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Northwestern University

Cost of Attendance

The Cost of Attendance is an estimate of your total education-related expenses while you are enrolled at Northwestern.

When you think about what it costs to go to college, you probably think about tuition, room and board, or the invoice you receive from the University each quarter. However, the cost of attendance - sometimes also called the "student budget" - actually includes the all expenses related to studying and living at college each year. Some of these expenses, like tuition, are "direct" costs for which you will receive a bill. Others, like books, are considered "indirect" costs - expenses you will have, but will not see on an invoice.

The Evanston undergraduate cost of attendance typically includes:

Why is the cost of attendance listed on your financial aid award letter?  Three main reasons:

Student Health Insurance

All full-time Northwestern students are required to have health insurance coverage, either through the Northwestern University Student Health Insurance Plan (NU-SHIP) or the student's or parent's own health insurance carrier.  The University will automatically enroll you in NU-SHIP at the start of the fall term unless you waive this coverage by the deadline and provide proof of other adequate coverage. Consult with the Student Health Insurance Office for more information.

The cost of health insurance is not automatically included in the cost of attendance. However, students who are required to enroll in NU-SHIP but do not have the resources to cover the cost may request additional assistance from the Office of Undergraduate Financial Aid. If eligible, assistance may be provided in the form of a loan or institutional grant assistance. Be sure to complete and submit a Health Insurance Assistance Request by the deadline, signed by both student and a parent.

Computer Purchase

The cost of a computer is not automatically included in the cost of attendance. However, if you need to purchase a computer for school and would like to borrow a student loan to help cover the expense, you may contact Undergraduate Financial Aid to discuss your eligibility.

The cost of attendance may be increased to include the one-time cost of a reasonably priced, education-related computer. You should contact our office to discuss an appropriate amount to spend prior to making the purchase. Students who do not have resources available to pay for the computer up front may submit documentation of their intended purchase once on campus, and our office will work with you to discuss your options. You may need to provide a copy of the purchase receipt.

Undergraduate Student Budgets 2017-2018

Click on the chart headings for more information.

Living On-Campus Living in an Off-Campus Apartment Being a Resident Assistant Living with Relatives & Commuting
Direct Costs charged by Northwestern
These costs are set by the University and included on your quarterly invoice.
Full-Time Tuition $52,239 $52,239 $52,239 $52,239
Fees $439 $439 $439 $439
On-Campus Room/Board $16,047 $0 $0 $0
Other Estimated (Indirect) Costs
These expenses will not appear on your invoice from Northwestern.
Off-Campus Room/Board $0 $16,047 $0 $2,415
Books & Supplies $1,660 $1,660 $1,660 $1,660
Personal Expenses $2,595 $2,595 $2,595 $2,595
Transportation Varies based on permanent home address $984
Total $72,980 $72,980 $56,933 $60,332

Notes:

  • Tuition and fees are subject to change based on non-full-time enrollment.
  • Beginning with Fall Quarter 2017, Northwestern has implemented a 2-year live-on requirement for all incoming first-year undergraduate students.
  • Students enrolling in the Northwestern student health insurance plan should add $3,856.
  • Study abroad student budgets generally include the same cost categories, but amounts will vary by program.

Undergraduate Student Budgets 2016-2017

Click on the chart headings for more information.

Living On-Campus Living in an Off-Campus Apartment Being a Resident Assistant Living with Relatives & Commuting
Direct Costs charged by Northwestern
These costs are set by the University and included on your quarterly invoice.
Full-Time Tuition $50,424 $50,424 $50,424 $50,424
Fees $431 $431 $431 $431
On-Campus Room/Board $15,489 $0 $0 $0
Other Estimated (Indirect) Costs
These expenses will not appear on your invoice from Northwestern.
Off-Campus Room/Board $0 $15,489 $0 $2,415
Books & Supplies $1,620 $1,620 $1,620 $1,620
Personal Expenses $2,532 $2,532 $2,532 $2,532
Transportation Varies based on permanent home address $984
Total $70,496 $70,496 $55,007 $58,406

Notes:

  • Tuition and fees are subject to change based on non-full-time enrollment.
  • Students enrolling in the Northwestern student health insurance plan should add $3,799.
  • Study abroad student budgets generally include the same cost categories, but amounts will vary by program.
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