With May graduations completed and summer sessions in full swing, we begin looking toward the upcoming fall semester and the beginning of a new academic year. Eyes will also be focused on the legislative session set to begin in Texas on January 10, 2023. From policymakers to pundits to parents of students, one of the key conversations regarding higher education continues to be costs associated with attending colleges and universities. This blog post serves as the first in a summer series that will explore costs ranging from national averages to institution-level data.
In calculating costs of attendance, numerous variables are typically considered for inclusion. The categories that are most often included are tuition and fees, room and board, and books and supplies. Some calculations also include an “other expenses” category. However, our calculations do not include this category, as the primary categories are central to the academic mission of higher education. Institutions also provide grants and scholarships that serve to offset the cost of attendance and will be included in our calculations. Costs are reported by each institution as the amount that a first-time-in-college student who is paying in-state tuition and living in on-campus housing will pay for 30 student credit hours spanning a full academic year.
The national averages shown above provide a baseline against which other comparisons can be made. In the next few blog posts, we will explore how institutions in Texas compare to the overall averages while also contextualizing university-level data against peer and Carnegie Classification groups.