The High Cost of College Education
Colleges are making the headlines a lot these days, with much of the publicity becoming clearly unfavorable. Despite the negative aspects exhibited in colleges, for instance riots, drinking, various scandals, and remedial courses frequently taught in the institutions, the central topic has been the steady rise in the costs of college education. College education has become unaffordable to most of the students or for those who are planning to join, attributed to the high cost of living and high rates of inflation (Martin, 2005). Similarly, the tuition fee is increasing faster than the rate of inflation, or even people’s income, making the attainment of college education out of reach for majority families (Martin, 2005).
Evidence and Reasons of the Increase in Cost of College Education
There is a significant increase in the net tuition and fees, during the period from the 80s through 2000, for both public and private institutions. It is always evident that during recession, businesses usually tend to moderate price increases, often into the early years of recovery. However, by contrast, colleges tend to increase prices in recessionary periods and early recovery years (Vedder, 2004). Similarly, the real tuition- roughly the difference between the rise in tuition and the overall inflation rate-rose by five percent or more in 1982, 1983, 1992, and 2002, in all recessions and early recovery years (Vedder, 2004).
The increase in the cost of college education can be ascribed to plethora of facets, which encompass the tendency of university or colleges to have a vast fiscal behavior (Vedder, 2004). The colleges and university tend to make up their budget many months before the end an academic year, typically calling for generous spending (Vedder, 2004). In tandem to this, when there are unexpected or abnormal revenue shortfalls from non-tuition sources, they make up the difference by automatically raising the fees (Vedder, 2004). Further, there is change in the current trends of technology, and there is significant need for the application of technology in schools, thence, creating the need to increase the cost of education, in order to match all the technological aspects.
Many individuals have been championing for the reduction of the cost of college education so as to allow, an equal and easy access to facilities of higher levels of learning. This follows after the disparities that are created in job and wage allocation, in students or individuals with different academic achievements (Martin, 2005). Thus, it becomes fundamental to have the basic principles, on how to reduce the cost of education or on how to manage the tuition fees. The research will therefore strive to bring to light the causes of increase in college fees. The research will also attempt to provide remedies to parents and student and the government of how to avert the problem of high college fees.
It is patent that with the current economic situation, cost of college education is likely to increase, despite the formulation of policies to govern the system, and allocation of variety of aids to students. Hence, it is very necessary for parents and students to plan for college education (Snider, 2010). This can be achieved through the creation of awareness on how to make a good estimate of the annually cost of college attendance (Snider, 2010). In addition, parents should be encouraged to save some of their income, so as to facilitate the processes of higher education (Snider, 2010). Moreover, governments should revise policies that govern the determination of the cost of college education, and increase the provision of aids and scholarships to the needy students (Snider, 2010). Considering the nature of this research, secondary sources will be considered as the leading source of data.
Martin, E. R. (2005). Cost Control, College Access, and Competition in Higher Education. Massachusetts: Edward Elgar Publishing, Inc.
Snider, D. M. (2010). How to Get Money for College 2011: Financing Your Future Beyond Federal Aid. Lawrenceville, NJ: Peterson's a Nelnet Company.
Vedder, K. R. (2004). Going Broke By Degree: Why College Costs Too Much. Washington, DC: American Enterprise Institute.