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11.25.09

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The Breakdown

The UC system's infamous 32 percent rate hike is 'highly unusual,' according to the editor of 'Inside Higher Ed.'

By Jessica Lussenhop


Soon enough it will be time for University of California students to lay down their picketing signs and take out their wallets--the fee increases are on the way. Come January 2010, tuition -- erhm, whoops, fees -- will increase $585 for undergraduates and graduate professional degree students and $111 for graduate academic degree students. Then next year, the average student will pay about $2,500 more than this year, bumping the total to over $10,000.

Although the percent increase--32 percent from this academic year to the 2010-11 year -- is astounding, the actual dollar amount increases would be business as usual at a private university, according to Scott Jaschik, editor of online publication Inside Higher Ed. "There are lots of private colleges where increases in that dollar total wouldn't be shocking, but the percentage would be much smaller," he says, adding, though, that "the 32 percent figure is definitely highly unusual." Although he won't go so far as to call the figure "unprecedented," he says California's unique situation ("California doesn't even admit it has tuition") means that even though universities are hurting all over the country, he's almost certain no other institution is seeing increases like the UCs. "I'm having a hard time imagining it," he says.


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