How Much Does It Cost To Study In The USA?

21K School · Feb 8, 2023 · 3 min read

how much does it cost to study in usa

It is no mystery that studying at US universities is incredibly pricey. Studying at the top university in the USA has a higher cost than in the rest of the globe. Here we look at how much does it cost to study in the USA including tuition costs, accommodation, and even additional costs when taking admission to a university.

How much does it cost to study in the US?

The cost of studying in US universities depends on the college students apply to. There are mainly three types of institutions that they can opt-in to study: two-year or “junior”/”community” colleges, four-year public colleges, and four-year private colleges. The general level of opportunity and education offered in the institutions differentiate. Here we first look at the housing, tuition, and other costs.


Students’ tuition fees include the fees for their classes. Essentially, their tuition fee is estimated according to the units/credits per semester or quarter they enroll in and can differ for different majors.


The next significant cost is accommodation and food. Most colleges mandate that students stay on campus for the first year. Housing can cost up to $0-$15,000, depending on the accommodation. 

Other Costs

Other costs include money, or an allowance for personal expenses, to purchase stationery, clothes, books, and other necessities. This cost can vary considerably, but allocating at least $200-$400/month is usually helpful.

Summary of Other Costs

●    Cellphone Contract: $360-$1,200/year

●    Health Insurance: $1,500-$3,000/year

●    Visa Application & registration: $510

●    Transportation: $200-$1,000/year

●    Allowance: $2,400-$4,800/year

Costs as per the type of college

Here we are looking at the costs of attending three types of institutions:

Two-Year Colleges

A two-year college is a favoured option for most students, as it can be an academic bridge to a four-year college and a standard degree. Students that attend a two-year college get an Associate’s Degree can use it to get two years’ worth of credits in a four-year college. This is also inexpensive for those who can not afford a regular four-year college program.

The average two-year college in the USA costs $13,000, including tuition and accommodation costs.

Four-Year Public Colleges

Public four-year college is another option. The federal and state government partly funds the bachelor’s degrees awarded. It implies that the tuition fees of these universities are lower while maintaining high respect around the world. On average four-year public colleges in the USA costs from $35,000 to $45,000, including fee structure and accommodation costs. Students who live in the same state where the university is located get an “in-State” concession on their tuition and housing fees.

Four-Year Private Colleges

Four-year private colleges are privately financed institutions, usually with smaller student bodies and highly selective with entries. Universities such as Yale, Pomona, Harvard, Stanford, and Princeton are Ivy League Schools with powerful reputations and many successful alums.

The average four-year private college in the USA can cost up to $50,000 to $75,000 per year, including tuition and accommodation costs. These colleges offer the best facilities, research opportunities, and higher competent facilitators.

What About Scholarships?

Many universities offer scholarships to students so that they can afford college. Although seeking a scholarship is very competitive, especially for the top universities, students from all over the globe compete for scholarships. This implies that to secure a scholarship, students must be at their A-game and have an appropriate worldwide ranking to qualify for a scholarship. But, the scholarships very seldom cover all expenses related to studying at the university.

US universities also offer “financial aid,” that is, funding made available from diverse sources to decrease student fees and make university tuition reasonable. However, only American students are eligible for financial aid. Some private universities offer financial assistance to all students. Most universities do not have financial aid, which makes studying in the USA very expensive.

Final Thoughts

Going to college in the USA is very pricey. Students require anywhere about $8,000 – $70,000 a year in university. The difference is stark. The costs discussed here do not consider financial aid, which can greatly lower college costs.

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