The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

Residency Classification for Tuition Purposes

Residency determinations are made by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions for applicants who have not yet started classes. Current students’ residency determinations are evaluated by the Office of the University Registrar based on students’ requests as submitted via the Core Residency Questionnaire and required documentation subject to review by university officials. The University is guided by the Texas Education Code, Section 54.052, et seq., the Rules and Regulations for Determining Residence Status of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, and University Regulations. Under the state statutes and regulations, for tuition purposes, a student or prospective student is classified either as a resident of Texas, nonresident (U.S. citizens from another state) or students who are citizens from another country.

A resident of the State of Texas for tuition purposes is an individual or dependent who has physically resided (or whose parent has physically resided) in the state of Texas for a period of 12 continuous months prior to enrollment, or is an individual who graduated from a Texas high school and has maintained a residence in Texas continuously for at least three years prior to the date of that graduation and one year prior to enrollment. Individuals seeking to establish resident status under the second definition, and who are not citizens or permanent residents, must provide an affidavit stating that the individual will file an application to become a permanent resident at the earliest opportunity of eligibility. Students are required to complete the Core Residency Questionnaire as part of the application process and submit it before the start of classes in the term for which reclassification of Texas residency status is sought. Residency for tuition purposes will be based on this questionnaire and other information/documents submitted by the student as required by University residency officials in accordance with Texas Education Code. Documentation may include but is not limited to rental or lease agreements, copies of voter registration cards or driver’s licenses, evidence of receipt of social services, copies of professional licenses or certification, copies of utility bills, bank statements with personal financial information redacted, and payroll/check stubs.

A nonresident for tuition purposes is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident alien who has not lived and worked in the state of Texas for a period of 12 months prior to enrollment. A foreign student is a person who is a citizen of another country.

Residency for tuition purposes for a dependent is established based on the residency of the parents or legal guardian.

While these state requirements for establishing residency are complex and should be referred to in each particular circumstance, they generally require a minimum of 12 months of residence and gainful employment or ownership of residential property in Texas prior to enrollment, along with evidence of physical presence. Individuals classified as a nonresident or foreign student may qualify for resident tuition rates and other charges while continuing to be classified as a nonresident or a foreign student under the following exceptions:

  • Students who receive academic competitive scholarships
  • Teaching or research assistants
  • Faculty employment
  • Special types of visas
  • Military

Additional information on residency, reclassification, tuition exceptions and waivers is available at:

Office of the University Registrar
One West University Blvd.
The Tower, Main, Rm. 1.101
Brownsville, TX 78520
1201 West University Dr.
Student Services Bldg., 1st Floor
Edinburg, TX 78539
Phone: 956-882-4026

Students are required to sign an oath of residency as part of the application process. Residency for tuition purposes will be based on this oath and other information/documents submitted by the student as required by The Office of Undergraduate Admissions and/or The Office of the University Registrar.