Administrative Services

File code: STU.WAIVE.POL
Approval Date: February, 2001
Approved By: President

Policy on Tuition and Fee Waivers

Western Illinois University shall award tuition waivers in compliance with Illinois Statutes and in accordance with the WIU Board of Trustees Bylaws and Regulations and the WIU Tuition and Fee Waivers Procedures.

Waivers Defined and General Categories

A waiver represents an agreement between the university and the student to reduce or eliminate the tuition and/or fees that normally would be charged to the student.

Tuition and fee waivers are categorized in one of two general categories.

Mandatory Waivers. Waivers that the institution is required by State statute to grant to students who meet the specific parameters and criteria included in statute.

Discretionary Waivers. Waivers that are granted at the option of the university. Discretionary waivers include certain statutory waivers (e.g., Gender Equity in Intercollegiate Athletics Waivers) that are granted to specific individuals at the discretion of the institution.

Waiver Accounting Classifications

All tuition and fees assessed against students are recorded as revenue, even though there may be no intention of collecting the revenue from the student. A waiver is the amount of revenue that the university intentionally relinquishes for one of the purposes included in the Standard Tuition and Fee Waiver Chart of Accounts and are recorded as university expenditures. Tuition and fee waivers are classified by the university as budgeted, granted, or expended waivers. The classification of tuition and fee waivers is dependent on the point in the budgeting and accounting cycle in which the transaction takes place.

Budgeted Waivers. The University Board of Trustees and administrators recognize that waivers represent an institutional resource that should be included in the university's budget plan that outlines the allocation of all institutional resources. Budgeted waivers are estimated amounts identified by the university as the total amount available to students in a particular fiscal year. Budgeted waivers are not identified with specific students or student positions. The university includes estimated tuition waivers in its institutional budget. The university does not allocate budgeted tuition and fee waivers by college, department, or accounting unit.

Granted Waivers. Granted waivers are recognized when waivers are allocated to specific students or student positions. Granted waivers are available to students as reductions in tuition and/or fee charges.

Expended Waivers. Once an individual student is identified as the recipient of a granted waiver and the student's financial obligation account is reduced by the granted waiver amount, the waiver becomes an expended waiver. Expended waivers may not exceed granted waivers. In instances when a student withdraws from class and is entitled to a reduction in tuition charges, a concurrent reduction in the expended tuition waiver may be recorded to recognize the reduction in remised tuition.

Fiscal Year Reporting

The university will report tuition and fee waivers within a consistent state of Illinois fiscal year framework. Waivers are reported as budgeted, granted or expended waivers within the particular accounting period in which the corresponding tuition and fees are recognized as revenue.

In instances where waivers are adjusted after the end of the fiscal year, the university has established a cutoff date of August 31 to facilitate fiscal year waiver reporting. Adjustments made after the cutoff date will be allocated to the following fiscal year.

Determining the Number of Waiver Recipients

Unduplicated Number of Waiver Recipients refers to the number of students receiving any type of waiver within any of the specific waiver categories, or total student waivers. For example, if a student receives partial waivers for work as a graduate teaching assistant from two different colleges, the student would be counted only once in the Graduate Assistant: Teaching category. Further, assuming that the student also receives a financial need waiver from the Office of Financial Aid, the student would be counted only once in the Graduate Assistant: Teaching category, once in the Financial Need category, and only once in the Total Unduplicated Number of Waiver Recipients. To rephrase, a student could be included in the unduplicated headcount in more than one waiver category but should be counted only once in the total number of unduplicated waiver recipients.

Records and Record Retention

Tuition and fee waiver records consist of the complete files for the waiver program. These records include written documentation, where applicable, for the university approved waiver listing, application cutoff dates, eligibility and selection criteria for each waiver program, awarded and rejected applications, selection records, award notifications, records of rejected applicants, and procedures for entering waiver data into the university accounting system. Tuition and fee waiver files must be maintained for a minimum of five years. After five years, the university may dispose of the records providing all audits have been completed under the direction of the Internal Auditing office at Western Illinois University and the Office of the Auditor General, if necessary, and no litigation is pending or anticipated.

Overall Monitoring of Waivers

The Internal Auditing office at WIU has placed the tuition waiver program on its two-year compliance audit schedule. The Internal Auditing office will be responsible for determining compliance with statutory, WIU and IBHE requirements and reporting to management any deviation in compliance with respect to the tuition waiver program.