The Department of Education the second annual College Affordability and Transparency list, which tracks the cost of tuition at the nation’s public and private colleges and universities. The tuition increases at some for-profit colleges have now raised their net prices, and now, the cost of attendance minus grants and student aid is higher than the cost of attending Harvard.
According to the DoEd, on average the net cost of attending a public four-year university went up by 4.6% last year. The average net cost of attending a private four-year university increased by 6.1% and the average net cost increase for a private for-profit four-year university went up by 6.7%.
The two public schools with the highest in-state tuition are Pennsylvania State University-Main Campus and the University of Pittsburgh-Pittsburgh Campus. The public schools with the highest net prices are the University of Guam and Miami University-Oxford, Ohio.
The highest tuition for private, not-for-profit, four-year colleges can be found at Connecticut College which narrowly edged out Sarah Lawrence College. The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and California Institute of the Arts have the highest net prices for private, not-for-profit, four-year colleges.
In the private, for-profit college category, West Coast University’s Orange County and Los Angeles campuses have the highest tuition. West Coast University-Orange County’s net cost was also the second highest, only behind the New York campus of Pacific College of Oriental Medicine.
The Haskell Indian Nations University, Kan. and Dine College, Ariz. are the public universities with the lowest tuition, while Macon State College, Ga. and Escuela de Artes Plasticas de Puerto Rico have the lowest net cost of any public universities.
Berea College, Ky. and Turtle Mountain Community College, N.D. have the lowest tuition for a private,, not-for-profit, four-year college; Berea College also has the lowest net cost for a private, not-for-profit four year college followed by Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico.
The American Public University System, West Virginia and the Caguas, Puerto Rico campus of Columbia Centro Universitario had the lowest tuition of private, for-profit, four-year colleges. Columbia Centro Universitario-Caguas followed National American University in Rio Ranch, N.M. with the lowest net cost for a private, for-profit, four-year college.
Many administrators at public, four-year colleges took umbrage last year when the Obama Administration used the publication of the College Affordability and Transparency list to criticize rising tuition costs without discussing state cuts to higher education funding.
Geoff Rushton, a Penn State spokesperson, told Inside Higher Ed that the reason his university is consistently ranked as one of the most expensive schools is because the Pennsylvania Legislature has kept state funding at the same level since 1995, despite increases in Penn State’s enrollment numbers.
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