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Tuition Waivers

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Tuition Waivers for Qualifying Graduate Assistants (QGAs)

Qualifying graduate assistants are eligible for a waiver of up to the total number of hours required for the graduate program, provided they meet the eligibility requirements for QGAs.  

Tuition waivers do not cover: 

  • University fees (estimate the cost of fees using the Tuition and Fees Calculator
  • Tuition for OU Online (formerly Liberal Studies) courses
  • Tuition for OU North America and Europe (formerly Advanced Programs) courses
  • Tuition for College of Professional and Continuing Studies (formerly OU Outreach) courses
  • Tuition for College of Law courses
  • Audited courses 
  • OU Health Science Center professional degrees

Students in the following programs are not eligible for tuition waivers:

  • Online Energy Executive Master of Business Administration
  • Online Master of Accountancy
  • Online Master of Arts in Global Affairs
  • Online Master of Science in Civil Engineering
  • Online Master of Environmental Science in Hydrology and Water Security
  • Online Master of Science in Natural Gas Engineering and Management
  • Online Master of Science in Finance
  • Online Master of Social Work
  • Professional Master of Arts in TESOL

More details on tuition waivers and costs not covered can be found in section 4.3.3.1 of the Graduate College Bulletin

Award Process

  • Eligible QGA information is sent to Student Financial Services.
  • Tuition waivers are factored into a student's overall aid package.
  • Student Financial Services will disqualify any over-awarded waivers.
  • Allowable waivers are posted to the student's Bursar bill beginning 10 days prior to the first day of classes.
  • The student is responsible for any tuition not covered by the waiver.

Tuition Waiver Limits

Qualifying graduate assistants are eligible for a waiver of up to the total number of hours required for the graduate program. Doctoral students also in a master’s program are eligible for the total number of hours required for the doctoral degree.

Change in Enrollment

Tuition waivers are calculated on the number of hours in which a student is enrolled at the time the waiver is awarded. If a student's enrollment increases or decreases, tuition waiver adjustments will be made within a few business days. 

Summer Waivers

Students who held or will hold a qualifying appointment in the preceding spring or following fall semester will be eligible for a waiver in the summer, provided they have not exhausted their maximum allowable waiver.

Final Semester Enrollment

In the final semester, QGAs may enroll in fewer than five hours. Review the final semester enrollment page for specific requirements.

Tuition: Payment required of an individual for enrollment in courses. This term is not interchangeable with fees.

Resident Tuition: The tuition rate paid by all University of Oklahoma students.

Non-Resident Tuition: The additional tuition paid by all students who are not residents of Oklahoma.

Fees: Charges in addition to tuition which students are assessed as a condition of enrollment.

Tuition Waiver: A reduction in a student's tuition bill.

FTE: Full time equivalent

GA: Graduate assistant

GRA: Graduate research assistant

GTA: Graduate teaching assistant

QGA: Qualifying graduate assistant

Break in Appointment

What if a student has a break in appointment?

They are eligible for the waiver in the semesters they are appointed (plus summer) as a qualifying GA (.50 FTE assistantship for the full semester).

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Losing a Tuition Waiver

Can a student lose the tuition waiver? 

If a student is placed on academic probation or fails to make satisfactory progress toward their degree, the student may lose the tuition waiver award. A student who fails to enroll in the minimum number of required hours for the entire semester (fall and spring) will lose the tuition waiver award. If a student fails to have a qualifying graduate assistantship appointment for the entire semester (fall and spring), the student will lose any waiver dependent on that appointment. 

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Minimum Salary

What is the minimum salary an academic unit is required to pay a graduate assistant?

Starting August 16, 2019, the minimum rate for .50 FTE graduate assistants is $1,152.50 monthly or $13,830.00 annually.  

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Remaining Waiver Amount

Will students receive warning letters when their waiver eligibility is about to expire?

Hiring units have access to a report of each student and their remaining hours of waiver. Students can also contact gradgra@ou.edu to verify waiver eligibility.

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Running Out of Waivers

What happens if a student has 3 hours of eligible waiver remaining and enrolls in 9 hours while having a GA? Are only 3 hours waived?

Yes, the student is responsible for the remaining 6 hours of tuition.

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Changing Programs

What happens when a student changes from one program to another without finishing the first? How are the waiver hours calculated?

Hours from the uncompleted degree that apply to the new degree will reduce the limit for the new degree.

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Completing a Master's and Starting a Doctoral Program

What happens when a student completes a master's degree and is admitted to a doctoral program? Is there any “carry-over” in unused waivers?

No, there will be no carry-over (e.g., a student who completed a 30-hour degree but only received 15 hours of waiver does not carry 15 hours over). 

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Enrollment in a Master's and Doctoral Program

What if the student is in the final semester of their master's degree and simultaneously enrolls in doctoral courses? 

Doctoral students also in a master’s program are eligible for the total number of hours required for the doctoral degree.

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OU-Tulsa and OU HSC Courses

Are Norman campus students eligible for a tuition waiver for courses taken on the OU-Tulsa campus or at the Health Sciences Center?

Under special circumstances, tuition waivers awarded by the Norman campus Graduate College may be applied toward courses taken on the OU-Tulsa campus or OU HSC. Contact the OU campus where you are employed as a graduate assistant if you have questions about a course's tuition waiver eligibility.

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Tuition Waiver Not Showing Up

My tuition waiver has not been credited to my bill. What should I do?

Contact your hiring unit to verify your remaining hours of waiver. If you have hours remaining and the waiver is still not showing on your bursar statement after the 3rd week of the semester, contact the Graduate College at 325-3811 for assistance.

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Student Loans and Tuition Waivers

My student loans were used to pay my tuition before my waiver was applied. What can I do?

Bursar Services will send you a check for the amount of your waiver(s) once it appears on your bill.

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Final Semester

I'm in my final semester. What are my options?

If you do not need financial aid in the final semester, you may enroll in fewer than 5 hours. See the Final Semester Enrollment page for details. 

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