Regents Policy 3103: Policy on Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition*

Approved January 21, 1994
Amended July 2007, September 2007, March 25, 2010
, November 18, 2010, and July 18, 2012

  1. Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition shall be assessed to students enrolled in graduate professional degree programs, as determined by The Regents, to sustain and enhance the quality of the professional schools' academic programs and services.
  2. Revenue from Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition will remain with the campuses and will not be used to offset reductions in State support.
  3. The President, in consultation with the Provost, shall submit for the Regents' approval Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition levels from the campuses, within the context of such multi-year plans as the Provost requires for each program.
  4. The Provost is responsible for ensuring that the leadership of each campus engages in appropriate multi-year planning of Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition increases for each professional degree program in a manner that effectively advances the program's mission and strategic academic plan.
  5. Each professional degree program shall submit a Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition plan to the Provost, pursuant to a submission schedule communicated to the program by the Provost.  At a minimum, the Provost will require a multi-year plan (i) for each program for which Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition is proposed to be newly assessed; (ii) for each program that proposes Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition that exceeds the amount proposed in its most recent multi-year plan; and (iii) for each program, at least every three years. In developing a program's multi-year plan, the following factors are among those to be taken into consideration: the amount of resources required to sustain academic quality at, and enrollments in, the particular professional degree program; the ability of the program to remain competitive with other institutions of similar quality; the cost of education for each specific degree program; the resident and nonresident tuition and fees charged by comparable public and private institutions for each specific program; and other market-based factors (such as scholarship and grant support) that permit the degree program to compete successfully for students. Within this context, different Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition levels may be set for professional programs in the same discipline at different campuses.
  6. Financial aid targeted for students enrolled in professional degree programs is necessary to ensure access to the degree program, and to minimize financial barriers to the pursuit of careers in public service. The Provost is responsible for ensuring that each campus complements its proposed multi-year plans for professional degree programs with financial aid measures, including scholarships, grants and loan repayment assistance programs, to adequately meet these goals. Financial aid sources should be supplemented by an amount equivalent to at least 33 percent of new Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition revenue or by an amount necessary to ensure that financial aid sources are equivalent to at least 33 percent of all Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition revenue. Campuses will regularly evaluate and report on the effectiveness of these financial aid measures.
  7. The following conditions are adopted for future Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition increases:
    1. Access and inclusion are among the University’s core commitments, and student affordability is a vitally important component to a public education system. Any increases in Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition must be justified by programmatic and financial needs, but also must not adversely affect the University’s commitment to access, inclusion, and keeping the door open for students interested in pursuing low-paying public interest careers.
    2. With this sentiment in mind, if a professional school unit wishes to propose a Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition increase greater than 6 percent or in excess of the percentage increase in Tuition for a given year, it must submit a plan, endorsed by its chancellor, describing academic and/or programmatic reasons for the requested increase and describing policies to ensure or enhance access and inclusion in the face of the rising charges.
    3. Each plan should consider the following (including expenditure projections, design parameters, and performance metrics) components:
      1. Front-end financial aid such that needy students are able to pursue their academic and summer interests without regard to financial considerations.
      2. Loan forgiveness programs (or some equivalent alternative program) for, among others, students interested in pursuing low-paying public service jobs such that their debt from professional school does not unduly restrict their career decision.
      3. A strategy for inclusion of underrepresented groups.
      4. A detailed marketing and outreach plan to explain financial aid and loan forgiveness.
    4. Each unit’s Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition plan shall also include:
      1. Assurances that in any program directly supported by State 19900 funds, the total in-state tuition and fees charged will be at or below the total tuition and/or fees charged by comparable degree programs at other comparable public institutions.
      2. Information as to the views of the unit’s student body and faculty on the proposed increase. This information may be obtained in a variety of ways ranging from consultations with elected student leaders and faculty executive committees to referenda. The information would be treated as advisory, but The Regents would view more favorably Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition proposals that enjoy the support of a unit’s faculty and student body.
    5. The Provost will provide further guidance and coordination as needed to the campuses and to elements of the Office of the President, and coordinate submission of the Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition proposals to The Regents for annual action. Chancellors will carefully review Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition proposals and the supporting plans concerning financial aid, loan forgiveness, outreach, evaluation, and implementation of corrective measures if needed (such as a Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition rollback, freeze, limit on future increases, or other financial and/or non-financial measures), and forward the Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition proposals as revised to the Office of the President.
    6. Upon request of a professional program, with the concurrence of the Chancellor, the President, in consultation with the Provost, may consider and is authorized to reduce Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition for specific programs as the President deems appropriate and shall report those actions to the Regents.

*Nothing in this policy constitutes a contract, an offer of a contract, or a promise that any tuition or fees ultimately authorized by The Regents will be limited by any term or provision of this policy. The Regents expressly reserve the right and option, in its absolute discretion, to establish tuition or fees at any level it deems appropriate based on a full consideration of the circumstances, and nothing in this policy shall be a basis for any party to rely on tuition or fees of a specified level or based on a specified formula.

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