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Governments Should Offer A Free University Education - With A Free Essay Review
Prompt: “Governments should offer a free university education to any student who has been admitted to a university but who cannot afford the tuition. Write a response in which you discuss your views on the policy and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should consider the possible consequences of implementing the policy and explain how these consequences shape your position.”
Although education is very important for all citizens, and colleges and universities play very important roles in the transformation of a student to a working adult, it does not necessarily mean that university education should be free for any student who has been admitted to a university but who cannot afford the tuition. In addition, this action may not be beneficial for the society in long run.
First, offering a free university education to any student who has been admitted to a university but who cannot afford the tuition can impose a large financial burden for the government. In order to implement this action, a large amount of money is need. Along with the tuition for these qualified students, other costs should also be considered. For instance, enabling all of these qualified students to receive free university education may result in an increase of the number of student enrollment. Consequently, universities need to hire more teachers, build more dormetories to ensure student housing, build more labs and classrooms to adapt these extra students, and current spaces may not be enough for the extra crowd. All of these consequential costs should be taken into account, in addition to the tuitions of these students. Otherwise it is impossible for universities to uptake these increasing students.
Moreover, another potential problem is that due to extra students added to the current student population, class sizes may enlarge, and student-teacher contact will in turn decrease. These potential factors can affect the quality of education, and this can be an disadvantage for previously enrolled students.
In addition, if the university education is free for any student who has been admitted to a university but who cannot afford the tuition, then middle-class families who can barely afford the tuition are not qualified for this entitlement. This is not fair for these middle-class tax payers who pay more taxes for the expenses but they receive nothing from the money they spend.
Further, if the only criteria for the free university education is based on whether an enrolled student can afford the tuition or not, it is possible that the money will be spent on students who are not interested in academics and do not demonstrate good performances. The money is not worth being spent, if the student does not appreciate education at all. Since every penny made by the tax payer needs to be spent wisely, the money should be spent at the place where it is really needed. For instance, some students who are really interested in academic, and do very well in various subjects but are poor, should receive gorverment aid to help them achieve their goals and succeed. However, for the students who have no interests in acdemic, learning other skills or exploring the field they like may be better choices for them since all kinds of people are needed for the society.
Overall all, it is true that education is very important for all students, but offering a free college education to any student who is admitted but cannot afford the tuition is not likely to benefit the society or the individual in long run. In addition, this action can increase the financial pressure for the government too.
I did not find the discussion of the possible negative consequences very compelling or comprehensive. For instance, I don’t see why the number of students admitted to university would necessarily increase. A university could keep the number of students enrolled constant. And if universities increase the number of students it admits, then presumably the additional costs you mention would be borne by those universities (and presumably covered by tuition, whether paid by students or by the government). Generally speaking, universities benefit financially from having more students. None of that really matters, however, since the main point you want to make (the policy could “impose a large financial burden for the government”) is true whether or not the number of students increases. What you need to explain is not how that burden might be even larger than one might at first have imagined, but rather why a government ought not to assume that burden. You need to answer the question, “Is that a good thing for a government spend money on?” One’s answer to that question might vary with the nature of the society. It might depend, for instance, on what programs, if any, would need to be sacrificed in order to pay for the policy. Or it might depend on whether students are likely to be greater contributors to society if they have a college degree, or on whether the society suffers from a shortage of professionals in certain disciplines. These are the kinds of issues that you ought to discuss, I think, and you should try to do so in a less one-sided manner. At present, you look only at the possible negative consequences of the policy. It is possible that you think there would be no positive consequences, but even in that case you ought to concede that others do think there would be positive consequences, and explain why you disagree.
I began by saying that I did not find the discussion of the consequences very compelling, but you do also have an argument based on principle: the policy would be unfair to taxpayers. That’s an ideological argument, and I think it would fare better if it were presented as such. I don’t think, for example, that the argument is strengthened much by the speculation that some of the money will be wasted on unappreciative students. The real issue is whether poor students should have their education paid for. To respond: “no, they should not, because some of them might be lazy” seems a silly argument to me. You are being asked to discuss a policy and instead you are discussing problems of implementation. It would be better to limit your argument to the claim that it is wrong on principle to take money from one sector of society in order to fund the education of another sector. You could then explain in an abstract way why you think that; you might call it state-sponsored theft, for instance, or you might say that it encourages dependence, or whatever other excuses get used these days to denigrate government assistance programs.