What Does it Really Cost to Attend Barnard College?
Between location, size, career support, available degree programs, narrowing down your child’s school list to that one top school can be difficult enough without money as a barrier. Understanding the costs that can go into a college education early on in the process can help your family understand what schools make financial sense.
While predicting the exact cost for your student to attend their school of choice might be difficult, taking a deeper look at the factors that determine a college cost can help you get a better sense of what to expect. In this series, we aim to prepare your family to go into the application process by breaking down the various factors that go into a college cost, like your family finances, in-state versus out-of-state tuition, and more.
Read more to learn about what a Barnard College education could cost for your student.
Why Are College Costs So Variable?
One of the reasons that college costs are so hard to predict is because the price a family pays depends on the individual financial situation. The dollar amount you see listed on a school’s website or in a brochure is what we call the list price, or the sticker price. This is the amount a family would pay with no financial assistance whatsoever. As a result, it does not take into account any individual factors that impact your family.
List price usually includes things like tuition, room and board, and activity fees, but be sure to look at the line item list of included costs when comparing these numbers. Since most families do not pay the list price, it is typically more valuable to compare schools’ net costs instead.
Net cost is what a family normally pays out of pocket (including loans). By considering net costs instead of list prices, your family will be better equipped to make a school decision based on finances. There are three main factors that determine a school’s net cost: federal, state, and local government aid; institutional financial aid; and merit scholarships.
While it is difficult to predict the amount of aid your student will receive before getting an official offer letter, looking at the average net costs can help you determine if a school is financially right for your family.
What Is the List Price at Barnard College?
Barnard is a private institution, so state resident and non-resident tuition is the same. In the 2016-2017 school year, the list price for Barnard College was $68,512 for both in-state and out-of-state students.
However, most families do not pay this amount. Usually, only wealthy families that earn more than $175,000 per year would be expected to pay the list price.
What Is the Net Cost of Attending Barnard College?
Net cost for your student depends on the three previously mentioned factors: government aid, institutional aid, and merit aid. Because Barnard offers need-based aid and no merit aid, this last one is not a factor for the net cost of attendance here. Instead, we’ll look at government and institutional aid.
With these two types of aid, the average net price of attending Barnard for both in-state and out-of-state aid in 2016-2017 was $56,932.
For students who do not qualify for government and institutional aid, the net price was $68,512 for the same year.
What Is the Income-Based Cost of Attending Barnard College?
That average net cost number can still seem an impossible number for many families, but remember: it is the average cost across students of all financial backgrounds. When we break it down by family income brackets, the net cost for your family is much easier to estimate:’
|Family Income||Average Net Cost|
Barnard also has a tool to estimate your aid available on their website.
How Much Merit Aid is Typical at Barnard College?
As stated above, Barnard offers aid based entirely on need. Therefore, they do not offer any amount of merit aid. Like many top schools, this is typical. Barnard ranks 938th in the pool of over 1000 schools CollegeVine analyzed for merit aid generosity as a result.
How Many Students Take Out Loans to Attend Barnard College?
About 26% of Barnard students have federal loans, which typically have lower interest rates and favorable repayment options compared to private loans. On average, Barnard undergrads have $3,885 in federal loans.
The success rates of Barnard students are promising. About 90% of Barnard students graduate within six years, while the average salary ten years after graduation is $57,900.
Local Area Cost Considerations
Barnard College is located in New York, New York, which is often a major draw for would-be applicants. An epicenter of entertainment, food, business, and more, the cost of living in this major city reflects the many opportunities available here.
New York City has a cost of living index of 209.3, meaning that costs in the city are a little over double the US average of 100. Barnard guarantees housing for students currently living in campus housing, but if a student moves off-campus their costs could increase. New York rents vary widely between neighborhoods and convenience to campus, grocery stores, public transit, and more, but your student could expect to pay upwards of $1743 for a studio apartment, $1,788 for a one-bedroom, $2,049 for a two-bedroom, and $2,600 for a three-bedroom. Barnard offers resources for off-campus housing on their website.
Luckily, minimum wage in New York City was raised to $15 an hour in January 2019, which is more than double the federal minimum wage. This will somewhat help offset the higher cost of living in this area.
Other Ways to Help Fund a College Education
Besides government and institutional aid, there are a variety of other ways to help fund a Barnard education. New York residents can look into the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) for grant funds that would not need to be repaid.
Another option for New York state residents is the New York State Scholarship for Excellence (NYSE), which is based on student grades in certain Regents exams. You can learn more about these programs here.
For residents and non-residents alike, there are a variety of outside scholarships that can offer additional funds for your education. Read up on Barnard’s outside scholarship policies and find a curated, comprehensive list of scholarships also on the Barnard website.
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