For-profit colleges have lower graduation rates, says report

The rate of students who drop out of their studies at alternative providers of higher education is 15 percentage points higher than the rest of the sector, warns a report released today.

The report from the National Audit Office found that although the percentage of students dropping out had fallen, graduates from alternative providers – often privately run for profit – have lower rates of progression into employment or further study, and lower salaries than graduates of publicly-funded providers of higher education.

UCU general secretary Sally Hunt said: “We have serious concerns about the government’s desire to open up the higher education sector to more for-profit alternative providers. In the US for-profit universities and colleges, such as Trump University, have been investigated for the mis-selling of qualifications to vulnerable students and their families.

“Our colleges and universities are a success story, but further privatisation could cause serious damage to their reputations and put our proud international standing for excellence at risk.”

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