University of Arizona OOS Merit

Their scholarships for OOS are VERY generous. I need the pros to weigh in on situation for my 2023 D.

Has all A’s and likely will at end of Junior year except a B+ in Bio as a freshman. It drops her down for their top merit (costing 5000 per year!!!).

Can she:

  • sub in the A she got in Earth Science as an 8th grader? It was HS level…
  • take bio at a CC or local college and if an A use that grade?
  • if she gets an A in a lab science as a senior, can that be subbed retroactively?

It’s frustrating that one grade can cost 20,000

I’d ask someone at AZ and it is literally impossible to get anyone on the phone or get an emailed returned.

You can’t substitute grades. But A grades might raise her GPA…

One B+ grade shouldn’t be an issue. What IS her GPA.


Az is $35k for 4.0 UW and $30k for 3.9 to 3.99. So it’s true that over four years it is $20k.

The other sad part is that APs or just meeting the minimum curriculum. Doesn’t matter. So you are not rewarded for stepping up rigor wise. We’ll if you’re not that star student it’s much better for you. But the kid with 10 APs and a 3.8 is penalized vs the kid with a 3.9 and no rigor.

The flip side to this is, assuming tuition holds, you’re talking $8k per year. Sure it should have been $3k. But either way, it’s still a steal.

They set the table and you have to live with it. It’s very clear.

Both my kids had one B. So same situation.

That said you bring up an interesting point. Another poster once wrote they had a B but since U OF A looks at a certain academic requirement and they exceeded the requirements…ie that they submitted three years of something that needed two and the lesser grade was not counted. That was not our experience however.

No matter what, your student did great, is getting a great deal and for those that don’t test well or take a rigorous schedule…that’s an even bigger bonus. Others that are similarly aggressive like Alabama require the SAT/ACT for merit.

Congrats to your daughter. The school is gorgeous. The honors dorm outstanding. My better half is an alum and a nice and nephew work there.

Ps when we were deciding and it was during time of furloughs (my niece told me), we were able to get someone on the phone numerous times. Try another day.

That said will the difference of $3k tuition or $8k tuition impact your decision to apply?

Did u contact these #s? If not email the dean…her email is on here too.

If you go under 3.9, that’s where the big drop comes.

Good luck.

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I do not want to be a wet blanket, but it was mentioned on the ASU thread a while back that UA was planning on restructuring their merit scholarships next year and they might not be nearly as generous for '23 kids as the deals that are being offered through this year. :worried: ASU lowered their merit awards this year (after kids had already applied!) and it does sound unfortunately like UA may be following suit for next year’s class.

Read through to the bottom of this post:

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I read this as well. It is possible. Colorado School of Mines did this. ASU did this. College of Charleston did this. It could be budget. Other schools are shifting budgets from merit to need.

One won’t know yet.

If merit is desired, while we are in a test optional or blind environment, there are many cases where a high test score is still needed for merit or will bring in $$.

As for merit, you’ll have to wait a year and see at any auto merit school if they make changes for future generations.

I do find it interesting that the states most aggressive merit wise are providing less funds than in the recent past to students, led by Arizona. Not sure how they find the merit…but they do.

Yep - I just wanted to mention it because these scholarships do seem to be in flux, so you can’t count on what was available this year being the same (or even remotely comparable in some cases) next year. I’ve got a D23 as well and watching what seems like an ever shrinking pool of significant merit opportunities is sobering. UT Dallas is another school that used to give big merit and seems to have scaled way back. I’m sure there are others.

The ASU situation seemed extra bad this year because they didn’t announce the changes until after people had already paid their application fees and invested time/effort that they might well not have bothered with if they knew they were only going to get half the merit money advertised at the start of the application cycle.

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I read about ASU - but I just put in my daughter’s stats from last year and it was the same - $15.5K. But others seem to say that.

She didn’t apply to ASU due to size and the fact that U of A is more traditional.

But yeah - you do need to keep an eye. ASU doesn’t have a table but a calculator.

I think the tables (like U of A, Murray State, Alabama) should be accurate when one applies - unless they are disclaimed.

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I know there is no guarantee their matrix remains the same next admission cycle- but it could. And if it does- one + grade costs 20,000. If there is a way to replace the grade or use the one from 8th grade, even knowing it could change, we would at least explore the opportunity.

I do wish their were a way to communicate in some way with the school- it is literally impossible.

My daughter got 12 K merit. 3.7 uw gpa. Test optional. OOS.

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You aren’t going to be able to swap the B+ for the 8th grade course/grade.

HSs vary on their willingness to replace grades with classes taken thru online providers or CC. Generally, this happens with D and F grades, not B+. This road would go through your kids HS GC so that’s who you have to talk with.

ETA: your student should be able to make up that $5k each year by working during the school year and summers.

Again. Look at the positive. If the scholarship and tuition holds its $8k tuition a year. That’s unreal. The school is able to set as they choose. If you want more $$, get a great ACT and apply to Alabama.

You are seeing the $5k a year on a table. Guess what. Schools that don’t publish, which is most, change their merit too based on their internal tables.

If you earn $20k merit at a school how do u know if it might have been $30k if something changed even a smidge ?

You don’t.

At least Arizona is giving you full transparency. And has minimal requirements…not even rigor.

Sure you can reach them. I sent u contacts b4 including a person.

Good luck .

Edit: U of A is very generous…in both merit and admissions flexibility. Similar schools like CU, Oregon, Indiana, the UCs, Illinois, Rutgers…u name it. Cost more!

Be thankful for their generosity, gorgeous campus and incredible Honors complex.

Or you can choose to spend your money elsewhere. Just know most other OOS schools will cost considerably more…peer, higher and lower in the pedigree atmosphere.


As others pointed out, you cannot substitute a course for GPA consideration. If the Earth Science course was high school level, it would generally be included on the high school transcript.

Your student may be able to retake the course for grade improvement via your local high school summer school this summer or via an online provider if your school will allow grade improvement/grade replacement. In our state we have a state-wide online education provider and our high school accepts credit from the online school with minimal issues. Every school varies as to their policies on this type of situation so ask detailed school policy questions first and I recommend getting an affirmation in writing, at least in an email following any meeting or conversation. A CC course will not generally be accepted for high school credit unless it is a dual credit course recognized by your high school and you need the course to be accepted for high school credit so that it appears on the high school transcript.

Barring a dual credit course accepted by your high school, the University of Arizona would be unlikely to view a CC course as a replacement for a HS grade. The courses are going to appear on two separate transcripts and the GPA posted on the high school transcript would not take into account the CC course so you would be right back where you started.

A word of caution. Universities are very particular about college courses taken following high school graduation for admitted students (even if the admission has not yet been accepted by the student). Some universities state that any credits earned after high school automatically move the student to transfer status rather than first-year, while some universities have a credit limit below which a student will still be deemed first-year. Be very careful about taking courses subsequent to high school graduation as there can be significant consequences depending on university policy.

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Just wanted to share - I went to UA’s financial aid and scholarships office’s website this week and found there’s an online chat function, so I asked when they’d be updating their website to show OOS merit info for the Class of 2023. They told me the website should be updated in late October/early November.

I’m also hoping UA will be an affordable OOS option for my 2023 kid, but it sounds like we won’t be able to confirm that until later this fall.


is there a scholarship chart for 22 kids? i’m not seeing it. . . . if anyone sees it, could you post a link?

I am curious; i do know schools can change things; and i read somewhere on this board that U of A might not look the same for 2023 kids.

2022-2023 Incoming First-Year and Transfer Tuition Scholarship Awards | Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid (

:woman_shrugging:t3: can’t believe i didnt scroll down enough. thanks!

My DDs school gives the A-. When her two A- get calculated in to her GPA, she has a 3.975 unweighted. We heard from a college counselor that Arizona might treat her A-s like As and give her the 4.0 merit award. Is there any truth to this claim. Of course, we’ll be asking the university rep soon.

The difference is $2k a year so apply and find out soon. Also they don’t look at all classes. Just the ones they mention.

Good luck.

Daughter got in tonight OOS with a 4.0 Unweighted GPA. Offered 32k in merit


In the past, they’ve also sent an extra $1k for the first year. HOpefully you get that although last year it was $35K and now $32K.

Still a great deal.

Does she have a test score? If so, given U of A increased tuition, the other U of A - Alabama (assuming a good test) would be $3K or so tuition instead of $9K.

Both are home runs.

Congrats to her.

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