Since the inception of the, EIT has seen a steady increase in the number of people accessing fees free study. In 2018 EIT had just over 500 students enrol who were eligible for this subsidy. In 2019 there has been a 40% increase.
Executive Director of Policy and Projects, Patrick Jones says, “Much of the focus in recent media has focused on the uptake and subsequent performance of those fees free students attending a university. However, in a regional provider such as EIT, the removal of a potential barrier (such as fees or debt incursion) provides increased opportunities for our communities to engage in tertiary education for the first time.”
“And having a wide portfolio of programmes on offer, from certificate level to degree level, means that this policy further increases accessibility for learners across a wide range of levels and disciplines.”
Building on 2018, year to date in 2019 EIT has had a 40% increase in students who are accessing this policy. “General awareness of this policy is growing in our communities and that it is not just about first time university level studies. This is partly as a result of EIT promoting fees free and proactively working with students to determine their eligibility,” says Patrick.
An initial look at the performance of the 2018 fees free students indicates that these students performed well, with a course completion rate of over 80%, equivalent to those studying at the same levels that did not receive fees free.