Ohio State University: Ohio State proposes Tuition Guarantee rates for incoming first-year students

Since 2018, in-state first-year students have benefited from the Ohio State Tuition Guarantee, which locks in tuition, housing and dining costs for each entering cohort for four years. For autumn 2021, the university plans to increase tuition and fees for incoming Ohio freshmen by 3.8%, which equates to a $418 annual change from last year’s rate, according to a proposal being presented to the university’s Board of Trustees on Thursday.

The new rate will then be frozen for four years for these students, who will become the sixth straight class of Ohio students to graduate with no tuition and fee increases. The guarantee provides students and their families with predictability about college costs by locking in-state tuition, mandatory fees, housing and dining for each incoming class of undergraduate students from Ohio.

Based on Ohio State’s tuition and fee proposals, the university would remain the second most affordable for resident undergraduates among selective admission public universities in Ohio and at the median for in-state tuition and fees among public Big Ten schools. The university evaluates tuition and fees annually and sets rates based on program needs and market data.

“It’s vital to keep Ohio State affordable and accessible and to stay true to our history as a land-grant university – to enable students from ordinary backgrounds to do extraordinary things,” said Ohio State President Kristina M. Johnson. “By locking in costs, we’re continuing to provide a predictable path for students and their families to plan for and invest in their futures.”

Market and pricing structure was also reassessed and adjusted as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on traditional non-resident students who transitioned to fully online courses. Prior to the pandemic, just 1% of traditional students took all of their courses fully online. During the autumn 2020 and spring 2021 semesters, 49% and 54%, respectively, of non-resident students were fully online.

Pending approval by the board of trustees, additional tuition and fee proposals include:

The non-resident surcharge for students who attend classes in person would increase 5%. Overall, tuition and mandatory fees for non-resident students would increase by $1,517.
The non-resident surcharge for students who take all of their classes online will increase $19,493 to more closely match the surcharge for non-resident students attending classes in person. With the increased online non-resident surcharge, Ohio State’s tuition and fees still remain more affordable than seven of the 14 Big Ten university’s comparable out-of-state online programs.
Housing and dining rates would increase by 2.5% for incoming students and remain frozen for those in the Ohio State Tuition Guarantee.
Student health insurance, which covers a third-party pass-through rate, would increase 1%. Most domestic students utilize private insurance instead of obtaining coverage through the university.
General graduate tuition and fees will remain unchanged for Ohio residents. Among graduate and professional programs, nine programs propose specific fee changes, and two new programs are seeking a fee.
In Columbus, in-state tuition and fees would total $11,936 per year through 2025-26 for incoming first-year students. Including the most common housing and dining plans, the total rate for these students would be $25,288.

At regional campuses, in-state tuition and fees for incoming students would be set at $8,550 for the Lima, Mansfield, Marion and Newark campuses and $8,508 at the Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster. Most regional campus students do not live on campus.

Ohio State has placed a strategic emphasis on access, affordability and excellence. As of spring 2021, the university has devoted more than $200 million to increase support for low- and moderate-income Ohioans since 2015. Through the end of the coming academic year, an estimated 45,000 Buckeye families will have benefited from three financial aid programs:

The Buckeye Opportunity Program, which ensures that financial aid covers the full cost of tuition and mandatory fees for Ohio students who qualify for federal Pell Grants.
President’s Affordability Grants, which support about 15,000 low- and middle-income students annually at all Ohio State campuses.

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