Students are racking up huge debts, but how can they tell if it’s value for money? | Sonia Sodha

 In News

Universities make it very hard to judge the value of their courses, yet it has never been more vital

High interest rates mean that, for the vast majority of recent graduates in England, student loans have become the equivalent of running up a down escalator. Anyone who started university between 2012 and 2022 is now paying 7.6% interest on what they borrowed, meaning that almost all will see their loans go up by more than they repay this year.

Personal finance reporter Laura Purkiss tweeted last week that the interest she’s been charged so far this year is three times what she’s paid off; the replies were filled with similar stories. Many graduates are watching debts in excess of £60,000 balloon, despite having 9% of their earnings above £27,295 deducted. Little wonder that Andrew Adonis, former education minister under Tony Blair, a few years ago dubbed the system “Frankenstein’s monster”.

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