Estimating Costs

Estimating Cost of College

Calculating the cost of college requires you to take into consideration many different aspects beyond tuition. Here are some of the things you will need to consider when estimating the cost of college.


Tuition is the main expense you will need to account for. You can estimate this amount by looking at each school's website. Keep in mind that tuition costs may increase slightly each year.

Room & Board

Where will you live while at school? If you are going away to school, you'll most likely be required to live on campus and purchase a meal plan. The cost for these varies depending on a number of options. You can refer to each school's website for specific information on the costs associated with these. If you plan, and the school allows you to, live off campus then you'll need to estimate the cost of rent, food, and utilities. In some cases this might prove to be a more economical choice, but remember to ask your parents or relatives so that you have realistic expectations on these costs.

Books & Supplies

At the beginning of every semester you will need books and supplies for your classes. Depending on your major, and the classes you are taking, books and supplies may range from $500-$1000 a semester. You might be able to save money by purchasing your books from online retailers such as or


Most schools charge various fees on top of tuition. These may include health services fees, lab fees, student activities fees, etc...Refer to the school website to estimate the exact amounts & types of fees you'll be expected to pay.

Other Expenses

Would you need to fly back home during the holidays? Would you need spare cash for snacks or going to the movies? Don't forget to take into account these expenses when calculating the total cost of college.

College Costs Calculators

You can use the following calculators to help you estimate the costs of college.

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