Dependent Portable Tuition Benefits

Summary Plan Description PDF Document

  • Undergraduate courses taken by dependent children as a full-time student at schools other than Northwestern University. An indication of financial dependency is the Federal Form 1040 (Please upload page 1 showing the student as a dependent and page 2 showing the signature portion). Students establishing residency in other states may not qualify for the Dependent Portable tuition benefit if they are not listed as a dependent on their parent’s (the employee’s) Form 1040.
  • Eligibility requires 5 or more years of Qualified Service.
  • Based on billed tuition and eligible, mandatory fees minus financial aid such as scholarships and grants.
  • Benefits are provided for up to 8 full-time semesters (12 quarters) up to age 26 per dependent.
  • Requires an online application per dependent child for each term (semester, quarter or trimester) of study.
  • Checks are made payable to the school, but may be made payable to the employee with proof of payment.
  • Payments are issued by Accounts Payable and forwarded to the Benefits Division for pick up or mailing to the employee.
  • By submitting an application, you are agreeing to the following statement: I certify that the information provided is correct. I agree to comply with the provisions of the Northwestern Educational Assistance plan as described in the plan document.

Required Qualified Service

Tuition Benefit

Plan ID

5 years - Full-time Service

Up to 50% of billed tuition


18 years - Full-time Service*

100% of billed tuition up to $5,616 per academic year


* Eligibility requires date of hire prior to January 1, 2000. Employees hired prior to January 1, 2000 may choose either the percentage or flat amount plan for each child in a family. Once the percentage plan is chosen for a child, an individual may not later choose the flat amount plan for that same child.

Waiver of Service Period

For new hires as of 9/1/2014: You may qualify to waive part or all of the 5-year Northwestern service period for the educational assistance plans. You must have worked in a full-time, benefits-eligible position at a FAFSA-qualified college or university offering a comparable tuition benefit immediately prior to joining Northwestern University as a faculty or staff member. Please complete the top portion of the waiver form and have your previous employer complete the bottom portion. Return the form to the Benefits Division (or attach online) for approval.

Tuition Reimbursement Applications

For the dependent portable tuition application, you will need to collect the following documentation:

  1. A copy of your most recently filed 1040 tax form as proof of dependency. Both the first page showing your child listed as a dependent and the second page showing the signature portion are required.
  2. Proof of full-time student status: a letter from the school stating that the student is enrolled on a full-time basis for the term in question or a course list including the student's name, the school's name, and the credit hours for each course.
  3. An itemized tuition bill from the school bearing the student's name.
  4. (If you want the check made payable to you) Proof of payment.