Section 77: Limit on student fees: part-time courses
364.Section 77 amends the definition of “course” in section 41(1) of HEA 2004 to remove the exclusion of part-time courses from that definition. The effect of this amendment is that references to “course” in Part 3 of HEA 2004 will include part-time courses. This will enable the Secretary of State to apply a regime of capping the amounts which institutions providing higher education courses can charge part-time students, as can currently be done in relation to full-time students. In particular, the Secretary of State will be able to specify in regulations under section 24 of HFEA 2004 the amounts which can be charged for part-time courses, and to prescribe the type of part-time courses which are subject to these amounts. This will ensure that part-time undergraduate students can be treated in a way which is commensurate with the treatment of full-time undergraduate students.
365.Subsection (2) provides that this amendment applies in relation to a part-time course which begins on or after 1 September 2012, unless the case is within a prescribed exception.