When students in the Graduate Non-Degree Program at IUPUI received their bills for tuition this August, those taking undergraduate courses were surprised to learn that they were now being charged graduate tuition rates. An undergraduate credit hour costs $150 for Indiana residents. Graduate courses cost $201 per hour. For a three credit hour class, the fee increases by $153.
Indiana University adopted the new policy for all of its campuses last year, with it taking effect this fall semester. The increase was part of a university transition to a new student services program. According to Dr. Sherry Queener, an IUPUI associate dean and director of the school’s Graduate Office, “All of the transition items, including this fee increase, were reviewed and approved at all levels in the university.”
Graduate students often take undergraduate courses in preparation for graduate programs that differ from their undergraduate degrees. These can include teachers, people readying for MBAs, CPAs and law or medical degrees. Though Queener said the university does have a large number of students that take undergraduate courses in preparation for a graduate program, they don’t yet know how many students are affected by the change. “One is too many, but we don’t expect it to be far reaching,” she said. Exact numbers will be available after a student census is conducted at the end of August.
In the meantime, Queener said the university has been working with individual students to find short-term solutions to the problem, while work goes on with other groups within the university toward a permanent solution.
The short-term solutions have included finding available scholarships and loans for individuals. Possible long-term solutions include alternate coding of students in the Graduate Non-Degree Program so they would be charged the undergraduate rate, though she said that these could cause problems with recordkeeping for other offices within the university.
When asked if there would be a resolution for the spring semester, Queener said, “The systems programming will take the longest and we are hoping to have resolution by the fall of 2005.”