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Tuition costs of colleges and universities

Question:
What are the trends in the cost of college education?

Response:

For the 2016–17 academic year, annual current dollar prices for undergraduate tuition, fees, room, and board were estimated to be $17,237 at public institutions, $44,551 at private nonprofit institutions, and $25,431 at private for-profit institutions. Between 2006–07 and 2016–17, prices for undergraduate tuition, fees, room, and board at public institutions rose 31 percent, and prices at private nonprofit institutions rose 24 percent, after adjustment for inflation. The price for undergraduate tuition, fees, room, and board at private for-profit institutions decreased 11 percent between 2006–07 and 2016–17, after adjustment for inflation.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2019). Digest of Education Statistics, 2017 (NCES 2018-070), Chapter 3.

Average total tuition, fees, room and board rates charged for full-time undergraduate students in degree-granting institutions, by level and control of institution: Selected years, 1985–86 to 2016–17
Year and control
of institution
Constant 2016–17 dollars1 Current dollars
All
institutions
4-year
institutions
2-year
institutions
All
institutions
4-year
institutions
2-year
institutions
All institutions
1985–862 $10,893 $12,274 $7,508 $4,885 $5,504 $3,367
1995–96 13,822 16,224 7,421 8,800 10,330 4,725
2000–01 14,995 17,909 7,576 10,820 12,922 5,466
2001–02 15,497 18,573 7,786 11,380 13,639 5,718
2002–03 16,008 19,240 8,331 12,014 14,439 6,252
2003–04 16,891 20,218 8,743 12,953 15,505 6,705
2004–05 17,460 20,899 8,982 13,793 16,510 7,095
2005–06 17,845 21,281 8,824 14,634 17,451 7,236
2006–07 18,404 21,956 8,874 15,483 18,471 7,466
2007–08 18,604 22,194 8,754 16,231 19,363 7,637
2008–09 19,321 23,071 9,312 17,092 20,409 8,238
2009–10 19,761 23,652 9,562 17,650 21,126 8,541
2010–11 20,278 24,227 9,733 18,475 22,074 8,868
2011–12 20,688 24,537 9,966 19,401 23,011 9,347
2012–13 21,222 25,037 10,041 20,233 23,871 9,573
2013–14 21,682 25,509 10,215 20,995 24,701 9,891
2014–15 22,278 26,051 10,409 21,729 25,409 10,153
2015–16 22,852 26,613 10,599 22,439 26,132 10,407
2016–17 23,091 26,593 10,598 23,091 26,593 10,598
Public institutions
1985–862 $7,964 $8,604 $6,647 $3,571 $3,859 $2,981
1995–96 9,825 11,016 6,623 6,256 7,014 4,217
2000–01 10,514 11,993 6,706 7,586 8,653 4,839
2001–02 10,924 12,523 6,996 8,022 9,196 5,137
2002–03 11,328 13,042 7,464 8,502 9,787 5,601
2003–04 12,057 13,919 7,840 9,247 10,674 6,012
2004–05 12,487 14,463 8,070 9,864 11,426 6,375
2005–06 12,748 14,765 7,916 10,454 12,108 6,492
2006–07 13,134 15,212 8,101 11,049 12,797 6,815
2007–08 13,265 15,392 7,995 11,573 13,429 6,975
2008–09 13,855 16,122 8,555 12,256 14,262 7,568
2009–10 14,353 16,834 8,630 12,819 15,036 7,708
2010–11 14,889 17,472 8,867 13,566 15,919 8,079
2011–12 15,311 17,900 9,189 14,359 16,787 8,617
2012–13 15,755 18,328 9,363 15,021 17,475 8,927
2013–14 16,140 18,692 9,587 15,628 18,100 9,283
2014–15 16,597 19,102 9,828 16,188 18,632 9,585
2015–16 17,075 19,558 10,097 16,766 19,204 9,914
2015–16 17,237 19,488 10,091 17,237 19,488 10,091
Private nonprofit and for-profit institutions
1985–862 $19,812 $20,578 $14,521 $8,885 $9,228 $6,512
1995–96 27,027 27,661 18,161 17,208 17,612 11,563
2000–01 29,621 30,290 20,660 21,373 21,856 14,907
2001–02 30,522 31,179 21,550 22,413 22,896 15,825
2002–03 31,101 31,696 23,656 23,340 23,787 17,753
2003–04 32,109 32,690 25,503 24,624 25,070 19,558
2004–05 32,680 33,241 25,694 25,817 26,260 20,297
2005–06 32,812 33,330 26,101 26,908 27,333 21,404
2006–07 33,805 34,375 24,111 28,439 28,919 20,284
2007–08 34,120 34,646 24,855 29,767 30,226 21,685
2008–09 34,822 35,353 25,690 30,804 31,273 22,726
2009–10 35,089 35,655 27,389 31,341 31,847 24,463
2010–11 34,985 35,689 25,355 31,875 32,517 23,101
2011–12 35,251 35,910 25,170 33,058 33,677 23,605
2012–13 36,168 36,785 24,496 34,483 35,071 23,355
2013–14 37,173 37,797 24,652 35,995 36,599 23,870
2014–15 38,367 38,947 24,941 37,422 37,988 24,327
2015–16 39,734 40,261 24,824 39,016 39,534 24,375
2016–17 40,925 41,468 24,882 40,925 41,468 24,882

1Constant dollars based on the Consumer Price Index, prepared by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, adjusted to an academic-year basis.
2Room and board data are estimated.

NOTE: Data are for the entire academic year and are average charges for full-time students. Tuition and fees were weighted by the number of full-time-equivalent undergraduates, but were not adjusted to reflect student residency. Room and board are based on full-time students. Data through 199596 are for institutions of higher education, while later data are for degree-granting institutions. Degree-granting institutions grant associate's or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs. The degree-granting classification is very similar to the earlier higher education classification, but it includes more 2-year colleges and excludes a few higher education institutions that did not grant degrees. Some data have been revised from previously published figures.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics (2019). Digest of Education Statistics, 2017 (NCES 2018-070), Table 330.10.

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