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Data from several sources, including annual surveys by the College Board, show that the robust economy of recent years relieved pressure on institutions to increase their tuition and fees, but current budget constraints may result in increased tuition and fees for students. The rate of increase in tuition and fees at public four-year institutions grew at a slightly higher rate in 2000-2001, even though that rate remained below the average increase of the previous decade. Room and board charges increased at a rate of 5.0% for 2000-2001. Over the past few years, the cost of attending college as a percentage of family income has stabilized, but the relative cost of attendance remains high for low-income families. Financial aid to postsecondary students in the United States increased approximately 4% in constant dollars between 1998-1999 and 1999-2000, growing to $68.4 billion. State policy education appropriations rose in 1999-2000, and the rise in appropriations, paired with continued moderation in tuition/fee increases, underscored the inverse relationship between these two factors. The arrival of a new federal administration, new governors and state legislators, and changing fiscal conditions offer a window of opportunity for considering important questions related to college financing and tuition policy. Two appendixes contain lists of student charges at selected institutions belonging to the American Association of State Colleges and Universities and the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges. (Contains 10 tables and 32 endnotes.) (SLD)

Descriptors: Budgeting, Costs, Economic Factors, Educational Finance, Educational Policy, Higher Education, Paying for College, Retrenchment, Tables (Data), Tuition

Autor: American Association of State Colleges and Universities, Washington, DC.; National Association of State Universities and Land Gran


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