Campus Grotto ranked American U. as the second most expensive college in the United States with a “net price” of $36,271.
Campus Grotto, a national college news publication, determined the net prices of various colleges by subtracting the average need-based grant from the total cost of attendance for the 2011-2012 school year, according to its website.
Drexel U. came first with a net price of $40, 491.
AU Vice Provost for Undergraduate Enrollment Sharon Alston said these rankings are misleading since the data did not factor in merit awards and other institutional funding from the university.
“The reality is that AU meets the demonstrated need of its students,” Alston said.
Approximately 80 percent of last year’s entering class received financial support from AU.
“This academic year alone, $69 million of the University’s budget has gone toward undergraduate financial aid, and financial aid expenditures are third behind personnel (faculty and staff) and supplies in the overall budget, an indication of the University’s commitment towards the students,” Alston said.
In October, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine ranked AU as the 47th best value for a private university.
Applicants must navigate all of these college ranking sites and determine for themselves if AU will provide the best value for their tuition dollars, Alston said.
“Students and their families need to evaluate the variety of material that they read online and compare this to the information they receive from the institution itself to determine whether the university is the right fit,” Alston said.