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Regents approve 4% tuition increase

March 30, 2023 By Greg Bump

University of Wisconsin–Madison’s tuition for Wisconsin-resident undergraduate students will increase by 4% during the 2023-24 academic year, the first increase since 2012, under a plan approved Friday by the UW System Board of Regents.

Resident undergraduate tuition will increase by $372 to $9,646 annually in fall 2023. Segregated fees will increase by $46, a 3% change over the current academic year. Put together, tuition and fees at UW–Madison for resident undergraduates will increase by $418 per year, a 3.88% increase that is well below the current inflation rate.

Chancellor Jennifer L. Mnookin says that the decision to increase tuition is in line with the quality of the educational experience offered at UW–Madison, and with peer institutions.

“The University of Wisconsin–Madison is recognized as a top-tier academic and research institution. After a decade of frozen in-state tuition, additional investment is needed to maintain our quality,” Mnookin says. “At the same time, it is critical to maintain and further build our commitment to ensuring that access to the university remains affordable, especially for students from Wisconsin with financial need. We believe the tuition plan approved by the Board reflects those priorities. UW–Madison has expanded financial aid offerings to lessen the impact inflation is having on families with financial need.”

The Board of Regents also approved a 3% tuition increase (or $1,137) for non-resident UW–Madison undergraduates in the 2023-24 academic year, bringing the cost of tuition and fees for non-Wisconsin students to $40,611.

Room and board rates at UW–Madison will increase slightly, with the cost for University Housing going up by $200 to $7,433 and the meal plan rising by $50 in the 2023-24 academic year.

The Regents also approved increases in the tuition differential charge for undergraduate students in the schools of Business and Engineering and the establishment of an undergraduate tuition differential charge in Nursing.

According to U.S. News & World Report, UW–Madison is the 10th ranked public university in the U.S. (No. 2 among Big Ten public universities), offering students access to the highest quality education with a breadth of academic and co-curricular activity. The current (2022-23) resident tuition and fees rate places UW–Madison 10th in the Big Ten; the nonresident tuition and fees rate places UW–Madison fourth in the Big Ten.

More than sixty percent of UW–Madison’s 2022 graduating seniors did not take out student loans while pursuing their undergraduate degree, the sixth straight year the figure has been well over 50 percent. Among those who did borrow, the average student loan debt ($25,513) is below the most recent national and statewide data available, and the default rate for UW–Madison borrowers is among the lowest in the nation at 0.2%.

The adjustments to undergraduate tuition will generate about $21.5 million in additional revenue to support the teaching and research mission across UW–Madison. The additional revenue will fund the university’s 30% share of the 2023-24 pay plan and be invested in expanding access to high-demand courses, growing need-based aid and providing new teaching and student services positions.

UW–Madison is committed to making tuition affordable for students in need. Currently, Bucky’s Tuition Promise provides free tuition and fees to 3,500 Wisconsin high school residents from 70 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties.

Recently announced, Bucky’s Pell Pathway provides Pell eligible UW–Madison students a roadmap to covering the full cost of attendance, including tuition and fees, room and board, books and other expected expenses.

Students who are the beneficiaries of either Bucky’s Tuition Promise or Bucky’s Pell Pathway have all tuition and fees covered by these programs, so this increase will not impact their costs to attend UW–Madison.