Sunday, September 13, 2009

College Costs Add Up — Before You’re Even Accepted

By Melissa Korn

Posted by Albert Tirado

Shopping for college gear is expensive, but shopping for a college itself can cost nearly as much.

Guide books, application fees, charges for taking standardized tests, charges for sending said test scores to schools and actually visiting the schools in question can easily cost the families of college-bound students a few thousand dollars. While some of those costs are unavoidable, there are ways to trim expenses without hurting Junior’s chances of getting into Favorite State University. Here’s how:

One inevitable expense families incur when on the college hunt comes from exams, as most colleges require a score from at least one standardized test. Registration for the SAT and ACT costs $45 and $32, respectively. Students are allowed to send SAT scores to up to four schools for free but must shell out an additional $9.50 for each school after that (plus $27 for rush reporting); the ACT charges $9-$13.

Students with extraordinary need (those who receive free or reduced-cost lunches at school) can contact their college counselors about obtaining fee waivers. John Boshoven, counselor for continuing education at Community High School in Ann Arbor, Mich., recommends other needy students ask their schools to forward test scores to colleges along with official transcripts. High schools get the scores automatically, and some universities will accept those scores as “official.”

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  1. I remember these days when my family went to all types of measures to figure out where I would attend school. Syracuse Did end up becoming my college of choice, but I remember all the costs that led up to my admission. I feel that these expenses were almost all waste in the end. Some of these costs can be helpful in the process, but still felt that families all spend a very decent amount of money when helping their kids figure out their future college.

    Posted by Adam Lindheim

  2. Its very important for parents and students to make sure they can not only afford the tuition but also the extra costs and expenses that come with going to college. Most students need to also work part-time so they can have some spending money for the school year.

    Posted by Michael Rivezzo