Education Minister Batt O'Keeffe is meeting the heads of Ireland's universities today to discuss their calls for the reintroduction of third-level fees.
The university presidents are reported to be pushing for a student-loan system to cover the cost of fees, which they say are necessary to boost third-level funding.
The scheme would require students to repay the loans once they start working.
Mr O'Keeffe has indicated that he may be open to reintroducing fees, but has insisted that such a move would only affect wealthy families.
The Union of Students in Ireland, however, is vehemently opposed to the idea.