Block tuition plan could save students money

STILLWATER, Okla. - A block tuition plan could shave $10,000 off the cost of a degree at Oklahoma State University, according to a plan proposed by President David Schmidly.

Under the proposal, students would pay the standard per-credit-hour charges on the first 11 hours, while students enrolled in 12 hours or more each semester would pay a flat rate for tuition and fees.

That means that a student could enroll in 13 to 18 hours per semester and pay the same as the cost of 12 hours of credit, Schmidly said.

"When I hear concerns about affordability related to tuition, I worry that people are focused on the wrong cost factor," said Schmidly. "Tuition at OSU is about $3,000 a year, while the costs for room, board, transportation, telephones, clothes and incidentals for a year can total close to $9,500."

He said giving students an incentive to shorten their time in college could save more than three times the cost of any tuition increase being considered by the Legislature.

College students are currently averaging about 13 hours per semester, while 16 to 17 hours are required to graduate in four years, Schmidly said.

Schmidly said he'd like to implement the program next fall, pending approval from OSU regents and state regents.

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