Ryerson scraps $70 tuition deferral fee

There will be no financial penalty - $70 deferral fee - next year for students who choose not to pay full tuition at the beginning of the academic year. (Matt Oxman / Ryersonian Staff)

There will be no financial penalty – $70 deferral fee – next year for students who choose not to pay full tuition at the beginning of the academic year. (Matt Oxman / Ryersonian Staff)

Ryerson’s students will no longer have to pay tuition deferral fees starting in the fall 2014 semester, an announcement that the Ryerson registrar hopes will increase student participation during winter course intentions.

There will be no financial penalty next year for students who choose not to pay full tuition at the beginning of the academic year.

In the past, students were expected to pay their full year tuition in September and were charged a $70 deferral fee if they wanted to delay the winter semester payment until January.

The official announcement was made by email blast on March 12 to coincide with course intentions, but the move was originally reported by The Ryersonian in January.

In the email blast, the axing of deferral fees was framed as an incentive for students to sign up for winter courses,
“We have heard that some students are reluctant to participate in course intentions for fall and winter because historically, tuition for the full year would be due in September and students would incur a $70 deferral fee to defer payment,” Ryerson registrar Charmaine Hack said in an email.

Hack said that by participating in course intentions, students tell the university what classes should be offered and get OSAP moving on processing student loans.

Now, a full year’s tuition will still be calculated in September, but students will see both their full tuition owing and the separate amounts they owe for the fall and winter enrolments.

The Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities’ new guidelines, released on Dec. 14, 2013, required the university to remove its deferral fees. It states that universities are required to offer per-term billing without financial penalty to students by the 2014-2015 academic year.

Students did not have the option to split tuition payments until 2009. In March 2012, the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities put a moratorium on increasing and creating tuition deferral fees.

The decision to eliminate the tuition deferral fee, Hack said, will reduce operating revenue for the university.

This story was first published in The Ryersonian, a weekly newspaper produced by the Ryerson School of Journalism, on March 19, 2014.

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