Howard Forward strategic plan graphic with students.2020 – 2021 Undergraduate Cost of Attendance

The cost of attendance (COA) is an average estimate of what it costs a typical undergraduate student to attend Howard University for one academic year. Your cost of attendance estimate doesn't only include tuition. It also takes basic living and commuting expenses into account. The actual amount you pay, and the amount it costs you for one academic year will always differ from the cost of attendance.

A typical Howard University undergraduate student living on campus and taking a full load of classes might have the following cost of attendance for the 2020-2021 school year:


Direct Costs Estimate:





Housing and Needs




Indirect Costs Estimate:

Books & Supplies




Personal Expenses




If a family opts to take out a loan, federal fees are associated with doing so.

Loan Fees - Stafford


Cost of Attendance


2020-2021 Cost of Attendance for Graduate and Professional Schools

What's included in my COA?

Your cost of attendance is made up of two different types of costs: direct and indirect.

  • Direct costs are items that will appear on your University bill, such as tuition, fees, and room and board (if you live on campus). This is the cost of a Howard University education.
  • Indirect costs will not appear on your bill, but are estimated costs associated with going to college and should be included in your budget. These include items like books, transportation and personal/miscellaneous expenses.

Howard student typing on a computer.Detailed descriptions of direct and indirect costs

Direct Costs that appear on your bill from Howard University

  • Tuition and Fees: These figures reflect the cost of tuition and fees for a student taking 12-18 credits during each of the fall and spring semesters of the 2020-21 academic year (which is considered full time).
  • Please note: Students who clear their fall and spring balances each semester can take up to 6 additional credits in the summer for free as part of the STAGE grant offered by Howard University. This is part of Howard University's investment to support our families in reducing the cost of a Howard University education, and in graduating within four years.
  • Housing and Meals: The number reflected here is the cost of the most popular meal plan chosen by students who live on campus.

Indirect Costs that DO NOT appear on your bill from Howard University

  • Books and Supplies: This is an estimate of the cost of books and supplies for a typical student for the entire academic year. You will not be billed directly by Howard University for books or supplies. You can purchase these items at the University’s Barnes & Noble bookstore. The supply cost assumes that students do not have a computer, and allows for a student to purchase a personal computer.
  • Transportation: This is an estimate of the cost of traveling to and from campus or the cost of operating and maintaining a vehicle. The cost also assumes 3 round trips bus/plane tickets to and from campus to your family’s home. Unless you buy a Howard University parking permit, you will not be billed directly for transportation costs. This line item will not appear on your bill.
  • Personal Expenses: This is an estimate of costs for clothing, haircuts, entertainment, etc. for the year. Money spent on these types of items will vary from student to student. These items will not appear on your Howard University bill.
  • Average Loan Fees: There is an origination fee of 1.059% for Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized student loans, which is taken out of the loan before funds are sent to Howard University. Some of our parents opt to take advantage of the Parent PLUS loan. The fee amount varies with the amount borrowed from the federal government.

Howard students with booksA student’s actual cost of attendance may vary due to factors such as:

  • Number of enrolled credit hours
  • Room and board choices
  • Degree program and plan
  • Personal and miscellaneous expense