Budgeting Tuition Remission

Policy Approval Authority President
Responsible Division Division of Research and Innovation Partnerships
Responsible University Office Sponsored Programs Administration
Responsible Officer(s) Assistant Vice President
Contact Person Dara Little, dlittle@niu.edu
Primary Audience Faculty
Status Active
Effective Adoption Date 10-01-2008
Last Review Date 12-07-2008
Policy Category/Categories Sponsored Funding/Grants and Contracts


It is Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) policy that funds for tuition costs (hereinafter, tuition remission) for graduate research assistants (GRA) included in all grant proposals and contracts be requested from all sponsors unless the sponsor expressly does not allow tuition remission. Federal grants and contracts normally allow for such costs.

Reason for this Policy

Principal Investigators (PI) having externally funded projects at Northern Illinois University are expected to include the tuition costs for graduate research assistants (GRA) in all grant proposals unless the sponsor expressly does not allow the tuition remission.

Intended Audience

  • Director, Department Chair, Division Head
  • Faculty and Staff
  • Department/Divisional Business Adminstrators
  • Sponsored Programs Administration Personnel


Application of Tuition Costs

  • Full in-state tuition (24 credit hours total; 18 semester fall/spring hours and 6 semester hours for each adjacent summer term) will be included in the project budget for each GRA identified.
  • Tuition costs will be pro-rated accordingly for projects that support a GRA less than a full academic year.
  • Associated student fees will not be included in the budget.
  • Tuition costs will be identified as a direct cost within the “Other” budget category with the following justification “Tuition remission is provided to all Northern Illinois University graduate research assistants employed on non-sponsored as well as sponsored activities and in accordance with the provision of 2 CFR 200.466.”
  • If the Principal Investigator (PI) must add a GRA to a project, the PI is responsible for re-budgeting dollars from other direct cost categories to cover both the GRA stipend and tuition remission costs.

Cost Sharing Tuition Remission

Proposals that require a mandatory cost share commitment may use the GRA tuition to meet the required cost share. Other requests for the university to cover all or part of the tuition costs for GRAs supported on grants will be considered when the inclusion of these costs places a hardship on the PI in completing the proposed project. Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) will evaluate these requests.

Contact Information

Policy questions and waiver approvals:

When budgeting tuition on a proposal, contact your RDS

When rebudgeting or charging tuition on an award, contact your Grants and Contracts Administrator

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