91% feel burden of high college tuition

An overwhelming 91 per cent of college students said in a survey that their tuition was higher than their expectations, the Worker's Daily reported Friday.

The result of the survey, conducted by China National Center for Students Assistance Administration, shows most students believed their tuition was too high, with only 8 per cent saying it was reasonable, plus a minor 1 per cent saying the tuition was low. However, 85 per cent of surveyed students agreed that their tuitions helped colleges improve services, the paper said.

An official from the education authority in Chongqing municipality said tuition for local first-class universities is about 5,000 yuan (S$975) a year, while tuition for second-class colleges would be higher. Students majoring in the arts or medical sciences spend at least 12,000 yuan a year, the report said.

Supporting someone through college may even leave a family poor in some cases. Many students from rural families or lacking social networks have to pay extra to gain different kinds of certificates to land a job, the report said.

Wang Xiumu, a local scholar, said modernized teaching equipment and the rising cost of human resources result in higher tuition, and colleges trying to make the most profit add to the problem, the paper said.