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2016-2017 Attendance Budget

The academic year budget or, cost of attendance, for 2016-17 includes direct expenses, or actual costs, for which Columbia College Chicago will bill you, such as tuition, registration and related fees (individual class fees will vary), and room and board (if you live on campus). Also included in this budget are estimated costs for indirect expenses, such as books, supplies, personal expenses, travel, and off-campus rent and food associated with attending Columbia College. Dollar amounts other than tuition and fees are based upon a combination of federal regulations and cost surveys.
We use a standard budget for financial aid purposes to ensure equitable distribution of resources. Some students will spend more than our estimates, and others will spend less. The budget also serves as a ceiling for borrowing. Students and families may not borrow or receive funds in excess of their academic year budget. In determining how much you may borrow in a private loan, please subtract any other financial aid/loans that are already included in your award notification package.
Use the Budgets below as a starting point in determining the estimated costs for your intended enrollment and housing choices. Personalize your chosen budget by reviewing each cost and comparing it in a realistic fashion to your particular circumstance. Once you enroll, you will be assigned a budget based on your actual enrollment and housing status. Changes to your enrollment or housing status will result in an adjustment to your budget and subsequently the maximum amount of financial aid you and your family may utilize.

Undergraduate Student Academic Year Budgets

An undergraduate student’s cost of attendance is determined by the number of credit hours for which s/he is enrolled for the semester.

Number of Credits Financial Aid Enrollment Status

12+ credits

Full-Time (FT)
9-11 credits Three-Quarter Time (QT)
6-8 credits Half-Time (HT)
5 credits or less Less than Half-Time (LT)
A student’s cost of attendance is always based on the student’s financial aid enrollment status and is constructed to allow the student a reasonable cost of living based on the amount of time a student will spend attending classes or completing academic activities. Full-time students will have their cost of living expenses based on their enrollment as a full-time student; part-time students will have their cost of living expenses based on their enrollment as a part-time student.

Undergraduate Student Fall/Spring Budgets

The following table indicates how an undergraduate student’s budget is determined during the fall and spring semesters.

If you plan to enroll less than full-time and the budget component indicates it is prorated based on enrollment, you can calculate your estimated costs using the following methodology:



Component Description of Component 2016-17 Full-Time Amount per Semester On and Off Campus 2016-17 Full-Time Amount per Semester Commuter
Tuition and Fees

An estimated amount of tuition and mandatory fees; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time.

$12,899 $12,899
Books and Supplies An estimated amount of expenses for books and supplies; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $800 $800
Room and Board An estimated amount of expenses for living costs (rent, utilities, food); prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $6,649 $1,451
Miscellaneous An estimated amount of expenses for personal costs; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time (students at less-than half-time are ineligible for a miscellaneous allowance per federal regulations). $1,003 $1,003
Transportation An estimated amount of transportation expenses (excludes UPASS fee); prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $425 $425
Loan Fees

An average loan fee allowance is included for students who are eligible to borrow the Federal Direct Subsidized and/or Unsubsidized Loan.

NOTE: Dependent students whose parent borrower secures a Federal PLUS loan will have additional fees added to their cost of attendance to cover the origination fees. 

$40 $40
TOTAL  $21,816 $16,618
* Note: because the College does not charge students a mandatory health insurance fee, the College is unable to include an allowance for health insurance costs as part of the standard cost of attendance construction.

Undergraduate Student Summer Budgets

The following table indicates how an undergraduate student’s budget is determined during the summer semester.

If you plan to enroll less than full-time and the budget component indicates it is prorated based on enrollment, you can calculate your estimated costs using the following methodology:


Component Description of Component 2016-17 Full-Time Amount per Semester On and Off Campus 2016-17 Full-Time Amount per Semester Commuter
Tuition and Fees An estimated amount of tuition and mandatory fees; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $8,632 $8,632

Books and Supplies

An estimated amount of expenses for books and supplies; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $800 $800
Room and Board An estimated amount of expenses for living costs (rent, utilities, food); prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $4,433 $968
Miscellaneous An estimated amount of expenses for personal costs; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time (students at less-than half-time are ineligible for a miscellaneous allowance per federal regulations). $669 $669
Transportation An estimated amount of transportation expenses (excludes UPASS fee); prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $283 $283
Loan Fees

An average loan fee allowance is included for students who are eligible to borrow the Federal Direct Subsidized and/or Unsubsidized Loan.

NOTE: Dependent students whose parent borrower secures a Federal PLUS loan will have additional fees added to their cost of attendance to cover the origination fees. 

$26 $26
TOTAL  $14,843 $11,378

* Note: because the College does not charge students a mandatory health insurance fee, the College is unable to include an allowance for health insurance costs as part of the standard cost of attendance construction.

Graduate Student Academic Year Budgets

A graduate student’s financial aid cost of attendance is determined by the number of credit hours for which s/he is enrolled for the semester. 

Number of Credits Financial Aid Enrollment Status
9+ credits Full-Time (FT)
8 credits Three-Quarter Time (QT)
6-7 credits Half-Time (HT)
5 credits or less Less than Half-Time (LT)

This enrollment status may be different than your academic classification of enrollment status.

A student’s cost of attendance is always based on the student’s financial aid enrollment status and is constructed to allow the student a reasonable cost of living based on the amount of time a student will spend attending classes or completing academic activities.

Full-time students will have their cost of living expenses based on their enrollment as a full-time student; part-time students will have their cost of living expenses based on their enrollment as a part-time student. Cost of living expenses for students enrolled in eligible thesis coursework during the semester will have those expenses budgeted as the equivalent to full-time enrollment.  Thesis student budgets will not be increased until after the student has enrolled in the thesis class.

Graduate Student Fall/Spring Budgets

The following table indicates how a graduate student’s budget is determined during the fall and spring semesters for programs where summer enrollment is considered optional.

If you plan to enroll less than full-time and the budget component indicates it is prorated based on enrollment, you can calculate your estimated costs using the following methodology:


Component Description of Component 2016-17 Full-Time Amount per Semester
9-Month Programs on and off campus
Tuition and Fees An estimated amount of tuition and mandatory fees; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $12,287
Books and Supplies An estimated amount of expenses for books and supplies; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time except for students enrolled in an eligible thesis. $962
Room and Board An estimated amount of expenses for living costs (rent, utilities, food); prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time except for students enrolled in an eligible thesis. $6,649
Miscellaneous An estimated amount of expenses for personal costs; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time except for students enrolled in an eligible thesis. $1,003
Transportation An estimated amount of transportation expenses (excludes UPASS fee); prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time except for students enrolled in an eligible thesis. $425
Loan Fees

An average loan fee allowance is included for students who are eligible to borrow the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan.

NOTE: Students who secure a Federal PLUS loan will have additional fees added to their cost of attendance to cover the origination fees.

$104
TOTAL $21,430 

* Note: because the College does not charge students a mandatory health insurance fee, the College is unable to include an allowance for health insurance costs as part of the standard cost of attendance construction.

Graduate Student Summer Budgets

The following table indicates how a graduate student’s budget is determined during the summer semester for programs where summer enrollment is considered optional.
If you plan to enroll less than full-time and the budget component indicates it is prorated based on enrollment, you can calculate your estimated costs using the following methodology:


Component Description of Component 2016-17 Full-Time Amount per Semester
9-Month Programs on and off campus
Tuition and Fees An estimated amount of tuition and mandatory fees; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time. $12,155
Books and Supplies An estimated amount of expenses for books and supplies; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time except for students enrolled in an eligible thesis. $962
Room and Board An estimated amount of expenses for living costs (rent, utilities, food); prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time except for students enrolled in an eligible thesis. $4,433
Miscellaneous An estimated amount of expenses for personal costs; prorated for any enrollment status less than Full except for students enrolled in an eligible thesis. $669
Transportation An estimated amount of transportation expenses (excludes UPASS fee); prorated for any enrollment status less than Full-Time except for students enrolled in an eligible thesis. $283
Loan Fees

An average loan fee allowance is included for students who are eligible to borrow the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan.

NOTE: Students who secure a Federal PLUS loan will have additional fees added to their cost of attendance to cover the origination fees.

$69
TOTAL $18,571 

* Note: because the College does not charge students a mandatory health insurance fee, the College is unable to include an allowance for health insurance costs as part of the standard cost of attendance construction.

Re-Evaluation of Cost of Attendance

SFS recognizes that the cost of attendance construction may not account for specific costs incurred while enrolled during undergraduate or graduate study. Students with costs outside of the standard cost of attendance should contact our office to discuss a potential re-evaluation of your budget to include an allowance for the following: