When deciding on whether to take an online college course or not, the question of how much it will cost is crucial. It is no secret that public colleges are usually the cheapest. But what many people don’t know is that the cost of studying at a public online college changes a lot depending on what you study, and in which community you study.

In both public and private colleges, the cost of the tuition you pay each year is obtained by multiplying the number of credits you register for by the cost per credit. Normally, during each year of your degree you will study 60 credits. With this data, now you only need to know the cost per credit.

The cost per credit and the “degree of experience”

Within the same university, different grades may have different costs per credit depending on their “degree of expertise”.

In general, Engineering, Science and Health Sciences degrees tend to cost more because their study requires special materials, equipment and/or facilities that represent an additional expense for the university.

Each Autonomous Community categorises the degrees offered by its public universities according to their “degree of expertise”. The degrees of experimentality are numbered. Degrees with a degree of experimentality 1 are the most experimental (and therefore the most expensive!), followed by those of degree 2, degree 3, etc. Most communities have established between 3 and 5 degrees of experiment, although there are exceptions.

Failing is expensive, and more than you can imagine!

When you fail a course, you have to repeat it. And of course, pay for it again. But it doesn’t cost the same anymore, because all universities charge more the second time. And even more the third time. How much more? Are you sitting down? In eight communities, the cost per credit is multiplied by two the second time you enroll in the same subject. And if it’s your fourth attempt, it costs you… 6 times more than your first tuition! In the other communities it goes up a little less, but come on, the best thing for you and your parents’ pocket is to always pass the first time.

Public vs. private

In spite of all this, the public college is still generally a much cheaper option than private colleges. At the private college, the cost of tuition for undergraduate studies is around 9,500 Dollar per academic year, depending on the course and institution chosen. The possibility of obtaining a scholarship or study aid must also be taken into account in many cases.

The cost of tuition fees at private universities is set by each university and can vary greatly from one to another, even doubling! To get an idea, take a look at what it costs to study medicine at the various private universities that offer this degree.

Accommodation and other expenses associated with studies

In addition to the tuition, there are many other expenses: transport, books, support classes… and, if you also leave home to study, you will have to add the cost of university accommodation.

To live, university students have several options: halls of residence, residences or shared flats. In general, halls of residence are more expensive than residences, while shared flats are the cheapest option.

However, if you live in a flat you will have to add to your list of expenses: electricity, water, food… which are already included in the price of the first ones.

Take advantage of the scholarships

To reduce your expenses, try to take advantage of student grants and scholarships. Every year the Ministry of Education announces scholarships for college studies. These grants can cover tuition, accommodation, transport, materials, etc. To benefit from these grants, you must meet a series of general, academic and financial requirements. All updated information is published on the Ministry of Education website as soon as the new call for applications is published.

The best students pay less

Students who are starting college and get either Global Honor Roll or the Extraordinary Prize for High School can get free tuition at the vast majority of colleges.

This scholarship means that you don’t have to pay a single Dollar of the public tuition fees for your first year at university. If this is your case, ask the university or centre you are interested in what they offer you for being an outstanding student.

For more information on scholarship programs and aid in general, consult the university where you want to study.