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Glossary of Fees
For the most current and complete information see http://www.registrar.iastate.edu/fees/
All tuition, fees, expenses, and policies listed in this publication are effective fall session 2020 and are subject to change without notice by Iowa State University and the Board of Regents, State of Iowa.
Tuition and fees are based on credit load at 5:00 p.m. on the 10th day of class, which is the last day for adjustments downward in tuition and fee assessment.
Tuition is charged based upon the number of credits in which a student is enrolled. Maximum charges start at 12 credits for undergraduate and veterinary medicine students. Maximum charges start at 9 credits for graduate students.
Students who are not residents of Iowa pay a higher tuition rate each semester. Nondegree undergraduate students and noncollegiate students pay the same fees as undergraduates. Tuition and fees are assessed in accordance with regulations of the Board of Regents, State of Iowa. Information about these regulations are found in this catalog under Admissions and Registrar.
Following are the descriptions of several commonly assessed fees for Iowa State University students. The list is not inclusive. All fees are subject to change without notice.
Account Review Fee (per credit hour): This fee will be assessed to those students who request account research for prior semester periods. The $10 per hour fee (with a minimum of $10) helps defray the costs of personnel time taken to perform the research, which involves gathering information from various sources when the request is made for a prior semester.
Activity, Services, Building and Recreation: The activity, services & building fee is a mandatory fee that supports a variety of activities and services for all students. It is not based on whether or not a student uses an individual activity or service. This fee provides several benefits such as student admission rates to concerts and athletic events and, unlimited use of CyRide, the Ames bus system. In addition, the fee provides support for campus recreation facilities, the Memorial Union, and campus organizations and services as allocated by the Government of the Student Body. The activity, services, building and recreation fee includes assessments of the following amounts for each fall and spring semester (full time student).
Activity Fee Category
Temporarily Off-Campus Amount
Distance Education only Amount
Exemptions are granted for students exclusively registered for the following: distance education courses (sections beginning with X); courses for which no tuition is assessed; continuous registration status courses, and high school students enrolled under the Post-Secondary Enrollment Options Act. Students in exemption categories named above may elect to pay this fee and will be assessed based upon their enrollment status.
For students who withdraw or change to an exempt status as defined above, the tuition adjustment schedule will also be used for the activity fee.
Additional Billing Statement: A student can authorize the ISU Accounts Receivable Office to mail a billing statement to another individual. The cost of the Additional Billing Fee to mail a monthly paper statement is $8 per semester. This remains in effect as long as the student is enrolled or until discontinued by the student.
Undergraduate Domestic Student and Non-Degree Student - This $40 application fee is charged to individuals in the undergraduate domestic student and non-degree student categories applying for admission to Iowa State University. This fee is charged to cover administrative costs such as IT costs, personnel, and postage.
Undergraduate International Student - This $50 application fee is charged to non-immigrants applying for undergraduate admission to Iowa State University. This fee is charged to cover administrative costs such as IT costs, personnel, and postage. These individuals are charged a higher rate because of the additional costs associated with the evaluation of foreign academic records, the need to maintain certain resource materials and immigration forms, and increased postage for overseas mailings.
Graduate Domestic Student - This $60 application fee is charged to individuals in the graduate domestic student category applying for admission to Iowa State University. This fee is charged to cover administrative costs such as IT costs, personnel, and postage.
Graduate International Student - This $100 application fee is charged to non-immigrants applying for graduate admission to Iowa State University. This fee is charged to cover administrative costs such as IT costs, personnel, and postage. These individuals are charged a higher rate because of additional costs associated with the evaluation of foreign academic records, the need to maintain certain resource materials and immigration forms, and increased postage for overseas mailings.
Veterinary Medicine Student - This $75 application fee is charged to individuals applying for admission to the Veterinary Medicine College at Iowa State University for their first degree-seeking enrollment. This fee is charged to cover administrative costs such as IT costs, personnel, and postage.
Applied Music Fees (range of $100 - $290): The music fee is charged to students receiving private music instruction and is in addition to regular tuition. The fee offsets the costs of one-on-one instruction. Revenue generated from this fee is returned to students through music scholarships.
One credit of instruction is $150; the fee for two or three credits is $190.
Continuing Education (per credit hour): A special tuition rate is assessed to students participating in these programs. The undergraduate assessment is $323 per credit and the graduate rate is $517 per credit. Summer camp programs entitled to the special rate are Anthropology and Geology. Students will be charged other fees in addition to tuition for enrolling in these programs. To obtain total fee information, students should contact the director of the individual program.
Deferred Billing Administration Fee: Each term, students who do not pay their first payment in full by the due date will automatically select the deferred option, and will be charged a $20 administrative fee.
Delivery: Some distance education courses charge a delivery fee to offset additional expenses incurred in offering a course at a distance. Applicable delivery fees are listed with the specific course in the Schedule of Classes available at http://classes.iastate.edu. Delivery fees also appear on each student's schedule detail available on AccessPlus.
Departmental Exam for Credit Fee (per exam): This $100 fee partially covers the expenses of creating or purchasing, administering, and scoring special examinations to determine whether students may receive test-out credit for a course in which they are not formally enrolled.
Developmental: A developmental course fee is charged in addition to the tuition charged for other courses on the student's schedule. For example: A student taking 12 credits plus a developmental course will pay full-time tuition for the 12 credits, plus the developmental course fee(s). Developmental course fees range from $160 - $530. These fees are intended to cover the direct costs of offering these developmental courses.
Diploma Replacement Fee: This $25 fee is charged to individuals who have lost their diploma and have requested a replacement. The charge covers the cost of printing the diploma, personnel to process the order, postage, and other administrative costs.
Doctoral Post Comprehensive or Prelim: Doctoral Continuous Registration is used only for medical, maternity, military, or personal/family leave. The fee will be $70. Permission is required in order to register for this course. Permission may be requested via the Graduate College Petition form. This option is only available to Ph.D. students who have passed their preliminary examination and not yet taken their final examination.
FAX Fee (for sending official documents): A $7 FAX fee is charged for sending official documents, such as transcripts, certifications, and statement of account, using FAX technology. The fee covers the phone charges and personnel costs associated with preparing and sending the document.
Graduate College Fees - Copyright Fees – Doctoral Dissertation and Master’s Thesis (Optional): PhD and Master’s candidates may pay an optional fee of $55 for copyright services offered through ProQuest/UMI. The copyright fee covers the U.S. copyright fee as well as the costs to ProQuest of the copies required by the Copyright Office. The student will authorize this on-line with a credit card when submitting the electronic thesis.
Late Fee for Applying After Deadline (Graduate College students only) - A late fee of $20 will be assessed to Graduate College students applying for graduation after the graduation application deadline for a specific semester.
Health Facility: All students are charged an $8 Health Facility Fee each semester except for students exclusively registered for the following: distance education courses (courses with sections beginning with X); courses for which no tuition is assessed; continuous registration status courses; and high school students enrolled under the Postsecondary Enrollment Options Act. These exceptions do not apply to international students (except where noted) or graduate students on graduate assistantships. For students who withdraw or change to an exempt status as defined above, the refund schedule for tuition will be used for the health facility fee.
Students who carry the ISU sponsored student health insurance must also be assessed the health facility fee.
Health (Student Health): A $120 student health fee, which partially finances the services of the Thielen Student Health Center, is charged to all on-campus students each semester. A $40 student health fee is charged to all temporarily off-campus students each semester. This fee is not assessed to students enrolled for four or fewer credits or students exclusively registered for the following: distance education courses (courses with sections beginning with X); courses for which no tuition is assessed; continuous registration status courses; Lakeside Laboratory courses; ISU employees whose primary role at the university is as an employee; and high school students enrolled under the Postsecondary Enrollment Options Act. (These exemptions do not apply to international students or to graduate students on graduate assistantships.) Students who are exempt from the mandatory health fee may use the services of the Thielen Student Health Center on a fee for service basis, or may elect to pay the health fee and health facility fee (based on their student type), which allows participants to receive services at the Thielen Student Health Center for the same rate as students who pay the mandatory health fees. Spouses/domestic partners of students who wish to use the Thielen Student Health Center must pay the on-campus $120 Health Fee and $8 Health Facility Fee.
Students who withdraw or change to an exempt status as defined above will receive a credit adjustment of 100 percent through the 10th day of classes, with no credit adjustment after the 10th day of classes. Students who add courses at any time during the semester will be assessed the student health fee if applicable according to the guidelines stated above. Students who carry the ISU sponsored insurance must also be assessed the student health fee. If spouse or domestic partner is covered under the insurance plan, the spouse (domestic partner) must also be covered under the Health Fee and Health Facility Fee.
Health Insurance: All international students and their accompanying dependents must enroll in the ISU Student and Scholar Health Insurance Program. ISU requires nonimmigrant international students and their dependents to purchase and maintain coverage through the ISU health insurance plan for the duration of their tenure at the university. Insurance plans purchased outside the university may be used for supplemental coverage, but cannot be substituted for the ISU plan. Students not assessed the mandatory Student Health Fee and spouses of students should contact the Student Health Insurance Office at 515-294-4820 for more information.
Identification Card (ISUCard) Replacement Fee: All students receive their first identification card free of charge. Those cardholders who have lost or misplaced their identification cards are assessed a $25 fee to cover the cost of replacement which includes the cost of materials, processing, and personnel associated with the replacement process.
International Student Orientation Fee: This $120 fee is charged to all new undergraduate degree-seeking students in a non-immigrant status. This fee will support the international student orientation program as well as provide other transitional programs and activities unique to the international student population.
Lakeside Lab: Iowa Lakeside Laboratory is a field station of Iowa's state universities that provides summer classes and research opportunities for students. The mission of Lakeside Lab is twofold: 1) to provide science classes and research opportunities for university students and 2) to offer public programs and provide services through the state universities. Lakeside Lab offers students a unique educational experience through small full-immersion, field-oriented courses. This fee ($323 undergraduate; $517 graduate) helps to cover program costs. More information can be found at Iowa Lakeside Laboratory.
Late Payment of Fees or Charges: The finance charge is a penalty charged to discourage late payment of bills, as well as to make up for the university's lost opportunity for investment income. The up to 1% per month finance charge also helps defray the costs of extra IT costs, handling, and mailing involved with the record keeping and collection of charges over a longer period of time. This fee is assessed to students and non-students.
Late Registration: This fee is assessed to students who do not register for classes before the first day of class. This fee is an administrative charge to encourage students to register for classes in a timely manner so as to provide enrollment management data to administrative areas who can make decisions on how to best utilize university resources. The stepped up fee for graduate students is necessary because ISU provides tuition scholarships for students on assistantship appointments. Students who do not register by the end of the second week may create significant payroll, fee assessment, and scholarship problems that will take excess staff time to resolve.
Undergraduate Students - $20
Graduate Students, Day 1-5 - $30
Graduate Students, Day 6-10 - $60
Graduate Students, Day 11 onward - $100
New Student Programs/Matriculation Fees: The New Student Programs/Matriculation fee of $195 will be assessed to all new degree seeking undergraduates. The fee covers costs associated with orientation and Destination Iowa State programming, including math assessment, publications, mailings, programming, and student assistants who provide services to students and their families during orientation and Destination Iowa State. For those students entering in the fall semester, the New Student Programs/Matriculation fee is refundable prior to May 1 (minus a $25 administrative charge).
Administrative Fee: This $25 fee is the nonrefundable portion of the New Student Programs/Matriculation Fee, and is assessed to defray administrative costs if the student chooses not to enroll prior to May 1 for fall and summer semesters and November 1 for spring semester.
Records and Documents Fee: The Records and Documents fee funds schedule changes, graduation and commencement, and transcript requests. This fee consolidates and replaces the previous transcript, schedule change, and application for graduation fees, offering an improved value for students and alumni.
Starting in Fall 2017, all students (including new direct from high school, transfer, and re-entry students) will be assessed the Records and Documents Fee once in their lifetime (with the exception of students who move from non-degree to degree-seeking status: specifically, a non-degree seeking student who chooses to later pursue a degree will be charged the $80.00 difference between the $50.00 non-degree rate and the $130.00 degree-seeking rate).
Reissue Check Fee: This fee will be assessed to those individuals who request the issuance of a duplicate check. This $30 charge helps defray the personnel time involved in researching the check, the cost of printing a new check, as well as the bank costs.
Returned Check: - This $30 fee is a surcharge against the maker of a dishonored check. According to Section 554.3512, subsection 1, Code 2003 of the State of Iowa, a fee of $30 may be assessed against the maker of a dishonored payment instrument.
Debit Fee: This $30 fee is a surcharge against the person who authorizes a direct debit to an account that has
been closed or has insufficient funds. According to Section 554.3512, subsection 1, Code 2003 of the State of Iowa,
a fee of $30 may be assessed against the maker of a dishonored payment instrument.
Senior Fee (optional): This is a $3 optional fee for graduating seniors. The funds generated by the fee go to the Senior Class Council that sponsors a variety of activities for seniors. Events include the Senior Send-off, spring and fall commencement receptions, international graduation reception, graduation breakfast, senior week, and the solicitation of pledges for the senior class gift.
Student Course Fee(s): Some courses have expenses above the cost of tuition that enhance the instruction. These fees may cover the cost of field trips, use of equipment, materials or supplies, or professional support. Applicable sstudent course fees are listed with the specific course in the Schedule of Classes available at http://classes.iastate.edu/. Student course fees also appear on each student's schedule detail available on AccessPlus.
Sponsored International Student Fee: The sponsored international student fee (5% of fees) is assessed to students participating in a group study abroad program. This fee is in addition to the program fee they must pay. It covers various administrative costs associated with these programs, such as registration and special processing, which creates additional workload.
Study Abroad Administrative Fee: This $50 fee is assessed to all students participating in a study abroad program. This fee is in addition to the center fee they must pay. This fee covers the cost of the study abroad registration system, study abroad emergency notification system, personnel time for registration, and the promotion and support of study abroad across campus.
Study Abroad Center Fee: This study abroad program fee of $275 is assessed to students participating in a program managed by the Study Abroad Center. It is used to partially finance the cost of administering these programs which includes program advising, program development, program promotion, and site visits to veterinary programs.
Full-time graduate and undergraduate students enrolled in the College of Engineering (including Systems Engineering, Agricultural Systems Technology, and Industrial Technology) are charged $253 per semester.
Full-time graduate and undergraduate students majoring in Computer Science are charged $253 per semester.
Full-time undergraduate students enrolled in the College of Design are charged $253 per semester, while full-time graduate students are charged $230 per semester.
Full-time undergraduate students enrolled in the College of Business are charged $165 per semester, while full-time graduate students are charged $142 per semester.
All other full-time undergraduate students are charged the standard technology fee of $145 per semester. Full-time graduate students are charged a $122 per semester technology fee.
Students enrolled less than full-time are assessed prorated technology fees according to the number of credits for which they are enrolled.
High school students enrolled under the Postsecondary Enrollment Options Act; or students enrolled exclusively in courses for which no tuition is assessed are not assessed a technology fee.
For students who withdraw, technology fee adjustments will be made according to the tuition adjustment schedule. Adjustments for a reduction in credits below a full time load is 100 percent through the 10th day of classes, with no refunds after the 10th day of classes. Students who change their major will be charged the full technology fee for the major into which they transfer if the change occurs before the 10th day of classes. If the change occurs after the 10th day of classes, then no change in the technology fee assessment will occur.
Thesis Fee - Masters/Doctorate: This $145 nonrefundable fee is charged to any student who submits a master's degree thesis or doctoral dissertation to the Graduate College. This fee helps defray costs associated with providing part-time support for the thesis office, electronic thesis administration, and the salary of the thesis reviewer.
Transcript/Certification Special Handling Charge: An additional $5 special handling charge will be assessed for same day transcript service or other requests that require immediate or special handling.*
Veterinary Medicine Advance Payment: Student applicants to the College of Veterinary Medicine who have accepted an offer for a position to enroll in that college may subsequently change their mind and withdraw, sometimes as late as the first day of classes. These late withdrawals can result in unfilled spaces, or the need to ask an alternate candidate to make a hasty move to Ames with little time to make arrangements for financial aid, housing, or books. To reduce the incidence of late withdrawals, admitted students are assessed a non-refundable payment toward tuition of $500.
Veterinary Medicine Mobile Computing Fee: This $2,550 fee is charged to all entering first year veterinary medicine students to support the college's mobile computing initiative. The fee covers tablet PC and required software. This initiative ensures that students 1) have the most effective and efficient learning experience possible and 2) enter the workforce prepared to use current technologies continuing education and professional practice.
*Additional charges may apply for expedited delivery services.