Fee Policy: Frequently Asked Questions

What governs CSU’s fee policy?

Executive Order 1102 governs tuition and fee policies for the CSU.

What are fee categories?

Executive Order 1102 breaks down fee types into six different categories:

  • Category I fees are systemwide mandatory fees (e.g., systemwide tuition) that must be paid to apply to, enroll in, or attend the university, or to pay the full cost of instruction required of some students by statute.
  • Category II fees are campus-based mandatory fees required for enrollment in the university. 
  • Category III fees are miscellaneous course fees for state-support instruction, such as materials and services used in academic courses.
  • Category IV fees are fees for services, use of facilities or fines.
  • Category V fees are fees charged by self-support operations on campus, such as parking, housing or extended education. Self-support programs are defined as those not receiving state general fund appropriations; instead, fees are collected to pay the full cost of the program. 
  • Category VI fees are systemwide voluntary fees, such as the Student Involvement and Representation Fee. 
Do all campuses charge the same mandatory fees?
  • No. The Chancellor, through EO 1102, has empowered each campus with the ability to determine which mandatory fees are necessary and at what level they need to be charged.
  • If a new fee is required, the campus will request the Chancellor establish it based on campus needs.
  • Once a fee has been established, the campus president has the authority to adjust fee rates based on campus need, after going through the proper process described in EO 1102.
  • The CSU basic cost of attendance includes the systemwide tuition (Category I fee) combined  with campus-based mandatory fees (Category II fees). This cost does not include housing, food or books. Learn more about CSU Costs.
Why do some campuses have more mandatory fees than others?

The uniqueness of each campus is why the Chancellor has delegated the authority to set fee rates to the campus presidents. Many factors come into play when campuses are determining their fee rates. Learn more about how the fees are used at each campus.

Why are fee names the same on Calstate.edu but different on campus websites?

When campuses report their mandatory fees to the Chancellor’s Office each year, they are grouped for reporting purposes by CO staff into six categories. These categories cover the types of fees charged at all campuses, even though they may have more specific names at the campuses

How does the CSU inform the public about fees charged to students?
  • The Chancellor’s Office posts fee information here and includes an estimate in the cost of attendance calculator.
  • While this information is collected centrally, it has been CSU’s policy to only share mandatory fee information among campuses. We do not publish fee rates and fee descriptions for all 23 campuses in all categories. These fees (Category III, IV, and V) are all based on individual campus need and not based on the fees approved at other campuses.