The value of a Purdue education

Our students and their families deserve a high-value education they can afford. With a focus on administrative efficiency, we are fitting our spending to their budgets — not the other way around — so that we can deliver the highest proven value in higher education.


  • Provide the absolute highest value in higher education.
  • Set a national standard for accountability in delivering the value we promise our students.
  • Provide students the most intellectual, professional and personal growth per educational dollar.
  • Focus on campus-wide administrative efficiencies, concentrating our resources on the core objectives of the university: teaching, research, and engagement.
  • Fit our budgets to those of our students and their families.


  • For the first time on record, the cost of attending Purdue has gone down every year since 2013, thanks to a series of measures including:
    • Breaking a 36-year string of tuition increases, Purdue froze tuition for all students at 2012-13 levels, a measure that will last through at least the 2017-18 school year.
    • Meal plan charges have been cut 10 percent, then held flat since 2014.
    • Housing charges have been held flat since 2014.
  • Through an innovative partnership with Amazon, Purdue students can save an average of about 30 percent on their textbooks purchased at, the third-highest college expense behind tuition and room and board.
    • Textbook sales through Amazon for the first week of the fall 2016 semester increased by 25 percent over that of the fall 2015 semester, with more than 22,000 books purchased. 
    • Book rentals through Amazon accounted for 30 percent of textbook acquisitions by students, compared to just 12 percent last year.
    • The Chronicle of Higher Education reported on our partnership with Amazon, which includes the company’s first pick-up point. The idea seems to be catching on, with new partnerships now underway at Berkeley, Amherst, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of Texas at Austin, among others.
  • Student and parent borrowing is down 30 percent since 2012, leaving students and their families some $55 million to invest in other dreams.
  • University-wide, we committed to finding administrative efficiencies wherever we could, counting every $10,000 saved as a “student tuition equivalent.” Here are just a few examples:
    • By consolidating data centers and coordinating with the regional campuses on bulk purchasing, our information technology unity has achieved several hundred thousand dollars in savings that continues to repeat and grow each year.
    • Through collective purchasing of diesel fuel and renegotiated contracts for bus service and parking, Purdue is saving tens of thousands of dollars annually.
    • We’ve sold about a dozen underutilized vehicles for roughly $10,000 apiece.
    • We cut unneeded rental storage in half, for an annual savings of $160,000.
    • Our Office of Sustainability found used furniture to reduce a planned expense of $30,000 to $2,000.
    • The School of Aviation and Transport Technology optimized the use of its training aircraft fleet, reducing semester fees for professional flight students by $795 and increasing program capacity by 16 students. Over the next two academic years, this optimization is expected to save students $250,000.

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