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Tuition Tracker is an interactive tool that shows the relationship between published tuition and the actual costs of attending college. Students can compare colleges based on their household income level to see what students like them have paid in the past.

Colleges and universities can also be compared based on graduation rate, which shows the likelihood of a student successfully completing their degree on time — a significant factor in affordability.

Tuition Tracker was relaunched in Fall 2019 using historical data to forecast college costs out to the 2020-21 academic year. However, the disruption to enrollment and higher ed financial models caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has altered the trajectory of prices for many schools. Due to the ongoing uncertainty, the Hechinger Report has not modeled prices for the 2021-22 academic year. Other historical data, such as net price and completion rates, have been updated in August 2021 using the most recently available figures.

Tuition Tracker uses cookies for optimal performance. Neither Tuition Tracker nor The Hechinger Report retains records of your personal data or answers to income questions.

To submit questions or report issues with the data, email Pete D'Amato (


Tuition Tracker is powered by U.S. Department of Education data from IPEDS, the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, a service provided by the National Center for Education Statistics. The institutions analyzed are all U.S.-based, degree-granting colleges and universities that have first-time, full-time undergraduates.

Prices are for first-time, first-year students. The projected prices for each institution were calculated by taking the compound annual growth rate over the period of 2008-09 to 2018-19* using raw IPEDS data, then projecting that rate from the 2018-19 sticker price to the 2020-21 academic year. Institutions without consecutive years of data going back to 2008-09 will not have projected prices. The tool assumes net price will remain the same percentage of sticker price for each income level as it was in 2016-17, the last year that data has been reported for.

Rates for graduation, retention and percent of students paying sticker price are derived from IPEDS data on first-time, first-year students.

The data on institutional characteristics, acceptance rate, and enrollment by race/ethnicity and gender below are published as they are provided in IPEDS.

*2018-19 data are considered provisional but have undergone NCES quality control procedures

Icons by Amy Morgan, Katya Prokofyeva, Becris,, AomAm and Rob Crosswell via The Noun Project.
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