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Affordability and transparency

The U.S. Education Department’s new College Affordability and Transparency Center lets prospective students research expensive and low-cost alternatives in all higher education sectors.

For example, here’s a list of public two-year colleges with the highest tuition. Quite a few are in New Hampshire. The cheapest community colleges are all in California.

Starting tomorrow, career and vocational colleges will have to inform prospective students about tuition, fees and typical costs of books and fees, graduates’ median loan debt, the on-time graduation rate, the job placement rate and the occupations the program prepares students to enter.

Colleges and universities will be required to provide students with a net price calculator by late October. The calculator will estimate the actual costs of attendance, taking grants and scholarship aid into account, based on the family’s income.