How Much Does Community College Cost?

Written by: Staff
Last Updated:  August 13, 2018

According to, community college is defined as “A two-year, public college that provides associate’s degrees and also prepares students who will transfer to a four-year school. They typically have relatively low admissions requirements, low tuition and reside in populated areas, making college education accessible to many.”  To compare the cost of community college with that of a state university, also see “How Much Does College Cost?

How much does community college cost?

Community college can cost as little as $20 per credit hour or as much as $200 per credit hour.  Since most classes are three credits, and most colleges consider 15 credits full time, this results in a per-semester price of about $300-$3000.  This translates to a cost of $600-$6000 per year if attending both fall and winter semesters full time.   The cost will depend on your residency status, the school and if any grants will be included.  Refer to our chart below for a sample of random community colleges in the United States

For example, Oakland Community College located in Oakland, Michigan, is around $60 per credit hour, while non-residents will be charged $112 per credit hour.  Those that reside outside of the state will be charged $158 per hour.

Another community college, such as the Chandler-Gilbert Community College, located in Arizona runs around $75 per credit hour, while an out of county student will be charged upwards of $300 per credit hour.

Portland Community College located in Oregon charges its residents $79 per credit hour while a non-resident will be charged around $200 per hour.

Community CollegePer Credit Hour
Blue Ridge Community and Technical College$161 (in-district) / $291 (out-of-district)
Butler Community College$67 (in-district) / $138 (out-of-district)
Calhoun Community College$113 (in-district) / $226 (out-of-district)
Cankdeska Cikana Community College$125 (in-district) / $300 (out-of-district)
Cossatot Community College$68.50 (in-district) / $179.50 (out-of-district)
Delaware Technical Community College$139.75 (in-district) / $349.50 (out-of-district)
El Paso Community College$94 (in-district) / $200 (out-of-district)
Faulkner State Community College$144 (in-district) / $259 (out-of-district)
Hinds Community College$110 (in-district) / $220 (out-of-district)
Holmes Community College$110 (in-district) / $110 (out-of-district)
Lord Fairfax Community College$175 (in-district) / $372 (out-of-district)
Massasoit Community College$24 (in-district) / $230 (out-of-district)
Mesalands Community College$55 (in-district) / $99 (out-of-district)
Metropolitan Community College$59 (in-district) / $88.50 (out-of-district)
Moberly Area Community College$86 (in-district) / $141-$194 (out-of-district)
Northwest Mississippi Community College$120 (in-district) / $220 (out-of-district)
Pearl River Community College$125 (in-district) / $225 (out-of-district)
Richmond Community College$76 (in-district) / $268 (out-of-district)
Riverland Community College$162.95 (in-district) / $183.57 (out-of-district)
Southark CommunityCollege$83 (in-district) / $96 (out-of-district)
SouthwesternCommunity College$79 (in-district) / $271 (out-of-district)
State Fair CommunityCollege$100 (in-district) / $210 (out-of-district)
Tidewater Community College$139 (in-district) / $316 (out-of-district)
Walla Walla Community College$119 (in-district) / $137 (out-of-district)
Wallace Community College$117 (in-district) / $234 (out-of-district)
Waubonsee Community College$110 (in-district) / $283 (out-of-district)

Note:  International students may have to pay more than out-of-state.  Fees are accurate as of November 2016.

What are the extra costs?

If the class also has a lab, the lab fees and time should be covered by the cost of the class itself.  When signing for a class, it will note if there are any type of labs that will have to be covered.

All colleges have some type of application or processing fee – this is usually $25-$75.

If you choose a payment plan with some courses, a payment plan premium fee may apply.

The cost of books and manuals for each class will cost extra.  See “How Much Do Textbooks Cost

If you live out of state, or in some cases out of the county, the cost per credit hour will be higher.

Additional books will be required for each and every class.  CDs or computer-related coursework may also be required.  The prices for books will greatly vary depending on the class.

For community colleges that offer housing on campus, housing and food will cost extra.  Keep in mind that many community colleges don’t offer room and board.

Late registration fees may apply.

Late payment fees may apply.

Tips to know

When choosing a community college, be sure to the college is accredited by the American Association of Community Colleges.

How can I save money?

For information on how to obtain a student loan or government grants used for college, visit the US Department of Education.

Search for scholarships.  Even if you’re a returning parent coming back to college, there is a scholarship out there for everyone.

If planning on attending a four-year university after community college, be sure to take the exact classes that are going to transfer over to the university.  There are some classes that won’t transfer to the school.  If you’re unsure of what courses are going to transfer, it’s always best to meet with a school advisor.

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