3 years ago
Paying for College

College Tuition

I have no idea why, but the whole college tuition thing confuses me. Is the cost of tuition what you have to pay upfront? How do colleges accept you if you don't have the money to pay for dorms and things like that? Is this what creates debt that you have to pay off after college?

I have another question about dorms too; is that something you have to pay upfront as well? I want to go to college in Hawaii, Seattle, or Florida and I know it's already going to be extremely expensive to the extent that I will most likely have to get a dorm.

@Melokenzie3 years ago

It's not just you, I looked into it and since it varies by school it gets confusing quickly.

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Accepted Answer
3 years ago[edited]

All schools will charge differently. Typically, anyways, Tuition, Housing, Meal fees are a direct costs because they are your college living essentials. You more than likely shouldn’t have to worry about tremendous amounts of loan money for these costs because they can be covered by financial aid (make sure to fill out FAFSA for you academic year) upon acceptance and intent for attendance. If the college fails to meet a comfortable coverage of financial aid here, then you’ll have to adjust financial plans for loans.


An actual example of my expenses for my college,

Direct Costs estimation (first year): Tuition ($44,400) ; Hosing, Meals, and other fees ($7,956) = total direct ($52,356) - ($amount financial aid) - ($scholarly aid).

Indirect Costs estimation (first year): Books and supplies ($1,000) ; Personal expenses varies ($2,600) = total indirect ($3,600) - ($remaining scholarly aid)


This is perhaps a good example for roughly all colleges: direct costs are your essentials that college’s provide (education, housing, feeding, health, etc.) and indirect costs are all personalized (books for desired major, study tools, technology, accommodation needs, transportation, groceries, etc.).

You’ll see that the largest factor in total college expenses will reside based off of college/university. Meanwhile, your personal expenses will be a factor of (to a lesser degree) the geography of the institution (i.e urban, suburban, rural etc.).

Hope this helps!!

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