Estimate Costs & Aid
Understanding Your Estimated Cost of Attendance
Here are some common questions about estimated cost of attendance and charges:
- Is My Cost of Attendance What I Will Owe?
- What May Be Included in the Estimated Cost of Attendance?
- What Can Impact Estimated Cost of Attendance?
- Where Can I Find My Estimated Cost of Attendance?
- Where Can I Find My Balance Due?
- What Is the Difference Between Estimated Cost of Attendance and My Balance Due?
- Can I Use My Estimated Cost of Attendance to Estimate My Out-of-Pocket Expense?
- Will My Costs Be Different as a WVU Online Student?
Is My Cost of Attendance What I Will Owe?
No! Your "cost of attendance" or "budget" for financial aid purposes is the estimated total amount it may cost a student to pursue their degree for the fall and spring parts of the academic year (or for each semester). Institutions are required to provide a fuller picture of what it may cost students to pursue their degree, not just what they will owe to the institution, for a few reasons. First, it helps students plan for other expenses, such as books, that may not be part of their student charges. Second, it helps us determine their cost and financial need for educational expenses so we can fully determine their aid eligibility.
A student's cost of attendance is composed of all educational expenses that can be included for financial aid purposes that a student may accrue while pursuing their education for the semester and/or year. A student's financial aid cannot exceed their cost of attendance.
- This is not necessarily the actual amount you will pay the institution.
- The estimated cost is made up of both billable (direct) and non billable (indirect) costs.
- Students are encouraged to develop their own budget based on the provided estimates.
- Estimated cost of attendance is usually based on anticipated full-time enrollment in courses eligible for federal aid (with the exception of a few graduate programs that traditionally have half-time enrollment). Should a student not enroll full-time, their cost of attendance and financial aid may be adjusted accordingly to reflect their cost and aid eligibility based on their actual enrollment.
What May Be Included in the Estimated Cost of Attendance?
The estimated cost of attendance includes billable (direct) costs (costs the student would need to pay WVU) and non billable (indirect) costs (other costs a student may have while pursuing their education that are not charged by the institution).
If you are trying to determine how much your balance may be, focus on billable (direct) costs. If you are trying to determine how much your total educational expenses may be - including those you may have that are not charged by the University- use both billable (direct) and non billable (indirect) costs.
Examples of Possible Billable (Direct) Costs:
- University tuition
- University fees
- College tuition (based on the student's program of study and level)
- Housing and food (if living on-campus)
- Student health insurance
- For certain degree programs:
- Materials and instruments (for some programs)
- Study Abroad expenses (Request for Transient Financial Aid and Consortium Agreement required)
Examples of Possible Non Billable (Indirect) Costs:
- Books, course materials, supplies and equipment
- Personal expenses
- Transportation costs (car payments cannot be included)
- Housing and food (if living off-campus)
- License, certification, or first professional credential fees (for some programs, budget appeal may be required if not in your cost of attendance)
- Study Abroad expenses (Request for Transient Financial Aid and Consortium Agreement required)
- Dependent care (budget appeal required)
- Disability-related expenses (budget appeal required)
If the student's actual expenses are greater than their projected cost of attendance, they may be eligible to submit a budget appeal to have their costs reviewed. Please refer to our Budget Appeals webpage for deadlines and additional eligibility information.
What Can Impact Estimated Cost of Attendance?
Various elements can impact a student's estimated cost of attendance such as:
- Program of study (Engineering, Biology, Accounting, etc.)
- Degree the student is pursuing (associate, bachelor, etc.)
- Enrollment in degree-pursuant courses
- Level (undergraduate, graduate, professional)
- Residency (charged tuition and fees as a resident of West Virginia or non-resident of the state) or if the student qualifies for a reduced tuition program
- Living at home/with parents, on campus, or off campus
- Campus (Morgantown, Beckley, Keyser, etc.)
Where Can I Find My Estimated Cost of Attendance?
Students who have been offered financial aid can find their estimated cost of attendance through their WVU Portal. Please remember this is not your balance due. This is your estimated cost for financial aid purposes.
- Go to your WVU Portal
- Enter your login credentials (WVU username and password)
- Click on the "Financial Aid Information" button
- Select the appropriate award year (Example: Fall 2022, Spring and/or Summer 2023 would be the 2022-2023 aid year)
- Click on the "Award Offer" tab
- Both billable (direct) and non billable (indirect) costs are listed under the Cost of Attendance table
Where Can I Find My Balance Due?
Charges usually are available online through the WVU Portal for students to review in early July for the fall semester and mid-November for the spring semester.
Students who have a balance due after payments and financial aid are also sent billing notifications to their MIX email via their WVU Portal.
What Is the Difference Between Estimated Cost of Attendance and My Balance Due?
Your balance is composed of institutional charges. This can include things like tuition and fees, housing, food, new student ID fees, library fees, materials, instruments, and student health insurance. The balance due is what the student must pay.
A student's estimated cost of attendance is composed of all educational expenses that can be included for financial aid purposes. These are expenses a student may accrue while pursuing their education for the semester and/or year. Since a student's financial aid cannot exceed their cost of attendance, this gives an idea of the maximum amount of financial aid - including loans - that a student could potentially receive if eligible.
This is particularly important when a student wants to take out financial aid - including loans - to cover no billable (indirect) costs. For example, a student may have grants, scholarships, and loans that cover their full cost of attendance. That financial aid will disburse to cover billable (direct) costs (that are billed), then whatever is remaining is refunded to the student to use for non billable (indirect) costs - such as books or housing and food if living off-campus.
If a student's billable costs do not accurately reflect their actual costs, they may be eligible for a cost of attendance or budget review. For full details about our budget appeal process, please refer to our Budget Appeals webpage.
Can I Use My Estimated Cost of Attendance to Estimate My Out-of-Pocket Expense?
Yes, you can! Since charges are not available until July (fall) or November (spring), it is a good idea to use your estimated cost of attendance to determine what your estimated charges may be or what your estimated overall cost of attendance could be. This will help you determine how much will be due each semester if you want to sign up early for the monthly payment plan or plan ahead for the balance due date. It will also help you determine how much you may need to apply for should you choose to borrow loans.
- Review your estimated cost of attendance and develop your own budget for fall/spring. If trying to estimate your charges, only look at billable (direct) costs.
- Subtract any grants, scholarships, and waivers you accept.
- Subtract any external scholarships or sponsorships you receive from third-parties (outside of the University).
- The remaining balance will be your out-of-pocket expenses. You may consider accepting federal loans or exploring other funding options.
Will My Costs Be Different as a WVU Online Student?
WVU Online offers both "capped" and "uncapped" programs. Students in capped programs will only incur charges per credit hour up to full-time enrollment (12 hours for undergraduates and 9 hours for graduates). However, students in uncapped programs will be charged per credit hour no matter the number of hours enrolled. For more information, please refer to the WVU Tuition website.
Estimate Costs and/or Financial Aid
If you have not received a financial aid or scholarship offer, your estimated cost of attendance may not be available. Please use the resources available here to estimate your costs and/or financial aid.
If you are in a program under the Health Sciences Center or College of Law, you may download the 2023-2024 Estimated HSC Cost of Attendance spreadsheet.
There are multiple options to estimate billable (direct) costs only or your full cost of attendance.
Estimate billable (direct) cost only:
- Use the Tuition Calculator to estimate tuition (includes tuition and fee calculation by credit hour).
- Use the Cost & Resource Planner for your campus to estimate billable (direct) costs including on-campus living expenses and/or student health insurance
- If you are a non-resident of West Virginia, see the Reduced Tuition section of the Admissions Cost and Aid website to see if you qualify for reduced tuition.
Estimate full cost of attendance (both billable (direct) and non billable (indirect) costs):
- Incoming first-time freshmen can calculate estimated cost of attendance and estimated financial aid with the Net Price Calculator.
- Download the spreadsheet for the full costs of attendance for various programs and levels. Click here to download the full spreadsheet.