Earning a graduate degree requires investments of time, effort, and, of course, money. However, there are two things you should know about the cost of a graduate education at UNL:
  • Nebraska is more affordable than many of its peer institutions.
  • At Nebraska, hundreds of people get paid to be graduate students.
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Tuition and Fees

Cost of attendance can be very different from one student to another because tuition rates and fee requirements vary based on course level (graduate or undergraduate), course college, whether courses are online rather than on campus, and other factors.

To estimate your own cost of attendance, go to Student Accounts: Tuition and Fees and find the term, location (online or on campus), and level for which you'll be enrolling.

If you have questions about tuition and fees, contact studentaccounts@unl.edu.

Payment: When payment is required, the office of Student Accounts will post billing information to a student's MyRED account.

Graduate vs. undergraduate rates: Tuition is determined by course level rather than student level. E.g., a graduate student who takes one undergraduate course will pay the undergraduate rate for that course.

Nebraska residency: Students who have recently resided or enrolled outside the state of Nebraska may be classified as non-residents for tuition purposes. For ways to qualify as a Nebraska resident, download the Residence Policy for Tuition Purposes (PDF). The file includes an application form.

Auditing: Tuition for audited courses is the same as tuition for courses taken for a grade or pass/no-pass.

Financial aid: The office of Scholarships and Financial Aid provides information on loans and need-based funds.

Full-time status: A degree-seeking graduate student enrolled for nine or more hours in one semester is considered a full-time student for that semester.

Reciprocity agreements: UNL does not participate at the graduate level in the tuition discount program of the Midwest Higher Education Compact (Midwest Student Exchange Program). Former reciprocity agreements with Missouri have expired. However, students should check with their academic department about eligibility for the August Edgren Tuition Fellowship.

Assistantships

Over 1,700 assistantship appointments are made by departments during an academic year. Most assistantships include tuition remission during the semester of appointment and may include tuition remission for the summer. The assistantships are competitively awarded and typically require 13 to 20 hours of service per week. Assistantships for summer may also be available. Graduate assistants are required to register during the fall and spring semesters if employed during that time, but not in the summer.

An international student may apply for a teaching assistantship if the student: 1) is a native of a country in which English is the only national language; or 2) successfully completes the Institute for International Teaching Assistants. The Institute, a concentrated 90-hour program, is held the last week in July and the first week in August.

For more details, go to the assistantship page for current students.

Teaching and Research Assistantships

To inquire about your opportunities for a teaching or research assistantship, contact the graduate chair of your department.

If you are not admitted to a department or area with a specific graduate degree objective, you will not be eligible for an assistantship.

Administrative Assistantships

We list open positions when we hear about them.

Fellowships

Graduate students newly admitted to UNL degree programs are eligible for several fellowships. All of these fellowships are awarded by or through the academic departments, with no separate fellowship application forms for new students to complete. Because departments make nominations for some of the fellowships by mid-February, and many departments begin reviewing applications by January 15, it is important that your Application for Admission be completed as early as possible.

Contact your admitting department for further information regarding fellowships that might be available to you.


Othmer Fellowships are intended to assist in recruiting exceptional scholars who are seeking a terminal degree (i.e., Ph.D., Ed.D, D.M.A, M.F.A.). While UNL alums are not prohibited from receiving an Othmer Fellowship, the general assumption is that a UNL student would only receive this fellowship if we are actively competing with other prestigious institutions to retain the student at UNL. Othmer Fellows will receive, in addition to the departmental assistantship, an $8,000 fellowship per year. Othmer Fellowships are renewable for up to three years, given continued excellent progress toward the degree. All graduate applicants newly admitted to a doctoral or M.F.A. degree program are eligible for an Othmer Fellowship. To qualify, the department is expected to offer an assistantship stipend at least equal to the highest amount offered by the department to first-year students. The assistantship must be renewable for up to three years.

Selection Criteria:
  • Exceptional scholar
  • Newly admitted doctoral or M.F.A. student
  • Minimum GPA of 3.5 in previous degree
  • Excellent letters of recommendation
  • Student must be offered a department assistantship at the highest level of funding
 
Chancellor's Fellowships are designed to assist departments with the recruitment of superior graduate students by adding fellowship funds to an assistantship. Chancellor's Fellows will receive, in addition to the departmental assistantship, a $4,000 fellowship per year. Chancellor's Fellowships are automatically renewable for a second year, given excellent progress toward the degree. All newly admitted masters or doctoral students are eligible. To qualify, the department is expected to offer an assistantship stipend at least equal to the typical level offered by the department to first-year masters or doctoral students. The assistantship must be renewable for up to two years.

Selection Criteria:
  • Newly admitted doctoral or master's student
  • Excellent academic record
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA in previous degree
  • Excellent letters of recommendation
  • Student must be offered a full department assistantship at the typical level for master's or doctoral students
 
The Edgren Tuition Fellowship is available to U.S. citizens who are full-time students and non-residents of Nebraska for tuition purposes. Students retain the fellowship until graduation if continuously enrolled.

Selection Criteria:
  • Newly admitted full-time domestic doctoral or masters student
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA in previous degree
  • Excellent letters of recommendation
  • Student must be a U. S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Students who receive the fellowship pay tuition at 150% of the resident tuition rate until graduation if continuously enrolled at UNL
  • Covers up to 12 credit hours during the fall and spring semester and 6 credit hours during the summer session