Course/Lab Materials Funding Policy

Academic Affairs Policy 4.07-14 Lab/Supply Materials Funding

The dean of each academic unit (college/school) is responsible for monitoring existing and/or new course lab/supply costs associated with undergraduate and graduate courses that require supplies, materials, and/or maintenance of specialized instructional equipment. This policy provides the guidelines and process for requests for funding for those costs.  

Academic departments wishing to request funding must provide a written justification that includes documentation of the material costs incurred in teaching the courses and must comply with the following criteria: 

  • Items covered by the funding must be clearly identifiable, and they must be essential to the student’s completion of the course. Specifically, absence of the items covered by the funding would prevent student success in the course.
  • Items covered by the funding must be unique and unavailable through other practical means for use in the specific course, must be considerably cheaper to buy in bulk, or must be used for shared costs, such as for field trips that are central to the topic of the course.
  • The same costs should apply to all sections of the course within a given semester and the funding will be approved for all sections of the course.  Courses in May session sections will have the same costs as those in regular and short summer sessions and will receive the same funding. 


Course/Lab Materials Eligible for Funding

Funding will be approved for the actual cost expended to provide supplies, materials, and maintenance of specialized instructional equipment in undergraduate and graduate courses. It is not intended as a means of recouping ordinary and usual costs related to the instructional process.


Examples of costs that will be eligible for Course/Lab Materials Funding

Eligible for Funding

  • Items given to students in lab/supply kits (e.g., art supplies, test tubes).
  • Items consumed by students during a course (e.g., chemicals, paint).
  • Yearly maintenance contracts on specialized equipment dedicated solely to instruction (e.g., magnetic resonance spectrometer, rapid prototype printer).
  • Any tool or device used in a course that has an expected life of one year or less, is an operational item (no property tag), and is used to transform expendable items to a product needed for success in the course (e.g., sculpture chisel, electronic components).
  • Instructional computing site license fees not eligible for Student Technology Fee funds.
  • Costs associated with field trips.

Not Eligible for Funding

  • Items eligible for Student Technology Fee funds.
  • Items costing over $5,000 and carrying a property tag.
  • Furnishings, utilities costs (e.g., telephones) and similar items covered by state funds.
  • Salaries or stipends for personnel (including the salaries for laboratory assistants.)



Course/lab material costs will be approved for funding on an annual basis.  The requests for continued funding, new funding, removal of courses from the approved funding list, and revisions of the amount of funding for approved courses, will be submitted each year.  Funding requests will include approval by the department head, dean/director, and Vice President of Instruction.   The approved funding awarded will be based on actual enrollment and provided to the department after the end of the drop/add period when enrollment in the courses approved for funding is final.  Details concerning the process are available on the Registrar’s Office website.



USG Policy Manual, 7.3.2 Student Fees and Special Charges:

USG Business Procedures Manual: Section 24.3.2 Elective Student Fees: