University of North Carolina system leaders have approved an average 3.9 percent increase of in-state undergraduate tuition and fees at its 16 campuses.
The UNC Board of Governors voted Friday morning to approve the plan after system President Erskine Bowles urged that tuition increases be kept as low as possible.
The rates were less than a third of what campuses had requested.
State budget officials have told the university system to expect budget cuts up to 7 percent this year because of the sour economy.
Under the hike, undergraduates will pay as little as $71 more at East Carolina University to as much as $432 more at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.
The rates will have to be approved by the state Legislature.