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What your tuition fees pay for

Your fees pay for more than just your tuition. Find out what they were used for in the 2019/20 academic year.

By choosing to study here, you are making a significant financial and time commitment to Brunel University London. In return, we are committed to ensuring that you receive value for money and an education which will set you apart as a global citizen fully equipped to apply your knowledge, understanding and skills in the workplace.

We do this by offering:

  • research-led teaching and experiential work-based learning which takes our students to the cutting edge of their subject. With 90% of our courses offering a placement year, students have dedicated support from our Professional Development Centre in securing placements and internships both in the UK and overseas, such as Brunel Summer Internship Programme and Brunel Professional Mentoring.
  • a central Library where a broad, multi-disciplinary range of books and specialised research journals are available both online and in-person, and specialist subject support for your area of study.
  • free academic English, Arabic, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Russian and Spanish language tuition.
  • our Brunel+ award which takes account of your work experience, volunteering and student society participation.
  • high standard sports facilities and training, including our Indoor Athletics Centre, one of the best indoor training facilities in the country and the chosen training venue for many of the country's finest athletes.

Where Brunel gets its income

Tuition fees make up 58% of the University’s total income. The rest comes from funding councils, government and research grants, donations and from our accommodation and catering services. Student fees from UK and EU students are being funded by the government backed Student Loans Company.


What your fees cover

While we prioritise spending on academic departments and research institutes, tuition fees also contribute to our core costs, including:

  • academic and research staff
  • student services
  • teaching support
  • IT facilities
  • the Library
  • work placements and study abroad
  • financial support (bursaries)
  • sports and arts facilities
  • estates and facilities
  • utility costs like maintenance, heating and cleaning
  • repaying loans for new buildings

Breakdown of expenditure by activity


Breakdown of expenditure by cost type


Depreciation represents the annual effect of spreading the cost of the University’s capital assets (such as buildings and equipment) over their economic life. The interest cost is a fixed annual cost of servicing the University’s long term borrowings which financed the construction of the student residences on the campus during the last decade.

How our fees are set

Fees for UK and EU students are set by the UK Government, and undergraduate tuition fees have been limited to £9,250 per year for all UK and EU citizens since 2017/18. The government also provides grant funding for high cost subjects and for research.

EU students are currently eligible for home fee status and for financial support. The fee status of EU and EEA students starting courses at UK universities from 2021–22 has not yet been determined by UK governments, although Brunel will be charging the equivalent of 'Home' fees for the 2021/22 academic year.  

Brunel attracts around 20% to 25% of all its students from countries across the world, so we ensure our fee levels are competitive with other international institutions that offer comparable high quality courses. The majority of tuition fees are set in three bands – currently £14,800, £16,200 and £18,000 – fees are reviewed each year and published here.

Universities still get some government funding for UK and EU students but not for international students from outside the EU. International student fees are therefore higher to reflect the full cost of your education. We provide extra regulatory and support services for international students, for example, help with immigration and English language support, and these costs are reflected in the fees we charge.

Investment and improvements for the future

As a charity, we don't have any shareholders or owners so any surplus we make is invested back into the University for improvements to our IT systems as well as campus facilities and services.  

You can read a more detailed analysis of the University’s most recent financial results and position, and a narrative on the University’s operating activities including its teaching, research and charitable/public benefit initiatives, in the Strategic Report section of the University’s Financial Statements.