In-State Tuition Classification Status

In-State Tuition Classification Status

General Information

The State of Colorado partially subsidizes the cost of tuition for all students whose domicile, or permanent legal residence, is in Colorado. Each Mines student is classified as either an “in-state resident” or a “non-resident” at the time of matriculation. These classifications, which are governed by Colorado law, are based upon information furnished by each student on their application for admission to Mines. A student who willfully furnishes incorrect information to Mines to evade payment of non-resident tuition shall be subject to serious disciplinary action.

It is in the interest of each graduate student who is a U.S. citizen and who is supported on an assistantship or fellowship to become a legal resident of Colorado at the earliest opportunity. Typically, students on an assistantship contract that covers tuition and fees will have the non-resident portion of the tuition paid by Mines during their first year of study only. U.S. citizens are expected to obtain Colorado residency status by the end of the first year of study. Obtaining residency status is not automatic, students must petition through the Registrar's Office. More information on petitioning for residency status as a graduate student can be found here: After the first year of study, these students who do not obtain residency status may be responsible for paying the difference between resident and non-resident tuition. International students on an assistantship contract that covers tuition and fees will have the non-resident portion of the tuition paid by Mines beyond the 1st year.

Requirements for Establishing Residency as a Graduate Student

The specific requirements for establishing residency for tuition classification purposes are prescribed by state law (Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 23, Article 7). Because residency status is governed solely by Colorado law, the fact that a student might not qualify for in-state status in any other state does not guarantee in-state status in Colorado. The Tuition Classification statute places the burden of proof on the student to provide clear and convincing evidence of eligibility for residency. The final decision regarding tuition status rests with the Residency Appeals Committee of Colorado School of Mines. A student who willfully gives wrong information to evade payment of nonresident tuition shall be subject to serious disciplinary action.

There are two components to determining residency eligibility for graduate students: 

  • Domicile is a person’s true, and permanent home and place of habitation and must be established at least 12 consecutive months prior to the first day of classes.
  • Intent are the legal ties a person has established to make Colorado their permanent home and must be established concurrently while establishing domicile. This means a student must sever ties from their former state and establish these ties in Colorado. This would include: license, voter registration, vehicle registration, and filing state taxes like any other resident of the state.

More information on how to qualify and petition for resident status, as well as deadlines, can be found on the residency website.

Tuition Classification for WICHE/WRGP Program Participants

WICHE, the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education, promotes the sharing of graduate-level higher education resources among the participating western states through the Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP). Under this program, residents of Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming who are enrolled in qualifying graduate programs may be eligible for a discounted tuition classification. Contact Graduate Admissions for more information about WRGP.

Current qualifying programs can be found on the Mines WRGP website.

WRGP is considered a public benefit from a student's home state. Therefore, students participating in the program may not petition for residency in Colorado. A student may only claim domicile in one state.  A student would need to surrender the WRGP benefit, then fulfill the requirements prescribed by Colorado State law on Tuition Classification for no less than 12 consecutive months before being eligible to be classified as a Colorado resident.