Top 10 Most Expensive Colleges in the US

Ever wondered where the top 1% study? If you’re one of the many who fancy the idea of enrolling in one of the top universities across the US, it is important to remember that taking your studies in these high-class schools can come at a great price – metaphorically and literally.

Surely, it’s no secret that enrolling in college is utterly expensive; however, being reminded of how expensive it can get may even leave you astounded. 


To give you a quick guide, we have collected a list of 10 of the most expensive universities all over the US. Be sure to check out which among them you dream of being a part of.

10. Trinity College

10. Trinity College,

Tuition and fees: $54,770

Room and board: $14,200

Total: $68,970

Established in 1823 as an alternative to the more celebrated Yale, this small liberal arts college in Hartford, Connecticut stands as the top 10 most expensive college in the US, costing nearly $69,000. To date, Trinity College serves as the second-oldest college in the state of Connecticut, next to Yale University. It is also the most expensive.

Among the school’s most notable alumni include Pulitzer Prize winners Jim Murray, Edward Albee, George Will, Charles McLean Andrews, and many more.

9. University of Southern California

9. University of Southern California
USC Trojans, Bloomberg / © Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times

Tuition and fees: $54,323

Room and board: $14,885

Total: $69,208

Founded in 1880, the University of California now stands as one of the world’s leading private research universities. To date, this 139-year old institution is the 9th most expensive school in the US, valuing $69,208 per semester.

Among its most recognized and widely-celebrated alumni include Neil Armstrong, John Wayne, George Lucas, Will Ferrel, and many others.

8. Scripps College

8. Scripps College
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Tuition and fees: $52,966

Room and board: $16,294

Total: $69,260

Founded in 1926, this women-only, private college situated outside Los Angeles takes pride in being one of the four Claremont colleges included in the country’s most expensive universities. To date, it charges $52,966 for tuition and other fees, plus $16,294 for room and boarding.

7. Oberlin College

7. Oberlin College
Toledo Blade,

Tuition and fees: $53,460

Room and board: $15,862

Total: $69,322

From its founding in 1833, Oberlin College now stands as a world leader in both liberal arts and music. Students can also rent original works of art from the Allen Memorial Art Museum, one of the most recognized university museums in the US, for $5 per semester. 

As of 2019, its students pay a total of nearly $70,000 to get into the school and study their desired programs.

6. Southern Methodist University

6. Southern Methodist University, @smudallas /

Tuition and fees: $52,498

Room and board: $16,910

Total: $69,408

Positioned in the suburbs of Dallas, Texas, this private Methodist research university stands as the top expensive school in Texas and the sixth in the US. As of 2019, students are charged with $52,498 for tuition and other fees and an additional $16,910 for boarding. 

To date, the school takes up the 64th rank in U.S. News & World Report rankings. It was also identified by The Princeton Review as one of the “Best Western Colleges”, adding more prestige to its already much-celebrated name.

5. Columbia University School of General Studies

5. Columbia University School of General Studies
Yahoo News,

Tuition and fees: $55,478

Room and board: $13,950

Total: $69,428

Founded in 1754 as King’s College, the Columbia University School of General Studies now stands as the fifth-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the finest liberal arts school in the country

Among its most well-known alumni include Nobel Prize-winning immunologist Baruj Benacerraf, Nobel Prize-winning economist Simon Kuznet, Peabody Award-winning documentary filmmaker Whitney Dow, and Emmy Award-winning screenwriter Eric Shaw.

4. Bard College

4. Bard College,

Tuition and fees: $54,496

Room and board: $15,066

Total: $69,562

Located in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, this private liberal arts college takes pride in approximately 1,900 undergraduates and more than 600 graduate students. The overall cost to study here is estimated to be above $69,000.

3. University of Chicago

3. University of Chicago
Chicago Sun Times / © Victor Hilitski/Sun-Times file photo, US News

Tuition and fees: $54,825

Room and board: $15,726

Total: $70,551

Founded in 1890 by John Rockefeller, this school is recognized to be one among the most prestigious in the world and the third most expensive. To date, the school has over 90 Nobel Prize winners in its ranks of alumni and faculty members. Former US President Barack Obama also taught at the university’s Law School for over a decade.

2. Columbia University

2. Columbia University, NYC Go

Tuition and fees: $57,208

Room and board: $13,618

Total: $70,826

Sitting near the Upper West Side of Manhattan, New York, this Ivy League institution lands as the second most expensive school in the US as of 2019. To date, the school carries over 90 Nobel Laureates, 3 US Presidents, 29 foreign heads of state, 10 Supreme Court Justices, 38 living billionaires, 11 Olympic medallists, 39 Academy Award winners, and 125 Pulitzer Prize recipients.

Among the school’s top alumni include former US Presidents Barack Obama, Theodore Roosevelt, and Franklin Roosevelt. The school had also housed a number of notable writers, including Jack Kerouac, Hunter S. Thompson, and J.D. Salinger.

1. Harvey Mudd College

1. Harvey Mudd College, The Armijo Signal

Tuition and fees: $54,886

Room and board: $17,592

Total: $72,478

Named to be the most expensive university in the country for three years running, the Harvey Mudd College stands as one of the seven elite Claremont Colleges. Although it houses only 889 students, the school graduates the highest-earning alumni in the country. To date, it costs almost $80,000 to enroll and continue your education in this prestigious school. As reported by The New York Times, the median family income of a student studying at the university is estimated to be $145,400. About 68% of the student population also come from the highest-earning 20% of American households.

Among its most notable alumni include producer of the James Bond series Michael G. Wilson, creator of Flash software Jonathan Gay, creator of the Audacity sound editing program Dominic Mazzoni, and many more.


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Has your jaw dropped while reading this list? It is no secret that college is straight expensive, but who could have thought it could be this skyrocketing?

Which among these schools do you see yourself studying at? 

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