Several factors determine how much it may cost for your child to attend college. Tuition, room, board, food, fees, books, etc, all need to be taken into consideration for college costs. Most statistics for college costs are gathered by various agencies are based in one of three categories: Two-year public colleges, Four-year public colleges, and Four-year private non-profit universities.
The College Board tracks costs of post-secondary education in public and private schools. According to their most recent survey, public two-year schools cost about $10,000 a year on average tuition, room, board, fees, etc. Public four-year universities cost about $15,000-$16,000 a year on average for tuition, room, board, fees, etc. Private nonprofit universities cost almost $40,000 per year to attend. Keep in mind, also, that out-of-state schools typically have higher costs.
The above figures do not include financial aid. Public two-year students receive about $3,000 a year in financial aid. Public four-year students receive about $5,000 in financial aid, and private school students receive about $15,000 per year.
So the question, how much is college going to cost, does not have a simple answer. Since all the above numbers are averages, your situation may be radically different based on income, grades, and other considerations. Primerates has compiled several other useful articles which should help point you in the right direction in helping keep the costs of college down – there are articles on where to go for financial aid; helping your student with budgeting and money, and other informative tools which will help you and your child prepare financially for college.