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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 2020

Questions & Answers

  • What do all these numbers mean?

    All costs are the average net cost paid by families in each income bracket. Net cost is the total cost of attendance minus government grants and institutional scholarships. Loans of any kind are not included. Figures are based on data from the 2017-18 school year, which is the latest available as of January 2020.

  • What is “Total Cost” on the chart?

    Total cost is the total cost of attendance for 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 $17,515 and the average private school would be $23,502. 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 seemed 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 our Scholarship Guide For Busy Parents, which describes how you and your student can win scholarships for college and save money!)
    • tax planning
    • student work
Cost of Iowa Schools Explanation

Net Price:

Net price is the total cost of attendance minus the average amount of government grants and institutional scholarships awarded. 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 (2017-18)
Tuition and Fees $8,965
Room and Board $10,450
Books $950
Other Expenses $2,242
Total $22,607

Total Cost:

Total cost is the total cost of attendance for that particular institution for the 2017-18 school year. This is the latest data available as of January 2020. 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 $21,514 IA Private $48,086
$0 - $30k $10,823 $18,471
$30,001 – $48k $12,056 $18,593
$48,001 – $75k $15,112 $21,005
$75,001 – $110k $17,515 $23,502
$110,001+ $18,388 $27,043

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-$9,000 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 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $8,636 $8,988
    Room and Board $8,546 $8,720
    Books $994 $1,048
    Other Expenses $2,430 $2,430
    Total $20,606 $21,186
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $9,801 $10,077
    $30,001 - $48k $10,419 $10,712
    $48,001 - $75k $13,908 $14,299
    $75,001 - $110k $16,898 $17,374
    $110,001+ $18,486 $19,006
  • University of Iowa

    Iowa City
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $8,965 $9,267
    Room and Board $10,450 $11,172
    Books $950 $950
    Other Expenses $2,242 $2,850
    Total $22,607 $24,239
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $10,599 $11,364
    $30,001 - $48k $12,347 $13,238
    $48,001 - $75k $15,388 $16,499
    $75,001 - $110k $17,732 $19,012
    $110,001+ $18,623 $19,967
  • University of Northern Iowa

    Cedar Falls
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $8,699 $8,938
    Room and Board $8,781 $8,948
    Books $900 $900
    Other Expenses $2,950 $2,148
    Total $21,330 $20,934
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $12,069 $11,845
    $30,001 - $48k $13,403 $13,154
    $48,001 - $75k $16,041 $15,743
    $75,001 - $110k $17,916 $17,583
    $110,001+ $18,054 $17,719

Private IA Schools Cost Breakdown

  • Briar Cliff University

    Sioux City
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $29,786 $30,970
    Room and Board $8,640 $8,896
    Books $1,339 $1,323
    Other Expenses $3,319 $3,297
    Total $43,084 $44,486
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $15,794 $16,308
    $30,001 - $48k $17,203 $17,763
    $48,001 - $75k $18,630 $19,236
    $75,001 - $110k $21,118 $21,805
    $110,001+ $19,832 $20,477
  • Buena Vista University

    Storm Lake
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $32,854 $34,004
    Room and Board $9,490 $9,538
    Books $999 $999
    Other Expenses $2,276 $2,267
    Total $45,619 $46,808
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $15,313 $15,712
    $30,001 - $48k $15,563 $15,969
    $48,001 - $75k $18,506 $18,988
    $75,001 - $110k $22,124 $22,701
    $110,001+ $26,302 $26,988
  • Central College

    Pella
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $35,930 $37,296
    Room and Board $9,980 $10,280
    Books $1,339 $1,323
    Other Expenses $3,298 $3,199
    Total $50,547 $52,098
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $17,053 $17,576
    $30,001 - $48k $18,393 $18,957
    $48,001 - $75k $19,636 $20,239
    $75,001 - $110k $22,587 $23,280
    $110,001+ $25,130 $25,901
  • Clarke University

    Dubuque
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $31,950 $33,350
    Room and Board $9,400 $9,600
    Books $1,340 $1,330
    Other Expenses $3,210 $3,120
    Total $45,900 $47,400
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $19,010 $19,631
    $30,001 - $48k $18,192 $18,787
    $48,001 - $75k $22,249 $22,976
    $75,001 - $110k $23,765 $24,542
    $110,001+ $27,011 $27,894
  • Coe College

    Cedar Rapids
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $42,430 $44,050
    Room and Board $9,140 $9,480
    Books $1,000 $1,000
    Other Expenses $2,670 $2,670
    Total $55,240 $57,200
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $16,518 $17,104
    $30,001 - $48k $15,724 $16,282
    $48,001 - $75k $18,114 $18,757
    $75,001 - $110k $22,241 $23,030
    $110,001+ $25,912 $26,831
  • Cornell College

    Mount Vernon
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $40,880 $42,299
    Room and Board $9,110 $9,384
    Books $1,339 $1,323
    Other Expenses $4,625 $5,375
    Total $55,954 $58,381
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $22,796 $23,785
    $30,001 - $48k $23,044 $24,044
    $48,001 - $75k $23,203 $24,209
    $75,001 - $110k $27,139 $28,316
    $110,001+ $31,427 $32,790
  • Dordt College

    Sioux Center
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $30,000 $30,840
    Room and Board $9,140 $9,590
    Books $1,160 $1,140
    Other Expenses $3,500 $3,500
    Total $43,800 $45,070
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $23,225 $23,898
    $30,001 - $48k $21,892 $22,527
    $48,001 - $75k $24,216 $24,918
    $75,001 - $110k $25,091 $25,819
    $110,001+ $27,868 $28,676
  • Drake University

    Des Moines
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $39,062 $41,396
    Room and Board $10,158 $10,528
    Books $1,100 $1,100
    Other Expenses $3,700 $3,700
    Total $54,020 $56,724
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $22,298 $23,414
    $30,001 - $48k $24,942 $26,190
    $48,001 - $75k $26,124 $27,432
    $75,001 - $110k $28,763 $30,203
    $110,001+ $32,322 $33,940
  • University of Dubuque

    Dubuque
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $29,710 $34,110
    Room and Board $9,450 $9,930
    Books $950 $950
    Other Expenses $900 $900
    Total $41,010 $45,890
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $20,548 $22,993
    $30,001 - $48k $21,105 $23,616
    $48,001 - $75k $21,480 $24,036
    $75,001 - $110k $23,345 $26,123
    $110,001+ $30,479 $34,106
  • Graceland University-Lamoni

    Lamoni
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $28,110 $29,240
    Room and Board $8,480 $8,760
    Books $1,250 $1,320
    Other Expenses $3,290 $3,120
    Total $41,130 $42,440
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $15,673 $16,172
    $30,001 - $48k $16,136 $16,650
    $48,001 - $75k $18,124 $18,701
    $75,001 - $110k $21,356 $22,036
    $110,001+ $23,606 $24,358
  • Grand View University

    Des Moines
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $26,516 $27,608
    Room and Board $8,834 $9,178
    Books $816 $824
    Other Expenses $2,770 $2,778
    Total $38,936 $40,388
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $16,302 $16,910
    $30,001 - $48k $16,903 $17,533
    $48,001 - $75k $18,397 $19,083
    $75,001 - $110k $19,675 $20,409
    $110,001+ $22,456 $23,293
  • Grinnell College

    Grinnell
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $50,714 $52,392
    Room and Board $12,400 $12,810
    Books $900 $900
    Other Expenses $1,800 $2,200
    Total $65,814 $68,302
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $14,836 $15,397
    $30,001 - $48k $11,413 $11,844
    $48,001 - $75k $20,712 $21,495
    $75,001 - $110k $24,241 $25,157
    $110,001+ $37,443 $38,858
  • Iowa Wesleyan University

    Mount Pleasant
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $24,600 $24,600
    Room and Board $10,500 $10,960
    Books $1,339 $1,316
    Other Expenses $3,215 $3,297
    Total $39,654 $40,173
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $24,558 $24,879
    $30,001 - $48k $25,893 $26,232
    $48,001 - $75k $26,854 $27,205
    $75,001 - $110k $30,095 $30,489
    $110,001+ $31,456 $31,868
  • Loras College

    Dubuque
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $32,886 $34,184
    Room and Board $7,840 $8,275
    Books $1,100 $1,100
    Other Expenses $2,011 $2,011
    Total $43,837 $45,570
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $13,973 $14,525
    $30,001 - $48k $13,271 $13,796
    $48,001 - $75k $15,597 $16,214
    $75,001 - $110k $18,537 $19,270
    $110,001+ $24,158 $25,113
  • Luther College

    Decorah
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $41,020 $42,290
    Room and Board $8,970 $9,460
    Books $1,040 $1,040
    Other Expenses $3,015 $3,015
    Total $54,045 $55,805
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $17,555 $18,127
    $30,001 - $48k $17,901 $18,484
    $48,001 - $75k $19,950 $20,600
    $75,001 - $110k $24,659 $25,462
    $110,001+ $29,263 $30,216
  • Morningside College

    Sioux City
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $30,390 $31,530
    Room and Board $9,390 $9,610
    Books $1,339 $1,323
    Other Expenses $3,215 $3,116
    Total $44,334 $45,579
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $20,748 $21,331
    $30,001 - $48k $21,785 $22,397
    $48,001 - $75k $22,115 $22,736
    $75,001 - $110k $24,463 $25,150
    $110,001+ $24,718 $25,412
  • Mount Mercy University

    Cedar Rapids
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $30,582 $31,998
    Room and Board $9,166 $9,534
    Books $1,340 $1,320
    Other Expenses $3,668 $3,680
    Total $44,756 $46,532
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $17,761 $18,466
    $30,001 - $48k $16,261 $16,906
    $48,001 - $75k $20,981 $21,814
    $75,001 - $110k $22,138 $23,016
    $110,001+ $24,306 $25,271
  • Northwestern College

    Orange City
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $30,200 $31,100
    Room and Board $9,000 $9,200
    Books $1,350 $1,300
    Other Expenses $3,100 $3,000
    Total $43,650 $44,600
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $21,700 $22,172
    $30,001 - $48k $18,700 $19,107
    $48,001 - $75k $22,426 $22,914
    $75,001 - $110k $23,451 $23,961
    $110,001+ $25,851 $26,414
  • Saint Ambrose University

    Davenport
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $30,016 $30,894
    Room and Board $10,164 $10,470
    Books $1,320 $1,320
    Other Expenses $3,338 $3,282
    Total $44,838 $45,966
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $21,044 $21,573
    $30,001 - $48k $23,298 $23,884
    $48,001 - $75k $24,504 $25,120
    $75,001 - $110k $25,484 $26,125
    $110,001+ $26,808 $27,482
  • Simpson College

    Indianola
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $37,663 $39,144
    Room and Board $7,963 $8,380
    Books $1,339 $1,324
    Other Expenses $3,289 $3,192
    Total $50,254 $52,040
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $17,172 $17,782
    $30,001 - $48k $19,502 $20,195
    $48,001 - $75k $21,116 $21,866
    $75,001 - $110k $24,177 $25,036
    $110,001+ $27,180 $28,146
  • Upper Iowa University

    Fayette
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $29,600 $30,450
    Room and Board $9,760 $8,454
    Books $1,560 $1,560
    Other Expenses $3,286 $3,286
    Total $44,206 $43,750
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $19,008 $18,812
    $30,001 - $48k $19,808 $19,604
    $48,001 - $75k $22,255 $22,025
    $75,001 - $110k $22,363 $22,132
    $110,001+ $24,282 $24,032
  • Wartburg College

    Waverly
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $39,730 $41,280
    Room and Board $9,748 $9,995
    Books $1,100 $1,100
    Other Expenses $1,300 $1,300
    Total $51,878 $53,675
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $16,774 $17,355
    $30,001 - $48k $16,960 $17,547
    $48,001 - $75k $19,880 $20,569
    $75,001 - $110k $24,672 $25,527
    $110,001+ $27,369 $28,317
  • William Penn University

    Oskaloosa
    Year 2017-18 2018-19
    Tuition and Fees $25,000 $25,600
    Room and Board $6,952 $6,952
    Books $1,224 $1,250
    Other Expenses $4,176 $4,398
    Total $37,352 $38,200
    Family Income Net Cost (Actual) Net Cost (Estimated)
    $0-$30k $18,327 $18,743
    $30,001 - $48k $19,976 $20,430
    $48,001 - $75k $19,973 $20,426
    $75,001 - $110k $21,936 $22,434
    $110,001+ $20,946 $21,422
 

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