Modeling kept under wraps by the UK government for nearly two years estimates that Brexit could cost the country’s universities nearly two-thirds of their student body in the European Union and £ 63million ($ 87million) in one year , but that the universities of Oxford and Cambridge will increase their income.
Following Brexit, EU students lost their access to UK student loans and will no longer be subject to the same automatic tuition fee caps as home students – meaning they will likely have to deal with upfront fees and universities can charge. them the much higher full tuition fees charged to non-EU foreign students.
The report for the Department of Education, prepared by London Economics, models the potential impact of these changes on undergraduate and postgraduate recruitment of UK universities in the EU, as well as that of EU students with the same limited postgraduate rights to work in Britain as non- European students, and the same restrictions on their rights to bring their families to Britain as non-European students.
Last year, the Department of Education denied an access to information request from Times Higher Education to publish the report, stating that “discussions with the EU on our ongoing future trade relationship, there are reasonable grounds to delay publication in this matter in order to avoid it affecting our future negotiations. “
The report, originally slated for release in April 2019, has now been released, following the end of the UK government’s trade talks with the EU.
The report brings together data on university income and the number of EU students to produce data on the amount of money universities earn from this source, and it models the potential future impact on demand for EU students by examining the impact of the move from a fee to a loan system in 2006 had on recruitment.
Considering all four changes for EU students, ‘the estimated combined impact of all these policy changes would be to reduce tuition fee income from EU sources by approximately £ 62.5 million, with 35,540 (57%) fewer first year enrollments in the EU ”. the report concludes.
The report takes into account that if the demand for EU students is likely to decline, universities can compensate for this by charging higher fees.
But it also clearly shows that “the overall impact on tuition fee income masks significant variation” between different types of universities.
The report uses a previous analysis which groups UK universities into four ‘clusters’. According to this earlier analysis, “Oxford and Cambridge ’emerge as an elite level’ (group 1), the other universities in the Russell group being essentially undifferentiated from the majority of other universities before 1992 (groups 2 and 3)”, but “with about a quarter of post-1992 universities forming a ‘distinctive lower level’ (group 4),” the report says. (The Russell Group is an organization of research universities.)
The report, which uses various scenarios to determine how many and which universities are in each cluster, explores how demand is likely to vary between clusters, in which universities have different levels of recruitment in the EU and different strengths in prestige. .
He concludes that Group 1 universities “would benefit overall; while the institutions of groups 2, 3 and 4 would be worse off. “