Higher Costs Prevent Graduates from Getting Postgraduate Education

March 24, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. social mobility 
[SOH-shuhl moh-BIL-i-tee] (n.) – the ability of people to move from one social class to another (e.g. from lower class to middle class)
Example: Higher education promotes social mobility and allows people to improve their lives.

2. postgraduate [pohst-GRAJ-oo-it, -eyt] (n.) – a person who studies a higher level after finishing college
ExamplePostgraduates study even after college to become experts in their field.

3. deter [dih-TUR(v.) – to stop a person from doing something
Example: Lack of interest in studying deterred Robin from getting high grades in math.

4. advantageous [ad-vuh n-TEY-juh s] (adj.) – helpful or useful
Example: Good educational background can be advantageous in getting a job.

5. deserving [dih-ZUR-ving] (adj.) – rightful or worthy of getting something
ExampleDeserving students should get the quality education they need.

Read the text below.

A study from Sutton Trust Charity has revealed that the rising costs of postgraduate courses may discourage poorer graduates in the UK from getting advanced education and may affect social mobility.

According to the study, the number of postgraduates in the UK’s workforce has increased   from 4% in 1996 to 11% in recent years. However, this number may decrease because not all students can afford the higher costs of getting a postgraduate degree. Higher tuition fees in the college level may also deter people from finishing college.

Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of Sutton Trust Charity, said that many graduates with more than £40,000 in student debts would not see the appeal of paying another £9,000 a year for postgraduate education. In other words, only graduates with enough resources can afford postgraduate courses.

In the UK, college education is already a basic requirement in getting a high-paying job. However, employers nowadays often prefer people with postgraduate degrees. In addition, postgraduates could earn £5,000 more earnings each year than college graduates.

While having a highly educated workforce is advantageous to the country, Sir Peter suggested that postgraduate courses should not be available only to wealthy people. He said that a postgraduate degree makes a country’s working population competitive in the global market. But college graduates who cannot afford additional education should still have equal access to good jobs just like wealthy postgraduates.

The Sutton group recommends that the government and other organizations financially help deserving students who want to take up postgraduate courses.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         Why do you think the number of postgraduate students is increasing?
·         What are some advantages and disadvantages of getting higher education?

Discussion B

·         Do you think having postgraduate education is always an advantage in finding a career? Why or why not?
·         If you were an employer, would you prefer a postgraduate over a college graduate? Please explain your answer.


March 24, 2013