Daily Digit: More than just tuition, the real cost of college is staggering

Sam Matthews

Daily Digit is the story behind the numbers that make our world work. Today we’re looking at the real cost of a college degree. Students at private universities have to budget an average of $50,900 per year to pay for their education. That figure includes transportation, books, housing and other expenses, but tuition makes up the bulk of the cost — $34,740. Students at state universities fare slightly better, paying an average $9,970 for studying in state and $25,620 for out of state. Still, public universities in the U.S. are the most expensive in the developed world. Collectively, Americans carry about $1.5 trillion in student debt, and 60% of borrowers carry student debt well into their 40s.