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Fee hikes at polys, ITE and universities

THE three universities, five polytechnics and Institute of Technical Education (ITE) announced separately on Friday that they will raise tuition fees for the academic year starting this year.

The institutions all said the increased cost of providing a quality education has forced the fee hikes which, as with previous hikes, will be bigger for permanent residents (PRs) and foreigners than for citizens.

At the polytechnics and ITE, the fee increase will hit new and existing students. At the universities, however, the fee increases will affect only incoming freshmen, but male students who applied for places before their national service will have their tuition fees pegged to the date of their applications.

The universities have generally increased their fees every year in the last few years, with the exception of 2009, when the economic downturn sparked a deferment in fee increases.

Singaporeans starting at the National University of Singapore (NUS) and the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) will pay 4 to 6 per cent more than their seniors; those starting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) will pay 3 per cent more.

For instance, an arts and social sciences student who entered NUS last year would have paid $6,890 in tuition for the year; a student entering the faculty this year will have to pay $7,170 – $280 or 4 per cent more.

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