The College Puzzle Blog
Prior PostingsAbout
Dr. Michael W. Kirst

Michael W. Kirst is Professor Emeritus of Education and Business Administration at Stanford University since 1969.
Dr. Kirst received his Ph.D. in political economy and government from Harvard. Before joining the Stanford University faculty, Dr. Kirst held several positions with the federal government, including Staff Director of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Manpower, Employment and Poverty. He was a former president of the California State Board of Education. His book From High School to College with Andrea Venezia was published by Jossey Bass in 2004.

Most Recent Blog
::Blackboard Hopes to Help Bridge the Divide>
::College Success is More than College Completion>
::End of Course Exams Embody College Readiness>
::Finally, Study on What Works To Enhance College Re...>
::Up, Up and AWAY! College Prices Keep Soaring.>
::States Collaborate to Create A Common Algebra Test...>
::CUNY Creates New Programs to Increase College Comp...>
::Policy Alignment to Enhance College Completion>
::Student Indicators of Inadequate College Readiness...>
::College Readiness Has Many Dimensions>


My blog discusses the important and complex subjects of college completion, college success, student risk factors (for failing), college readiness, and academic preparation. I will explore the pieces of the college puzzle that heavily influence, if not determine, college success rates.

High School Students and Parents Have No Idea What College Costs

Many studies over several decades demonstrate that high school students and parents overestimate college tuition. In our study Betraying the College Dream we found that significant numbers of students estimated more than five times the real cost of tuition. The US Department of Education found overestimates in their studies as well. Yes, tuition is going up, but many middle and low income people think private college tuitions like Harvard apply to state institutions. But California community colleges cost $300 for full time attendance, and the University of California tuition is under $6,000.
In many cases the underestimated college costs by prospective college students are for room , board, textbooks, and student fees. Community colleges can be expensive if you add these in because even if students do not live on campus they still must pay rent and eat. This is another indicator have how poor the information system is for students who attend broad access colleges. They overestimate and underestimate at the same time. Our other site has a method for figuring out real college costs.

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