New York - The cost of education keeps on rising, leaving students with increasing debt and less money to live on. Studies show that the average total cost of a attending a public college in the United States is $24,061, and for a private institution this rises to $47,831. Fees are a large part of this, along with housing and living costs, tuition material purchases, and using public transport.
New York – The cost of education keeps on rising, leaving students with increasing debt and less money to live on. Studies show that the average total cost of a attending a public college in the United States is $24,061, and for a private institution this rises to $47,831. Fees are a large part of this, along with housing and living costs, tuition material purchases, and using public transport.
How much does further education cost?
Students who graduated this year left with an average debt of $37,172 – 6% more than the previous year’s graduating class. Schools and universities are charging more than ever to attend courses, leaving students on a very tight budget during their time in education.
Average tuition costs for college education in 2015/16:
? Private education: $32,405
? Public education (state residents): $9,410
? Public education (out of state students): $23,893
While student loans can usually cover the course fees, and sometimes grants and scholarships help toward housing, the burden falls on students and their parents to manage any other costs. Just 17% of the general population feel they can cover the cost of college for themselves or for a relative, and non-affordability is probably the leading reason why only 65.9% of students will continue to higher education.
However, it is not all negative news. The percentage of people who possess a college degree is rising every year, and there are lots of ways to bring the cost of studying down. Where you attend, the course you enroll in and your lifestyle during your school years can all make a big difference to your financial health – both during studying, and after you graduate.
Affordable colleges and universities for all students
While the average costs are rising, there are plenty of educational establishments which try and keep their rates down. One of the biggest ways to save on college education is to attend a school in your home state, where fees are likely to be subsidized and therefore much lower. However, going away from home for the first time is a big part of the college experience. If you want to experience the wider world, there are still plenty of budget options with great courses. Studies show that the Midwest is home to some of the cheapest universities, so consider Mississippi, Texas or North Dakota instead of California or New York. Look for schools that encourage out of state students to apply by lowering their course fees, or you might even consider heading overseas to study and trying a whole new way of life.
Subject choice and costs
How much your course will cost depends to some extent on what you study. Popular subjects sometimes cost more because of the demand, while rates may be dropped to encourage less favorable subjects to be studied. Medical school costs can run to the region of $180,000 over the eight years of studying required, while technical college course costs less and academic subjects are often taught for under $9000 per year. There are often initiatives that encourage people into particular subjects, especially in areas where the average income is low.
Other costs of studying
Course fees are expensive, but there are many other expenses students must meet as well, and this is where debts can soon mount up, or hardship can occur. A recent study by Frugaa asked students to rank their biggest costs during the academic year. The leading areas of spending were:
? Food and essential items
? Course materials
? Entertainment and leisure
While some may argue that entertainment and leisure are not essential areas of spending – students have a reputation for partying a whole lot and not working very hard – socializing is an essential part of the college experience. 72% of students admit they cut back on food and household costs in order to stretch their budget and enjoy a night out or party with friends.
Around 30% of students get help with some or all of their college fees from their parents, but many have to find the funds themselves. Research suggests that 73% of students have a part time job as well as studying full time, and the average hours worked per week is 19. 62% of students say that their parents pay their cell phone bills, helping them keep in touch with their family back home even when money is tight.
Cutting back and saving money
Students can stretch their small budgets much further if they care about their spending, and if they are willing to cut back on certain luxuries. Picking up used course materials such as textbooks, and using voucher codes for stationary and equipment, can help ease the overall cost of studying. College and university attendees should also take advantage of places that offer a student discount: many bars, restaurants, shops and transport services allow students to use the service at a reduced rate.