COUNCIL HAS approved free membership for students on three or four year full-time courses.
In a bid to raise student membership from 3,660 in full-time courses towards a possible 10,300, the package will also include 35 term-time issues of NCE for £10 a year. Individually wrapped and personally labelled NCEs will be sent in bulk to university departments for distribution to students.
Council heard that this brings about a major price saving in postage which makes the low cost scheme possible. An option will be included for a single advance payment for NCE over the full length of the undergraduate course.
'It would be far better if students can be persuaded to pay for three years worth of NCE at the start of their courses when they can afford it. Pre-payment would also reduce administration costs,' said Sir Alan Cockshaw.
Students on four year courses would pay £40 at the start of their course and those joining later would pay on a pro-rata basis.
Research forecasts that 90% of students would take up the offer. Annual subscriptions for 1999 were agreed by Council at 1% above inflation, which is forecast to be 3.2% in December 1998. Subscription for a Class B member, resident and working more than 32km from Great George Street, will rise from £133 to £139.