The average cost of a bachelor’s degree is $25,143 per year at a private college and $6,585 at a public college or university, according to the 2008-09 reports released by the College Board. About 56 percent of students pay less than $9,000 in tuition and fees per year, the board found, while only 9 percent pay more than $33,000. These averages do not include room and board.
From 1958 through 2001, tuition increased at a rate of 6 to 9 percent, or about 1.2 to 2.1 times the rate of general inflation. On average, tuition increased at a rate of 8 percent. If this rate of increase were to continue, it would mean if you have a child today, the average price of public school tuition when he is ready for college will be $26,313. In real dollars, assuming a 3 percent annualized inflation rate, which equates to $15,847 per year.
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