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Thursday, 28 March, 2002, 15:13 GMT
Prince's pull costs university 175,000
St Andrews
St Andrews does have other attractions
The university chosen by Prince William has been "fined" because it attracted so many other students as a result.

Applications to St Andrews went up by about 45% after it became public knowledge that the prince was going to study there from last autumn.

Prince William
Prince William: Art history student
But the funding rules penalise higher education institutions which exceed their recruitment targets - and St Andrews has had to pay back 175,000.

Glasgow Caledonian University over-recruited by an even larger percentage - though it is not clear whether this was due to people wanting to avoid attending the same university as the prince.

The university says it is a victim of its own success in recruiting students from "non-traditional" backgrounds - those without a family history of university attendance.

It is having to pay back 452,000.


They are the only two universities to be penalised in the current funding round, just announced for next year.

The Scottish Higher Education Funding Council set out the targets in May last year.

It said an institution would be penalised only if its student enrolments were more than 3% above its target figure, to allow for some leeway.

The target for St Andrews was to have the equivalent of 4,069 students for 2001-02. It took on another 165 undergraduates - an extra 7%.

Glasgow Caledonian was supposed to have 8,024 and went 8% over.

The way the fine works is that the funding council recovers the tuition fees - 1,100 - paid for the students that are above the 3%-over-target figure.

In addition there is no government funding for those students - so the whole cost of having them is borne by the institutions.

'Excellent results'

In a statement, St Andrews said it "regretted" the fine for over-recruiting.

It said it had done its best to operate within the funding framework and had given advance warning of what was going to happen.

It was delighted that its "excellent set of results" in the latest assessment of its research quality had been recognised by the funding council with an increase of more 11% in its core funding for next year.

The funding council said its policy flowed from the spending predictions required by the Scottish Executive - which meant limits had to be applied to overall student numbers.

"Higher education institutions can recruit as many part-time and postgraduate students as they like. They can also recruit as many overseas students as they like," a spokesperson said.

But if a university went over its target for undergraduates there was a cost burden on the executive, so it was penalised.

  • The University of Edinburgh and the University of Glasgow were fined 85,000 and 56,000 for under-recruiting.

  • See also:

    20 Aug 01 | Scotland
    Prince boosts university's draw
    31 Jan 01 | Scotland
    William 'guards' request more cash
    28 Jan 01 | Scotland
    Students warned over William leaks
    18 Aug 00 | UK
    William: The student Prince
    17 Aug 00 | Education
    Prince William makes the grade
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