ENGG GRA Tuition Policy
Graduate Research Assistants Tuition Policy
Effective Date: July 1, 2014
Updated: August 11, 2017
The College of Engineering (the College) aims to attract and retain top quality students to our graduate degree research programs by offering competitive recruitment packages including tuition support. It is the College policy that tuition costs for graduate research assistants (GRAs) be included as a direct cost in all grant proposals and contracts for all sponsors. Federal grants and contracts normally allow for such costs.
Tuition costs for graduate research assistants (GRAs) shall be included as direct costs in all grant and contract proposals, unless tuition is specifically not allowed by the sponsor. Tuition and other associated fees to cover a minimum of 18 credit hours per year (21 credit hours for the department of chemical engineering) are required. When a sponsor does not allow tuition costs, the Principal Investigator (PI) has two options:
- include tuition in the salary (The PI should provide sponsor documentation to be included with the eSign record); or
- include a Tuition Cost Share Request Form when routed for eSign approvals indicating commitment from the PI, department, and/or ERGP to cover tuition costs. More details are provided below.
The purpose of this policy is to:
- attract and retain top quality students to the graduate degree programs by offering competitive recruitment packages including tuition support;
- implement standard tuition support across all departments in the College of Engineering for graduate assistants supported by sponsored projects;
- advise PIs on charging full tuition directly to sponsored projects for graduate assistants assigned to and supported by a sponsored project during each semester; and
- advise PIs of the college internal process in cases where a sponsor does not allow tuition. Refer to the Request for ERGP Support of Unallowable Tuition Costs section below.
In accordance with the terms of the federal Uniform Guidance (2 CFR 200), tuition remission and other forms of compensation paid as, or in lieu of, wages to students performing necessary work are allowable provided that:
- the individual is conducting activities necessary to the sponsored agreement;
- tuition remission and other support are provided in accordance with established educational institutional policy and consistently provided in a like manner to students in return for similar activities conducted in non-sponsored as well as sponsored activities;
- during the academic period, the student is enrolled in an advanced degree program at the institution or affiliated institution and the activities of the student in relation to the sponsored research project are related to the degree program; and
- the tuition or other payments are reasonable compensation for the work performed and are conditioned explicitly upon the performance of necessary work.
Budgeting Tuition on Research Proposals
Principal Investigators who budget a GRA to their research proposals must include a budget line item for tuition, in accordance with the following guidelines:
- Tuition will be identified as a direct cost within the “Other” budget category with the following justification: “Tuition is part of the overall Graduate Research Assistant compensation package” or similar.
- If a sponsor does not allow tuition as a direct cost the PI can do one of the following:
- Adjust salary to include the cost of tuition and enter this total on the GRA salary line. Because tuition costs will be paid to the GRA as salary, the PI must inform the GRA he/she is required to pay his/her own tuition; or
- Include a Tuition Cost Share Request Form when the proposal is routed for eSign approvals indicating commitment from the PI, department, and/or ERGP to cover tuition costs (see Request for ERGP Support of Unallowable Tuition Costs section below for internal process requirements).
- Tuition and fees are not included in the University’s modified total direct cost (MTDC) base for determining facilities and administrative (F&A) costs and therefore do not generate indirect costs.
- Full in-state tuition of 18 total credit hours per year (9 hours for each fall and spring semester) will be included in the proposal budget line for each GRA identified. Each GRA must be appointed on a 0.5 FTE appointment to be eligible for in-state tuition. NOTE: The department of chemical engineering requires 21 hours of GRA tuition support; 18 total credit credits hours per academic year and 3 credit hours per summer semester.
- Tuition costs may be pro-rated accordingly for projects that support a GRA less than a full academic year.
- Associated campus privilege fees and College of Engineering surcharge fees must also be included in the budget.
- The escalation rate recommended by the college for tuition and fees is currently 5% each new project year, based on the college tuition rates and fee increases since the previous academic year.
- Tuition remission for GRAs at K-State is paid in lieu of salaries and wages. Amounts paid for tuition are reported to Human Capital Services and adjustments will be made to student paychecks to reflect related withholding amounts.
- If the project PI chooses to later add a GRA to an awarded project, the PI is responsible for rebudgeting appropriate funds from other direct cost categories to cover both the GRA salary, fringe benefits and tuition costs in accordance with sponsor guidelines and this policy.
Current Tuition Rates AY 2017-2018 (To be updated annually)
The current tuition rates for 2017-2018 are presented below. Tuition information is updated annually each summer when approved rates are received from the Kansas Board of Regents and posted to the Tuition and Fees Schedules page of the Division of Financial Services.
KSU TUITION & FEE SCHEDULE
Graduate - Fall 2017 & Spring 2018
Graduate - Summer 2017
In cases where a sponsor does not allow tuition coststhe PI may request assistance from ERGP in order to meet the college tuition policy in accordance with the following parameters and processes:
- Standard matching requirements for GRA tuition is expected to be funded equally between the college, the department, and the PI.
- Requests for the college to cover more than one third of the tuition cost share commitment will be considered when inclusion of such costs may place a hardship on the PI in completing the proposed project. Such requests will be evaluated by the ERGP office and approved by the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs.
- A Tuition Cost Share Request Form signed by the PI and department head must be submitted to ERGP a minimum of 12 business days prior to the proposal deadline for review.
- A Tuition Cost Share Request Form must be approved prior to submission of the proposal indicating commitment from the PI, department, and/or ERGP to cover tuition costs.
- For sponsors with a universal written policy restricting tuition costs, a publically-accessible copy of a sponsor’s current policy must accompany the Tuition Cost Share Request Form submitted to ERGP.
- The signed Tuition Cost Share Request Form and sponsor tuition restriction policy must accompany the proposal budget when routed for internal review and approvals through eSign.
Using Tuition Remission to Meet Sponsor Match Requirements
Cost share or matching commitments of any kind on behalf of the University are not allowed unless required by published policies of the sponsor. More details on the University’s Cost Share Commitments policy may be found on the University’s Research policies page. However, proposal programs that require a mandatory cost share commitment may use appropriate “hard dollar” tuition costs to meet the sponsor’s requirement.