The Real Cost Of Out-Of-State Tuition At The University Of Washington

As one of the top public universities in the US, the University of Washington attracts applicants from across the country. But with UW’s high out-of-state tuition, is it worth paying top dollar for an elite education?

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: UW out-of-state tuition exceeds $38,000 per year. Significant but less expensive than private schools. Financial aid can offset costs for qualified students.

This comprehensive guide will break down the actual cost of UW’s out-of-state tuition, financial aid and scholarships, cost of living, and strategies to minimize expenses as a non-resident.

Breaking Down UW’s Out-of-State Tuition

Attending college out-of-state can be an exciting and rewarding experience, but it often comes with a hefty price tag. For students considering the University of Washington (UW), understanding the breakdown of out-of-state tuition is crucial.

Let’s dive into the details and explore the real cost of out-of-state tuition at UW.

Base Tuition and Fees

The base tuition and fees for out-of-state students at UW can be a significant financial burden. As of the 2021-2022 academic year, the base tuition for out-of-state students is $39,114 per year. It’s important to note that this amount does not include other expenses such as housing, textbooks, and personal expenses.

Students should budget accordingly to cover these additional costs.

Additional Program and Class Costs

While base tuition covers the general cost of attending UW as an out-of-state student, there may be additional program and class-specific costs to consider. Certain majors or programs may require additional fees or expenses for specialized equipment, materials, or field trips.

It’s essential for students to research the specific requirements of their chosen program to have a comprehensive understanding of the total cost of their education.

Tuition Increases Over Time

Another important factor to consider is the potential for tuition increases over time. Tuition rates at universities often rise annually due to inflation and other financial factors. Students should be prepared for these increases and factor them into their long-term financial planning.

It’s advisable to check UW’s official website or contact the university’s financial aid office for the most up-to-date information regarding tuition rates and potential increases.

While out-of-state tuition at UW may seem daunting, it’s essential to remember that there are various scholarships, grants, and financial aid options available to help alleviate the financial burden. Students should explore these opportunities and apply for financial aid to make their dream of attending UW a reality.

For more information on out-of-state tuition at the University of Washington, you can visit

Seeking Financial Aid and Scholarships

Filing the FAFSA

One of the first steps in seeking financial aid for out-of-state tuition at the University of Washington is to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This form is used to determine a student’s eligibility for federal grants, loans, and work-study programs.

It is important to submit the FAFSA as early as possible, as some aid is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. The FAFSA can be completed online at It is recommended to gather all necessary documents, such as tax returns and income information, before starting the application process.

Merit-Based vs Need-Based Aid

When seeking financial aid for out-of-state tuition at the University of Washington, it is important to understand the difference between merit-based and need-based aid. Merit-based aid is typically awarded to students who excel academically, athletically, or in other areas.

This type of aid is often in the form of scholarships or grants that do not need to be repaid. Need-based aid, on the other hand, is determined by a student’s financial need. This can include grants, work-study programs, and low-interest loans.

It is important to research and apply for both types of aid to maximize opportunities for financial assistance.

UW Scholarship Resources

The University of Washington offers a variety of scholarship resources to help offset the cost of out-of-state tuition. The UW Office of Student Financial Aid provides information on scholarships specifically for out-of-state students.

Additionally, many academic departments and programs offer scholarships to students based on their field of study or other criteria. It is important to research and apply for these scholarships early, as some may have specific deadlines or requirements.

The UW Scholarship Database, available at, is a valuable resource for finding scholarship opportunities at the University of Washington.

Estimating Other Costs of Attendance


When considering the cost of attending the University of Washington as an out-of-state student, housing is a significant factor to take into account. The cost of housing can vary depending on whether you choose to live on or off campus.

On-campus housing options include residence halls and apartments, while off-campus options include renting an apartment or sharing a house with roommates.

According to a study conducted by the university, the average cost of on-campus housing for out-of-state students is $X per year. This includes room and board, as well as utilities and other amenities.

Off-campus housing costs can vary greatly depending on the location and size of the apartment or house.

It’s important to consider your personal preferences and budget when deciding on housing options. Living on campus can provide convenience and a sense of community, while off-campus housing may offer more independence and flexibility.

Additionally, exploring websites like or Zillow can help you estimate the cost of off-campus housing in the area.

Textbooks and Supplies

Another cost to consider when estimating the overall cost of attending the University of Washington as an out-of-state student is textbooks and supplies. Textbook prices can be notoriously high, and the cost can quickly add up over the course of a semester or academic year.

On average, out-of-state students at the University of Washington spend approximately $X on textbooks and supplies per year. However, there are ways to reduce these costs. You can consider buying used textbooks, renting them, or even utilizing online resources and e-books whenever possible.

Additionally, the university’s library system often has textbooks available for loan or access to online databases that may provide access to required course materials.


Transportation costs can also be a significant factor to consider when estimating the total cost of attending the University of Washington as an out-of-state student. Whether you choose to bring a car, rely on public transportation, or use alternative modes of transportation like biking or walking, it’s important to budget for transportation expenses.

The university provides various transportation options, including a comprehensive bus system that students can use for free with a valid student ID. This can significantly reduce transportation costs for students who choose not to bring a car.

However, if you do choose to bring a car or rely on other modes of transportation, it’s important to factor in costs such as parking fees, gas, and maintenance.

By considering these additional costs of attendance, you can get a more accurate estimate of the total cost of attending the University of Washington as an out-of-state student. It’s important to plan ahead and budget accordingly to ensure that you have a clear understanding of the financial commitment involved in pursuing your education at this esteemed institution.

Strategies to Reduce Overall Costs

Establishing Residency After Year 1

One effective strategy to reduce the overall cost of out-of-state tuition at the University of Washington is to establish residency after completing the first year of study. By doing so, students become eligible for in-state tuition rates, which are significantly lower than out-of-state rates.

Establishing residency typically requires proof of domicile in the state, such as a lease agreement or utility bills, and fulfilling residency requirements set by the university. It is important for students to research and understand the specific guidelines and deadlines for establishing residency at the University of Washington to take advantage of this cost-saving opportunity.

Seeking Employer Education Benefits

Another effective strategy to reduce the cost of out-of-state tuition is to seek employer education benefits. Many employers offer tuition assistance programs or reimbursement plans to their employees.

Students attending the University of Washington can explore these options by reaching out to their human resources department or researching the company’s employee benefits package. By utilizing employer education benefits, students can offset a significant portion of their tuition expenses and reduce the financial burden of out-of-state tuition.

Working Part-Time

Working part-time while attending university is a common strategy students use to reduce the overall cost of education. By earning additional income through part-time employment, students can contribute towards their tuition expenses, textbooks, and other educational costs.

The University of Washington offers various on-campus and off-campus employment opportunities for students, including work-study programs and internships. Students can explore these options to find a job that fits their schedule and helps alleviate some of the financial strain associated with out-of-state tuition.

It is important for students to carefully consider their options and assess how each strategy fits their individual circumstances. By combining these strategies and exploring other avenues for reducing costs, students can make attending the University of Washington more affordable and accessible.

Comparing UW to In-State and Private Alternatives

In-State Schools

For Washington residents, attending a local in-state school can be a more affordable option compared to out-of-state tuition at the University of Washington (UW). In-state tuition rates are typically lower as they are subsidized by the state government.

Students who choose to attend an in-state school can save a significant amount of money on tuition fees.

Washington State University (WSU), located in Pullman, is another popular choice for in-state students. With its strong academic programs and vibrant campus life, WSU offers a competitive alternative to UW.

Both universities are part of the prestigious Association of American Universities (AAU), ensuring a high-quality education.

Eastern Washington University (EWU), located in Cheney, is another in-state option worth considering. It offers a range of degree programs and has a strong focus on hands-on learning experiences.

Comparing the tuition rates of these in-state schools to UW can help students make an informed decision about their higher education options. It is important to consider factors such as program offerings, location, and campus culture when making this decision.

Private University Tuition

Private universities often have higher tuition rates compared to public institutions like UW. However, they may also have more financial aid resources available to offset these costs. It’s essential for students to carefully research and consider the financial aid opportunities offered by private universities before making a decision.

One popular private university in Washington is Gonzaga University, located in Spokane. With its strong reputation for academic excellence and a tight-knit community, Gonzaga offers a unique educational experience.

However, the higher tuition costs associated with attending a private university should be taken into account.

Another private university to consider is Seattle University, located in the heart of Seattle. Known for its strong business and law programs, Seattle University offers a diverse range of academic options.

However, students should be prepared for the higher tuition rates associated with attending a private institution.

When comparing private university tuition to UW, it is essential to consider factors such as scholarship opportunities, financial aid packages, and the overall value of the education provided. Visiting the websites of these institutions can provide more information on tuition rates, financial aid, and other relevant details.


UW’s out-of-state tuition means investing significantly in your education. But with financial aid, creative cost cutting, and diligent planning, an elite UW degree can still pay off long-term compared to alternatives.

Focus on academics to qualify for aid. Establish residency when possible. And leverage all resources to minimize out-of-pocket costs. With smart strategies, UW’s outstanding academics and opportunities can outweigh the higher out-of-state tuition.

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