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University of Galway Students' Union to propose reduction of exam repeat fees

Students at the University of Galway currently have to pay €295 to re-sit their exams.

UNIVERSITY OF GALWAY Students’ Union has said that it intends to put forward a proposal to university management to reduce the amount that students have to pay to repeat exams. 

The plan, being prepared by SU president Dean Kenny, looks to institute a €100 per module fee, capped at a maximum of €295, which is the current fee for students, which must be paid regardless of how many exams they need to repeat. 

Kenny emphasised however, that this was a temporary measure, and the students’ union is committed to the full abolition of repeat fees.

“This has been an issue that the students’ union has been campaigning on for years, but there’s been no willingness on the university’s part to engage on an abolition of fees,” he told The Journal. 

“I see this as being a stepping stone to that full abolition.”

The repeat fee in Galway is the highest per module in the country. The university has frequently come under fire from students and the students’ union over the burden that it puts on students’ finances.

Kenny said that with all the pressures that students face financially, any fees that can be abolished will make a massive difference.

Students are being hit in every regard. With the cost of living crisis, the increasing costs of rental accommodation, and with fees for repeats on top of that, any money that can be put back in students’ pockets is huge

Most recently, the university was criticised for maintaining the fee during the Covid-19 pandemic, when other universities, such as UCC, Maynooth, and Trinity waived fees.

UCC and Trinity have not reinstated repeat fees since the waiver. 

Different fee schemes are in operation around the country. Some universities have a flat rate: Dublin City University charges €150 and Atlantic Technological University charges €100, regardless of the number of exams sat. Others charge either by module or per ECTS credit: University of Limerick charges €171 per module, while Maynooth charges €10 per credit, with a minimum of €50 up to a maximum of €280.

In the north of Ireland, Queen’s University Belfast do not charge repeat fees, while Ulster University charge per module.

The plan comes amid the announcement last week by UCD students’ union that the university will be scrapping their exam repeat fees. The fee had already been reduced from €230 to €180 in 2018.

Speaking about the scrapping of the fees, UCD SU President Martha Ní Riada said “It was great to get this over the line for students, building on years of SU campaigning. This work will have a meaningful impact for students in the cost of living crisis.”

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