Recession-hit students and parents feel the pinchParents find it harder to fund kids at university

15 July 2010

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We all know a university education doesn't come cheap, but with student debt set to top more than £20,000 for 2011 graduates, both students and their parents are feeling the pressure as the recession bites.

According to new research from the Association of Investment Companies (AIC), more than three quarters of parents (82%) believe that the recession is making it harder to fund their children through university. Children are more realistic than their parents about the cost of getting a university education, with around a third predicting that they will be more than £20,000 in debt when they graduate, compared with just 19% of parents.

Parental support

Student loans are the mainstay of financial support for students, with 46% of students surveyed using them as their main source of income. However, a quarter of parents said they will be putting their hands in their pockets to fund their children's university education. And plenty of parents are prepared to make quite significant sacrifices to help their kids through university: 23% said they would sacrifice their annual holiday and 21% said they would forego a new car.

Life after university

In 2011, the average student is expected to graduate with £21,198 of debt, so finding a job on graduation has never been more important. Worryingly however, more than half of students are worried they won't be able to find a job because of the recession. Almost a third expect to look for a higher paid job over their career vocation to help pay off their student debt.

Student and graduate accounts

Faced with such big debts, it's important to manage your money well, both when you are a student and when you graduate. For details of the best deals from all the main banks, use the Which? guide to student and graduate accounts. And don't forget to check out the Which? guide to student credit cards.

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