Tuition and Financial Aid

The University at Buffalo ranks among the most affordable public universities in the United States. Students fund their graduate education through a variety of sources, including federal and state aid, as well as UB scholarships and fellowships.

smiling students at the human U.B. welcome event.

Tuition, Fees, and Billing


The University of Buffalo is part of the State University of New York (SUNY) system, and as such, has differential tuition rates for New York State residents and non-residents (out-of-state/ international students). 

Out-of-state students who move to NY and establish a permanent residence may apply for NY residency and obtain the in-state resident rate for the remainder of their program. You can read more about NY residency on the Student Accounts website. 


Students are required to pay fees in addition to tuition. Students enrolled in our online part-time programs are able to request a waiver for some (not all) of the fees. 


Full-time students are billed a flat rate each semester, and part-time students are billed per credit hour for the number of credits they are taking that semester.

Students receive an electronic bill (eBill) each semester through the HUB Student Center. Payment plans are available; detailed information can be found on the Student Accounts Office website. 

Watch our Tuition and Funding Video! [10:16 min]

MSW Tuition and Funding

2019/20 MSW Rates*

Full-Time (per semester)

Part-Time (per credit)

ONLINE Part-Time (per credit)

*Rates based on fall 2019 combined tuition and fees, subject to change. View all current rates on the Student Accounts website.

When planning how you will fund your graduate degree, make sure to budget for not only the direct costs (like tuition and fees), but also indirect costs, such as housing, food, books, supplies, transportation, and childcare. View the full-time cost of attendance on the Financial Aid Office website to see a sample budget.

Financial Aid, Scholarships, and Fellowships

There are various types of financial assistance available to students. Below are some of the most common.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Eligibility: All U.S. citizens and certain eligible non-citizens who are enrolled in at least 6 graduate credits per semester.

About: The FAFSA is an application for federal student aid that collects the basic information needed to determine your eligibility for all of the financial aid programs sponsored by the federal government. The most common types of graduate student aid are low interest federal student loans such as Federal Direct, Stafford, and Perkins loans.

How to Apply: You can file a free FAFSA application online. This form must be filed every year, as soon as possible after January 1. Be sure to file your financial aid application as soon as possible, UB's priority due date is March 1. The University at Buffalo's federal title IV school code is 002837. Filling out a FAFSA doesn't mean that you have to accept all of the aid. You will have the option of accepting all or some of it, or of declining to take any at all. Therefore, you should fill out a FAFSA even if you are not sure you will be attending UB.

Questions?: Steps on how to apply for financial aid and maintaining eligibility can be accessed at the UB Office of Financial Aid. You may also contact the office at 716-645-8232 or e-mail at

Canada Student Loans Plan

Eligibility: Canadian citizens, permanent residents, or protected citizens who are residents of Ontario.

About: UB is an approved school under the Canada Student Loans Plan through the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP). 

How to Apply: Visit the OSAP website for details on how to apply and the link to the application.

School of Social Work Dean's Admission Awards

Eligibility: All full-time and part-time MSW students

About: Each year the School of Social Work awards a number of scholarships to incoming students who demonstrate academic achievement and a commitment to the social work profession.

How to apply: No separate application is required; simply apply to the social work degree program of your choice. We consider all applicants for these scholarships at the time of application review. If scholarship funding is awarded, the amount will be stated in the student’s mailed acceptance letter. Due to the limited amount of funding, we recommend submitting your program application early for the best chance of consideration.

Graduate Opportunity Program (GOP)

Eligibility: Full-time MSW students who are New York State residents and graduates of an EOP, SEEK, or HEOP program.

About: Awards include a tuition scholarship at the in-state graduate tuition rate. Students are responsible for paying the difference in graduate and MSW tuition rates and all fees associated with enrollment. Applications are reviewed by UB committee, and the awards are competitive/limited.

How to Apply: View details and application process on the The Graduate School website. Application deadline is March 1.

Arthur A. Schomburg Fellowship

Eligibility: New, full-time MSW, MSW/PhD, and PhD students who are U.S. citizens

About: This highly competitive fellowship is sponsored by the SUNY office of Diversity Equity and Inclusion and offers support for academically outstanding students who can demonstrate that they would contribute to the diversity of the student body, especially those who can demonstrate that they have overcome a disadvantage or other impediment to success in higher education. Arthur A. Schomburg fellows receive a stipend and a full tuition scholarship.

How to Apply: No separate application is needed; simply apply to the degree program of your choice. MSW applicants will be selected by the admissions committee after program applications are reviewed. MSW/PhD and PhD students will have the opportunity to upload a Schomburg statement with their application to be considered. 

Presidential Fellowship

Eligibility: New PhD in Social Welfare students

About: These competitive fellowships are available for academically outstanding new PhD in Social Welfare students. To be considered, students must have an undergraduate GPA of 3.4 or higher or a combined verbal/quant GRE score of 313 and writing score of 4.5. The award comes with an assistantship and stipend in addition to a tuition scholarship. 

How to Apply: No separate application is necessary; all PhD applicants are considered and recipients are selected by the PhD Admissions Committee after program applications are reviewed.

Graduate Assistantships

Eligibility: Full-time MSW, MSW/PhD and PhD students

About: Assistantships typically require 20 hours of work per week (during normal business hours) in exchange for a tuition scholarship and stipend. PhD and MSW/PhD students are typically awarded an assistantship for a set number of years as part of their funding package when they are admitted. Full-time MSW students are typically in class from 9am-5pm four days a week, which means that very few are able to find assistantships that can accommodate their class and field hours. 

How to Apply: At present there is no centralized tracking of GA opportunities. Students typically respond to postings on campus, send resumes to various academic units or check with Career Services.  

External Funding

Students can find additional sources of funding that come from outside the UB School of Social Work.

  • Some part-time students who continue working while attending school get tuition assistance from their employer.
  • External scholarships may be available from professional social work organizations, such as the National Association for Social Workers (NASW).
  • Other external scholarships and information about finding other awards can be found on the UB's Graduate School Scholarships page.