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Toolkit | Access to Postsecondary Education

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Background on Tuition Equity Measures



Basic Facts about In-State Tuition for Undocumented Students (National Immigration Law Center, Jan. 2012).

This fact sheet summarizes the current state laws and policies that offer access to in-state tuition rates for students, regardless of their status; provides an overview of the tuition equity measures; and addresses some of the arguments in support of and in opposition to these policies.

In-State Tuition and Unauthorized Immigrant Students (National Conference of State Legislatures, Feb. 19, 2014).

The article summarizes federal statutory and case law affecting access to higher education for students, regardless of their status. It lists by year and/or bill number state measures providing or restricting access to in-state tuition, state financial aid, and scholarships for immigrant students.

State Policies Regarding Undocumented College Students: A Narrative of Unresolved Issues, Ongoing Debate and Missed Opportunities (Alene Russell, American Association of State Colleges and Universities, Mar. 2011).

The authors provide an overview of the arguments raised by supporters and opponents of increasing access to college for immigrant students. They include a table of state laws and examine trends on immigrant access to college and eligibility for in-state tuition and state financial aid. They also discuss the legal challenges to state tuition equity laws, which to date have been upheld by the courts.

Unauthorized Immigrants’ Access to Higher Education: Fifty States, Different Directions (Sejal Zota, Popular Government, Spring/Summer 2009).

The article describes federal laws and pending legislation on access to higher education for unauthorized immigrants. It surveys state actions related to unauthorized immigrants’ eligibility for in-state tuition rates and admission to higher education institutions and provides a table listing the laws by state, year, and requirements. The article also examines the impact of allowing unauthorized immigrants to qualify for in-state tuition. Finally, it describes the history and status of immigrant access to universities and community colleges in North Carolina.