More Than Tuition

Cost of Attendance and Today's College Students

For today’s students, the cost of college includes much more than tuition. Federal Cost of Attendance (COA) measures the total education and living expenses for a student at a particular college or university, making it the key estimate of how much the student must budget for an academic year, as well as a key tool in how financial aid is distributed. However, the difficulty in creating these estimates often means that students and institutions are unable to accurately predict student expenses, leading some students to borrow more than they might need, while still others are unable to pay for basic expenses like housing and food.

To fully explore COA’s promise and pitfalls, New America’s Education Policy Program recently put together a series of blog posts addressing some of its key questions and concerns. This series will culminate with a panel event on May 25th, that will explore issues surrounding COA and how policy makers and institutions can better align resources for today’s students.

Take part in the conversation online using #MoreThanTuition and following @NewAmericaEd.

Welcome and Opening Remarks:

Kim Dancy
Policy Analyst, New America

Panel Discussion Participants:

Rachel Fishman 
Senior Policy Analyst, New America

Barbara Gault, Ph.D 
Vice President and Executive Director, Institute for Women’s Policy Research

Jee Hang Lee 
Vice President for Public Policy and External Relations, Association of Community College Trustees

Matt Reed
Vice President for Learning at Brookdale Community College (NJ)

Panel Discussion Moderator:

Scott Carlson 
Senior Writer, Chronicle of Higher Education