Students will still have the chance to study humanities courses with teachers who are research leaders in their field despite proposed fee changes, says the head of the University of Tasmania's Humanities School.
Last Friday federal Education Minister Dan Tehan announced proposed changes which would see the price of some degrees increase to subside decreases in other courses.
The changes would result in the cost of a humanities degree increasing by 113 per cent while law and economics degree would also increase by 28 per cent.
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Changes are at a unit level so units relating to nursing, agriculture, maths, English and languages, environmental science, health, architecture, IT and engineering will be cheaper.
Concerns have been raised about the changes discouraging people from pursuing the arts but Professor Lisa Fletcher said UTAS is committed to the humanities.
"The University of Tasmania understands there is intrinsic value in the study of the humanities, and that there is a vital importance in the humanities and the arts for Tasmania's society," she said.
"We understand that concerns have arisen about the government's proposal.
"However, as they always do, our students will make careful choices about the courses they select and the specialisations they pursue. The cost of study is one factor in that decision-making, but it is not the only factor."
Tasmanian Liberal Senator Eric Abetz said all government expenditure needed reconsidering due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
He said the changes gave taxpayers more benefit for the money which was being spent.
But independent economist Saul Eslake said the government could afford to expand places and subsidies some course without increasing the cost of other degrees.
"Of course they could, ultimately government has an enormous range of options open to it in deciding how much to spend and whether to fund that spending by increased taxation, cutting spending in other areas of borrowing," he said.
"You could say that the government has $60 billion more up its sleeve than it thought it was going to have before it knew treasury had overestimated the cost of the JobKeeper program.
"Or the government could choose to have spent less subsidising people buying new homes or undertaking renovations in order to free up funds for reducing the costs for degrees they think are important."
Reportedly the changes will result in universities receiving less government funding per student in areas such as environmental science, science, engineering and maths.
Despite those courses being identified by Mr Tehan as courses with strong job outcomes.