Nov   2019

Tue

12

5 College Tuition Tips for a Lower Bill

by
Founder, Prep Expert

This blog originally appeared on PrepExpert.com.

Every student attending college and every parent of a future college student worries about the same thing: the bill. Thankfully, there are plenty of college tuition tips you can use to lower the total cost of school.

Use these five easy tuition tips to make going to college less expensive.

Related: 6 Ways to Reduce the Cost of College

Take Advanced Placement (AP) classes

A common method students use to reduce tuition costs is by taking AP classes in high school. The benefits of doing so include:

  • Getting you ready for college-level coursework
  • Earning transferrable credits

The key to earning those credits is taking and scoring well on the corresponding AP exams. If you put in the hard work and score well, those AP credits will eliminate the need to take various classes early on in college. By skipping those classes, you’ll save money by not having to pay for them.

Apply for grants and scholarships

While in high school, two of the best money options available for paying college tuition are grants and scholarships.

This “free money” is valuable to every student because, unlike loans, it doesn’t have to be paid back. The more grant and scholarship money you can secure, the less need you’ll have for federal loans.

What’s even better is that you can keep looking for free money while you’re in college; there’s no specific cutoff for the process itself. Keep hunting for funds, even if you’re only a year or two away from graduation.

Places to look for this money include:

  • Nonprofit organizations
  • Honor societies
  • Churches
  • Corporations
  • And sites like CollegeXpress

Related: How to Start Your Scholarship Search

Don’t pay with credit cards

It’s tempting to put everything on a card during college. The credit card companies count on that temptation. However, you will only put yourself into debt and be hit with ridiculously high interest rates and other fees.

Don’t be afraid to use a credit card for minor purchases to build a credit history or in the case of an emergency. Outside of that, keep within your borrowing limit and don’t slap tuition bills on them.

Consider CLEP exams

CLEP (College-Level Examination Program) offers 34 specific exams in various subjects. The idea is that these exams cover many intro-level college course credits.

If you take one of these exams and pass it, you’ve basically tested out of having to take the corresponding college course. If you pass a CLEP exam, you can earn at least three college credits at nearly 3,000 corresponding schools.

The more credits you can earn before entering college, the less you’ll have to ultimately pay. It’s a win-win situation, especially for subjects you’re already well versed in.

Related: Pre-College Credit: How to Earn It and How It Transfers

Consider community college

Community college is a cost-effective way of earning intro-level credits for a significantly lower price. Many students will complete their first two years at a community college to get those prerequisites. If you want to get into your dream school but don’t want to pay dream school tuition, community college is a great way to shrink that bill.

Read the original blog on PrepExpert.com, and find scholarships to lower your tuition costs with our Scholarship Search tool.

Note: Did you know you could win a $10,000 scholarship for college or grad school just by registering on CollegeXpress? This is one of the quickest, easiest scholarships you’ll ever apply for. Register Now »

About Shaan Patel

Shaan Patel

Shaan Patel, who scored a perfect 2400 on the SAT, is the author of “SAT 2400 in Just 7 Steps” and a co-creator of Veritas Prep SAT 2400, the only global SAT prep course.

Originally from Las Vegas, Nevada, Shaan grew up in a small, humble motel his parents managed. After taking a no-nonsense approach to SAT preparation and learning many effective strategies of the SAT elite, Shaan was able to improve his score from 1760 to a perfect 2400. As a result of his preparation, Shaan was offered admission into prestigious universities, earned over $230,000 in scholarship monies, and received other national awards and accoloades.

Shaan’s SAT advice has been featured on www.businessweek.com, www.about.com, The New York Times' "The Choice" blog, and other prominent media outlets.

In addition to offering SAT prep tips to high school students, Shaan is a medical student at the University of Southern California.

 
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