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The price of higher education: how rational is British tuition fee policy?

Miller, Brian

Abstract:
This article examines the introduction of variable tuition fees for university students in the UK - an initiative which has become totemic in British higher education policy. The article seeks to identify the origin of this policy, using the work of Michael Oakeshott (1962) as a framework for discussing the rationality of new Labour. The rhetoric of the government during the passage of the 2004 Higher Education Act is analysed to identify the extent to which rationalism is demonstrated in the policy-making process and this is contrasted with Oakeshott’s conception of policy as evolution. The article concludes that variable tuition fees resulted from a process of conservative evolution, notwithstanding rhetoric of rationality, and discusses the implications of this for the future direction of British higher education policy.

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Document Title: The price of higher education: how rational is British tuition fee policy?
Journal: Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management
Volume: 32
Issue: 1
No. of Pages: 85-95


Document Type:Journal Article (Peer Reviewed)
Subject Area:Finance and Physical Resources
Country:United Kingdom
Keywords:Tuition Fees, Trends in Higher Education, Funding, Higher Education Policy


File Size:72 KB
Date Added:01 September 2011


The price of higher education: how rational is British tuition fee policy?