Understanding the Cost of Attendance

The Cost of Attendance (COA) at Florida State University is developed in compliance with the Higher Education Act, section 472. The cost of attendance is an estimate for planning purposes and to determine your initial financial aid offers. It includes the costs associated with the student’s education for the academic year (fall and spring). The summer semester is optional and has a separate COA.


In accordance with federal guidelines, we use the following components to develop an estimated cost of attendance:

Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fees are set by the Florida Legislature and FSU rates can be found here. The undergraduate cost of attendance is initially set at 26 credit hours (13 hours per term). The tuition will be adjusted after the drop/add period to accommodate the student’s actual enrollment (per federal regulation).

Books and Supplies

The cost for books and supplies is determined by utilizing an average book cost for several academic programs and projecting that cost for 5 books per term plus the cost of supplies.


The cost of housing is developed by averaging the costs for select on-campus dorms as well as a selection of off-campus apartments. You may visit the University Housing site to view the various dorm costs.


The cost of food for a semester is based on the cost of the Open Access dining plan through Seminole Dining. You may peruse the various meal plans on the Seminole Dining site.


Transportation costs for in-state students are calculated to ensure students have adequate funding for travel plus average daily travel using the department of transportation estimates. The mileage is calculated using the IRS mileage rate. Out-of-state students are calculated in the same manner as in-state students, except that the 2 round trips are calculated for New York rather than Miami (used for in-state travel).

Personal Expenses

Personal expenses are calculated using the IRS national standards for food, clothing and other items for a single person. Additionally, an allowance is provided for health insurance based on the cost of an FSU health insurance plan. If applicable, an average fee is included to cover the cost of a federal student loan origination.

Last updated: 06/26/2020
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