- Blame Bush: 5 years later, that’s still the mantra, pollsters find
- Dutch prostitutes demand same retirement benefits as soccer stars
- John McCain to Harry Reid: I’ll ‘kick the crap’ out of you
- Dogs that talk: Researchers seek $10K for ‘No More Woof’ technology
- 1,000 firefighters called to battle stubborn Big Sur wildfire
- Black Friday brouhaha: Millions of Target shoppers hit by credit card theft
- Britain orders airplane to rescue citizens from violent South Sudan
- Mega Millions winner emerges as Georgia mom, in ‘disbelief’
- ‘Duck Dynasty’ Phil Robertson suspended ‘indefinitely’ for gay quip
- John Podesta eats crow: ‘I apologize to Speaker Boehner’
Feds’ website enables college-tuition comparisons
Technical schools, 2-year institutions most economical
Question of the Day
Can’t decide between that prestigious culinary school or the community college down the street? A new online tool created by the Department of Education could help students make that decision, with detailed price comparisons for colleges and universities of all types across the country.
If you’re looking to go to school for free, New York’s Webb Institute could fit the bill - if you’re lucky enough to get in. The naval architecture and engineering school has only 80 undergraduates, all of whom get full scholarships, making the annual tuition price $0.
Bates College, a liberal arts institution in Maine, comes in as the priciest school in the nation, with an annual tuition of $51,300, the Education Department reported.
Two-year community and technical schools remain the best bargains, with an average national price of $2,527 per year.
Traditional four-year public colleges and universities average $6,397 a year, with Penn State University’s main campus in State College, Pa., coming in as the most expensive in that category with a yearly price tag of $14,416 for in-state students, followed closely by the University of Pittsburgh at $14,154.
Private four-year nonprofit colleges average $21,324 a year, while their for-profit counterparts average $15,661.
Along with providing an unprecedented database, the project has an ulterior motive, according to some education scholars; namely, creating a wall of shame for institutions that dramatically raise tuition rates year after year.
The worst offenders - the 5 percent that have increased prices the most from 2007-08 to 2009-10 - must submit a report to the Education Department justifying the price hikes.
“We hope this information will encourage schools to make the costs of college more transparent so students … aren’t saddled with unmanageable debt,” Education Secretary Arne Duncan said.
While the goal is transparency, some institutions have found slick ways to save their reputations and avoid the impression that they’re raising prices, said Richard Vedder, director of the Center for College Affordability and Productivity.
“Some schools change what they put into the tuition charge,” he said in an interview Thursday. “It is possible to game the system.”
For example, Mr. Vedder said some schools may bypass tuition increases by tacking on extra charges, like fees to use the computer labs or athletic facilities. Those tricks, he added, could go unnoticed, except by the students forced to pay them.
“Government bureaucrats find it difficult to precisely define what a tuition fee is,” Mr. Vedder said.
For the average student, the list, while interesting, may not have a real influence on their decision, said Jim Hermes, director of government relations at the American Association of Community Colleges.
“For the most part, people who go to community colleges are going to go to their local school,” he told The Washington Times on Thursday. “Our students are coming from those local communities.”
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Ben Wolfgang covers the White House for The Washington Times.
Before joining the Times in March 2011, Ben spent four years as a political reporter at the Republican-Herald in Pottsville, Pa.
He can be reached at email@example.com.
- President gets budget win -- but only by staying out of negotiations
- 'There's something about moms:' White House enlists mothers to sell Obamacare
- White House hints Olympic envoys a shot at Putin over gay rights
- Under pressure, White House to unveil key surveillance report
- Top Democrats reject court ruling over NSA spying on Americans
Latest Blog Entries
By Andrew P. Napolitano
Fourth Amendment says Obama is not at liberty to collect metadata
- Duck Dynasty Phil Robertson suspended indefinitely for gay quip
- Half of America strips religion from Christmas
- Bill Gates: The Secret Santa disguised as a 'friendly fellow' on Reddit
- Gov't wasted $30 billion on 'pillownauts,' crystal goblets -- buying human urine!
- U.S. Army mulls wiping out memory of Robert E. Lee, 'Stonewall' Jackson
- Armed response, not restrictive gun laws, brought swift end to school shooting
- NAPOLITANO: NSA spies pick up interference from the Constitution
- BOLTON: Nero in the White House
- 'Duck Dynasty' star Phil Robertson: Gays 'wont inherit the kingdom of God'
- John McCain to Harry Reid: Ill kick the crap out of you
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Politics, economics, and business from a real world perspective.
The cold hard truth about politics in America today and the state of this once great nation.
Nobody likes to talk about dying. But we can help.
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow