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Residency and Tuition

Wondering whether you pay in-state or out-of-state tuition rates? The answer depends on your residency status, which is based on the information you include in your application for admission.

The official and most up-to-date information about residency (including all the forms and requirements you need in order to prove or change your residency) can be found at the Records and Registration website.

How You Can Qualify for In-State Residency and Tuition

The statutes and policies of the State of Washington define your residency status, and many factors help determine if you meet the eligibility requirements for in-state residency tuition.

Has one of your parents or guardians lived in Washington for at least 12 months before the date you start college? You may qualify for in-state tuition as financially dependent.

Have you lived by yourself in Washington for at least 12 months before the date you start college? You may qualify for in-state tuition as financially independent.

Have you lived in Washington before, but you moved to study at another college or university? You may qualify for in-state tuition under an exemption for education.

Are you a non-U.S. citizen who has lived in Washington for three years and graduated from a Washington high school? You may qualify for in-state tuition for non-citizens (HB 1079). (See below for more details.)

Are your parents or guardians non-U.S. citizens who hold refugee status or temporary or permanent resident status? You may qualify for in-state tuition as financially dependent.

Are you a non-U.S. citizen with refugee status or temporary or permanent resident status? You may qualify for in-state tuition as financially independent.

Are you a Native American tribal member? You may be eligible for in-state tuition, but be sure to contact Records and Registration at regonline@ewu.edu or 509.359.2321 to find out more.

In-State Tuition for Non-Citizens ("HB 1079")

Students who are non-citizens who have graduated from a Washington high school and have lived in the state for at least three years may be eligible for in-state tuition at public institutions, rather than being charged non-resident tuition.  

To qualify for in-state tuition under this classification, a student must meet these three criteria:

  • Graduate from a Washington State high school (or obtain a GED or equivalent)
  • Live in Washington for at least three years prior to earning the high school diploma or equivalent and continuously since.
  • Sign an affidavit (written promise) affirming eligibility and promising to become a permanent resident/citizen of the United States when eligible to apply.

In addition, Washington state's 2014 Legislature passed the REAL Hope Act (SB 6523), also known as the Washington Dream Act, to expand eligibility for the Washington State Need Grant to non-citizens who meet the same residency requirement under HB 1079 and program requirements.  Visit the website to find the Washington Dream Act application process and requirements.

What to Do If You Think You Should Be Eligible for In-State Tuition

If you are currently coded as an out-of-state resident but feel you may be eligible for in-state residency, please fill out the residency questionnaire at the Records and Registration website, copy the necessary supporting documents and send the information to the Records and Registration office by the applicable deadlines.

What to Do If You're Not Eligible for In-State Tuition

The Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE) helps out-of-state students lower the cost of tuition at Eastern. Discover if you're eligible.

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