University of Southern California (USC) cost of tuition is on the higher end of college tuition prices, at more than $60,000 per year. The good news is that there are plenty of tuition assistance programs that can help you attend this prestigious school at a more accessible price. In fact, the University of Southern California Financial Aid Office spends over $773 million in financial aid programs yearly.
In this article, we’ll tell you all about University of Southern California tuition costs. We also talk about other expenses you’ll have to take into account if you want to attend this school, like housing, meals, and school supplies. We’ll also cover different USC scholarships and financial aid programs in detail, as well as University of Southern California rankings.
University of Southern California Rankings and Profile
- Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges
- Acceptance Rate: 13%
- Graduation Rate: 92%
- US News & World Report Ranking: #27
- Times Higher Education Ranking: #63
The University of Southern California is the oldest private research university in California, and it was founded in 1880. USC is made up of 23 colleges and schools, and it has a student body of 49,500 students. The most popular bachelor’s degree programs are business, communications, and computer science, and the most popular graduate programs are social work, computer science, and electrical engineering.
USC is recognized as one of the 100 best universities in the world by Times Higher Education and one of the top 30 best universities in the United States by US News and World Report. This school is known for its academic excellence and for its competitive admissions process. More than 71,000 prospective students applied to USC in 2021, but only 8,884 were admitted.
How Much Does University of Southern California Cost?
The University of Southern California costs $85,648 per year for undergraduate students living in on-campus housing. This number includes expenses such as tuition, fees, and books, as well as additional costs such as transportation and living expenses. Your actual cost will vary depending on your living situation.
|Expense||University of Southern California Cost|
|University of Southern California Undergraduate In-State Tuition and Fees||$61,503|
|University of Southern California Undergraduate Out-of-State Tuition and Fees||$61,503|
|University of Southern California Graduate In-State Tuition and Fees||$61,396|
|University of Southern California Graduate Out-of-State Tuition and Fees||$61,396|
|University of Southern California Books and Supplies||$1,200|
University of Southern California tuition is over $60,000 per year, both for undergraduate and graduate students. USC’s current tuition rate is well above the national average in the United States. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average cost of tuition at a private, four-year school is $32,769.
University of Southern California Living Expenses
|Expense||University of Southern California Cost|
|University of Southern California On-Campus Room and Board||$16,732|
|University of Southern California Off-Campus with Family||$3,556|
University of Southern California living expenses range between $12,575 and $19,739 per academic year. This includes the cost of on-campus housing, utilities, and required meal plans, which range from $755 to $3,465.
Living expenses at the University of Southern California are above average. According to the Education Data Initiative, the average cost of room and board for students living on campus at private, nonprofit institutions is $12,540 per academic year.
Cost of Living in Los Angeles, California
USC’s two campuses are located in the center of Los Angeles, California. The University Park campus is near LA’s Exposition Park, home to world-class museums and recreational facilities. A few miles to the northeast is the Health Sciences campus. Los Angeles is a well-known center of creativity, innovation, and culture, with a lot to offer to USC students.
LA is one of the most expensive cities in the US. The cost of living in Los Angeles is 49 percent above the national average, according to Payscale. The median rent in LA is $2,781 per month, and the cost of groceries is above the national average by 13 percent. Whether living on campus or off campus, the cost of living is a huge financial obligation for USC students.
University of Southern California Financial Aid Statistics
According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), 76 percent of USC students get financial aid. The most common types of aid USC students receive are need and merit-based scholarships and grants and athletic awards. Only 22 percent of students use student loans.
During the 2021-2022 academic year, USC spent more than $685 million in financial aid funds. More than 75 percent of this aid was given in the form of gift aid, which means that the financial aid recipients don’t have to pay back the award amounts. The average financial aid award packet that students receive from grants and scholarship programs is $41,493, according to NCES.
To apply to University of Southern California financial aid programs, students must submit a CSS Profile and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Both applications are used to determine a prospective student’s financial aid eligibility. Students need to submit the FAFSA every year, but most students only need to fill out the CSS Profile once.
Does University of Southern California Accept FAFSA?
Yes, USC accepts FAFSA for domestic students. In fact, it is necessary for applying to University of Southern California financial aid programs. Your FAFSA application determines your financial aid eligibility for federal student loans, Pell Grants, and work-study jobs. To submit the FAFSA form, you’ll have to answer a series of questions regarding your family’s financial standing.
Does University of Southern California Accept GI Bill Benefits?
Yes, the University Of Southern California accepts GI Bill Benefits. Through this financial assistance program, qualifying veterans and their families can get money to cover all or some of the program costs for college or professional training. USC student veteran benefits included $25,162 per year for tuition and fees, plus a monthly stipend for housing and a book stipend.
Is University of Southern California a Yellow Ribbon School?
Yes, the University of Southern California is a Yellow Ribbon school. In fact, the University of Southern California is one of the best military-friendly colleges in California.
The Yellow Ribbon program is a partnership between willing private colleges and universities and the federal government to help student veterans meet the higher cost of tuition at private schools. To be eligible, students must be in good academic standing and submit the Application for Semester Entitlement every term.
University of Southern California Scholarships and Grants
- Trustee Scholarship. This is one of USC’s full-tuition scholarships for first-year students. Approximately 100 scholarships are given every year, with an average award amount of $60,446 per student. To apply for the 2022-2023 academic year, students must complete the Common Application and submit the required USC supplement materials before December first.
- International Freshman Academic Scholarship. First-year, international students in good academic standing with financial need are eligible for this scholarship. Scholarship application steps include completing the Common Application and submitting the required USC supplement materials.
- USC Associates Scholarship. This scholarship aid program is for first-year students in excellent academic standing. Students are chosen on merit and need-based criteria. Approximately 10 scholarships, with an average amount of $18,000, are awarded each academic year.
- Dean’s Scholarship. This merit-based scholarship is for any first-year college program students with proven academic excellence and leadership skills. Approximately 100 scholarships are awarded every year. Students are given approximately $15,111 as a tuition assistance benefit.
- Transfer Merit Scholarship. This tuition assistance scholarship is for transfer students in good academic standing. To apply, students must have a GPA of 3.7 or higher and more than 30 transferable units. A total of 40 awards are given every year. A transfer merit scholarship recipient receives approximately $15,111 as coverage for tuition.
- Half Century Trojans Scholarships. This scholarship is open only to currently enrolled USC undergraduate students. Applicants must be a direct descendant of a person who received an undergraduate degree from USC at least 50 years ago. Five to ten $10,000 awards are given each year.
- USC Latino Alumni Association Scholarships. This scholarship is for Latinx full-time undergraduate and graduate students who have demonstrated a strong commitment to their community. This financial aid award ranges from $2,000 to $5,000 for undergraduate students, and $500 to $5,000 for graduate students per academic year.
- Topping Scholarship. This tuition assistance scholarship is provided by the Norman Topping Student Aid Fund. The amount awarded varies every year. This scholarship is renewable as long as the student maintains a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 for undergraduate students, or 3.0 if they are a graduate student, and completes 20 hours of community service per semester.
- Alumni Scholarship. These merit-based scholarships are awarded to continuing undergraduate students by different USC alumni groups. Awards range between $1,000 and $3,000 per year. These scholarships are primarily awarded to California residents, but non-California residents do have eligibility for scholarships in this program.
- SCion Scholarship. These scholarships are awarded by the USC Alumni Association. They are given to continuing students that are direct family members of USC alumni. A current SCion scholarship recipient doesn’t have to reapply every year as long as they maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.
University of Southern California Average Net Price by Income
|Family Income||University of Southern California Net Price|
|$0 to $30,000||$12,404|
|$30,001 to $48,000||$12,875|
|$48,001 to $75,000||$18,626|
|$110,001 and up||$45,251|
The average net price students have to pay to attend USC, based on their family income, is calculated by subtracting the average financial aid amounts students receive from USC’s total tuition and living expenses. The cost of college increases with family income, so families with higher incomes usually pay higher net prices.
How to Calculate University of Southern California Cost
In order to calculate University of Southern California cost of attendance, you can use the USC Net Price Calculator. This tool will help you estimate the cost of tuition and other important expenses, as well as your eligibility for need-based financial aid. All you’ll have to do is answer a series of questions about your family income and financial standing.
It’s important to remember that the cost of attendance provided by this net price calculator is not a guarantee of the financial aid you’ll actually receive. It’s only meant to help you estimate the cost of most college expenses. In addition to this, it’s important that you create a plan to pay for additional expenses such as personal expenses, meals, and transportation.
Is the Cost of College Too High?
No, the cost of college is not too high if you get enough scholarship aid or federal student aid. University of Southern California cost of attendance is higher than the national average. However, USC student financial services offer plenty of scholarship programs and other financial aid options that can help you pay for your education.
University of Southern California Student Debt
- Students Receiving Federal Loans: 27%
- Median Debt After Graduation: $18,956
- Average Monthly Loan Payment: $189
Almost a third of USC students use federal student loans as part of their financial aid package, according to the US Department of Education’s College Scorecard. On average, USC undergraduate students receive $4,215 in federal student loans. While federal loan debt is more common than private loan debt, USC federal loan debt amounts are much lower.
Only two percent of undergrads at USC use private loans, according to the NCES. The average private loan amount for first-year students is $29,056. This is more than the average California college student’s private loan debt, which was $26,693 for the graduating class of 2020, according to the Institute for College Access & Success.
University of Southern California Tuition Payment Plans
USC’s Office of Student Financial Services offers a tuition payment plan that allows students to pay for their education in interest-free installments. Depending on their college program, students will pay the full cost of tuition each term with one down payment and either three or four monthly installments.
University of Southern California Graduate Salaries and Outcomes
University of Southern California graduates make a median annual salary of $83,426, according to College Scorecard. Almost 90 percent of USC grads find employment or continue with post-secondary education within six months of getting their degree.
According to Data USA, the most popular career outcomes among USC graduates are software developers, managers, and engineers, including nuclear, civil, and mechanical engineers. Internships are the primary way in which undergraduates land their first job. Almost 80 percent of USC students complete at least one internship before graduation.
How to Save Money in College
- Buy used books. College textbooks are expensive, but used versions are much more affordable. Another cheaper alternative to new books is to borrow books from another student or from USC libraries.
- Get a part-time job. Finding a part-time job that pays well while attending college is a great way to earn and save money. There are plenty of options, including federal work-study and other employment opportunities such as internships.
- Use campus amenities. A great way to save money on things such as fitness classes or a gym membership is to use campus facilities as much as possible. For a small fee, students have access to facilities such as USC libraries, computing centers, USC student health centers, and fitness facilities. Look closely to see what your student programming fee pays for, and use those services.
- Use student discounts. With active student email accounts, USC students can get discounts on things such as clothing, laptops, subscription-based streaming services, and transportation. Moreover, USC students can get tickets for the theater, theme parks, and other recreational activities at prices that better fit into budgets for students.
- Apply for scholarship competitions. Beyond institutional scholarships and federal financial aid, there are additional scholarship opportunities you can apply for. Look for organizations that support students in your field or from your background, for example, scholarships for women in engineering. You can also contact USC’s Financial Aid Office to ask for guidance on where to look for additional scholarships.
Is University of Southern California Affordable?
Yes, University of Southern California is affordable if you apply when you take its scholarship programs into account. USC’s 2021-2022 tuition rate was more than $61,000 for undergraduate students. This is higher than the national average annual rate of $53,217. However, USC offers plenty of forms of tuition assistance to help students with financial need fund their education.
University of Southern California Cost FAQ
It costs $85 to apply to the University of Southern California as an undergraduate student. The application fee for most graduate programs is $90, payable by some credit cards. In addition to paying the application fee, students must complete an application form through the Common Application and submit official test scores, recommendation letters, and academic transcripts.
The cost of the University of Southern California student fees is $1,258 per academic year for undergraduate students. In addition to student programming fees, first-year students must pay a $450 new student fee. Students in graduate programs have to pay a $1,054 student health plan fee and a $55 new student fee.
University of Southern California tuition is $42,740 for full-time master’s students and $51,288 for students in doctoral programs. The tuition rate is the same for international and domestic students on a per-unit basis. The estimated cost of attendance for graduate students ranges from $70,990 to $79,764. Fortunately, USC awards numerous graduate assistantship tuition awards every year to help students in need fund their education.
Yes, the University of Southern California offers free tuition to students with high financial need. In fact, most incoming students from families with an annual income of $80,000 or less attend USC for free. In addition to this tuition assistance program, USC offers plenty of scholarships and grants to help students attend this school.
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