Why We Did It

Ashland University has taken a bold step in addressing the issues of accessibility and affordability facing higher education by cutting the cost of its traditional undergraduate full-time student tuition by more than $10,000 for the 2014-15 academic year. This tuition reset was done for a number of reasons.

  • Over the past decade everyone in higher education has danced around the subject of the rising cost of college. Yet few have been willing to tackle the issue and the complications involved. Ashland University knows the importance of positioning ourselves to meet the rising demand for quality education at an affordable price. We have decided now is the time to act.

  • Our research indicates that many prospective students and their parents are deterred by ‘sticker shock’ and not looking at the actual cost to attend Ashland University even when financial aid is applied.

  • As we reviewed the alternative, we were uncomfortable with continuing to raise tuition costs and create higher costs for our students year after year.

  • Our undergraduate enrollment has been stable over the past few years and we’ve seen an increase this year in first year students compared to 2011 and 2012, so this is really about becoming more transparent in our pricing structure.

  • The change will mean that students who qualify for federal and state assistance will see a greater percentage of these available dollars applied towards their tuition costs, thereby reducing the out-of-pocket expenses for students receiving assistance.

  • Our new full-time tuition price of $18,908 makes the cost of an Ashland University degree more competitive with public universities and less expensive than most of the private colleges and universities in the state.

  • We are maintaining generous financial aid awards and believe that once students see their net costs that AU will be among the most affordable four-year private institutions in the Midwest.

  • Our projections indicate that the tuition reset and financial aid changes will help us to recruit more traditional undergraduates.

  • This tuition reset is just the latest in a number of AU developments in response to student and family financial concerns about higher education costs. In just the past two years, Ashland University has:

    • reduced the minimal number of credit hours needed to complete an undergraduate bachelor’s degree from 128 to 120.

    • instituted a three-year degree program that will allow students to earn a quality private education in less time and for less money.

    • established a four-year graduation guarantee program that will help keep college costs predictable for families.

    • launched a five-year accelerated accounting degree program that allows students to complete bachelor’s and master’s programs in less time than it would for separate degrees.