The Russell Group says that higher education should remain “free at the point of use”.
“Government could achieve an overall cost reduction in comparison to the current system, whilst still providing loans to cover the full tuition fee, even up to a fee of £9,000 per year, if necessary,” the document claims.
But Aaron Porter, president-elect of the National Union of Students, said this could lead to students accruing debts of more than £40,000.
Removing the cap on fees would expose students and their families to “the huge risks and potential calamities of the market, abandoning them to sink or swim”, he said.
The University Alliance also suggests that student loan bonds could be sold to private buyers, which it says would free up money to expand student numbers.
It joins Universities UK in calling for a rebranding of top-up fees as graduate contributions.
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