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Canajun Finances Home » Tuition and Inflation are in No Way Related

Tuition and Inflation are in No Way Related

This is from 2013, but inflation and tuition rates are still unrelated. The cost of going to a post-secondary school in Ontario has been out of control for the entire 21st century.

I am picking on my alma mater again, but I really can only comment on three different Universities now: U Waterloo because I am an alumnus, Trent, and Acadia because I send them money to pay Tuition.

I usually check out the Daily Bulletin where the University puts out a lot of interesting tid-bits of information. On Friday (June 2013) they put out their list of increases in Tuition for the next few years. As we all read monthly in this very blog Inflation has run between 1 and 2% for the past little while, so keep this in mind with the numbers I am about to quote:

$100 notes/Coupures de 100 $
This is close to tuition for 4 Months (OK maybe not enough)

On the advice of Dennis Huber, vice-president administration and finance, the board approved the following framework:

Undergraduate students (domestic):

  • Regulated programs (year 1) – 3 per cent
  • Regulated programs (upper year) – 3 per cent
  • Deregulated programs (year 1) – 5 per cent
  • Dereg’ed programs (upper year) – 4 per cent
  • Dereg’ed AFM, Biotech/CA. CFM, Math/CA
    • Year 1 – 3 per cent
    • Upper year – 1 per cent
  • Accountancy Diploma (all years) – 2 per cent

Graduate students (domestic): 2 per cent

  • Specifically identified Master and Diploma Programs – 3 per cent

International Students:

  • Undergraduate programs – 4.2 per cent
  • Graduate programs except research plans – 4.2 per cent
  • Graduate research plans – 3 per cent
  • Specifically identified Master and Diploma programs – 3 per cent

The above figures are overall averages. There are scores of different fee levels, depending on what program a student is taking and what year he or she is in.

How this all compares to other Universities, I am not sure. However, I would be willing to entertain comments with links to what other schools are planning on charging in the coming years. Anybody from Quebec (who goes to school in Quebec) you are disqualified (your tuition fees are very low).

Canajun Finances Home » Tuition and Inflation are in No Way Related

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  1. Punch cards. Ah that brings back memories! My first college course is when I used punch cards. I remember being told to write the card number on the back of the punch card and did so. When my cards were sitting in a box waiting to be processed, the box got knocked off the desk and my cards were the only ones marked. My program was the only one to be processed out of that batch. It was a good day for me but not for the others that had programs in that box!
    The next time I went to school, we programmed on Apple 2Es. I have since built my own PCs from bought parts, and my laptop just blows away the decades old hardware from the late 70’s and early 80’s in capabilities. Voice input helps me do the work that would cause me pain to do, were I to have to type it all.

    I recently graduated from college, (again), and I saw the penny pinching that my school does to stay financially viable. I also saw how broke some students are, and remember hearing the question asked about how much printing would cost. Some could barely afford the $10-15 per month for the printing we had to do to hand in assignments. The school used massive amounts of paper, and we had to pay for every page we printed. Got to the point where It was not a matter of whether we were asking if there was a charge for something, we eventually were asking what the charge was knowing there would be one. (Rental on the graduation gown tomorrow is $35.)

    It costs… It costs… It costs!!!

  2. Here are the tuition and cost of living numbers for the University of Lethbridge:

    Estimated Costs (8 months of study)
    Tuition and Fees (10 courses per year) – $5300
    Medical and Dental Plan – $250
    Books and Supplies – $1,250
    Living Expenses – $3,800 to $8,000

    Total – $10,600 to $14,800

    1. The medical and dental can be “opted out” and some schools (if the parents have plans that cover kids in Universities), so that is worth keeping in mind too. Useful info, thanks!

  3. Those increases don’t seem as bad as in the last couple of decades. Between 1990 and 2011 tuition increased at a 6% yearly average when inflation averaged 2.1%. 1-2% inflation these days compared with 1-3% increases in tuition, that’s better than the last 20 years. I know annual inflation has dipped below 1% recently but that is very unlikely to last.

  4. My eldest is attending Waterloo right now, so the tuition increase next year is hitting me.

    I’m torn on tuition increases. From a business perspective, one never cuts R&D budget, even when things get rough – and universities are Canada’s R&D department. The gov’t should be making it easier to go to university, not harder.

    Conversely, if tuitions are on the rise, what about grant/loan programs like OSAP? Are they increasing by a similiar rate? If so, this would offset some of the pain.

    And lastly, the Ontario gov’t has a program that cuts some large amount of the tuition – like 1/3? for people with an income below a certain level. That grant didn’t exist when I went to school. I suspect the impact of that grant has actually dramatically decreased the cost of tuition in Ontario.

    In any event, tuition increases shouldn’t be a hit on finances if you remember to plan ahead. If you contribute regularly to an RESP (and if you don’t, start now – see ) and if your child lives at home, then there should be almost no additional cost to a child going to school.

    1. OSAP “grants” are non-existent, however the Loans are not tracking either (from my small sampling of data).

      When you went to school, there were no laptops! 🙂 OK that was a cheap shot (when I went to University we still used punched cards (OK only in 1st year)).

      Tuition isn’t a problem also if you plan on letting your kids pay for their own education too (just pointing that one out).

      1. Laptops? Punch cards? Does anyone that went to Waterloo in the 1980’s remember the Debug printer? A line printer in a closet, the night before projects were due it ran nonstop printing student’s code. You’d go into the room and paper would be flying everywhere, people ripping sheets off the printer and throwing your project on the floor. It was line printer mayhem!

        1. No we had Widget (sp?) where you had PDP-8 (or PDP-11) mini computers acting as “Virtual” card punchers, Spoolers and output devices… sounds insane now, but back then it was State of the Art! Hey I even learned Pascal in CS140!

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