USA College Fees

College fees in the USA vary depending on exactly where you attend. Our guide will help you work out how much it will cose you to complete a degree course.

How much does it cost to go to college?

Tuition, fees and funding are crucial when navigating the university application process. Will you live at home, on campus or off campus?

Keep in mind living at home or on campus will drastically change the cost of your complete education. Think about:

  • Do you plan to take part in any study abroad programs?  
  • How are your grades?
  • Do you qualify for any scholarships?  
  • Are you comfortable taking out a government or personal loan?  

These questions, plus hard numbers will also influence your education decisions.

Tuition, fees and related expenses such as meal plans and housing will be different from university to university.

The U.S Department of Education had a great Net Price Calculator to help you work out how much attending a particular college will cost you, and our College Budgeting Tips are available to help you organise your finances once you start your first semester.

Personal funding

You may already have your own resources or you may be saving money. Possibly your parents will be funding you.

Keep in mind it is critical to budget per semester, per academic year and keep inflation and increases in tuition costs and unexpected expenses in mind.

Additional funding

Are you interested in possible additional or supplemental funding sources?  

Take the time to research local and national scholarships that you qualify for.

Besides online research, your high school guidance counselor is a great resource for this information.

Scholarships can be based on your academic, extracurricular or interest background.  

Don’t forget to look into places of faith or local community organizations such as the Rotary Club for additional scholarship resources.

Completing the FAFSA is also a good idea. You can always complete the application to see if and what you qualify for.

You are not required to automatically accept what you qualify for. Yet, you can’t change your mind about applying for FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) if the deadline has already passed. Pay close attention to the strict FAFSA deadline.


Is it possible to work on campus? It probably is, but if it is a small school the opportunities may be limited and competitive.

Does the city have a lot of off campus opportunities?  Consider the fact if you will have personal transportation or have to rely on public transportation.  

Sometimes there may be a lack of public transportation in your university town, so look into this when considering employment options.  

If you are looking for off campus employment possibilities you might want to try to apply for jobs/contact employers 2-3 months before the semester start.  

This might get you ahead of the wave of new students when arriving to the university.

Don’t forget about campus resources such as the Career Services Center/Career Development Center.

This department can provide you with job leads as well as an excellent resource for creating a resume, job interview skills, employment prospects etc.

You can also contact your academic department for some possible academic connected related work. Note:  these latter two options are more appropriate if you are typically in your Junior or Senior year

Sample Academic Year Fees Based on Full Time Enrollment

Emory University, Juris Doctor Program

2018/19 Estimated Total Cost of Attendance

Tuition $56,500
Fees $848
Estimated Variable Costs
Living expenses $18,918
Books: $1230 / $4042
Student Health Insurance $3,708
Parking $672 

Harvard College

Tuition & Fees: $50,420
Room & Board: $17,160
Estimated personal expenses/books: $4070 
Florida Institute of Technology, Undergraduate Program

Engineering and Science Majors $20,550
All other majors $18,730
Facility Fee  - $500
Parking Fees - general  - $85
Full-time student with Florida Tech license plate - $45

Still feeling put off by the fees? Take a look at our Online Degree Programs section as an alternative.

Further information

For more tips and advice on applying to college, please see: