Choice and information in the public sector: a Higher Education case study

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Harding, Jamie (2012)

Successive governments have encouraged the view of users of public services as consumers, choosing between different providers on the basis of information about the quality of service. As part of this approach, prospective students are expected to make their decisions about which universities to apply to with reference to the consumer evaluations provided by the National Student Survey. However, a case study of a post-1992 university showed that not all students made genuine choices and those who did tended to be in stronger social and economic positions. Where choices were made, they were infrequently based on external evaluations of quality.
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