The Tuition and Fee Advisory Task Force discussed the overview of college tuition Wednesday.
Students, faculty, staff and members of the Board of Trustees discussed the amount of tuition being paid by four groups — N.C. residents versus nonresidents and undergraduate students versus graduate students.
Sandra Hoeflich, associate dean for Interdisciplinary Education, Fellowships and Communication in the Graduate School, said the task force changes from year to year depending on the terms coming from the direction of the legislature.
Provost Jim Dean presented information on concepts such as policy considerations, state budget and campus-based tuition as a basis for the discussion. Dean said it's important to understand what the parameters are for this year concerning tuition and fees of students.
“This is the meeting where we try to get everybody on the same page,” Dean said.
Dean said there are distinctions between campus-based tuition, which is based on all students in a particular group.
“Professional schools have their own tuition because graduate education is a lot more fragmented than undergraduate education and so some schools cost more than others,” Dean said. “So what we are trying to do is to make market-based decisions to find out what the tuition should be in the schools.”
The task force compared tuitions between UNC and other schools.
“We usually do start with the context of how we compare with our peers and other programs and history over time,” Hoeflich said. “It’s supposed to be kind of who are we competing with students for, but it’s not exactly the same as saying who are the other private institutions that are like us.”
Hoeflich said looking at tuition and fees on a graduate level is different because there is no competition with institutions.
“You compete on a program level, so the main competitors of a history program is going to be very different from a biochemistry program,” she said. “On the undergraduate level it is more institutional.”
Setting the tuition and fees for all of the students is a process, Hoeflich said. First, there are committees that are student based, then it goes to the task force, then recommendations are made to Chancellor Carol Folt and then it goes onto the Board of Trustees and the Board of Governors.
Dwayne Pinkney, vice provost for Finance and Academic Planning, said the National Association of College and University Business Officers adopted a methodology that helps determine the cost of college. The task force looked over the tuition decisions made by the national association.
“What we point out is what the cost is and what the price to our students is and get a picture of the subsidy the state provides,” Pinkney said.
Why was this meeting important?
Dean said there is different guidance when looking at tuition and fees. The meeting discussed concepts that might have been unclear or needed to be looked into further as the planning for next year begins.
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