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Tuition Fees in the US: Surely there must be a catch? watch

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    Earlier on, primarily out of curiosity, I started plugging in some of my family's general financial details into the "Net Price Calculators" that feature on a number of the US college's websites. After completing a few of them, I was surprised to find that, because of the financial aid on offer, I would only be expected to pay around the region of $9500 a year, which I, personally, find difficult to believe.

    I'm fairly middle-of-the-rung with regards to the socio-economic ladder; my parent's income is greater than £40,000 so I tend to always miss the financial aid available in the UK. When I converted my parent's "rough" income into dollars, it was around the region of $85,000-$100,000, so I thought I'd get pretty much next-to-nothing in the way of financial aid if I were to apply... but it appears not.

    Is there anything I'm not picking up on here? As it stands now, it would appear that studying overseas would be cheaper than studying here in the UK... surely that can't be correct? I've always remembered hearing horror stories of US students being in huge amounts of debt because of the likes of $50,000 p.a tuition fees etc...

    Thanks for any information.
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    (Original post by Apologetic Cube)
    Earlier on, primarily out of curiosity, I started plugging in some of my family's general financial details into the "Net Price Calculators" that feature on a number of the US college's websites. After completing a few of them, I was surprised to find that, because of the financial aid on offer, I would only be expected to pay around the region of $9500 a year, which I, personally, find difficult to believe.

    I'm fairly middle-of-the-rung with regards to the socio-economic ladder; my parent's income is greater than £40,000 so I tend to always miss the financial aid available in the UK. When I converted my parent's "rough" income into dollars, it was around the region of $85,000-$100,000, so I thought I'd get pretty much next-to-nothing in the way of financial aid if I were to apply... but it appears not.

    Is there anything I'm not picking up on here? As it stands now, it would appear that studying overseas would be cheaper than studying here in the UK... surely that can't be correct? I've always remembered hearing horror stories of US students being in huge amounts of debt because of the likes of $50,000 p.a tuition fees etc...

    Thanks for any information.
    Not exactly sure................but doesn't financial aid only apply to US citizens? Also over there because of the cost of education, moving out, etc, financial aid applies to a wider income spectrum then in the UK.

    Then you got individual college bursaries, scholarships, etc a lot more on offer in terms of financial support.
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    (Original post by Apologetic Cube)
    Earlier on, primarily out of curiosity, I started plugging in some of my family's general financial details into the "Net Price Calculators" that feature on a number of the US college's websites. After completing a few of them, I was surprised to find that, because of the financial aid on offer, I would only be expected to pay around the region of $9500 a year, which I, personally, find difficult to believe.

    I'm fairly middle-of-the-rung with regards to the socio-economic ladder; my parent's income is greater than £40,000 so I tend to always miss the financial aid available in the UK. When I converted my parent's "rough" income into dollars, it was around the region of $85,000-$100,000, so I thought I'd get pretty much next-to-nothing in the way of financial aid if I were to apply... but it appears not.

    Is there anything I'm not picking up on here? As it stands now, it would appear that studying overseas would be cheaper than studying here in the UK... surely that can't be correct? I've always remembered hearing horror stories of US students being in huge amounts of debt because of the likes of $50,000 p.a tuition fees etc...

    Thanks for any information.
    It depends on the university you are applying for. A small number of universities, if not none, give out financial aid to international students, and even if they do, it's usually private and Ivy League universities who do that. Now, given that you are looking for financial aid, this means you will have to get superb grades with a lot of extracurricular activities, on top of an excellent SAT score in order to get a big amount of financial aid through grants, scholarships, and bursaries.

    If you meet this requirement, then you will reap the rewards. If not, then I'm afraid you'll still have to pay the exorbitant fees that US universities charge their international students. However, if you are very athletic and that you might potentially be an asset to the team of that university (of course, that would mean being scouted and trying out for college sports teams), you might get the opportunity to get a full scholarship.
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    (Original post by Apologetic Cube)
    Is there anything I'm not picking up on here? As it stands now, it would appear that studying overseas would be cheaper than studying here in the UK... surely that can't be correct? I've always remembered hearing horror stories of US students being in huge amounts of debt because of the likes of $50,000 p.a tuition fees etc...
    The system or website you were using must have assumed you have U.S. citizenship or residency. Tuition fees can be quite costly in the U.S.! I have heard plenty of horror stories from my friends and their worries about graduating with debt.

    I attend the University of Texas at Austin. I am German, but have permanent residency, so fortunately I pay in-state tuition. At UT, Texas-resident tuition is about $10,000/year, non-resident is about $35,000/year, excluding living costs (accommodation, food, extra expenses). Intl students do not receive financial aid from the U.S. government, but can apply for assistance from the university itself or other scholarships, if you can demonstrate financial need. Your family's income probably disqualifies from this category, but I could be wrong. Like most of my intl friends, you can apply for academic scholarships. Most intl students are either self-funded or choose to only do a one-year exchange programme. If you intend to study for the full four years, something else you could consider: applying to private universities. It may be easier for intl students b/c they are more likely to receive partial to full tuition scholarships, should the university accept you.

    Cost of living varies across region. In general, it is slightly lower in the south. For example, the cost of living is low in Texas compared to the East coast. If you are looking at Texas, I would wholeheartedly recommend Austin!


    Hope this helps!
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    (Original post by wakeypuzziegirl)
    The system or website you were using must have assumed you have U.S. citizenship or residency. Tuition fees can be quite costly in the U.S.! I have heard plenty of horror stories from my friends and their worries about graduating with debt.

    I attend the University of Texas at Austin. I am German, but have permanent residency, so fortunately I pay in-state tuition. At UT, Texas-resident tuition is about $10,000/year, non-resident is about $35,000/year, excluding living costs (accommodation, food, extra expenses). Intl students do not receive financial aid from the U.S. government, but can apply for assistance from the university itself or other scholarships, if you can demonstrate financial need. Your family's income probably disqualifies from this category, but I could be wrong. Like most of my intl friends, you can apply for academic scholarships. Most intl students are either self-funded or choose to only do a one-year exchange programme. If you intend to study for the full four years, something else you could consider: applying to private universities. It may be easier for intl students b/c they are more likely to receive partial to full tuition scholarships, should the university accept you.

    Cost of living varies across region. In general, it is slightly lower in the south. For example, the cost of living is low in Texas compared to the East coast. If you are looking at Texas, I would wholeheartedly recommend Austin!


    Hope this helps!
    I definitely specified that I was a non-resident in the US: https://college.harvard.edu/financia...=0&residence=0

    I was only really looking at the "full-need" universities in the US (Harvard, Princeton and MIT), who ask you to pay a certain fraction of the tuition fees and then they will cover the rest, because that's all I could really afford. Would it therefore be realistic to assume, if I were to gain admittance to one of these schools, that I would only be paying around $10,000 a year?
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    (Original post by Apologetic Cube)
    I definitely specified that I was a non-resident in the US: https://college.harvard.edu/financia...=0&residence=0

    I was only really looking at the "full-need" universities in the US (Harvard, Princeton and MIT), who ask you to pay a certain fraction of the tuition fees and then they will cover the rest, because that's all I could really afford. Would it therefore be realistic to assume, if I were to gain admittance to one of these schools, that I would only be paying around $10,000 a year?
    Pretty much. Although those calculators are just estimates. And, each university calculates "need" differently. But it's definitely feasible for it to be waaaay cheaper to go to the US than the UK. Of course, competition is fierce especially at the universities you've mentioned, so it's best to keep your feet on the ground when thinking about it.
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    (Original post by Apologetic Cube)
    I definitely specified that I was a non-resident in the US: https://college.harvard.edu/financia...=0&residence=0

    I was only really looking at the "full-need" universities in the US (Harvard, Princeton and MIT), who ask you to pay a certain fraction of the tuition fees and then they will cover the rest, because that's all I could really afford. Would it therefore be realistic to assume, if I were to gain admittance to one of these schools, that I would only be paying around $10,000 a year?
    If you want to discuss this, PM me. I would happily tell you about the nuances of the Financial Aid system, and no, there are A LOT more schools (good ones!) that meet full need than the three you have mentioned.
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    There are five or six US Universities that are both needs blind (meaning they don't look at ability to pay in admissions decisions) and guarantee aid if admitted to foreign students. A larger number are needs blind but don't guarantee aid for foreign students.The calculator shows you what your cost will be if the Uni gives you all the financial Aid you need. It doesn't mean you will get it. Indeed, at schools that are not needs blind asking for aid can hurt you if there is another non-US applicant close to your level but willing to pay full price.
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    (Original post by star999)
    There are five or six US Universities that are both needs blind (meaning they don't look at ability to pay in admissions decisions) and guarantee aid if admitted to foreign students. A larger number are needs blind but don't guarantee aid for foreign students.The calculator shows you what your cost will be if the Uni gives you all the financial Aid you need. It doesn't mean you will get it. Indeed, at schools that are not needs blind asking for aid can hurt you if there is another non-US applicant close to your level but willing to pay full price.
    Other way round, a fair amount of universities aren't need blind (I.e. they use your need as an aspect of your application) but meet 100% of your need if admitted. Sorry to be a nucance!
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    (Original post by Princepieman)
    Other way round, a fair amount of universities aren't need blind (I.e. they use your need as an aspect of your application) but meet 100% of your need if admitted. Sorry to be a nucance!
    No, thats not what I said. For foreign students, there are very few colleges that meet all your need if admitted.
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    (Original post by star999)
    No, thats not what I said. For foreign students, there are very few colleges that meet all your need if admitted.
    Yes, I know what you said. I'm telling you, as a foreign student, that there are more than just the five or six schools that meet full need for us, that number is closer to 30. As I said, the schools outside of the need-blind, full need list will take your finances into account during admissions but if you are admitted they will meet all of your need.
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    (Original post by Apologetic Cube)
    Earlier on, primarily out of curiosity, I started plugging in some of my family's general financial details into the "Net Price Calculators" that feature on a number of the US college's websites. After completing a few of them, I was surprised to find that, because of the financial aid on offer, I would only be expected to pay around the region of $9500 a year, which I, personally, find difficult to believe.

    I'm fairly middle-of-the-rung with regards to the socio-economic ladder; my parent's income is greater than £40,000 so I tend to always miss the financial aid available in the UK. When I converted my parent's "rough" income into dollars, it was around the region of $85,000-$100,000, so I thought I'd get pretty much next-to-nothing in the way of financial aid if I were to apply... but it appears not.
    America is a richer country and welfarism hasn't throttled civil society yet, so it does indeed have private financial aid stretching all the way into the middle class, aside from the fact that they probably would not consider our middle class to be very well off anyway.

    On the other hand, consider that that $9500 may be private sector debt with a real interest rate and fixed repayment schedule, whereas SFE debt has a low interest rate (not as much of a steal now as it used to be, admittedly) and repayment is tied to earnings. You also pay 4*$9500 rather than 3*£9000.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    America is a richer country and welfarism hasn't throttled civil society yet, so it does indeed have private financial aid stretching all the way into the middle class, aside from the fact that they probably would not consider our middle class to be very well off anyway.

    On the other hand, consider that that $9500 may be private sector debt with a real interest rate and fixed repayment schedule, whereas SFE debt has a low interest rate (not as much of a steal now as it used to be, admittedly) and repayment is tied to earnings. You also pay 4*$9500 rather than 3*£9000.
    Usually the EFC is not debt you take on but what they think your family can pay out of earnings and savings. US colleges expect parents to pay for your education to the maximum ability until you finish undergrad. That means some of the "aid" you get may be loans, and as a foreign student they may be market rate. Some top colleges have eliminated loans as part of the FA package but not all. And remember unlike UK loans these are due regardless of your income or employment status, although some defer to graduation. Basically, you need to run the numbers very carefully.
 
 
 
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