Cost of Earning Your Degree Online vs. In-Person
For many motivated to earn a college degree, especially working adults who went directly into the workforce after high school graduation, the cost of college tuition can become a roadblock. One of the benefits of attending an online college is that it addresses the cost issue.
Students increasingly recognize the advantages of attending an online college. A recent survey published by the Education Data Initiative found that 51 percent of students considered the affordable cost of online college as the most significant factor in choosing to attend an online academic program. Students also benefit from watching lectures and doing coursework around their own work and personal schedules. That flexibility is critical, especially for working adults.
Is online college cheaper than in-person? This is typically the case, although it depends on the institution. At Touro University Worldwide, for example, the cost of online college has stayed the same for 12 years.
The Cost of a Traditional College Degree
Potential students searching for the right college or university quickly find out tuition costs have risen for undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees. The average college tuition increased significantly in the past decade, rising from $17,045 in 2008-2009 to $24,623 in 2018-2019.
At public universities, tuition costs can vary depending on whether the student pays in-state or out-of-state tuition, with in-state residents paying a lower rate. Private universities typically do not differentiate between the two.
There are other costs, as well. For example, living on campus at a public university costs an average of $11,950 for room and board or $13,620 at a private school. Books and supplies cost $1,240. Transportation, personal items, clothing, and entertainment expenses run about $3,000 per year.
The Cost of Online College Degree Programs
According to a survey published by the Education Data Institute, only 17 percent of schools charge more for online tuition than on-campus tuition. But the cost savings for students in online programs extend beyond tuition.
The biggest difference is room and board for attending university as a traditional student. Also, students who live off campus pay the cost (in time and money) of transportation, which is not a concern for online students. Online students also don’t have to pay for an on-campus health insurance plan, which can run into thousands of dollars.
Online students save in other ways, depending on the university. For example, all of the following cost nothing for online students at TUW:
- Library fees
- Media fees
- Parking fees
- Student ID card
- Student services
Online Education at Touro University Worldwide
Touro University Worldwide helped to pioneer online education as part of its mission to increase access to education for people from all walks of life, including those in underserved communities. TUW focuses on providing working adults access to high-quality, affordable, and fully accredited degree programs at every educational level.
The university also offers a generous transfer credit policy for working adults and flexible programs designed for adults to complete a degree while continuing to work full-time. The faculty of experienced professionals teach both the latest in academic theory and the best practices for real-world applications of those theories.
Online education offers students a less expensive and more convenient way to expand their knowledge and boost their careers by earning a college degree. For working adults, online programs provide a stepping stone into a better life, both personally and professionally.