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Postsecondary Revenues by Source
(Last Updated: May 2014)

In 2011–12, revenues from tuition and fees per full-time-equivalent (FTE) student were 14 percent higher at public institutions ($6,072) than they were in 2006–07 ($5,339), in constant 2012–13 dollars. At private nonprofit institutions, they were 6 percent higher ($19,330 vs. $18,171), and at private for-profit institutions they were 2 percent higher ($15,176 vs. $14,810).

In 2011–12, total revenues, in current dollars, at degree-granting postsecondary institutions were $317 billion at public institutions, $162 billion at private nonprofit institutions, and $27 billion at private for-profit institutions. At private nonprofit institutions and private for-profit institutions, student tuition and fees constituted the largest percentage of total revenues (39 and 89 percent, respectively). At public institutions, the largest revenue sources were student tuition and fees (21 percent) and state appropriations (19 percent). It is important to note that revenue data are not comparable across institutional control categories because Pell grants are included in the federal grant revenues at public institutions but tend to be included in tuition and fees and auxiliary enterprise revenues at private nonprofit and private for-profit institutions.


Figure 1. Percentage distribution of total revenues at degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by institution level, institution control, and source of funds: 2011–12

Figure 1. Percentage distribution of total revenues at degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by institution level, institution control, and source of funds: 2011–12

# Rounds to zero.
NOTE: Percentages are based on current 2011–12 dollars. Government grants, contracts, and appropriations include revenue from federal, state, and local governments. All other revenue includes gifts, capital or private grants and contracts, auxiliary enterprises, and other revenue. Revenue data are not comparable across institutional control categories because Pell grants are included in the federal grant revenues at public institutions but tend to be included in tuition and auxiliary enterprise revenues at private nonprofit and private for-profit institutions. Degree-granting institutions grant associate’s or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs. Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Spring 2013, Finance component. See Digest of Education Statistics 2013, tables 333.10, 333.40, and 333.55.


Revenues from tuition and fees made up over three-quarters of all revenues for both 2-year and 4-year private for-profit institutions (89 percent each) and 74 percent at 2-year private nonprofit institutions. Revenues from government sources (which include federal, state, and local government grants, contracts, and appropriations) constituted 40 percent of total revenues at 4-year public institutions and 71 percent at 2-year public institutions. Investment returns or investment income accounted for 3 percent of total revenues at 4-year private nonprofit institutions and 2 percent of total revenues at 4-year public institutions; this source accounted for 1 percent or less of total revenues for other types of 4-year and 2-year degree-granting postsecondary institutions.


Figure 2. Revenues per full-time-equivalent (FTE) student from tuition and fees for degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by institution control and level: 2006–07 and 2011–12

Figure 2. Revenues per full-time-equivalent (FTE) student from tuition and fees for degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by institution control and level: 2006–07 and 2011–12

NOTE: Full-time-equivalent (FTE) student includes full-time students plus the full-time equivalent of part-time students. Revenues per FTE student are reported in constant 2012–13 dollars, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) adjusted to a school-year basis. Revenue data are not comparable across institutional control categories because Pell grants are included in the federal grant revenues at public institutions but tend to be included in tuition and auxiliary enterprise revenues at private nonprofit and private for-profit institutions. Degree-granting institutions grant associate’s or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Spring 2007 and Spring 2012, Enrollment component; and Spring 2008 and Spring 2013, Finance component. See Digest of Education Statistics 2013, tables 333.10, 333.40, and 333.55.


Between 2006–07 and 2011–12, the percentage change of revenues per full-time-equivalent (FTE) student varied by institutional control and level. Revenues per FTE student are reported in constant 2012–13 dollars, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI). During this period, revenues from tuition and fees per FTE student increased by 14 percent at public institutions (from $5,339 to $6,072) and by 6 percent at private nonprofit institutions (from $18,171 to $19,330). At private for-profit institutions, revenues from tuition and fees were 2 percent higher in 2011–12 than in 2006–07 ($15,176 vs. $14,810). At public institutions from 2006–07 to 2011–12, revenues from tuition and fees per FTE student increased by 17 percent at 4-year institutions (from $7,239 to $8,453), while revenues were 3 percent lower ($2,331 vs. $2,269) at 2-year institutions. At private nonprofit institutions, revenues from tuition and fees per FTE student increased by 6 percent at 4-year institutions (from $18,224 to $19,385) and by 14 percent at 2-year institutions (from $12,040 to $13,718). At private for-profit institutions, revenues from tuition and fees per FTE student at 4-year institutions were 3 percent higher in 2011–12 than they were in 2006–07 ($15,326 vs. $14,851), while at 2-year institutions they were less than 1 percent lower ($14,641 vs. $14,690).

Revenues from tuition and fees at public institutions rose more rapidly than did government revenues between 2006–07 and 2011–12. As a result, the percentage of revenues from tuition and fees was higher in 2011–12 (21 percent) than in 2006–07 (17 percent), and the percentage of revenues from government sources was lower in 2011–12 (45 percent) than in 2006–07 (46 percent).

Revenues per FTE student from government sources at public institutions were 10 percent lower in 2011–12 than in 2006–07 ($13,370 vs. $14,881, in constant 2012–13 dollars), 6 percent lower at private nonprofit institutions ($8,009 vs. $8,557), and 8 percent higher at private for-profit institutions ($1,029 vs. $956).


Figure 3. Revenues per full-time-equivalent (FTE) student from government grants, contracts, and appropriations for degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by type of revenue and institution control and level: 2006–07 and 2011–12

Figure 3. Revenues per full-time-equivalent (FTE) student from government grants, contracts, and appropriations for degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by type of revenue and institution control and level: 2006–07 and 2011–12

NOTE: Full-time-equivalent (FTE) student includes full-time students plus the full-time equivalent of part-time students. Revenues per FTE student are reported in constant 2012–13 dollars, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) adjusted to a school-year basis. Revenue data are not comparable across institutional control categories because Pell grants are included in the federal grant revenues at public institutions but tend to be included in tuition and auxiliary enterprise revenues at private nonprofit and private for-profit institutions. Degree-granting institutions grant associate’s or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Spring 2007 and Spring 2012, Enrollment component; and Spring 2008 and Spring 2013, Finance component. See Digest of Education Statistics 2013, tables 333.10, 333.40, and 333.55.


State and local government revenues per FTE student were generally lower in 2011–12 than in 2006–07 across degree-granting postsecondary institutions. Compared with 2006–07, revenues per FTE student from state and local sources in 2011–12 were 22 percent lower at 4-year public institutions ($12,366 vs. $9,623), 27 percent lower at 4-year private nonprofit institutions ($828 vs. $605), 21 percent lower at 2-year public institutions ($7,910 vs. $6,280), and 61 percent lower at 2-year private nonprofit institutions ($936 vs. $363). State and local revenues per FTE student at private for-profit institutions were 1 percent higher at 4-year institutions and 45 percent lower at 2-year institutions.

Revenues from federal sources were higher in 2011–12 than in 2006–07 across degree-granting postsecondary institutions. At public institutions, there was a 19 percent increase in federal revenues per FTE student, whereas state revenues were 25 percent lower in 2011–12 than in 2006–07. Additionally, federal funding per FTE student increased by 6 percent at 4-year public institutions (from $5,728 to $6,073, in constant 2012–13 dollars) and increased by 79 percent (from $1,882 to $3,375) at 2-year public institutions. Compared with 2006–07, revenues per FTE student from federal sources in 2011–12 were 4 percent lower at all levels of private nonprofit institutions ($7,728 vs. $7,406). At 4-year private nonprofit institutions, federal revenues were also 4 percent lower in 2011–12 than in 2006–07 ($7,465 vs. $7,773); at 2-year private nonprofit institutions, federal revenues were 40 percent lower ($1,508 vs. $2,517). Revenues per FTE student from federal sources at all levels of private for-profit institutions were 11 percent higher in 2011–12 than in 2006–07 ($965 vs. $872).


Glossary terms: Consumer Price Index (CPI), Full-time-equivalent (FTE) enrollment, Private for-profit institution, Private institution, Private nonprofit institution, Public school or institution, Revenue, Tuition and fees
Data Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS)


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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education