One of the biggest college expenses is tuition. You can save on tuition at many colleges by taking more classes each semester. That’s because many schools charge a flat rate if you’re a full-time student, whether you’re taking 12 credit hours or 18 credit hours. If you need 120 hours to graduate and only take 12 hours a semester, it will take you 10 semesters to finish. But if you take 18 hours each semester, you can finish in seven semesters. And the cost of tuition hasn’t been going down lately. Some colleges charge by the credit hour but offer discounts to students who take bigger loads.
If you’re still in high school, check into Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and dual-credit courses. You may be able to start college with enough credit hours to knock off a semester of classes.
Books are also expensive. You can save on textbooks by buying used copies whenever possible. Other ways to cut on book costs is to rent a textbook if your school has a rental program, or to check books out of the library. Some colleges have book exchanges where students sell to each other. The seller usually gets more than a bookstore would pay, and the buyer generally pays less than a bookstore would charge.
You can save money by keeping low-cost snacks in your room instead of going out for fast food all the time. Buying supplies like pens, pencils and notebooks on sale or in bulk may also help out.
To learn how to plan for higher education, visit www.GoHigherKY.org. For more information about Kentucky financial aid, visit www.kheaa.com; write KHEAA, P.O. Box 798, Frankfort, KY 40602-0798; or call (800) 928-8926.