Sunday, October 1, 2023
NewsProposed autonomous structure causes a 100% spike in tuition fees.

Proposed autonomous structure causes a 100% spike in tuition fees.

Ethiopia’s oldest university, Addis Abeba University (AAU), raises tuition costs by 100% as federal authorities urged first-generation public universities to become independent.

With the new fee becoming applicable to new entrants, students are now being charged between 600 and 800 birr for undergraduates, whereas it costs between 675 and 1,222 birr for master’s education. For PhD students, the tuition fee is now between 11,250 birr and 18,750 birr.

The fee is calculated based on the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS). Students must multiply the number of credits they are required to take by the new fee the university has imposed in order to determine the tuition cost for the course for which they have registered.

With a direction given by the Ministry of Education and under the leadership of Berhanu Nega, its minister, the AAU has become autonomous, a decision that will give the institution financial and operational autonomy. The university has been urging authorities to free it from state control for over three years in an effort to improve the quality of education.

With 1.7 billion birr allocated by the federal government for the institution for the current fiscal year, the AAU is now run on a government budget. The Education Ministry expects that the University will gradually achieve financial independence. A portion of its efforts to move in this direction includes the current tuition adjustment.

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Students are already crying foul over the adjustment made by the university, even pushing some to reconsider their decision to enroll at the university. “Education is a basic thing, and it should be affordable.” “What the university management is doing is the opposite,” said a regular student who is currently enrolling in a master’s program at AAU. “I am asked to pay almost $20,000, while I was expecting half.”

Another MA student whom The Reporter contacted said: “With the current living costs, I cannot afford to pay such a hefty amount.” Thus, I have decided not to enroll this time.

Our attempts to reach the management of AAU bore no fruit.

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