Net Price Calculator

Delivering the true cost of college to prospective students

What is a Net Price?


Your net price is a college’s sticker price for tuition and fees minus the grants, scholarships, and education tax benefits you receive. The net price you pay for a particular college is specific to you because it's based on your personal circumstances and the college’s financial aid policies.



The net price, on average, is considerably lower than the published price. For example, the average published in-state price for tuition and fees for four-year public colleges is $9,410 per year. But the average net price — what the average family really pays — is just $3,980 per year. For private nonprofit four-year colleges, the average published price is $32,410 per year, but the average family pays just $14,890 annually.

Why a Net Price Calculator?


A net price calculator is a free online tool that gives you a personalized estimate of net price. The federal government now requires most colleges and universities to have a net price calculator on their websites.

A college’s net price calculator asks you questions about your family’s finances and may also ask you questions about your GPA, test scores, activities and other things that may qualify you for financial aid. It uses your answers to figure out how much money in grants and scholarships the college is likely to award you. It then subtracts that number from the full cost of attendance to estimate how much the college might really cost you.


Many net price calculators also provide information about other kinds of financial aid you might be offered. These include loans and work-study jobs.