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Government claims that their HE funding cut is “small” are partly true – but misleading

Text against the image: What they say: the amount being cut is small, just 1%25; the MU view: this is partly true, but misleading

What they say: the amount being cut is small – only 1%

Examples of this claim in use:

  • This quote from an MP in response to a letter from an MU member: “​The proposed reforms to the funding of courses at universities will only affect approximately one per cent of the total funding allocated towards some arts subjects, including media studies, and only impact a small proportion of the income of higher education institutions.”
  • This tweet from the DofE 
  • This claim has also been made in more details by the OfS on Twitter and on their website.

The MU view: partly true, but misleading

The amount being cut is described here as £121.50 per student per year, which is approximately 1% of total funding.

But this calculation is disputed and fails to take into account other cuts being made at the same time, like the removal of the London Weighting.

The Russell Group has calculated that courses in the new C3 price group – the music and arts courses that are being cut – will in fact face an average deficit of £2,780 per student per year because of the various cuts and other financial pressures. This will mean that many arts and music courses are no longer viable.

Government has also said that it wants to make more cuts in the future. So even if the 1% claim were true, the cuts are planned to go beyond this.

Finally, talk of funding percentages overlooks that most Government’s Higher Education “funding” is in fact student debt.

Check more claims


Protect Government funding for Higher Education arts and music subjects

Government is imposing a 50% funding cut on residual funding for music and arts subjects at university.

Protect Government funding for Higher Education arts and music subjects