50-50 Highlights: Colleges with Free Application Fees

Student working on completing free college applicationEveryone knows that the college has become expensive but just applying to them can set you back a nice chunk of change as well. Application fees are hitting $100 for some institutions. Think about the next time you hear about some student applying to 20 schools.

According to the Integrated Public Education Data System (IPEDS), among all public and private schools with 500 or more full-time undergraduates, the average application fee is $34, with the public universities having a higher average of $39 than private ones at $31. I have a list of all free schools at 426 Colleges with Free Application Fees.

There are 73 50-50 schools that list their application fee as $0, three more than last year. Only one of these schools is public, Truman State University, the rest are private.

Many schools will waive their fees if you apply online through the Common Application or while visiting the campus. These schools along with those that don’t charge any fee, combine for a total 146 50-50 colleges. Only two are public.

Unfortunately, there are 187 50-50 schools that reported application fees over $50 including 102 public institutions. There are 18 50-50 schools with application fees of $70 with the majority being public schools.

  • Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
  • Clemson University
  • East Carolina University
  • Hofstra University
  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • North Carolina State University at Raleigh
  • Ringling College of Art and Design
  • Syracuse University
  • Texas A & M University-College Station
  • The College of New Jersey
  • University of California-Riverside
  • University of California-Santa Cruz
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Connecticut-Avery Point
  • University of Delaware
  • University of Massachusetts-Amherst
  • University of North Carolina Wilmington
  • Villanova University

The following table shows the 50-50 schools that list $0 as the application fee in IPEDS or no fee required in the Common Application. There are 44 schools that have an application fee of $25 or less but they aren’t listed here. As usual, the four-year graduation rate is used for private schools, the five-year rate for public ones.

50-50 Colleges with Free Application Fees
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There are 70 50-50 schools that list their application fee as $0, twelve more than the previous year. Only two of these schools are public, Truman State University and the University of New Hampshire at Manchester, the rest are private.

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