You’ve worked hard to get to where you are, but the journey toward being your best self is never-ending. Whether you’re looking to make a career change, start a business, or simply enhance your knowledge base, there are a myriad of free college courses for seniors that can help you confidently achieve your goals.
To help you make the best decision and best use of your time, we’ve outlined a few of the top college courses for seniors that are free! Continue reading to find free college courses for seniors in your state and feel free to reach out to each institution’s financial aid for more information about any of the following programs.
List of Free College Courses for Seniors & Older Adults by State
Free College Courses in Alabama for Seniors
If you’re a senior or aging adult in Alabama (60 or older), you’re in an excellent position to further your education. The entire state of Alabama offers free tuition programs at two-year postsecondary institutions. Although you must meet certain requirements, you can find a number of different community colleges and other institutions where you’ll pay nothing to improve your education.
Free College Courses in Alaska for Seniors
While Alaska may appear cold to outsiders, the state treats its aging older adults warmly with free college tuition. If you’re eligible for full social security benefits and you permanently reside in Alaska, you may be eligible for a senior student waver at a number of colleges and universities, including:
- University of Alaska Fairbanks
- University of Alaska Anchorage
- University of Alaska Southeast
- Alaska Pacific University
- Alaska Bible College
Free College Courses for Seniors in Arizona
Unfortunately for Arizona seniors, there are no free classes. Yet, seniors may qualify to pay half the in-county tuition at all 10 Maricopa Community College campuses. If you’re in Santa Cruz or Cochise county, you may qualify for 50% off at Cochise College. It’s worth noting that the University of Arizona and Arizona State University do offer no-credit classes and similar types of learning opportunities to those 50 and older for a marginal fee at Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes.
Arkansas Offers Free College Courses for Seniors
The great state of Arkansas mandates that all state-supported schools offer tuition-free enrollment for students who are 60 or older.
California Free College Courses for Seniors
If you are 60 years or older, you can receive free tuition at any of the State’s 23 campuses. In addition to tuition, the waiver covers health services, application fees, and related activity fees while reducing access to health facilities and student body center access to $1.00.
Tuition-Free College Courses for Aging Adults
A few different schools in Colorado offer free college courses for seniors. For example, those 55 or older can qualify for free courses at Colorado State University; while you must be at least 60 for courses at the Metropolitan State University of Denver and University of Colorado Denver. It’s worth noting that the University of Denver offers an audit program for those over the age of 60 for $100.
Connecticut Free College Courses for Seniors
The state of Connecticut keeps it simple: seniors who are 62 and older are able to attend any state college for free.
Free College & Graduate Courses for Delaware Seniors
Residents who are 60 and older can take classes at Delaware State University, the University of Delaware, as well as Delaware Technical and Community College. You can even work towards a graduate degree at the University of Delaware once you turn 60!
Free College Courses for Seniors in DC
Residents who are 65 and older can access tuition-free courses at the University of District of Columbia’s Institute of Gerontology at both campuses. Simultaneously, residents 60 and older who live in 20006 and 20037 zip codes can audit classes for a mere $65 at George Washington University.
Tuition-Free College Courses for Seniors in Florida
Florida residents who are 60 and older may qualify for a tuition waiver for audited classes at any university in the state system.
Georgia Free College Courses for Seniors
If you’re 62 or older and live in the state of Georgia, life’s a peach! The University System of Georgia allows you to take classes for credit or audit courses at a public college for free. While you may need to pay for labs, supplies, and others, you can attend an array of schools tuition-free. You can even use the waiver for a graduate-level course, but not for veterinary, dental, medical, or law schools. Arguably, Georgia is one of the top states for offering free college courses for seniors.
Hawaii Tuition-Free Courses for Seniors
Say Aloha to amazing weather and to free college courses for seniors! The state of Hawaii offers an innovative Na Kupuna (means ancestor, grandparent, or honored elder) program that allows residents who are 60 and older to audit a vast range of classes without tuition or fees. Many University of Hawaii schools participate in the program as well.
College Courses in Idaho that Are Free to Seniors
A vast number of schools in Idaho including the College of Southern Idaho and Boise State allow those 65 and older to audit classes for free. If you’re looking to get credit for the class, seniors get a special discounted rate.
Illinois Free College Classes for Seniors
In the state of Illinois, any low-income resident who is 65 or older may be eligible to register at any state college for free. To be classified as “Low Income,” the annual household income should be at or less than 200% of the federal poverty level.
Free College Classes for Seniors in Indiana
The State of Indiana requires all public colleges to offer residents 60 and older at least 50% off the in-state tuition rate for up to 9 hours a semester. Some institutions take it a step farther and waive 100% of tuition costs, such as:
Does Iowa Offer Tuition-Free Classes for Seniors?
In short, the answer is yes. However, seniors do not have a massive range of options as some other states offer. For instance, the private Simpson College and Des Moines Area Community College allows locals who are 62 and older to take one free for-credit course per semester.
Kansas Free College Courses for Seniors
In Kansas, those 60 and older are able to audit any graduate or undergraduate course without paying tuition. This offer is for state universities.
Kentucky Free College Courses For Seniors
In Kentucky, tuition and fees are waived for those who are 65 and older at state-supported schools. As with most other opportunities, it’s based on space availability.
What Free College Course and Discounts Are Available in Louisiana
Residents who are 55 and older can register at any public university or college in the state to receive waived tuition. As an added bonus, you can receive a discount of up to 50% of supplies and books purchased at the school’s bookstore.
Free College Courses for Seniors in Maine
If you’re 65 or will turn 65 during the semester you register for undergraduate courses, the University of Maine System offers a tuition waiver for residents of the state. This includes:
- University of Southern Maine
- The University of Maine at Augusta
- University of Maine
Massachusetts Tuition-Free College Courses for Seniors
Students who are 60 and older are eligible for a tuition waiver for undergraduate classes at any public college in Massachusetts for a minimum of three credits a semester. The actual waiver can vary by school, so you should contact each institutions’ financial aid office for more.
Michigan Courses for Seniors that Are Free
In Michigan, opportunities for seniors can differ by institution, for example:
- Western Michigan University allows those 62 and older to register for one class each semester for free.
- Michigan Tech allows students 60 and older to have tuition waived for a max of two courses each semester
- Wayne State University allows seniors 60 and older to receive up to a 75% tuition discount.
Free College Courses for Seniors in Minnesota
Recognized as the land of a thousand lakes, Minnesota allows residents —who turn 62 prior to the beginning of the semester— to audit classes without tuition charges at any public university or college in the state. And if you would like to take the course for credit, you may have to pay an administrative fee established by the institution, but it’s a marginal amount. For instance, at the University of Minnesota, it’s only $10 per credit hour.
Mississippi’s Free College Courses for Seniors
Although Mississippi doesn’t offer a statewide benefit for seniors, individual schools do have programs:
- The University of Mississippi allows seniors who are 65 and older to take one class each semester at any campus.
- Mississippi State University offers a waiver for six semester hours each semester to seniors who are 60 or older for classes offered on Meridian or Starkville campus. This caps out at a max of 18 hours per year.
Free College and University Courses for Seniors in Missouri
Residents who are at least 65 on or prior to August 1 can audit courses at any state-supported university or college.
Tuition-Free University and College Courses for Seniors in Montana
Through the Montana University System, resident seniors who turn 65 or older prior to the beginning of the semester can use a tuition waiver at any of the 16 different colleges and universities.
Nebraska Free College Courses for Seniors
Several Nebraska colleges and universities allow residents who are 65 and older to enroll in courses for free. For instance, seniors can audit one class a semester at Chadron State College and the College of Saint Mary. On the other hand, seniors can audit two classes a semester for only $25 bucks at Lincoln and Omaha campuses.
Free College Courses for Seniors in New Hampshire
New Jersey Tuition-Free Senior Classes
A number of universities and colleges in New Jersey offer seniors the opportunity to audit the course for free. While you have to be 65 or older to take advantage of free auditing at Montclair State University and New Jersey City University, residents only need to be 62 at Rutgers University. As an added bonus, Montclair State even lets eligible seniors use the waiver for graduate and undergraduate degree programs.
Are There New Mexico Tuition-Free College Courses for Seniors?
In short, no. New Mexico doesn’t offer a rule regarding tuition-free courses for seniors. However, public universities in New Mexico do offer a remarkably low tuition rate of $5 per hour for up to 10 hours a semester. To qualify, residents must turn at least 65 before the third Friday of classes. It’s important to know that schools can limit the number of hours. For example, New Mexico State allows students to take six hours at a reduced rate. For more specifics, check with the individual school’s admission office.
Free College Classes for Seniors in New York
New York residents who are 60 and older can audit courses tuition-free at any state or city university or college.
North Carolina Tuition-Free Courses & Classes for Seniors
Senior residents aged 65 and older in North Carolina enjoy tuition-free courses at community college.
Free College Classes for Seniors in North Dakota
In North Dakota, free college courses for seniors will vary from institution to institution. For instance, those who are over the age of 65 are eligible to audit one course per semester for free at Bismarck State.
Free College Classes for Seniors in Ohio
The state of Ohio keeps it simple: any resident who is at least 60 years old can attend any state college for free. However, seniors can only register on a space-available and will not receive credit.
Oklahoma Free College Courses for Seniors
Oklahoma state universities and colleges waive tuition and fees for senior residents who are 65 and older who wish to audit classes.
Free College Classes in Oregon Free for Seniors
Pennsylvania Free College Courses for Seniors
In Pennsylvania, seniors only need to be 60 to enjoy tuition-free classes at Bloomsburg University; while you’ll need to be 62 to qualify for a tuition waiver to audit classes at Clarion University. And seniors can enjoy additional benefits at the community college level. For instance, Bucks County Community College waives tuition for for-credit courses as long as the senior registers after students who pay full tuition.
Free College Courses for Seniors in Rhode Island
If you’re at least 60, you may be eligible to qualify for a tuition waiver in Rhode Island. However, you must meet certain income requirements through the Rhode Island General Assembly. Seniors over the age of 60 can request a waiver to attend classes as space becomes available at the Community College of Rhode Island. Those who are interested should submit a Senior Means test to verify income.
South Carolina Free College Courses for Seniors
Whether you’re looking to get credit for your courses or not, seniors can attend any state-supported university or college for free.
Can Seniors Take Free College Courses in South Dakota?
Unfortunately, there is no rule in South Dakota where seniors can take free classes. However, state institutions must offer a 45% discount on tuition to residents who are 65 and older. This rule applies to graduate-level courses as well as undergraduate.
Free College Opportunities for Seniors in Tennessee
In Tennessee, seniors have two different opportunities to attend college for free:
- At the age of 60, you can audit any class at a state university or college without having to pay tuition, registration, student activity fees, or maintenance fees.
- At the age of 65, you can circumvent the same costs and earn college credits for the classes. However, the institution may charge a service fee of up to $70 a semester or $45 a quarter.
Free College Classes for Seniors in Texas
Everything is bigger in Texas, so it should come as no surprise that seniors age 65 and up may have access to tuition-free classes. And if the senior prefers to take a class for college credits, some universities allow you to take up to six hours. A few of the top schools who offer this break include:
- The University of Texas at Dallas
- Lone Star College
- The University of Texas at Austin
- Midland College
- University of Houston
Utah’s Free College Courses for Seniors
Residents who are 62 and older can take classes at any public university or college for virtually free. While you will not pay tuition costs, you will have to pay a minimal quarterly registration fee that can vary. For example, Salt Lake Community College costs $10 a semester; while the University of Utah charges $25 a semester.
Free Colleges & Universities in Vermont for Seniors
Seniors who are 65 and older have the opportunity to audit one undergraduate course every semester without paying tuition. The course must be offered at a Vermont State College System.
Virginia Free College Class for Seniors
Virginia residents who are 60 and older are allowed to audit up to three courses every term at any university or state college for free. And seniors who have taxable income of $23,850 or less are able to register as either part-time or full-time students and take tuition-free courses
Free College Courses for Seniors in Washington State
In the state of Washington, seniors 60 and older may be eligible to waive tuition and pay a marginal registration fee for up to two classes a quarter or semester. The actual fees will be based on individual school policies. For example, eligible students will only pay $5 to audit a course at Bellevue College and South Seattle College; while Community Colleges of Spokane have a fee of $2.50.
West Virginia Free College Courses for Seniors
The state of West Virginia mandates all public universities and colleges offer programs at reduced costs to residents who are 65 and older. If earning credit, eligible seniors will pay no more than 50% of the standard in-state rate. On the other hand, eligible seniors can audit a class for a total of $50 in fees and tuition.
Free College Courses for Seniors in Wisconsin
In Wisconsin, senior students who are 60 and over can audit classes for free in the University of Wisconsin system. This robust system includes a total of 13 universities across 26 different campuses.
Wyoming Free College Courses for Seniors
Wyoming offers free options to seniors who are looking to further their education. For example, Northwest College offers a Golden Age program that offers Park County residents who are 60 or older a tuition waiver for up to six credits every semester. On the other hand, the University of Wyoming allows seniors who are 65 and older to enroll in classes tuition-free.
Whether you’re looking to start or continue your education, seniors have access to a long list of free and affordable options. However, we know how challenging it can be to find an appropriate option. Because of this, we’ve developed our list of free college courses for seniors by state.
If you’re a school administrator or representative and feel your school should be included, please contact us today! We’re continually looking to update for the best campuses that offer free college courses for seniors.