The Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency briefs peak bodies today on its proposed fees (as excellently explained by Michael Tomlinson in CMM, scroll up)
The university lobbies do not appear all that fussed – perhaps because their members are less exposed to fees, what their being self-accrediting for courses.
But private provider representatives aren’t entirely happy.
Independent Higher Education Australia warns the $18m in costs TEQSA intends to recover, will hurt “the sustainability of small and niche providers.”
And just as TEQSA regulates provider performance IHEA wants to know how the agency’s “costs are calculated and applied.”
“The TEQSA costing regime needs to be accompanied by stringent and transparent service obligations to ensure the regulator is meeting sector and community expectations.”
Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia generously gives TEQSA time to prepare for curly questions, such as; “an initial review creates a question concerning the extent that the Australian Government’s cost recovery guidelines have been met – the robustness of some underpinning assumptions is an open question.”
ITECA also has specifics, including why the regulator wants to charge providers $17 000 to add or re-locate a delivery site for international students, which TEQSA has already approved for a domestic campus. “This seems unreasonable and unnecessary,” ITECA suggests.
However, ITECA is happy that the TEQSA integrity unit is not included in cost recovery and it welcomes a review of Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students fees and charge, given possible duplication of recovery actions by TEQSA and the Department of Education, Skills and Employment.