Reports by College Board and others have indicated that net price, the true measure of what a student pays to attend college, continues to rise. College Board has maintained that the actual net price has been increasing for six to eight straight years.
Net price is defined as the costs of attendance (tuition, fees, room and board, supplies) less grants, scholarships, and other subsidized aid. Like a car dealership or a jewelry store, no one pays the published price. Institutions disclose these components separately giving us a bread-crumb of what is going on. Institutions must disclose published tuition, average tuition, expenses, fees, and housing costs. They must also disclose average financial aid and ultimately net price. Today we released an update to our Tuition and Pricing Interactive, which analyzes over 6 million data points from IPEDS over ten years. This updated Interactive is now available to our subscribers.
The most recent data suggests that the year-over-year changes that are all over the map. For example, why would one institution have a substantial increase in net price while no changes in tuition and other costs and modest declines in financial aid? We dive into this deeper in the video blog.