Cost of Attendance

  • Title 20 – Education

    Chapter 28 – Higher Education Resources and Student Assistance

    Subchapter IV – Student Assistance

    Part E – Need Analysis

    Sec. 1087ll. Cost of attendance


    For the purpose of this subchapter and part C of subchapter I of chapter 34 of title 42, the term “cost of attendance” means

    1. Tuition and fees normally assessed a student carrying the same academic workload as determined by the institution, and including costs for rental or purchase of any equipment, materials, or supplies required of all students in the same course of study
    2. An allowance for books, supplies, transportation, and miscellaneous personal expenses, including a reasonable allowance for the documented rental or purchase of a personal computer, for a student attending the institution on at least a half-time basis, as determined by the institution
    3. An allowance (as determined by the institution) for room and board costs incurred by the student which
      1. Shall be an allowance determined by the institution for a student without dependents residing at home with parents
      2. For students without dependents residing in institutionally owned or operated housing, shall be a standard allowance determined by the institution based on the amount normally assessed most of its residents for room and board
      3. For all other students shall be an allowance based on the expenses reasonably incurred by such students for room and board
    4. For less than half-time students (as determined by the institution) tuition and fees and an allowance for only books, supplies, and transportation (as determined by the institution) and dependent care expenses (in accordance with paragraph 8)
    5. For a student engaged in a program of study by correspondence, only tuition and fees and, if required, books and supplies, travel, and room and board costs incurred specifically in fulfilling a required period of residential training
    6. For incarcerated students only tuition and fees and, if required, books and supplies;
    7. For a student enrolled in an academic program in a program of study abroad approved for credit by the student's home institution, reasonable costs associated with such study (as determined by the institution at which such student is enrolled)
    8. For a student with one or more dependents, an allowance based on the estimated actual expenses incurred for such dependent care, based on the number and age of such dependents, except that
      1. Such allowance shall not exceed the reasonable cost in the community in which such student resides for the kind of care provided
      2. The period for which dependent care is required includes, but is not limited to, class-time, study-time, field work, internships, and commuting time
    9. For a student with a disability, an allowance (as determined by the institution) for those expenses related to the student's disability, including special services, personal assistance, transportation, equipment, and supplies that are reasonably incurred and not provided for by other assisting agencies
    10. For a student receiving all or part of the student's instruction by means of telecommunications technology, no distinction shall be made with respect to the mode of instruction in determining costs
    11. For a student engaged in a work experience under a cooperative education program, an allowance for reasonable costs associated with such employment (as determined by the institution)
    12. For a student who receives a loan under this or any other Federal law, or, at the option of the institution, a conventional student loan incurred by the student to cover a student's cost of attendance at the institution, an allowance for the actual cost of any loan fee, origination fee, or insurance premium charged to such student or such parent on such loan, or the average cost of any such fee or premium charged by the Secretary, lender, or guaranty agency making or insuring such loan, as the case may be.


    (Pub. L. 89-329, title IV, Sec. 472, as added Pub. L. 99-498, title IV, Sec. 406(a), Oct. 17, 1986, 100 Stat. 1454; amended Pub. L. 102-325, title IV, Sec. 471(a), July 23, 1992, 106 Stat. 585; Pub. L. 103-208, Sec. 2(g)(1), Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2471; Pub. L. 105-244, title IV, Sec. 471, Oct. 7, 1998, 112 Stat. 1729.)