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Edinburgh Fringe Benefits

24 Nov 2008

Edinburgh Fringe Benefits Those of you currently looking for graduate jobs in London might feel a little aggrieved that you had such a tough and frugal path through your university days.

The new wave of undergraduates may never know the character-building experience of taking a bath in lukewarm water which has already been used by two of their other housemates.

Brian Lang, the Vice-Chancellor of St Andrews University in Edinburgh, has been explaining to university leaders at Princeton University in America that undergraduates this side of the pond are becoming a lot more demanding.

Students - who are now paying up to £3,000 a year in fees - are expecting a little bit more back in return for their money. Dr Lang said that, “not only do (undergraduates) expect a single room; it has to be en suite, have a TV in it and be cleaned for them.”

“This spreads into the learning experience – they expect essays to be marked clearly and back within a certain number of days, and to see their tutor regularly. They want a fit-for-purpose library with all the books they need, when they need them – especially when they’re paying substantially for it. It’s part of an increasing cultural awareness of service.”

“We are becoming a service society, and students increasingly think they are buying a service – for which they want a return.”
Lang said that this trend was noticeable even in Scotland where top-up fees do not universally apply.

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