CSU is proud to offer academic privileges to help with the cost of tuition for you and your eligible family members. Explore the menu options below to learn more about eligibility requirements and how to apply. 

Helpful Links
Employee Study Privilege FAQs
Tuition Scholarship Program
Tax Benefits for Education

Contact
Human Resources
MyHR@colostate.edu
(970) 491-6947

Employee Study Privilege

The appropriate form must be completed in its entirety each semester you wish to use the privilege and must be submitted on or before the first day of the term in order for it to be used for that term. Applications returned after that date may be denied.

CSU – Fort Collins & CSU Online
Submit completed application to Registrar’s Office or CSU Online

Reciprocal Study Privilege
Submit completed application to Human Resources

Eligible employees include:

  • Academic Faculty with Regular, Special or Temporary appointments of half-time or greater;
  • Faculty Transitional appointees are eligible for the same benefit available to full-time academic faculty;
  • Administrative Professionals with Regular, Special or Temporary appointments of half-time or greater;
  • Post-Doctoral Fellows, Veterinary Interns, and Clinical Psychology Interns with appointments of half-time or greater;
  • Non-temporary State Classified employees with appointments of half-time or greater.

Eligible Faculty/Staff with full-time appointments may register for up to nine (9) credits per benefit year (commencing Summer session and ending Spring semester). Credits are prorated based on appointment percentage:

  • 100% appt. – 9 credits
  • 75 – 99% appt. – 7 credits
  • 50 – 74% appt. – 5 credits
  • under 50% appt – 0 credits

According to the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) taxation applies to graduate level educational benefits which exceed $5,250 per calendar year (for the amount an employee receives beyond this limitation.)

For this purpose, a ‘‘graduate level course’’ will be treated as meaning any course taken by an employee who has a bachelor’s degree or is receiving credit toward a more advanced degree, if the particular course can be taken for credit (whether or not enrolled in a degree seeking program). Any course taken for credit beyond an initial bachelors degree is taxable.

Example:
Total annual tuition = $9,656 – $5,250 (tax-exempt) = $4,406 x 22% (based on your tax bracket) = $969.32 (estimated amount deducted from the employee’s year-end pay advice). Taxable amounts may significantly impact take-home pay at the end of each calendar year. 

The IRS prohibits tax-free education related to games, hobbies or sports that are not directly related to seeking a degree at both the undergraduate and graduate level (e.g., music, art, horseback riding).

Only credit courses which are a part of the Colorado State University Curriculum, as defined by the Colorado State University General Catalog, are available under this benefit. These courses will be identified with a departmental course number. Information and registration forms for these courses are available from the Registrar’s Office. Questions about this form should be directed to the Registrar’s Office, Room 100, Centennial Hall.

Eligible Expenses

  • Base Tuition – up to 9 credits per year (credits are prorated based on your appointment percentage).
  • Undergraduate Differential Tuition – up to 9 credits per year (credits are prorated based on your appointment percentage).
  • Graduate Differential Tuition – at least one study privilege credit must be utilized each semester to allow eligibility.
  • University Facility Fee – prorated according to the number of study privilege credits utilized.
  • College Charges for Technology – prorated according to the study privilege credits utilized.
  • University Technology Fee – credited (fee waiver) to your student account.
  • General Fees – credited (fee waiver) to your student account. This waiver removes your free access to services under the General Fees including, but not limited to, the Student Recreation Center, CSU Health Network, University Counseling Center other campus services.

Note: The University Technology Fee and General Fees will still be credited (fee waiver) to your student account even if study privilege credits have been exhausted provided the Employee Study Privilege Registration Form is submitted.

Ineligible Expenses

  • Undergraduate tuition normally covered by the College Opportunity Fund (COF) – if you take a COF eligible course in a manner that COF cannot be applied (e.g., you do not apply for and authorize COF or you audit a course), the Employee Study Privilege Program will not cover the portion of tuition that would have been covered by COF
  • Special Course fees – a list of associated courses with applicable fees. After the exhaustion of available Employee Study Privilege credits, any remaining tuition, charges or fees are not eligible for coverage or the College Opportunity Fund (if applicable).

Note: After the exhaustion of available Study Privilege Program credits, any remaining tuition, charges or fees are not eligible for coverage or the College Opportunity Fund (if applicable). 

Reciprocal Study Privileges at the CSU Global Campus, CSU Pueblo, and University of Northern Colorado are available to eligible employees.

The appropriate form must be completed in its entirety each term you wish to use the privilege and must be submitted on or before the first day of the term in order for it to be used for that term. Applications returned after that date may be denied.

This reciprocal study privilege is administered according to the policies and enrollment procedures of the Host Institution, except that eligibility of the individual applicant shall be defined and determined by the study privilege policies of CSU. It is your responsibility to accurately complete the form subject to the Host Institution’s policies, enrollment procedures, and deadlines.

The full cost of any courses you enrolled in which are not approved by CSU or the Host Institution, shall become your responsibility.

Tuition Scholarship Program for Eligible Family Members

Submit completed application to Office of Financial Aid:

Submit completed application to Human Resources:

A scholarship for 50% of resident tuition for regular, on-campus credits is available to eligible family members of eligible employees. The amount may vary depending on degree program.

Full Program Details

This is a summary of the tax implications for the tuition scholarship program. The University does not provide tax advice, you are encouraged to contact a personal tax advisor for more detail. Additional information can be found in IRS Publication 970.

Undergraduate Tuition
Undergraduate tuition benefits for an eligible employee’s legal spouse are not subject to taxation.

Undergraduate tuition benefits for an eligible employee’s child are not subject to taxation if the child can be claimed as a tax dependent on the employee’s income tax return for the calendar year to which the benefits apply. If the employee’s child is not eligible to be claimed as a tax dependent, then the undergraduate tuition benefits are subject to taxation.

Graduate and Professional-Level Tuition
Graduate and Professional-Level tuition assistance benefits for all eligible family members are subject to federal taxation.

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