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College tuition credit or itemized deduction

Who is eligible? 

You are entitled to this credit or deduction if:

  • you were a full-year New York State resident;
  • you, your spouse, or dependent (for whom you have taken an exemption) were an undergraduate student who was enrolled at or attended an institution of higher education and paid qualified college tuition expenses; and
  • the student is not claimed as a dependent on another person's tax return.

Qualified college tuition expenses

  • Qualified college tuition expenses include only tuition paid for the undergraduate enrollment or attendance of the student at an institution of higher education. This includes expenses paid from a qualified state tuition program (like New York's 529 College Savings Program).
  • Qualified college tuition expenses do not include:
    • tuition paid through scholarships or other financial aid that need not be repaid;
    • amounts paid for room and board, and other similar personal or living expenses;
    • amounts paid for books, supplies, equipment, and nonacademic activities, even if required by the school; or
    • expenses reimbursed to you by your employer.

How much is the credit or deduction?

  • The credit can be as much as $400 per student. If it is more than the amount of New York State tax that you owe, you can claim a refund.
  • The maximum deduction is $10,000 for each eligible student. The college tuition itemized deduction may offer you a greater tax benefit if you itemized deductions on your New York State tax return.
  • Use the worksheets in the instructions to calculate your deduction and see if the credit or deduction is better for you. (See IT-272-I instructions)

Additional information 

Form IT-272Claim for College Tuition Credit or Itemized Deduction, and its instructions (only available in English).

Nonresidents or part-year residents

If you are a New York State nonresident or part-year resident, you do not qualify for the college tuition credit. However, you may be eligible to claim the New York college tuition itemized deduction.

For more information on claiming the college tuition itemized deduction as a nonresident or part-year resident, see Form IT-203-B, Nonresident and Part-Year Resident Income Allocation and College Tuition Itemized Deduction Worksheet, and its instructions (only available in English).