Families concerned about college costs sometimes find that the college with the lowest tuition charges may not be the best bargain for their tuition dollar. Looking through acceptance offers from universities, families need to look at admission scholarships offered and funds offered by the financial aid office in relation to tuition in order to assess how much of the tuition for each college they will be charged or have to borrow.
For example, a student looking at offers from a $40,000 college versus a $19,000 college may assume that the $19,000 college will be the least expensive. However, the $40,000 college may offer $20,000 in admission scholarships and an additional 2500 in a grant for students in certain majors or students attending a private college. The $19,000 college may not offer any scholarships. In that scenario, the $40,000 tuition bill is now $17,500. Depending on how much each college charges for room and board and other fees, the college with the highest tuition may actually be the best choice.
If possible, examine all charges and the financial aid and scholarship offers from each college before accepting an admission offer.