Short courses - staff resources


Check if your price is competitive

Work out your development and running costs before calculating your course price. Revisit your costs throughout the development process to see if your course price needs to change.

List all the likely costs of your course

Your course costs could include:

  • staff time (academic and administrative) to plan, design and prepare the course, including any assessments
  • staff time (academic and administrative) to run the course, including time to moderate forums (if you plan to run these) or mark assessments
  • room hire for external spaces
  • room hire at UCL: if you're using UCL space to deliver a course that's not directly linked to UCL standard teaching, you may have to pay a charge to UCL Estates (contact them by submitting a request form)
  • learning materials: for professional courses (like medicine or dentistry that uses clinical specimens) these could be expensive
  • licenses and technical support for online learning environments, like UCLeXtend
  • refreshments for face-to-face courses
  • other costs particular to your discipline or field

Overestimate the time for design: you could use a ratio (for example, 5 hours' design time for each hour of learning).

Decide which pricing model to use

There are 2 models you can use to price your course:

  • cost-based pricing
  • value-based pricing

How cost-based pricing works

You work out your likely costs and then set your suggested course price at a percentage above your costs.

Once you've identified your competitors, look at the prices they charge for courses similar to yours. 

Ideally, you would price your course between the cheapest and most expensive prices of your competitors.

If you think your price is too high compared with your competitors, you might need to cut your costs to get your price down.

How value-based pricing works

You work out how much money or value your course will generate for your customers.

This value could be from boosting learners' efficiency or skills.

You then set your course price in a range determined by what learners are willing to pay. 

Value-based prices are often higher than cost-based prices. So you may make your course too expensive for some learners if you use value-based pricing.

Use UCL's costing and pricing tool

You can use the UCL tool to work out:

  • your likely course costs
  • what course price you could charge

Contact the UCL Short Courses team about using the tool. Email cpd@ucl.ac.uk or call 020 7679 9353 (internal: 09353).

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