• Arizona
  • Thursday , Feb 1 , 2018

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No tuition increase for in-state students at ASU, NAU & UArizona for next school year

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There will be no tuition hike for in-state students at Arizona's three public universities next year. After a virtual meeting Thursday, the Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR) announced that tuition would not go up for in-state students at Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, and University of Arizona in the 2020-2021 school year. The board had previously said it wouldn't consider raising in-state tuition rates because it wants to make sure that higher education at Arizona's public universities remains accessible for students during economic challenges brought about during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"The format may be different, but our enthusiasm for celebration has never been more inspired."

At ASU, out-of-state and online tuition and fees may go up as much as 5%. NAU, meanwhile, will also increase out-of-state tuition by no more than 5%. Online students will see costs go up by about 4.6%. The University of Arizona will raise tuition for all new College of Medicine students by 3%.

"Our presidents are working diligently to ensure our universities are as efficient as possible in these unprecedented times. Expenses have risen due to the pandemic. Those expenses come directly from assuring health and safety on our campuses and from the modified learning environment during the late spring semester. Despite the many uncertainties for our universities, this is not the time to raise resident tuition. I am grateful to the presidents for their recommendations. We have worked to keep our universities among the most affordable in the nation and will continue to do so for our students' success, the future of our state and to build the workforce of tomorrow," said ABOR Chair Larry E. Penley.

This marks a change from last year, when the Board of Regents approved a proposed tuition increase at the state's three public universities.

Here's a look at highlights of approved tuition and fees for 2020-2021:

Arizona State University

  • No resident tuition increase.
  • No more than 5% increase for non-resident undergraduate and online credit hour tuition rates for 2020-21
  • Establishes college fees for online undergraduate students
  • Authorizes ASU to increase nonresident undergraduate college fees for immersion students up to 5%
  • Establishes three new graduate program fees

Northern Arizona University


  • No resident tuition increase.
  • Continues the Pledge guarantee program with most continuing undergraduate students seeing zero increase in tuition and mandatory fees.
  • Establishes a 0.5% increase in tuition for new undergraduate non-resident students on the Pledge program and a 3% increase for students not on the Pledge program.
  • Increases online tuition per credit hour rate by 4.6% for undergraduate students.
  • Establishes five new graduate program fees and one new undergraduate program fee.

University of Arizona


  • No resident tuition increase.
  • Continues the Tuition Guarantee Program ensuring the majority of continuing undergraduate students will have no tuition or mandatory fee increases.
  • Increases tuition 3% for new resident College of Medicine students.
  • Establishes tuition of $45,000 per year for resident and $69,999 for non-resident students for the inaugural year of the College of Veterinary Medicine.
  • Increases one differential undergraduate tuition (2020-21 academic year only), one undergraduate program, six class and an events board fee; establishes a new global study and eight new class fees.

Looking forward, ABOR also says that Arizona State University will continue its commitment to hold tuition increases to 3% or less for resident students in future years, and that NAU and UArizona will continue to have tuition guarantees that provide students with predictable rates.

Even without tuition hikes, the cost of college is still high. But ABOR reminds the public that financial aid is readily available for our state's universities. Arizona's public universities provided $863.3 million in fiscal year 2019 for students to earn their degrees, ABOR said. Around 76% of undergraduate students receive some type of financial aid.

"It is excellent news for our resident students who will have zero increase in tuition for the coming year. We're committed to increasing educational attainment among Arizonans, especially during this challenging time when so many are out of work. Earning a degree provides so many benefits for individuals including higher wages, lower unemployment rates and better quality of life," said ABOR Executive Director John Arnold.

In setting tuition rates, the board considers numerous factors including student input; the amount of state support provided to the university system; revenues generated from tuition and fees; cost of attendance and median family income; the availability of student financial aid; the tuition of peer universities across the country; and resources required to meet the universities' performance goals.

A university spokesperson told us that no, tuition would not be refunded because the university has continued to operate at "full capacity delivered in a different mode."

The COVID-19 crisis prompted all three universities to finish out the semester in an online format. At the end of April, the three schools announced they were planning to resume in-person classes for the fall semester.
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