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OUA: budget empowers student choice

14 May 2014

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The higher education sector could use a good dose of student focus and greater innovation in order to drive better learning outcomes. Any industry that makes price the issue is giving more power to consumers. In other industry sectors, deregulation of fees has led to better outcomes for consumers.

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OUA

On the back of the Federal Government’s 2014/2015 Budget announcements , Open Universities Australia (OUA) has released its breakdown of the budget and its impact on the Higher Education industry, and more importantly its impact on students.

“It might seem that this is a bad budget for you as a student, but don’t be too discouraged. Some of the changes won’t kick in until 2020, with the earliest changes happening in 2016,” says Mr Paul Wappett, OUA CEO.

“OUA’s focus is ensuring education is accessible and open to anyone who wants to study and today we’d also like to help students understand their options as a result of the upcoming changes.

“The higher education sector could use a good dose of student focus and greater innovation in order to drive better learning outcomes. Any industry that makes price the issue is giving more power to consumers. In other industry sectors, deregulation of fees has led to better outcomes for consumers.

“In a demand driven system, we encourage students to expect and demand more from their education providers. Work out what you really want. For some, prestige will always count but for many more, flexibility and affordability will be key.”

“If the quality isn’t there to justify the price, it would be reasonable to conclude that students will shop around on a global level. To retain Australian students in Australian universities, we have to view students as recipients of education, rather than a revenue stream.

“Our hope is that students will have access to a variety of clearly defined price tiers, better education content and that quality is the precious commodity that drives better outcomes for students.

“We’d say to students that what really matters is whether a degree can provide good employment and education outcomes, how difficult the initial investment will be to pay off and whether you’re effectively just buying a piece of paper or the support services and tools that will help you succeed as well,” says Mr Wappett.

See
OUA’s Federal Budget Factsheets
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