Average Rates of Growth of Published Charges by Decade

Between 2008-09 and 2018-19, published in-state tuition and fees at public four-year institutions increased at an average rate of 3.1% per year beyond inflation, compared with average annual increases of 4.1% and 4.2% over the two prior decades.

Figure 4A: Average Annual Percentage Increase in Inflation-Adjusted Published Prices by Decade, 1988-89 to 2018-19

Notes & Sources 

NOTES: Each bar in Figure 4A shows the average annual rate of growth of published prices in inflation-adjusted dollars over a 10-year period. For example, from 2008-09 to 2018-19, average published tuition and fees at private nonprofit four-year colleges increased by an average of 2.3% per year beyond increases in the Consumer Price Index. Average tuition and fee prices reflect in-district charges for public two-year institutions and in-state charges for public four-year institutions.
 
SOURCE: College Board, Annual Survey of Colleges; NCES, IPEDS Fall Enrollment data.
  • The 3.1% average annual rate of increase in published in-state tuition and fees in the public four-year sector between 2008-09 and 2018-19 corresponds to an average annual increase of $270 in 2018 dollars, compared with $170 per year between 1988-89 and 1998-99 and $250 per year between 1998-99 and 2008-09. (Table 2)
  • The average annual rate of increase in published tuition and fees at private nonprofit four-year institutions declined from 2.9% between 1988-89 and 1998-99 to 2.3% over the next two decades. The average dollar increases were $570 per year over the first two decades and $740 between 2008-09 and 2018-19. (Table 2)