Cost & Financial Aid

How much does CU Boulder cost?

There are 2 ways to look at how much it will cost to attend CU Boulder.

Amounts billed by the University:
  • Tuition and fees (our estimate does not include course and program fees)
  • On-campus housing and meal plans
  • Books & supplies (if charged to your tuition bill)
  • CU Health Plan (only if you are covered by the university's health plan)

This does not include any personal expenses. See #2 to see our estimates for your personal expenses.

Want to see these costs?

  • View estimated costs billed by CU provided by the Bursar's Office
  • View tuition & fee rate sheets for more detailed costs including tuition, mandatory fees, and housing rates per semester. Tuition is based on residency (in-state or out-of-state), type of degree, and number of credit hours.

Visit the Bursar's Office website  to find more specific estimated costs based on your college/school/program.

This is referred to as the Cost of Attendance (COA) and includes:

Amounts billed by the University (listed in #1)

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Amounts paid by the student:
  • Off-campus housing and food
  • Books & supplies (if paid by you or a 3rd party)
  • Transportation
  • Allowance for medical/dental expenses
  • Allowance for personal expenses

View our Example Cost of Attendance (COA) to see common examples.

How is Financial Aid Eligibility Determined?

There are 2 major factors determine your financial aid award eligibility.

We carefully estimate what a student will pay to go to college for one year including both costs billed by CU and estimated personal expenses. View COA estimate examples.

For more information on COA, please contact our office.

If you received financial aid to cover the student-paid expenses, you will receive a refund check from the Bursar's Office after your aid has been applied to your bill.

EFC is an index number used to calculate a family's ability to pay for college.

  • It is determined by the FAFSA and verification process.
  • It is not the amount of money your family will need to pay for college, nor is it the amount of federal student aid you will receive.
  • It is used to determine grant eligibility. The lower the EFC, the more grants may be offered.
  • Some scholarships and loans are also based on the EFC.

Get more information on how financial aid is calculated.

Please note: the amount of aid you receive cannot exceed the cost to attend.

Tips

Authorize Aid to Pay for All Charges: Federal Title IV financial aid funds, such as federal student loans and the Pell Grant, are limited to pay for tuition, fees, and on-campus room and board charges only. However, with your permission, this aid can pay for other types of university charges (i.e., health insurance, parking fees, optional student fees, and now textbooks).

You can use the Net Price Calculator  to get an estimate of how much financial aid was given to students who had a family income similar to yours last year.