westminster) mean that after successful completion of an HND or foundation degree course, students can opt to "top up" to a BA or BSc honours degree with a further year's full-time study.

College careers advisor Jamie O'Hara believes that many more students will be considering the college route for vocational higher education courses.

"The quality of teaching is high and many courses are offered on a parttime basis -- enabling students to combine study with working," he says.

"There's no up-front financial commitment if you take out a tuition fee loan and nothing to pay back until you earn at least [pounds sterling]21,000."

The college's Paddington Green Campus is hosting a Higher Education Open Day tomorrow from 3pm to 7pm. This gives potential students an opportunity to tour facilities, meet teaching staff and current higher education students, and get advice on issues ranging from fees and finance to childcare.

The event will be highlighting the expanded range of HE courses launching in September 2012. …


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