Back to School: Seniors Can Often Score Free or Discounted College Tuition

With old age – and especially retirement – there’s certainly the potential for one to become bored. So, why not go back to school? If you want to keep your brain active or gain new skills, attending college is a great option.

Think tuition is cost prohibitive? It doesn’t have to be. Countless colleges and universities actually offer highly reduced or even free tuition to seniors. Of course, you’re usually required to be over 60 to qualify. Here’s what you should know.


Earning Class Credits

Everything depends on the state and school you’re looking to attend. Some schools limit senior students by only allowing them to audit classes. However, some actually offer the opportunity to earn credits and work towards earning a degree for free.

Open Enrollment
Typically, the most likely schools to offer discounted or free classes are institutions with open enrollment, like community colleges. In some states, senior students attending state institutions can have their tuition completely waived.

Arkansas is a great example. While some fees may apply, and seniors can only enroll in classes that have space available, tuition is free.

Waivers and/or discounts are available in almost every state, though how much you can save varies.

State Tuition Waivers

What you’ll likely want to look for are state tuition waivers for the state in which you reside. You’ll probably also need to meet several requirements in addition to your age. Though, these are often simple in-state residency requirements.

Every state is different, and even the age requirements can vary some. In Georgia, for instance, you’ll likely need to be 62 or older.

Discounts at Private Colleges

While state institutions and community colleges are your best bet, they may not be the only option. Sometimes private institutions can also be generous, so it doesn’t hurt to check to see if there are discounts.

For the most part, finding out about tuition wavers is as simple as calling around to various colleges and universities.