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Net Price of Iowa Colleges by Income

Cost of Iowa Colleges Zoom In

Source: National Center for Educational Statistics. This is the most recent data available as of January 2022

Questions & Answers

What do all these numbers mean?

All costs shown here are the average net cost paid by families in each income bracket for one year at the college in question. Net cost is the total cost of attendance for one year, minus government grants and institutional scholarships. Figures are based on data from the 2019-20 school year, which is the latest available as of January 2022.

What is “Total Cost” on the chart?

Total cost is the total cost of attendance for one year at that particular college. It includes:

  • Tuition and fees (in-state tuition for public schools)
  • Room and board (on campus)
  • Books and supplies
  • Other expenses (travel and personal)

There are detailed chart below for each school that shows these expenses. Click here to go to the individual cost breakdown for schools.

How can I use this information?

This information is useful for building a realistic college budget. It's a good place to start until you better understand your specific circumstances. For example, let's say your income is $100,000 per year. This chart shows that the average state school would run $18,948 and the average private school would be $24,474. You can also get information on specific Iowa schools in the chart above or the tables below.

Will my family pay the amount on this chart?

Probably not. The numbers are averages. You may be below average or above average. However, there are two key points we can learn from this data:

  1. Families with higher incomes ($75,000-$110,000 and $110,000+) will most likely pay close to full price at the public schools.
  2. Private colleges have a higher list price but offer more discounts. This brings their net price much closer to the cost of state-funded schools.

Where did this information come from?

As part of federal financial aid, colleges are required to provide detailed cost information to the U.S. government. This data is made available to the public through the National Center for Education Statistics. For more details, click here.

What about athletes, merit aid or minority students?

Athletes, high achieving students, and those with minority status are averaged in with everyone else. Within each income bracket, there are families that pay more than average and families that pay less than average.

The costs on this chart seem large. How can families afford to pay it?

For many families paying for college is not easy, but in the end they figure out. Most families will pay their net cost of college with some combination of:

  • College savings and investments
  • Payments from current income
  • Loans
  • Outside scholarships (check out the Scholarship Guide For Busy Parents to learn how your student can win scholarships)
  • Tax planning
  • Student work
Cost of Iowa Schools Explanation

Net Price:

Net prices is the total cost of attendance for one year, minus the average amount in government grants and institutional scholarships the school awards. This is an average, so you may pay above the average or below the average. Your exact net price is likely to be different and sometimes drastically different.

Most families will pay the net price with some combination of savings and investments, current income and various loans. Some students will also receive scholarships from sources other than the federal or state government or the college. Any scholarships and grants from these outside sources are not included in the data. However, government grants and institutional scholarships are included in the averages.

Total Cost at University of Iowa (2019-20)
Tuition and Fees $9,606
Room and Board $11,400
Books $950
Other Expenses $2,850
Total $24,806

Total Cost:

Total cost is the total cost of attendance for that particular institution for the 2019-20 school year. This is the latest data available as of January 2022. Total costs include:

  • Tuition and fees (in-state tuition for public schools)
  • Room and board (on campus)
  • Books and supplies
  • Other expenses (travel and personal)

College Total Cost
Family Income IA Public $22,680 IA Private $51,639
$0 - $30k $11,278 $18,623
$30,001 – $48k $13,370 $19,143
$48,001 – $75k $15,985 $21,355
$75,001 – $110k $18,948 $24,474
$110,001+ $20,365 $27,682

Public vs. Private Averages

This table shows the average total cost of attendance for the Iowa public and private colleges we have included in our analysis. The costs include a breakdown of the average net price paid by family income. Notice that the average private college is $6,000-$8,000 more than the average public school, depending on your income bracket. It is important to stress that these are averages. Most families will not be average, and their individual circumstances could be drastically different. I encourage all families to work with their preferred colleges to get information specific to their family.

Below are similar charts for each individual private and public college in Iowa. Click a school to view its complete chart.

Public IA Schools Cost Breakdown

  • Iowa State University

    Ames
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $9,320 $9,316
    Room and Board $9,149 $9,193
    Books $1,041 $1,001
    Other Expenses $2,430 $2,430
    Total $21,940 $21,940
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $9,766 $9,766
    $30,001 - $48k $11,427 $11,427
    $48,001 - $75k $14,641 $14,641
    $75,001 - $110k $17,806 $17,806
    $110,001+ $19,491 $19,491
  • University of Iowa

    Iowa City
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $9,606 $9,606
    Room and Board $11,400 $11,590
    Books $950 $950
    Other Expenses $2,850 $3,230
    Total $24,806 $25,376
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $13,554 $13,865
    $30,001 - $48k $15,508 $15,864
    $48,001 - $75k $18,026 $18,440
    $75,001 - $110k $20,719 $21,195
    $110,001+ $22,516 $23,033
  • University of Northern Iowa

    Cedar Falls
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $8,938 $8,938
    Room and Board $9,160 $9,160
    Books $900 $800
    Other Expenses $2,296 $2,396
    Total $21,294 $21,294
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $10,513 $10,513
    $30,001 - $48k $13,175 $13,175
    $48,001 - $75k $15,287 $15,287
    $75,001 - $110k $18,318 $18,318
    $110,001+ $19,089 $19,089

Private IA Schools Cost Breakdown

  • Briar Cliff University

    Sioux City
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $32,202 $33,308
    Room and Board $9,384 $9,522
    Books $1,320 $1,320
    Other Expenses $3,744 $3,740
    Total $46,650 $47,890
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $19,748 $20,273
    $30,001 - $48k $18,049 $18,529
    $48,001 - $75k $22,933 $23,543
    $75,001 - $110k $24,633 $25,288
    $110,001+ $27,381 $28,109
  • Buena Vista University

    Storm Lake
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $35,194 $36,426
    Room and Board $9,872 $9,537
    Books $999 $1,190
    Other Expenses $2,310 $2,420
    Total $48,375 $49,573
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $13,483 $13,817
    $30,001 - $48k $14,348 $14,703
    $48,001 - $75k $15,581 $15,967
    $75,001 - $110k $18,909 $19,377
    $110,001+ $25,217 $25,841
  • Central College

    Pella
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $38,600 $18,600
    Room and Board $10,280 $10,280
    Books $1,323 $1,323
    Other Expenses $3,199 $3,116
    Total $53,402 $33,319
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $15,503 $9,673
    $30,001 - $48k $18,512 $11,550
    $48,001 - $75k $19,566 $12,208
    $75,001 - $110k $21,995 $13,723
    $110,001+ $23,782 $14,838
  • Clarke University

    Dubuque
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $34,670 $35,750
    Room and Board $10,000 $10,200
    Books $1,330 $1,330
    Other Expenses $3,360 $3,360
    Total $49,360 $50,640
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $21,117 $21,665
    $30,001 - $48k $24,023 $24,646
    $48,001 - $75k $22,412 $22,993
    $75,001 - $110k $27,232 $27,938
    $110,001+ $27,557 $28,272
  • Coe College

    Cedar Rapids
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $45,580 $47,220
    Room and Board $9,820 $10,174
    Books $1,000 $1,000
    Other Expenses $2,670 $2,670
    Total $59,070 $61,064
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $14,371 $14,856
    $30,001 - $48k $15,019 $15,526
    $48,001 - $75k $17,133 $17,711
    $75,001 - $110k $22,176 $22,925
    $110,001+ $26,944 $27,854
  • Cornell College

    Mount Vernon
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $43,976 $45,914
    Room and Board $9,760 $10,150
    Books $1,200 $1,200
    Other Expenses $5,401 $3,253
    Total $60,337 $60,517
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $16,806 $16,856
    $30,001 - $48k $17,628 $17,681
    $48,001 - $75k $21,797 $21,862
    $75,001 - $110k $24,390 $24,463
    $110,001+ $27,002 $27,083
  • Dordt College

    Sioux Center
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $31,770 $32,820
    Room and Board $10,020 $10,470
    Books $1,110 $1,130
    Other Expenses $3,500 $3,500
    Total $46,400 $47,920
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $20,035 $20,691
    $30,001 - $48k $20,101 $20,759
    $48,001 - $75k $23,412 $24,179
    $75,001 - $110k $26,186 $27,044
    $110,001+ $28,244 $29,169
  • Drake University

    Des Moines
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $42,840 $44,376
    Room and Board $10,848 $11,152
    Books $1,100 $1,100
    Other Expenses $3,700 $3,700
    Total $58,488 $60,328
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $25,309 $26,105
    $30,001 - $48k $25,332 $26,129
    $48,001 - $75k $26,088 $26,909
    $75,001 - $110k $30,425 $31,382
    $110,001+ $33,118 $34,160
  • University of Dubuque

    Dubuque
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $35,570 $36,610
    Room and Board $10,210 $10,500
    Books $950 $950
    Other Expenses $900 $900
    Total $47,630 $48,960
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $20,342 $20,910
    $30,001 - $48k $22,393 $23,018
    $48,001 - $75k $26,807 $27,556
    $75,001 - $110k $32,124 $33,021
    $110,001+ $35,136 $36,117
  • Graceland University-Lamoni

    Lamoni
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $30,420 $31,320
    Room and Board $9,100 $9,400
    Books $1,400 $1,320
    Other Expenses $2,904 $3,120
    Total $43,824 $45,160
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $16,354 $16,853
    $30,001 - $48k $16,406 $16,906
    $48,001 - $75k $18,806 $19,379
    $75,001 - $110k $19,850 $20,455
    $110,001+ $19,849 $20,454
  • Grand View University

    Des Moines
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $30,508 $29,792
    Room and Board $9,704 $9,920
    Books $836 $836
    Other Expenses $2,898 $2,900
    Total $43,946 $43,448
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $17,733 $17,532
    $30,001 - $48k $18,534 $18,324
    $48,001 - $75k $20,148 $19,920
    $75,001 - $110k $20,953 $20,716
    $110,001+ $23,446 $23,180
  • Grinnell College

    Grinnell
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $54,354 $56,680
    Room and Board $13,292 $13,864
    Books $900 $900
    Other Expenses $2,200 $2,200
    Total $70,746 $73,644
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $12,835 $13,361
    $30,001 - $48k $13,671 $14,231
    $48,001 - $75k $16,112 $16,772
    $75,001 - $110k $23,454 $24,415
    $110,001+ $38,039 $39,597
  • Iowa Wesleyan University

    Mount Pleasant
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $25,424 $25,280
    Room and Board $10,865 $11,010
    Books $1,315 $1,000
    Other Expenses $3,116 $3,500
    Total $40,720 $40,790
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $30,695 $30,748
    $30,001 - $48k $31,453 $31,507
    $48,001 - $75k $33,417 $33,474
    $75,001 - $110k $33,367 $33,424
    $110,001+ $33,915 $33,973
  • Loras College

    Dubuque
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $35,218 $35,218
    Room and Board $8,425 $8,600
    Books $1,100 $1,100
    Other Expenses $2,011 $2,011
    Total $46,754 $46,929
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $17,261 $17,326
    $30,001 - $48k $19,374 $19,447
    $48,001 - $75k $19,010 $19,081
    $75,001 - $110k $21,112 $21,191
    $110,001+ $26,065 $26,163
  • Luther College

    Decorah
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $44,070 $45,610
    Room and Board $9,760 $10,110
    Books $1,040 $1,040
    Other Expenses $3,015 $3,015
    Total $57,885 $59,775
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $21,838 $22,551
    $30,001 - $48k $20,153 $20,811
    $48,001 - $75k $23,262 $24,022
    $75,001 - $110k $26,789 $27,664
    $110,001+ $28,747 $29,686
  • Morningside College

    Sioux City
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $32,720 $33,970
    Room and Board $9,840 $10,110
    Books $1,300 $1,300
    Other Expenses $2,800 $2,800
    Total $46,660 $48,180
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $20,699 $21,373
    $30,001 - $48k $20,160 $20,817
    $48,001 - $75k $21,210 $21,901
    $75,001 - $110k $22,616 $23,353
    $110,001+ $24,824 $25,633
  • Mount Mercy University

    Cedar Rapids
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $33,862 $35,506
    Room and Board $9,915 $10,112
    Books $1,320 $1,320
    Other Expenses $3,780 $3,980
    Total $48,877 $50,918
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $19,250 $20,054
    $30,001 - $48k $17,384 $18,110
    $48,001 - $75k $21,263 $22,151
    $75,001 - $110k $25,560 $26,627
    $110,001+ $27,015 $28,143
  • Northwestern College

    Orange City
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $32,300 $32,920
    Room and Board $9,600 $9,800
    Books $1,250 $1,200
    Other Expenses $2,750 $2,980
    Total $45,900 $46,900
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $18,404 $18,805
    $30,001 - $48k $22,469 $22,959
    $48,001 - $75k $22,626 $23,119
    $75,001 - $110k $21,708 $22,181
    $110,001+ $24,613 $25,149
  • Saint Ambrose University

    Davenport
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $31,812 $32,758
    Room and Board $11,024 $11,354
    Books $1,320 $1,320
    Other Expenses $3,282 $3,282
    Total $47,438 $48,714
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $20,729 $21,287
    $30,001 - $48k $23,031 $23,650
    $48,001 - $75k $25,717 $26,409
    $75,001 - $110k $26,406 $27,116
    $110,001+ $28,322 $29,084
  • Simpson College

    Indianola
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $40,666 $42,246
    Room and Board $8,820 $9,282
    Books $1,238 $1,170
    Other Expenses $3,284 $3,264
    Total $54,008 $55,962
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $15,264 $15,816
    $30,001 - $48k $15,511 $16,072
    $48,001 - $75k $16,829 $17,438
    $75,001 - $110k $24,022 $24,891
    $110,001+ $27,485 $28,479
  • Upper Iowa University

    Fayette
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $31,685 $32,945
    Room and Board $8,706 $9,105
    Books $1,560 $1,590
    Other Expenses $3,286 $3,352
    Total $45,237 $46,992
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $25,363 $26,347
    $30,001 - $48k $20,104 $20,884
    $48,001 - $75k $22,508 $23,381
    $75,001 - $110k $24,642 $25,598
    $110,001+ $24,627 $25,582
  • Wartburg College

    Waverly
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $43,930 $45,680
    Room and Board $9,280 $9,592
    Books $1,100 $1,100
    Other Expenses $1,300 $1,300
    Total $55,610 $57,672
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $16,368 $16,975
    $30,001 - $48k $17,063 $17,696
    $48,001 - $75k $22,677 $23,518
    $75,001 - $110k $24,153 $25,049
    $110,001+ $26,082 $27,049
  • William Penn University

    Oskaloosa
    Year 2019-20 2020-21
    Tuition and Fees $26,100 $26,600
    Room and Board $7,072 $7,176
    Books $1,278 $1,300
    Other Expenses $4,556 $4,624
    Total $39,006 $39,700
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $19,257 $19,600
    $30,001 - $48k $19,110 $19,450
    $48,001 - $75k $20,551 $20,917
    $75,001 - $110k $23,566 $23,985
    $110,001+ $23,257 $23,671
 

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