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GALVESTON, Texas (AP) - Texas A&M University System regents have approved a fixed-rated tuition plan to lock in prices at the main campus for four years starting in fall 2014.

The Legislature required all Texas public universities to offer fixed-rate tuition plans. At their meeting Thursday in Galveston, the regents voted to put all new undergraduate students at Texas A&M University, as well as the Galveston campus and health science center, under the plan.

Each freshman class gets a new tuition rate, depending on degree plan and major. The rate would not change as they progress toward graduation.

School officials say fixed-rate tuition consolidates more than 7,000 student fees and makes budgeting easier.

Fixed-rate plans can be more expensive at the start, but can also guard against sharp increases over a student s academic career.

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