Fixed Tuition at GW

Excellence Awards 2009

Our families tell us that the fixed tuition plan takes much of the guesswork out of financing higher education. Last year alone, private institutions nationwide raised their tuition an average of 6.3 percent. So, while tuition elsewhere is subject to annual increases, the cost of a GW education, once set, remains constant.

We are committed to attracting academically qualified students who want to be at GW. Through the University’s innovative fixed-rate tuition plan, students no longer need to be concerned about annual tuition increases. The tuition you pay as an entering student remains fixed for your undergraduate program provided you maintain continuous full-time enrollment and are registered for a minimum of 12 semester hours of study each fall and spring term. Students also have the flexibility of a tuition fixed for up to ten semesters of study should a fifth year be required to achieve their academic goals. There are no additional fees except for a minimal Student Association fee. So, right up front it allows families to know the cost of a GW education, not just for the first year, but through the conclusion of a degree program.

In comparing costs of education and offers of financial assistance, GW’s fixed-tuition plan gives our families a long-term, guaranteed outlook, compared to most other schools that provide only a one year financial glimpse. We recognize that making the financial sacrifice for a quality private education at a select university is not easy, so we are doing our best to make tuition management as predictable as possible.

Budget Student Spending

The GW experience

The GW experience doesn’t require a lot of student spending. But even in a city that offers one-of-a-kind free activities and entertainment—ranging from free National Mall concerts to professional sports events—there are temptations.  It may be frequent cab rides or the lure created by a Starbucks on every corner.

One sure way to get college costs under control is to watch your student spending and live within your budget. Having all the benefits of studying and living in a major city is not inexpensive, but it does not have to be a budget buster. We tell our current GW students and parents that managing student spending is about planning and making good choices. That often includes student employment or federal work-study to help students afford their spending habits.  Most of our students have part-time jobs for the experience and to break into the D.C. job market while still in school but also for the extra cash for personal spending.

The $1,400 in personal spending we suggest each year is typically used for public transit, laundry, convenience and drugstore purchases, dry cleaning, movie tickets, entertainment and grooming or salon services consistent with city living.

Strategies for Financing Your Education

Students sitting outside

We recognize that this tough economy has sparked tough questions and family conversations about college affordability. There are many financial considerations that might affect your choice of a private university. Our approach is to develop programs and financing options to assist families in planning for tuition at GW.  We also have the following common sense advice:  

1. Plan early.

2. Do research to find out what federal, university, state, private, activity and academic help is out there, as well as what independent scholarships, funding and awards are available.

3. Never self-select out of financial aid. Apply even if you don’t think you have need.

4. Follow deadlines in order to avail yourself of all opportunities and options.

5. Have family conversations about affordability and how much of a financial commitment your family is willing to assume.

Cost of Attendance

Family at Graduation

GW continues to move to stabilize tuition increases and reduce costs. To date, we have made a commitment to keep increases in the overall cost of attendance to within three percent. That, combined with programs such as GW’s Fixed Tuition, Guaranteed institutional grant money, minimal increases in living expenses and a generous student-aid funding commitment worth more than $150,000,000 is part of our efforts to help families meet and plan for expenses.

Academic Year  - 2012-2013

2013-2014 academic year costs will be finalized in late February 2013

Tuition* $45,735
Student Association Fee $45
Matriculation Fee** $350
Room and Board*** $10,530
Books and Supplies**** $1,275
Personal**** $1,450
Transportation $1,000


*Tuition: New GW students will pay this fixed tuition rate for up to a total of 10 consecutive semesters as long as the student maintains full-time continuous enrollment. Refer to the University Bulletin for details.

Students enrolled in the Seven-Year B.A./M.D. program have a fixed tuition rate for the first three years of their program.  After the third year, B.A./M.D. students pay the prevailing tuition of the School of Medicine and Health Sciences for medical students.  

**Matriculation Fee: One-time only fee for freshmen and transfer students.

***Room and Board: Room and Board reflects an estimated minimum freshman Colonial Cash plan for dining of $3,400 for the year ($1,400 of the Colonial Cash amount must be used in Sodexho venues, which include the Marvin Center, Ames, Duques, and Pelham Commons at West Hall). Students may choose to increase this amount to fit their individual dining needs. The room calculation is based on a cost of $7,130. Other, higher priced, options are available.

****Books, Supplies, and Personal/Miscellaneous Expenses: Students may expect to pay an average of $1,275 for books and supplies and $1,450 for personal/miscellaneous expenses (laundry, entertainment, etc.) for an average total of $2,725. Many of these expenses can be managed through the Colonial Cash plan.


Costs & Financial Planning

For more information, please visit:  

Undergraduate Costs and Financial Planning

Graduate Costs and Financial Planning



Center for Talented Youth (CTY)

Seventh to 8th grade students are selected through Johns Hopkins University’s CTY Talent Search to receive a one-course scholarship to GW.  A limited number of scholarships are available and CTY notifies GW of the eligible students. If you, or your son or daughter, has received a scholarship letter from CTY, please read the steps below regarding the process for enrolling in a course through this program.
  1. Most recipients use their scholarship during the summer, though you are eligible to use it during the spring or fall as well.  Please check the Schedule of Classes to search for a class.  If the schedule is not yet available for the term in which you want to register, please check contact the Office of Non-Degree Students (ONDS) to learn when the schedule will be published.
  2. You are eligible for courses numbered between 1000 and 2001 provided there are no prerequisites and there is space in the classroom.
  3. Courses are offered at both our main (Foggy Bottom) campus and the Mt. Vernon campus (accessible via shuttle), be sure to confirm the location of the course.
  4. Please note that the scholarship does not cover any related course fees and materials, so you will be required to pay those costs directly.
  5. In order to register for courses at GW as a CTY student, you will first need to fill out a Non Degree Student online application.
  6. In the Academic Information portion of the application under Select your Program please choose "CTY Scholarship Program."
  7. ONDS will process your application in approximately 2 business days and provide you with an ID number (GWid). Your GWid will be your unique student number and should be included on your Registration Form.
  8. Once you have been registered, ONDS will send you a confirmation e-mail with further instructions including how to obtain a GW identification card, library access, setting up a GW e-mail account and more.    
Congratulations on your award and do not hesitate to contact us by e-mail,, or phone at 202-994-1972.


The Office of Non-Degree Students (ONDS) supports students who are not enrolled in a degree or certificate program through GW, but would like to take a class. This includes:

  • visiting students and professionals
  • students admitted to GW for a future semester
  • individuals enrolled in certain special programs

As a non-degree student, you do not earn a certificate or degree from GW, but can take courses for a grade, earn credits and receive an official academic record.

Apply to Take a Course

Follow the enrollment process based on the type of student you are. If you are unsure of the process you should follow, please contact the Office of Non-Degree Students.

As of Fall 2014, Corcoran Arts Continuing Education is part of the George Washington University's Office of Non-Degree Students.