Canada Markets closed

New York's 10 Most Expensive Private Colleges

Kelsey Sheehy

The U.S. News Short List, separate from our overall rankings, is a regular series that magnifies individual data points in hopes of providing students and parents a way to find which undergraduate or graduate programs excel or have room to grow in specific areas. Be sure to explore The Short List: College and The Short List: Grad School to find data that matters to you in your college or grad school search.

New York is home to some of the best private colleges and universities in the country. Nearly half of the state's 69 private schools ranked among the top 50 in their respective ranking categories in the 2014 Best Colleges rankings.

A private education in the Empire State doesn't come cheap, though.

Columbia University in New York City, ranked No. 4 among National Universities, had a price tag of $49,138 for 2013-2014 tuition and fees - higher than any private school in the country.

The school's sticker price does not include the nearly $12,000 fee for room and board, or other expenses such as books and travel.

[Find out which colleges have the cheapest room and board.]

Vassar College in Poughkeepsie and Union College in Schenectady are also among the 10 most expensive private schools in the country. The two schools charged $47,890 and $46,785 for 2013-2014 tuition and fees, respectively.

It should come as no surprise, then, that Columbia, Vassar and Union College top the list of the 10 highest-priced private schools in New York. Colgate University in Hamilton, Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy also landed among the state's priciest schools.

Tuition and fees at private colleges and universities in New York averaged $34,008 for 2013-2014 compared with the national average of nearly $30,500, according to data reported to U.S. News by 724 ranked private schools. New York's 10 most expensive private schools, however, charged an average of $46,684.

[Discover 10 ways to save on college costs.]

Attending a private college in New York does not always break the bank, though. Tuition and fees at nearly 30 of the state's private schools fall below the national average. Monroe College in the Bronx, New York's least expensive private college, had a sticker price of just $13,236 for 2013-2014.

Prospective students should keep in mind that sticker price doesn't represent the actual cost to attend a given school, which is often referred to as the net price. This figure includes room and board, as well as estimated fees for books and personal expenses, minus any grants or scholarships a student might be eligible to receive.

A college's net price could be tens of thousands of dollars less than its sticker price. Take Cooper Union in New York City, for example. The school's sticker price for 2013-2014 was $41,400, but every student admitted received a full-tuition scholarship. Starting in the fall of 2014, Cooper Union will reduce the award and cover half of a student's tuition.

[Learn how to use net price calculators in your college search.]

Each school's net price varies from student to student, depending on an applicant's academic achievement and family income, but students can get an estimate by using the net price calculator found on every school's website.

Below are the 10 most expensive private colleges in New York, based on tuition and fees for the 2013-2014 school year. Unranked colleges, which did not submit enough data for U.S. News to calculate a ranking, were not considered for this report.

School name City Tuition and fees (2013-2014) U.S. News rank and category
Columbia University New York $49,138 4, National Universities
Vassar College Poughkeepsie $47,890 13, National Liberal Arts Colleges
Union College Schenectady $46,785 41, National Liberal Arts Colleges
Colgate University Hamilton $46,380 20, National Liberal Arts Colleges
Bard College Annandale-on-Hudson $46,370 38, National Liberal Arts Colleges
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Troy $46,269 41, National Universities
Hobart and William Smith Colleges Geneva $46,165 61, National Liberal Arts Colleges
Hamilton College Clinton $46,080 14, National Liberal Arts Colleges
St. Lawrence University Canton $46,040 56, National Liberal Arts Colleges
Skidmore College Saratoga Springs $45,724 45, National Liberal Arts Colleges

Don't see your school in the top 10? Access the U.S. News College Compass to find tuition, complete rankings and much more. School officials can access historical data and rankings, including of peer institutions, via U.S. News Academic Insights.

U.S. News surveyed nearly 1,800 colleges and universities for our 2013 survey of undergraduate programs. Schools self-reported a myriad of data regarding their academic programs and the makeup of their student body, among other areas, making U.S. News's data the most accurate and detailed collection of college facts and figures of its kind. While U.S. News uses much of this survey data to rank schools for our annual Best Colleges rankings, the data can also be useful when examined on a smaller scale. U.S. News will now produce lists of data, separate from the overall rankings, meant to provide students and parents a means to find which schools excel, or have room to grow, in specific areas that are important to them. While the data come from the schools themselves, these lists are not related to, and have no influence over, U.S. News's rankings of Best Colleges or Best Graduate Schools. The tuition and fees data above are correct as of Oct. 25, 2013.

More From US News & World Report