Fees for credit-bearing academic courses require approval from SUNY. Requests must
include documentation and justification of the need for the charges and a budget for
the funds accruing from the fee. Please refer to SUNY Fee Policy Number 7804.
Any changes to course number or course additions to an existing fee must be formally
communicated to the Accounting office with approval from department Chair, Dean and
VP Offices (see required documentation below). All changes or additions must be approved
by SUNY before charging the fee.
All new fees and revision to existing fees must be reviewed and submitted to the department's
VP Office before submission to Accounting.
Due Dates For Course Fee Submissions:
Please send fee proposals through your VP Office for submission to the Accounting Office by:
Factors That Allow For A Course Fee:
From SUNY Fee Policy 7804: A fee may be charged for a course, or courses, that have
extraordinary costs that meet the following criteria; this listing is not intended
to be all-inclusive:
- Special course supplies and materials where the student retains an end product of
- Special and unique services provided by the course
- Extraordinary costs associated directly with degree, diploma, or certificate program
delivery (i.e. maintenance or purchase of specialized equipment, testing or certification
fees, clinical and practicum activities)
- Costs associated with a course specific to scientific chemicals, supplies and materials,
modest equipment, and proper disposal of waste
- The fee represents a financially significant savings to the student
Note that these fees are not permitted for routine materials (textbooks, etc.) and revenue from these fees may
not be used to fund the cost of instruction, academic staff, or technicians.
Course Based Fees, including amounts, must be disclosed in campus publications used
by students for degree, course and area of study selection.
Guidelines For Course Fee Submissions Are As Follows, But Not Limited To:
- Due to the significant administrative effort and costs for initiating new course fees, as
well as subsequent management of the fees, the minimum threshold of recouping expenses on new course fees is $5,000.
- Each fee requires a separate budget template (link on bottom of this page).
- Each fee should have a separate IFR account or subaccounts for tracking and audit
- Are expenses or equipment shared with other labs? If yes, the item cost must be allocated
across the number of labs.
- If expenses are not shared equally, separate fees are required. Complete a separate
budget template for each fee.
- The same fee can be applied to multiple courses as long as the expenses are shared
equally among the courses and average enrollment is taken into consideration.
- PSR IS NOT ALLOWED in the course fee proposal (No cost of instruction, academic staff, or technicians)
- Projection of enrollment, revenue and expenses - Actual annual enrollment should be
used as the basis for revenue projections. Actual annual expenses should be used
as the basis for expense projections.
- Expense projections should have detailed support, broken down by categories/type of
expense (example for Supplies: Gases-$1,000, Acids-$500, Gloves-$850)
- Supplementary documents must be provided and include itemized cost to support the
- Purchase Orders or Quotes are required for items over $2,000 (ex. maintenance agreements,
- Equipment cost should be broken down and depreciated over its useful life. A comprehensive
schedule should be provided as support. Purchase Order numbers should be included.
- For equipment useful life please contact Property Control.
- If the cost is associated with a student project, a breakdown of materials to build
one unit is required. Documentation supporting the unit costs are required (Itemized
cost, PO, quote, contract, or invoice)
- Unallowable costs identified by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) include
alcoholic beverages, bad debt, personal use of organization-funded automobile, unreasonable
reimbursement for travel expenses, cost of entertainment, etc. For more details on
allowable and unallowable costs, visit the link below under References.
- Fees are not permitted for routine materials, textbooks and items commonly available
to students at local merchants or the campus bookstore
- Inclusion of account deficit to increase the fee is not permitted
- The Result of projected revenue less projected expenses should not be a surplus
- IFR Cash balance for existing course fees - A large surplus should not remain in the
account. A surplus due to timing of invoices to be paid is acceptable if the expense
was already incurred. Support must be provided (ex. Invoices, POs, quotes, etc.).
- An explanation to justify the need to charge a fee must be provided. This may be on
dept letterhead, signed by the Chair.
- Justification must include the following:
- Indicate if the course is required for graduation/completion of a degree or if it
is an elective.
- If there is a tangible end-product that is retained by student at end of course.
- If there are significant savings for the student and estimate dollar amount saved
- Based on the nature of the course fee request, additional information may be required
- SUNY Budget Template (Course Fee Request Template)
- All supporting details for each expense item in SUNY Budget Template
- Course number with title and course description
- Upon final review by Accounting, the following approval letters are required on department
letterhead with signatory title:
- Letter from Chair explaining the need for the fee.
- Letter from Dean approving and endorsing the need for the fee.
- Letter from Provost (or other VP office) to the University Controller/VP of Finance
stating approval and endorsement of the fee.
Course Fee IFR Account - Ongoing Review:
SUNY's Fee Policy Number 7804 states that Course Fee IFR accounts will be reviewed
every two years to justify continued need for the fee and assurance that the revenue
generated by the approved fees is used in a manner that is consistent with the intent
of the fee. Only approved expenses presented with the budget for the SUNY approved
fee is allowed to be charged to the course fee IFR account to offset the fee revenue.
Such expenses should be directly charged to the associated IFR account.