Residency for Tuition Purposes

The Office of the Registrar determines residency for students. Residency determinations have a direct result on tuition charges.

Links below are maintained by the Registrar and can provide key information about residency. Questions regarding residency that are not addressed here should be directed to

NOTE: Some information within these links refers to students being "independent and self-supporting." This terminology and definition is used specifically for residency determination. It is not related to dependency determination on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (i.e., whether or not you are required to complete the FAFSA using parental information). Students who are self-supporting may meet the institutional or state residency definition for independent status, but financial self-support is not a criteria for the institutional, state or federal aid definitions of dependency.

Students who are classified as residents for tuition purposes receive the benefit of a state-supported education, funded largely by the taxpayers of Ohio. Therefore, the residency guidelines are meant to exclude from resident classification those people who are in the state of Ohio primarily for the purpose of receiving the benefit of a state-supported education. In its assessment of a student's eligibility for classification as an Ohio resident for tuition purposes, University of Cincinnati is obliged to apply the residency eligibility criteria established by Ohio Revised Code 3333.31 and Ohio Administrative Code 3333-1-10

University of Cincinnati is not empowered to alter or waive these state regulations, and must enforce their provisions for all students under all personal and/or financial circumstances.

The term "Ohio resident" for tuition purposes may differ from other definitions of Ohio residency.  A person who has an Ohio driver's license/vehicle registration or who is an Ohio resident for tax, voting, or welfare purposes may have established legal residence in the state but may not necessarily be considered a resident for tuition purposes.

To be reclassified as an Ohio resident for tuition purposes, a student must meet the residency guidelines established by State of Ohio Law and Ohio Department of Higher Education. Students are strongly advised to fully apprise themselves of the criteria established by the state of Ohio prior to seeking classification as an Ohio resident for tuition purposes.


Special Tuition Rates

In addition to standard Ohio and non-Ohio rates, students from qualifying areas in Kentucky and Indiana may be eligible for Metropolitan (Metro) or Reciprocity tuition rates depending on their academic programs. Active members of the military, veterans and their dependents also may qualify for Ohio tuition rate under specific circumstances.

These special rates do require application and approval. Also, changes to your academic program could change your eligibility once approved since there are programs limits to metro and reciprocity rates.

Tuition-based scholarship students who could be eligible for these special tuition programs may be limited to the reduced rate in their scholarship determination until such time they apply for the rate adjustment and are deemed ineligible.

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Financial aid budgets and award amounts can be affected by your residency classification. Changes can occur in awards with any change in residency. As well, acceptance of some aid programs such as the Parent PLUS Loan can directly affect your ability to apply for Ohio residency.

If you are in the process of changing your residency, you should contact One Stop Student Services (220 University Pavilion;; 513-556-1000) to understand how your aid package or specific aid awards may be related to the residency process.