Boston University » College of Engineering » Current Graduate Students

Graduate Financial Aid

Several sources of financial aid and education financing options are available for eligible graduate degree students in the College of Engineering at Boston University. Funding options include both merit and need-based assistance from a variety of University, federal, and private sources.

Financial Information

Tuition, fees, residence and dining plan rates, and any previous balance must be paid in full each semester before the payment deadline. Invoices are mailed to registered students’ permanent addresses several weeks before the start of the semester. Payments made in advance of registration should be directed to Student Accounting Services, 881 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215-1390.

The University does not accept credit cards as payment of tuition, fees, residence, and dining plan for full-time students. Checks should be payable to Boston University.

Although the University does not offer its own deferred payment plan for full-time students, financing may be arranged through private agencies. This should be done well before the start of the academic school year. Information on such plans may be obtained by contacting Student Accounting Services, 881 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215-1390; 617-353-2264. Financial Assistance, 881 Commonwealth Avenue, also provides information on meeting college costs in its booklet, Financing Options for Your Education.

The University assumes no liability for failure to provide educational or related services arising from causes beyond the reasonable control of the University. The University will exert reasonable efforts to provide comparable or substantially equivalent services, but its inability to do so shall not subject it to liability. The Trustees of the University reserve the right to change tuition rates, fees, and residence and dining plan rates at their discretion when it is deemed advisable.

Tuition and Mandatory Fees

Boston University will withhold all diplomas, degrees, official transcripts, and other official recognition of work done at the University from students for whom there are any outstanding overdue debts to the University, including, but not limited to, amounts owed in satisfaction of tuition, loan agreements, fees, and charges as well as monies owed for occupancy in University-owned or –operated residences and for dining service. No student may withdraw from the University in good standing or graduate from the University unless all current obligations to the University are pain in full.

Full-Time Students- 2013-2014 Rates (enrolled for 12 to 18 credits)
Tuition: $43,970
Graduate Student Fees:
Student Services Fee = $290 per year
Health & Wellness Fee = $320 per year
Community Service Fee = $40 per year

In figuring total expense, the student must add to the above tuition and fees his or her residence and dining plan rates, medical insurance, and any special fees, personal expenses, or other charges the student may incur. Current costs for such items are given in the pages that follow.

Part-Time Students (enrolled for ½ to 11½ credits)
Tuition: $1,374 per credit
Registration Fee: $60 per semester

Medical Insurance

The 2013/2014 cost of the Boston University medical insurance plan for full-time students (U.S. citizens and international) is: Boston University Student –BASIC Plan--$2,141; Boston University Student Plus Plan is $2,910 per year (8/23/13-8/22/14). Massachusetts law requires all students carrying at least 75 percent of the full-time curriculum to be covered under a qualifying medical insurance plan. If the student does not wish to participate in the Boston University medical insurance plan, he or she must annually file a Medical Insurance Waiver form that certifies coverage under a comparable medical insurance plan. The Medical Insurance Waiver form should be returned to Student Accounting Services, 881 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215-1390. Part-time students are also eligible to purchase Boston University medical insurance. For information, contact student Accounting Service, purchase Boston University medical insurance. For information, contact Student Accounting Services, 881 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215-1390. The insurance premium is subject to change.

Other Expenses

The estimated cost of books and supplies is $1,560 per year. Approximately $1,772 to $3,994 should be allowed for incidental expenses, which vary with individual circumstances, such as transportation, laundry, clothing, recreation, and miscellaneous expenditures.

The following are other changes that may form part of the cost of attending Boston University:

Application for Admission: $80

Late Fee: A minimum late fee of $150 for full-time students and $75 for part-time students may be assessed to those students who complete their official registration during the late registration period.

Transcripts: To request an academic transcript of grades and coursework, a student should submit a Transcript Request form to the University Registrar’s office. Letter requests will be honored if they are signed and give complete information about attendance, including enrollment dates, college(s) of registration, and degree(s) earned. Official transcripts are mailed approximately two weeks after receipt of the request. The transcript fee is $6 per copy, or $4 if ordered online. Payment must accompany the request. For transcripts sent express mail, add $15 per address. The express mail charge is subject to change depending on the carrier used. Unofficial transcripts for student use may be obtained from the University Registrar’s office on a walk-in basis Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. There is no fee for unofficial transcripts.

Replacement of Boston University Identification Card (Terrier Card): $40

Apartment Rentals

Below are estimated monthly rates for privately owned, unfurnished apartments in the Boston University area.

Furnished room (shared kitchen and bath): $650 and up per month.
Studio: $1,050 and up per month.
One-bedroom: $1,275 and up per month.
Two-bedroom: $1,900 and up per month.

Withdrawals and Refunds

Mere absence from classes does not reduce a student’s financial obligation or guarantee that a final grade will not be recorded. Students who officially withdraw or take a leave of absence will have their tuition and fees canceled in accordance with the University’s refund schedule, which is published by the University Registrar’s office and is available at The procedure for withdrawing or taking a leave of absence is explained under “Withdrawal, Leaves of Absence, and Reinstatement” in the “Policies and Procedures” section of this bulletin. Full-time undergraduate degree candidates wishing to request an exception to the refund schedule must do so in writing to the University Service Center at 881 Commonwealth Avenue; all others must submit their written request to the appropriate Dean’s office.

Part-time students who remain registered, but reduce their course loads during the first five weeks of the semester, will have their accounts adjusted for the difference between original and reassessed tuition charges.

A credit balance (overpayment) resulting from withdrawal, cash payment, loans and/or other adjustment will be refunded upon request via the StudentLink or by contacting the Graduate Programs Office, 44 Cummington Mall, Room 114, Boston, Massachusetts 02215.

Students with any federal financial aid should refer to the additional information pertinent to them under “Withdrawals, Leaves of Absence, and Adjustments” in the “Financial Aid” section of this bulletin.

Financial Aid Information

The Spring 2014 application deadline is October 1, 2013 for all applicants. We do not accept PhD applications for the Spring semester. The Biomedical Engineering Department does not accept applications for the Spring semester. Most financial aid is awarded to Fall semester applicants. Only a limited amount of funding is available for Spring applicants. Applicants requiring financial aid are encouraged to apply for the Fall semester.

Our Fall 2014 application and financial aid deadlines are listed below:

December 15, 2013 PhD applications from international and domestic students to ALL departments/divisions. International students’ applications to the MS and MEng programs who wish to be considered for financial aid.

January 15, 2014 Domestic students applying for the MS, MEng or LEAP programs who wish to be considered for financial aid. Special note: the MS application deadline for applicants to the Biomedical Engineering Dept., with and without aid, is January 15, 2014.

March 15, 2014 MS applications to: Electrical, Computer, Photonics, Mechanical, Manufacturing, Global Manufacturing, Systems Engineering, and Materials Science and Engineering from applicants who are not seeking financial aid.

March 15, 2014 MEng applications from domestic and international students to: Biomedical, Electrical, Computer, Photonics, Mechanical, Manufacturing, Global Manufacturing, Systems Engineering, and Materials Science and Engineering from applicants who are not seeking financial aid.

The College of Engineering has a policy of maintaining support for funded graduate students who continue to make satisfactory progress toward the degree. Admitted Master of Science or Master of Engineering students who do not receive University support but are eligible for educational loans will be sent appropriate information with the letter of admission. Matriculated students must remain in good standing and maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.0 in order to be eligible for continued federal, University, or College financial support.

Financial Resources Available to Domestic and International Students

Tuition Scholarship Policy

Tuition scholarship can be awarded only for courses applicable to a student’s degree program. Physical education and other unrelated class are not supported nor are withdrawals or audits.

Boston University awards scholarship funds only to students who are in compliance with federal aid regulations regarding defaulted education loans or requirements of the United States Selective Service Administration. Applicants with prior histories of compliance deficiencies are advised to establish early contact with the Graduate Programs Office of the College of Engineering.

Dean’s Fellowships

The Dean’s Fellowship provides a PhD applicant with an academic-year stipend of $20,000 (2013/2014), and individual enrollment in the Boston University Student Medical Insurance BASIC Plan. In addition, the student’s department may offer the guarantee of support for the first summer at a stipend rate of $10,000 bringing the total calendar year stipend to $30,000. The Dean’s Fellowship is not renewable, but each recipient can expect continued support in the subsequent years provided that she/he makes good progress toward completion of the doctoral degree. This support will typically come in the form of a Graduate Research Assistantship but may also include funding as a Graduate Teaching Fellow. No specific teaching or research service is required of Dean’s Fellows, but recipients are expected to establish research goals with a research advisor during the first year of study.

All applicants to the PhD program are automatically considered for the Dean’s Fellowship award, and no special application is required. Potential recipients are nominated by each department, and final decisions regarding annual awardees are made by the Dean of the College of Engineering.

Graduate Research Assistantships

Research Assistantships provide a salary of $10,000, up to 10 credit hours of tuition scholarship, and individual enrollment in the Boston University Student Medical Insurance BASIC Plan for each semester of support. The 2013/2014 calendar year salary for first-year students equals a total of $30,000. In subsequent years, Research Assistants may expect salary increases as progress is made toward the degree. Research Assistants are expected to work a minimum of 20 hours a week during the academic year and 40 hours a week during the summer semester.

Academic research faculty members holding sponsored research grants or contracts offer Research Assistantships each year to qualified students who have particular interests and abilities in research areas of mutual interest. Applicants interested in research assistantships should complete the “Financial Aid Application Form” describing their research interests and experience.

Graduate Teaching Fellowships

A Graduate Teaching Fellowship provides the student with an academic-year salary of $20,000 plus individual enrollment in the Boston University Student Medical Insurance BASIC Plan. In addition, Teaching Fellows receive tuition scholarship during the academic year.

Graduate Teaching Fellows work approximately 20 hours per week under the supervision a faculty member in support of courses taught by the College of Engineering. Duties may include tasks such as solution sets. All the new Graduate Teaching Fellows must attend a mandatory Training Seminar at the beginning of the semester. Applicants interested in Graduate Teaching Fellowships should complete the financial Aid section of the Application for Admission and describe any relevant teaching qualifications, experience, or interests.

Part-time Employment Within Boston University

A variety of paid part-time positions are available for graduate students through the Student Employment Office at Boston University. Opportunities vary each semester but may include such jobs a grader, laboratory assistant, office assistant, and research assistant. Students who are awarded Federal College Work-Study grants (restricted to U.S. citizens and permanent residents) have access to additional employment opportunities posted by the University Work-Study Office.

Off-Campus Part-Time Employment

A number of part-time off-campus jobs are available to Boston University students through the Student Employment Office. A full-time graduate student should not expect to work more than about ten hours per week or earn more than about $1,000 per month from such employment. Students awarded Federal Work-Study grants have access to additional employment opportunities listed by University Work-Study Office. International students may not work more than 20 hours per week total, including on-campus and off-campus jobs. All RA and GTF appointments require the student to work 20 hours per week, hence international students receiving these forms of financial aid may not hold any other type of employment. This employment restriction also applies to the summer semester.

Other international students are advised to seek the counsel of the International Students and Scholars Office at 888 Commonwealth Avenue, 2nd floor, to obtain up-to-date information and regulations concerning employment issues for foreign students.

Graduate Cooperative Education Program

The Cooperative Education program run by the College of Engineering enables students to gain valuable professional experience as an integral part of graduate study. Participants are provided with valuable experience that helps link knowledge gained in the classroom with the practical environment of industry. Hours and payment vary with position. Students interested in the Cooperative Education program are advised to consult with the College of Engineering Career Development Office.

Financial Resources Available to U.S. Citizens and Permanent Resident Aliens

Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship

The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship acknowledges those students who have embraced the memory and ideals of one of Boston University’s most prominent alumni, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (GRS’55, Hon, ’59). The scholarship provides renewable full-tuition awards for academically gifted students with proven leadership abilities and a strong commitment to social justice and community involvement. These students will epitomize the importance of different cultures on Boston University’s campus and will assist in promoting respectful, welcoming atmosphere for students from all backgrounds. Additional information regarding conditions, the application process, and criteria are available from Admissions and the Financial Assistance office.

National Consortium for Graduate Degrees for Minorities in Engineering and Science

Boston University participates in the National Consortium for Graduate Degrees for Minorities in Engineering and Science (GEM) program. Students interested in this fellowship award should apply directly to the GEM organization ( The College of Engineering will provide all admitted GEM awardees with a supplemental tuition and stipend scholarship, in addition to the GEM scholarship, to provide full-time study and total academic year stipend of $20,000.

Late Entry Accelerated Program Scholarship (Need-based)

The Late Entry Accelerated Program provides tuition scholarship funds to LEAP students who demonstrated need via the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and enrolled at least half-time. The level of scholarship is determined based on merit. Boston University LEAP tuition assistance is available for up to three semesters of Phase I study. Interested applicants should file a FAFSA form as part of the application process, listing Boston University code 002130) as a recipient institution. International LEAP students are not eligible for Financial Aid and must be prepared to present financial documentation to the International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO) prior to arrival on campus.

Federal Work-Study (FWS)

FWS is a program that promotes access to employment for students who demonstrate financial eligibility. Available funds are provided by a federal allocation and a University matching contribution. Recipients are selected by the Financial Assistance office and must meet federal need and other criteria. The Student Employment Office provides FWS information to eligible students about available jobs in University departments as well as off-campus nonprofit agencies. FWS allocations may be used for community service programs. Undergraduate students who participate in the FWS program are paid weekly at established hourly rates. Graduate FWS students may be paid either weekly at established hourly rates or monthly at a fixed amount, depending on the nature of the job. Job assignments, which average 9–12 hours per week, are coordinated with the student’s class schedule.

Educational Loans

Unlike scholarships and grants, loans must be repaid. However, loans are an important source of funds for educational expenses and represent a sound investment in a student’s future. To keep loan indebtedness to a reasonable level that can be repaid after college, students are encouraged to earn as much as possible and keep expenses to a minimum. Because a loan must be repaid, students are urged to borrow no more than necessary. If students are interested in obtaining a federal loan, they should complete the FAFSA at and forward the Student Aid Report to the Graduate Programs Office.

Deferments and cancellations are available to recipients of Federal Perkins and Federal Direct Stafford Loans under certain conditions that vary by loan program. Conditions may include: teaching students from low-income families, other designated teaching, military and volunteer service, unemployment, and economic hardship. Additional information on deferment and cancellation provisions is included with entrance and exit counseling for federal loan borrowers.

Federal Direct Stafford Loan Program

Unsubsidized (Non-need-based) Loans  A student may borrow an unsubsidized loan of up to $20,500 per academic year as long as the student is enrolled at least half-time in a degree program. Interest on the unsubsidized loan is incurred starting with the day the loan is first disbursed. The interest may be paid as it accrues or may be capitalized until loan repayment.

Students must submit a FAFSA in order to determine eligibility for loans. The FAFSA may be filed online at listing Boston University (code 002130) as the recipient institution. The loan repayment period begins six months after graduation, leaving school, or dropping below half-time enrollment.

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan

The Federal Direct Graduate PLUS loan is a credit-based loan available to students who are enrolled at least half-time (6 credits) per semester in a graduate or professional program leading to a master’s or doctoral degree. The student must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident, must not have an outstanding balance from a prior period of enrollment, and must be making satisfactory academic progress. Students must qualify for, and apply for, a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford loan before being able to receive a GRAD Plus loan.

Federal Perkins Loan (Need-based)

Formerly called the National Direct Student Loan, the Federal Perkins Loan program is need-based. The interest rate is fixed at 5%. Both payment and accrual of interest are deferred until 9 months after the student has graduated or enrollment falls below half-time. Perkins funds are allocated to students with the greatest need as demonstrated by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students can be awarded a maximum of $6,000 per academic year, with an aggregate limit of $60,000. Interested applicants should file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by April 15 for the Fall Semester, and by October 1 for the Spring Semester.

Private Credit-Based Loans

Private loans are available for domestic students, international students with a domestic credit-worthy co-borrower, and non-degree students. Questions regarding the various forms of financial assistance available to graduate students in the College of Engineering at Boston University may be directed to the Graduate Programs Office, 44 Cummington St., Room 114, Boston, MA 02215; telephone 617-353-9760 or email at