Post-secondary students slated to go back to the University of British Columbia’s two campuses can expect no reduction in their tuition fees, despite most classes and lectures delivered online.
“Primarily, our classes will be online in the fall. There will be some labs that will be conducted in person, but very few in comparison to years past,” Matthew Ramsey, director of university affairs said.
“We’ve put about 3,000 courses that were typically taught in classrooms into an online environment.”
Ramsey added another change students can expect is a different final exam format.
“Professors now can ask for a final project rather than an exam and that really provides the students with flexibility.”
However, what won’t change is tuition fees. UBC announced it won’t be reducing tuition rates as the university is projecting a financial deficit, despite a provincial operating grant.
UBC Vancouver provost Andrew Szeri said the operating grant is a firm foundation in helping the university provide high-quality education, but there are other expenses and supports they need to provide as well.
“This operating grant alone is not sufficient to meet all our financial needs and obligations. Tuition is a necessary source of revenue, now more than ever,” he said.
The provincial operating grant and tuition fees support faculty and staff salaries, student financial aid, libraries, information technology, as well as administration in the Vancouver and Okanagan campuses.
Even though students won’t be coming back to classrooms full force, the university said it is now experiencing a wide range of new expenses that still require funding.
“The university has invested heavily in online education supports, training, and systems for faculty, teaching assistants, and students.”
“The university has also invested in expanded emergency student financial aid and many other areas designed to assist faculty, students, and staff through COVID-19,” according to UBC.