Tuesday , 18 June 2019


The Average Annual Expenses Related To Getting a 4-yr College Degree Since 1971

…For many Americans, a college degree is often regarded as a measure of success, yet a postsecondary education has become cost-prohibitive…[and] those who do pursue a degree rack up tens of thousands of dollars in debt that, in many cases, will take decades to fully pay off. [This article] reviews the average costs of attending four-year public and private colleges nationwide…since 1971. Both figures include tuition, fees, and room and board.

The data below is based on data from the College Board, a nonprofit group associated with American postsecondary institutions.

1971
• Private tuition, fees, room and board per year: $2,930 (inflation adjusted: $18,140)
• Public tuition, fees, room and board per year: $1,410 (inflation adjusted: $8,730)
• Per capita income: $4,491 (inflation adjusted: $22,255)
• Adults with a bachelor’s degree: 11.4%

1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980

1981
• Private tuition, fees, room and board per year: $6,330 (inflation adjusted: $17,410)
• Public tuition, fees, room and board per year: $2,870 (inflation adjusted: $7,900)
• Per capita income: $11,326 (inflation adjusted: $27,266)
• Adults with a bachelor’s degree: 17.1%

1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990

1991
• Private tuition, fees, room and board per year: $14,190 (inflation adjusted: $26,260)
• Public tuition, fees, room and board per year: $5,450 (inflation adjusted: $10,080)
• Per capita income: $20,056 (inflation adjusted: $33,154)
• Adults with a bachelor’s degree: 21.4%

1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000

2001
• Private tuition, fees, room and board per year: $23,860 (inflation adjusted: $33,880)
• Public tuition, fees, room and board per year: $9,030 (inflation adjusted: $12,820)
• Per capita income: $31,574 (inflation adjusted: $42,856)
• Adults with a bachelor’s degree: 26.2%

2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010

2011
• Private tuition, fees, room and board per year: $37,970 (inflation adjusted: $42,350)
• Public tuition, fees, room and board per year: $17,160 (inflation adjusted: $19,140)
• Per capita income: $42,709 (inflation adjusted: $47,105)
• Adults with a bachelor’s degree: 30.4%

2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017

2018
• Private tuition, fees, room and board per year: $48,510 [+167.5%, inflation adjusted, since 1971]
• Public tuition, fees, room and board per year:$21,370 [+144.8%, inflation adjusted, since 1971] • Per capita income:$53,697 [+141.3%, inflation adjusted, since 1971] • Adults with a bachelor’s degree: 35.0% [11.4% in 1971]

Methodology

  • To determine the cost of college [for each] year, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed enrollment-weighted historical figures for average tuition and fees, including room and board from the College Board, a nonprofit organization working on behalf of colleges and universities
  • Years listed are for the beginning of the academic year.
  • …The inflation adjustment figures for college costs come directly from the College Board’s analysis, whereas 24/7 Wall St. made the inflation adjustment for personal income based on the personal consumption expenditure price index, which came from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, and is chained to 2018 dollars.
  • The share of adults with at least four years of college came from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey.
Editor’s Note: The above excerpts* from the original article have been edited ([ ]) and abridged (…) for the sake of clarity and brevity. Also note that this complete paragraph must be included in any re-posting to avoid copyright infringement.

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