The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the routines of untold numbers of students in colleges, universities and other institutes of higher education. Many are now seeking coronavirus-related tuition refunds, albeit without much success.
University administrators and students alike adjusted — and quickly — to a radically different learning paradigm. Private colleges and universities, especially in the United States, lost a significant amount of revenue. But all too often students — and their parents — are dissatisfied with the results.
After all, a university education isn’t cheap. Certainly not in the United States, and not in much of the rest of the world either. With so much on the line, you naturally expect to get what you pay for. And online classes do not exactly fit the bill.
Lockdowns and quarantines forced campuses to all but shut down entirely. Many professors, to their credit, began to offer their classes via Zoom or other online methods. For all their efforts, electronic alternatives do not compare with an in-person learning experience. Not the instruction. Nor the social interaction, which hardly exists. Nor the academic debate. Not to mention laboratory time, which is now unavailable. Very simply, this is not what students expected at the beginning of the school year.
That much at least is understandable. The situation was out of the universities’ control. Many of them (though by no means all) responded as well as they could. The problem comes down to money.
In countless cases in America and around the world, there are no refunds. Or they cover far less than students believe they deserve. For example, some colleges and universities only offer a prorated refund. It covers the food and lodging that students did not receive when their campuses closed. Those institutions typically claim that there are no tuition refunds because online classes are an equivalent substitute for traditional classes.
That claim is absurd. Nonetheless, institutions as prestigious as Brown University make that argument. According to Brown, an online degree is worth just as much as a conventional one. Of course, that begs the question why online degrees were much cheaper before the coronavirus apocalypse. The question answers itself, and shows how disingenuous the argument is.
It gets worse. Some universities actually offer recordings of class lectures. Unfortunately, that eliminates the possibility of interactive learning.
Not surprisingly, the difficulty in obtaining coronavirus-related tuition refunds led to a growing list of private and class action lawsuits. Defendants include some of the most prestigious private and public universities in the country. Apart from Brown, they include the University of Miami, UC Berkeley, Drexel University, New York University, and others.
The problem of university tuition refunds is not just an American one. New Zealand, the Philippines and numerous other countries are dealing with the same issues.
Are you a student or parent experiencing difficulty in getting your money back due to cancelled or downgraded learning? If so, contact MyChargeBack today for a free fund recovery consultation. We have the strategies to assist. And we will be pleased to review your case without any obligation.