Tuition and Fees Exemptions and Waiver Information

The University of Houston extends to students any waivers and exemptions for which they qualify. The university reserves the right to evaluate each individual waiver and exemption for compliance with existing regulations and will base any decision on the merit of such review.

Effective Fall 2014, all Texas public institutions of higher education will be required to comply with new legislation passed by the Texas Legislature. Section 54.2001. Continued Receipt of Exemptions or Waivers has been added to the Texas Education Code. In order to continue receiving certain waivers and exemptions, graduate and undergraduate students must now meet the University's grade point average requirement for making satisfactory academic progress toward a degree or certificate, in accordance with the institution's policy regarding eligibility for financial aid. In addition, hours considered excessive under Texas Education Code, Section 54.014 Tuition for Repeated or Excessive Hours, may not be eligible for exemption.

If your waiver has been denied for failure to meet SAP requirements and you wish to have your case reviewed, please visit the following links for our Appeal Process and Appeal Form.

Waivers should be submitted by deadline.
All students seeking waivers must submit any applications accompanied by supporting documentation no later than the Official Census Date of the semester/term in which they are currently enrolled. This is generally the 12th class day of a regular semester/term and the 4th class day of a shorter term/session. Waivers will not be granted for prior semesters/terms.

The following represent the most common waivers available to students.

Blind and Deaf Students
Blind or deaf students who are residents are entitled to exemption from tuition if they present:

  1. Certification by the appropriate state vocational rehabilitation agency that they are handicapped in the respective manner.
  2. A high school diploma or its equivalent.
  3. Letters of recommendation by high school principals, clergymen, a public official, or other responsible individuals.
  4. Proof of admission to the university.

Highest Ranking High School Graduates
The university issues scholarships each year to the highest ranking graduates of each accredited high school in Texas. These scholarships exempt students from paying tuition during both semesters of the first regular session immediately following graduation. The exemption may be granted for any one of the first four regular sessions following high school graduation.

Senior Citizens
Senior Citizen means a person 65 years of age or older. The university allows senior citizens to audit any course offered by the campus without payment of a fee, providing space is available. Refer to the section on course auditing. Senior citizens enrolled in courses for credit are entitled to a waiver of the "tuition only" for up to six hours of courses.

Children of Disabled Firefighters and Peace Officers
Eligible parents include full-paid or volunteer firefighters, or full-paid municipal, county, or state peace officers, or custodial employees of the Texas Department of Corrections, or game wardens who have a child under 21 years of age.

Disabled means the inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determined physical or mental impairment that can be expected to result in death or to be of long-continued and indefinite duration. Individuals are not considered disabled unless they furnish proof of disability. The university exempts students whose parents have suffered an injury resulting in death or disability sustained in the line of duty according to the regulations and criteria governing the department or agency that were in effect when the parent was employed.

Children of Prisoners of War or Persons Missing In Action
Upon presentation of satisfactory evidence, the university will exempt from the payment of tuition and fees the dependent child of any person who is a domiciliary of Texas on active duty as a member of the United States armed forces, and who at the time of enrollment (registration) is classified by the Department of Defense as a prisoner of war or missing in action.

Veterans and Dependents
The university exempts students from paying all tuition, fees, and charges, including fees for correspondence courses, but excluding property deposit fees, student services fees, and any fees or charges for lodging, board, or clothing, provided the students seeking exemption were citizens of Texas at the time they entered the services indicated and have resided in Texas for at least 12 months before the enrollment (registration) date. Exemptions include:

  1. All nurses and honorably discharged members of the United States armed forces who served during the Spanish-American War or World War I.
  2. All nurses, members of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps, members of the Women's Auxiliary Volunteer Emergency Service, and all honorably discharged United States armed forces members who served during World War II, with minor exceptions.
  3. All honorably discharged men and women of the United States armed forces who served during the national emergency that began on June 27, 1950, and is referred to as the Korean War.
  4. All persons who were honorably discharged from the armed forces of the United States after serving on active military duty, excluding training, for more than 180 days and who served a portion of their active duty during the Cold War, the Vietnam era, the Grenada and Lebanon era, the Panama era, the Persian Gulf War, or any future national emergency declared in accordance with federal law.

These exemptions also apply to the benefit of the children of members of the armed forces of the United States who are or were killed in action, who die or died while in service, who are missing in action, or whose death is documented to be directly caused by illness or injury connected with such service, and to the benefit of orphans of members of the Texas National Guard and the Texas Air National Guard killed since January 1, 1946, while on active duty. However, to qualify for this exemption a person must be a citizen of Texas and must have resided in the state for at least 12 months immediately preceding the date of the person's enrollment (registration).

The exemption from fees in this section does not apply if the student is eligible for benefits under federal legislation in effect if such benefit is equal to or exceeds the value of the exemption. The exemptions obtained shall not exceed a cumulative total of 150 credit hours.

Military Personnel and Dependents
Officers, enlisted men and women, selectees, or draftees of the Army, Army Reserve, Army National Guard, Air National Guard, Air Force, Air Force Reserve, Navy, Navy Reserve, Marine Corps, Marine Corps Reserve, Coast Guard, or Coast Guard Reserve of the United States, who are assigned to duty in Texas, are entitled to enroll (register) themselves, their spouses, and their children at the university by paying Texas resident tuition and fees. This tuition waiver is without regard to the length of time they have been assigned to duty or resided in the state.

As long as they reside continuously in Texas, spouses and children of United States armed forces members who have been assigned to duty elsewhere immediately following duty in Texas are eligible to pay resident tuition and fees.

Spouses and children of United States armed forces members who die or are killed are eligible for resident tuition if the spouse and children become Texas residents within 60 days after the death.

If United States armed forces members are stationed outside Texas and their spouses and children establish Texas residency by residing in Texas and by filing with the university a letter of intent to establish residency, they will be permitted to pay resident tuition and fees regardless of the time they have resided in Texas.

Student Employees
Teaching assistants and research assistants are entitled to enroll (register) themselves, their spouses, and their children by paying the tuition and other fees charged to Texas residents. This residency waiver is without regard to the length of time they have resided in Texas, provided the students are employed at least one-half time in a teaching or research position relating to their degree program.

To receive a waiver for summer, students must be employed one-half time during the summer sessions. A waiver form must be presented to the Human Resources Office during the semester to which it applies. No retroactive waivers will be granted.

Faculty and Dependents
Teachers, professors, and researchers of state institutions of higher education are entitled to enroll (register) themselves, their spouses, and their children by paying resident tuition and fees. This residency waiver is without regard to the length of time they have resided in Texas, provided the employees are employed at least one-half time.