College Admissions Expert Elizabeth Levine: Net Price Calculator

Elizabeth Levine

What is the Net Price Calculator and what information does it provide?
The Net Price Calculator (NPC) is required by the Higher Education Act, as of October 29, 2011, to be posted to each secondary institutions web site that participates in the Title IV Federal Student Aid programs. The NPC uses institutional data to provide net price information to current and prospective students and their families based on a student's individual circumstances. Net price is the cost of attendance for 1 year, minus any grant and scholarship aid, based on what similar students paid in a previous year.
Some schools use the US Department of Educations Net Price Calculator or they devise their own. The minimum requirements are below:

Input elements: ▪ Data elements to approximate the student's Expected Family Contribution (EFC), such as income, number in family, and dependency status or factors that estimate dependency status*

Output elements:
▪ Estimated total cost of attendance
▪ Estimated tuition and fees
▪ Estimated room and board
▪ Estimated books and supplies
▪ Estimated other expenses (personal expenses, transportation, etc.)
▪ Estimated total grant aid
▪ Estimated net price
▪ Percent of the students (full-time, first-time students) that received grant aid; and caveats and disclaimers, as indicated in the Higher Education Act
Completing the NPC on a school's web site can take from a few to 15 – 20 minutes, dependent on how much information they ask for. It is worth your while to complete, though, since it does provide fact based information on the amount of aid you could potentially receive and what a good estimate of the true cost to you would be for a specific college. Please note that you need to complete it for each individual institution since the net cost will differ, sometimes dramatically, dependent on the aid that that institution has given in the previous year. For more information on the US Department of Educations Net Price Calculator requirements and information please see the link below:
If you have any questions about the college admissions process or the above information please do not hesitate to contact me at or by phone, 845.551.6946.
Elizabeth Levine
Signature College Counseling is an Orange County, Hudson Valley based company
that works one on one with students and their families in navigating the admissions process so you attend the college that is right for you.
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