A new model that moved the tuition cap to 15 hours to link it to the number of hours a student would need to take each semester in order to graduate in four years was announced in fall 2012, effective in fall 2013 for all new full-time undergraduates and transfer students. It was coupled with the tuition rise cap of 3 percent a year for the class of 2017. Previously, students paid for 12 hours, with additional hours being free. Beginning in fall 2013, while enrolled students’ tuition cap remained at 12 credit hours, new students paid for 15 hours, with additional hours being free. The plan was designed to effectively save students money by eliminating the cost of an additional year to finish. The new plan also linked more appropriately with HOPE and institutional scholarships, which are limited to four years.
The new tuition model was calculated to add $6 million to the university’s bottom line, and the administration said that those funds would be used to add staff for high-demand courses and labs, hire more advisors and tutors, enhance summer school and online course options, and provide more need-based scholarships.