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Merit Tuition Waivers

Merit waivers are awarded to recruit, retain and help students graduate in a timely manner.

Colleges, schools and programs may award a limited number of merit University tuition waiver hours that they may award to competitively selected graduate students who are not supported by regular assistantships, fellowships or other waiver programs.

Students interested in seeking merit waivers should contact their program for information concerning application procedures.

Fill Out Merit Waiver Request Form

The following guidelines apply to merit waivers:

  • Colleges must provide to the Office for Graduate Education and Life a plan for merit waiver use for the next academic year each October 15 and a report on merit waiver use for the previous academic year each September 15. 
  • Merit waivers must be awarded only to students who have been admitted to a degree program and who are in good standing in their program.
  • Academic programs may only award waivers to their own students. Exceptions require permission from the Office of Graduate Education and Life in coordination with the colleges.
  • Merit waiver awards can range from 1 to 9 hours (full-time). University tuition is also waived for hours taken above the full-time limit if a full-time award is made (excluding in online programs).
  • Students may register for more hours than their merit waiver award. They will be invoiced for the additional hours unless they have been granted a full-time waiver.
  • Merit waivers cannot to support non-degree students or students who are enrolled in certificate programs.
  • Programs should generally not provide merit waivers to full-time students for more than 3 years for master’s degrees and 6 years for doctoral degrees. Exceptions require permission from the Office of Graduate Education and Life.
  • Merit waivers may not be offered in exchange for work or mandatory activity (excluding academic performance standards). 

Submitting merit waiver forms

  • A waiver form must be submitted for each student by the program that provides the waiver.