Cost of College Continues to Rise, but it’s Worth the Degree

December 4, 2014
December 4, 2014 ACS

It is probably no surprise, but the cost of attending college continues to rise. The College Board recently released its Trends in College Pricing and Trends in Student Aid reports, which highlight current college costs and trends in financial aid for public in-state colleges, public out-of-state colleges, and private colleges.

College costs can vary depending on the region and college, and the findings by the College Board are average cost figures based on a survey of almost 4,000 colleges throughout the United States.

Here is a breakdown of what the College Board released from its survey:

Public in-state colleges

  • The tuition and fees increased an average of 2.9% over the last year to $9,139
  • The price for room and board, which includes living in a dorm or off campus and food expenses increased 3.2% to $9,804
  • The total average cost, which adds tuition and fees, room and board, and the fees for books, transportation, and personal expenses was $23, 410, which went up from the previous year’s total of $22,826

Public out-of-state colleges

  • Tuition and fees cost $22,958, and increase of 3.3%
  • Room and board increased 3.2% to $9,804
  • The total cost for going to an out-of-state public university rose from $36,136 to $37,229

Private colleges

  • The tuition and fees increased 3.7% to $31,231
  • The room and board cost $11,188, a 3.4% raise
  • The total cost of attending a private university increased to $46,272, up from $44,750 the previous year

In addition, according to The Institute for College Access and Success, for the graduating class of 2013, almost 7 in 10 students graduated from college with an average of $28,400 in loans. Approximately 20% of these college graduates debt consisted of private loans.

The report also explained that, “For many 2013 (college) graduates, their college years came during a time of increasing college costs and stagnant family resources. State budget cuts led to sharp tuition increases at many public colleges, increasing students’ need to borrow…Multiple factors influence average college debt levels, such as endowment resources available for financial aid, student demographics, state policies, institutional financial aid packaging policies, and the cost of living in the local area.”

The report did state that even though the cost of college has been increasing, the strong employment and earning prospects for college graduates still highly outweighs those who only have a high school education.

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