Resources and Templates

The university's budget includes a variety of revenue sources that reflect the diversity and scope of Ohio State's activities. The following overview provides a broad introduction to the university's revenue sources and budget model.

Budget overview

Overall, the university generated nearly $7 billion in revenue in fiscal year 2017, split between patient care and Ohio State's academic enterprise.

There are three main types of revenue:

  1. General funds 
  2. Earnings (from the Wexner Medical Center, teaching clinics, athletics, conferences, core labs)
  3. And restricted funds, which may be used only for designated purposes. Examples include:
    • Endowment (interest & principal)
    • Current Use Gifts (one-time cash)
    • Grants and Contracts (non-OSP)
    • Plant Funds (capital and infrastructure)
    • Office of Sponsored Programs (grants)​

FY17 revenue sources - Ohio State University

Revenue sources by college

Each college relies on a different mix of revenue based on its mission. Some are largely reliant on general funds, such as tuition and the State Share of Instruction. Others have substantial earnings revenue from clinical operations and/or restricted funding through grants or other sources.

FY sources of fund by college - Ohio State University

How the budget model distributes general funds 

The university's budget model determines the distribution of general funds to Ohio State's colleges and administrative support units.

FY17 general funds budget - Ohio State UniversityThe budget model begins with the present budget allocation (PBA) for each college or unit from the previous year, and then makes adjustments based on two factors:

  • Resources available (annual marginal change in resources)
  • Commitments (annual marginal change in commitments)

The result determines the allocation of general funds for the following fiscal year. 

Ohio State University budget model

Budget detail: Factors affecting annual adjustments

Ohio State University budget model


Factors affecting the annual marginal change in resources include:

  • Enrollment trends, both overall and by college.
  • Tuition rates, both as set by the university and as determined by enrollment mix. Undergraduate tuition rates differ for Ohio residents, U.S. non-residents and international students, so the mix of students can affect resources available as well.
  • State funding through the State Share of Instruction (SSI)


The annual marginal change in commitments is affected by these factors: 

Central taxes totaling 24%

19% central tax

Supports units such as the President’s Office, OAA, Treasurer’s Office, Controller, Public Safety, and University Landscaping.

Also supports promotion and tenure and strategic initiatives.

5% Strategic investments

These taxes apply to:

  • State Subsidy (SSI)
  • Instructional Fees

These taxes do not apply to:

  • Indirect Cost Recoveries
  • Differential Fees
  • Program Fees
  • Technology Fees

Plant Operation and Maintenance

Annual changes in expenses are allocated to the units based on the assigned square footage recorded in the university’s space inventory.

The square footage is multiplied by a flat rate per square foot for four types of costs:

  • utilities
  • custodial service
  • maintenance,
  • and in some years, renewal & replacement and deferred maintenance

Units that have leased space are responsible for additional leased space and rent increases.

Research assessment

Research cost allocation covers the budgets of units that support sponsored research.

Individual colleges are allocated a research cost proportional to their Modified Total Direct Cost expenditures.

Central tax funds the administrative components of the Office of Research that have university-wide responsibilities (e.g. Office of Responsible Research Practices).

Student service assessments

There are three separate Student Service Cost Pools:

  • Cost Pool 1 (Undergraduate):90% of this cost pool is Undergraduate Financial Aid. Also includes operating budgets for Financial Aid and First Year Experience. Expense is allocated by average undergraduate credit hours.
  • Cost Pool 2 (Graduate): 83% of this cost pool is Non-Resident Fee Authorizations and Graduate Fellowships. This is the largest cost pool and includes operating budget of the Graduate School. Expense is allocated by average graduate credit hours.
  • Cost Pool 3 (All Students):This is the smallest cost pool and includes portions of operating budgets for Student Affairs, Academic Affairs, and new Library Acquisitions. Expense is allocated by an average of ALL credit hours. Majority of study abroad assessment included in this pool.