Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Incentives matter: education file

This from the Chronicle of Higher Education
Several British universities apparently are offering cash incentives to students to induce them to enroll in unpopular degree programs, according to an investigation by London’s Sunday Times in which undercover reporters posed as students seeking spots.

A female reporter was offered £1,000, or $2,000, to enroll in Leicester University’s undergraduate physics program and was told “that she was a strong candidate for the money partly because women were ‘underrepresented’ on the course,” the Times reported. [...]

All but a handful of undergraduate courses of study cost the government-set maximum annual tuition of approximately $6,000, but the newspaper noted that the “booming market in cash awards to fill some courses” represents an effort by institutions, “reluctant to appear cheap,” to effectively offer discounted rates while officially charging the national norm.

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