There are plenty of Tories who believe that the top universities should be allowed to charge higher fees.
The Lib Dems (and students) would immediately feel better if tuition fees were renamed as a 'capped graduate tax'.
Tabatha Leggett visits A C Grayling's elite start-up, where the first intake of students are getting to grips with life at a private university.
The UK already invests less in higher education than every other OECD member state except Japan.
With further cuts to higher education and 40 per cent of student loans unlikely to be repaid, the parties need to agree on a sustainable funding system.
The coalition promised to reduce the cost to the taxpayer. But reduced university participation and higher inflation mean we'll end up paying more.
Defending the right to protest.
The changes to student finance, the promotion of STEM subjects through the EBacc and visa issues for international students are all discouraging potential students from realising their talents by following a creative arts degree.
Johann Lamont's declaration that free higher education is "effectively regressive" is a significant moment.
Nick Clegg said the deficit meant fees had to rise. But the new system will cost the government more.