Annual Costs

Undergraduate Tuition

Tuition for Central College is $35,930 for the 2017/2018 academic year. This is 29% more expensive than the national average private non-profit four year college tuition of $27,755. The cost is 48% more expensive than the average Iowa tuition of $24,275 for 4 year colleges. Tuition ranks 36th in Iowa amongst 4 year colleges for affordability and is the 8th most expensive 4 year college in the state. Price does not vary by residence.

Housing Costs

On campus room and board is provided by the school at a cost of $9,980 per academic year. Students electing to live off campus elsewhere in Pella should budget at least this amount.

Books and Supplies

The estimated annual cost for books and supplies is $1,339.

Other Living Expenses

If living on-campus, students should budget for $3,298 in additional living expenses. Off-campus students should budget for $3,298 in other miscellaneous living expenses.

Total Costs

The annual tuition and living expense budget to go to Central College was $50,547 for the 2017/2018 academic year. The cost is the same for all students regardless of Iowa residence status as there is no in-state discount.

Citation: Price data from the U.S. Department of Education's 2017-2018 and 2016-2017 IPEDS survey response for Central College and represent reported costs for the 2016-2017 and 2015-2016 academic years.

Costs and Tuition for Central College
Estimated Budgets
Iowa Resident Total Budget $50,547
   In-State Tuition$35,930
   Other Fees$0
   Room and Board$9,980
   On-Campus Other Budget$3,298
   Books and Supplies$1,339
Non-Resident Total Budget $50,547
   Out-of-State Tuition$35,930
   Other Fees$0
   Room and Board$9,980
   On-Campus Other Budget$3,298
   Books and Supplies$1,339


What it Really Costs

Depending on many factors including student and parent income and assets, the total cost of attendance may be less than the $50,547 published price if scholarship or grant aid is made available to you.

Net Price

The net out-of-pocket total cost you end up paying or financing though student loans is known as the net price. The reported Central College net price for in-state students is $22,510* for the 2014/2015 academic year. This net price includes housing and meal expenses.

Pell Grants and other Grant Aid

100% of Central College students received grant aid in 2014/2015. The average total aid amount was $22,641. 30 percent of students received aid in the form of Pell Grants from the U.S. Federal Government. The average Pell Grant awarded for 2014/2015 was $4,283. To apply for a Pell Grant to attend Central College, the first step is to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Net Price and Financial Aid for Central College
Financial Aid Summary
Average Annual Net Price$22,510*
Percent of Students Receiving Grant Aid100%
Average Total Grant Aid$22,641
Percent of Students Receiving Pell Grants30%
Average Amount of Pell Grant Aid$4,283

Average Net Price by Family Income

The average net total cost of attendance for different levels of family income after federal, state or local government, institutional grant and scholarship aid are awarded. Data last published for the 2014/2015 academic year.

Family Income Avg. Net Price
$0 to $30,000$15,741
$30,001 to $48,000$16,983
$48,001 to $75,000$18,443
$75,001 to $110,000$21,115

Average Financial Aid Mix - $50,547 In-State Total Cost

CollegeCalc has estimated typical coverage of the annual in-state tuition and living expenses of $50,547. Breakdown is based on average grant aid and federal loan aid which will vary based on your family income.


Grants and Scholarships

 48% - $22,641

Money granted to you by the U.S. Department of Education, Central College or other organizations. These are not loans and do not need to be repaid.

Federal Loans

 13% - $6,292

Low interest student loans funded by the U.S. Department of Education. This amount will need to be repaid.

Out of Pocket

 39% -  $18,316

Covered by family savings, work or private student loans which you will have to repay.

*Reported Average Annual Net Price for students receiving grant or scholarship aid reported to the U.S. Department of Education's Academic Year 2014-2015 IPEDS Survey. Financial aid is only available to those who qualify. Consult this school's net price calculator for further understanding of your potential net price.

Note that for colleges with no reported on-campus room and board, the average net price has been increased to account for living expenses. This number may not only reflect the net price paid to the school for tuition.

Tuition Comparison to Similar Private Colleges in the Region

School Cost vs. Central College
Wartburg College7.7% more expensive
Monmouth College1.3% more expensive
Luther College13.3% more expensive
Clarkson College56.9% less expensive
Benedictine College22.8% less expensive

Cost of a Degree

When considering ability to pay for college, the annual cost is often discussed but it's the "all in" multi-year degree cost which matters in the end. Let's take a look at what it could really cost for four years at Central College.

Estimated 4 Year Cost at Published Tuition

At the current published rates, an estimated total tuition, fees and living expense price for a 4 year bachelor's degree at Central College is $202,188 for students graduating in normal time. This methodology for estimating the 4 year cost is a straight multiple of the most recent reported annual total cost and does not factor in tuition increases during the time you're in school. It also assumes you receive no grant or scholarship aid and pay the full list price.

A potentially more accurate but less conservative estimate of a degree cost can be made by using the school's annual $20,786 in-state net price as the basis. Applying this cost over 4 would estimate the cost of a degree at $83,144**

If you end up on the "five year plan" and need an additional year to graduate, your five year cost could be as high as $252,735 or $103,930 using an average net price.

**Based on a 4 year multiple of Average Annual Net Price for students receiving grant or scholarship aid reported to the U.S. Department of Education's 2014-2015 IPEDS Survey. Financial aid is only available to those who qualify. Consult this school's net price calculator for further understanding of your potential net price.

Other Costs

Estimated Cost Per Semester

Most colleges don't charge students on an annual basis but instead require payment semester by semester. If you ever need to take an additional semester of classes to complete you degree you shouldn't have to pay for a full academic year. These our estimated costs for a semester at Central College.

Iowa Resident Tuition Per Semester$17,965
Iowa Resident Total Cost Per Semester$25,274

Cost Per Credit Hour and Cost for a Class

Some schools offer the ability to take single classes by paying on a per credit hour basis. The reported price per credit hour and estimated cost for one class at Central College are as follows. Per credit costs are for reference only as many schools will not allow students to pay by credit hour.

Cost per credit hour and per class at Central College
Price per credit hour$1,497
Cost for one class (3 credit hours)$4,491
Cost for one class (4 credit hours)$5,988


Student Loans and Debt

The second consideration after understanding the cost of college is determining how to finance it. Some students are fortunate enough to have some form of family financial assistance, but student loans end up financing a significant portion of higher education in the U.S. 77% of Central College students receive U.S. Federal Student Loans with an average annual Federal Loan aid amount of $6,292. The reported average student debt upon graduation is $27,990.

Example Loan Payments and Costs

How much are student loan payments for Central College? Obviously this varies based on a number of factors - offsetting financial aid you receive, percentage of fee you pay upfront while enrolled and the interest rate on your loans. We've modeled a sample student loan based on current Stafford loan rates to give you an approximate idea.

The following are the costs for a loan if you borrowed $83,144, 100% of the estimated average net price for a four year program and paid nothing while enrolled. The total of all payments including interest would sum $103,162.64. This could be your effective total out of pocket cost of an education at Central College. Note that this calculation assumes you don't pay full list price tuition, are part of the reported 100% of students at this school who receive financial aid and you are paying an average annual net price of $20,786. If you do not financially qualify for a reduced net price, your student loan payments could be significantly higher than this example. Use our Central College student loan calculator below to change loan assumptions and recalculate.

Student loans are not free money and must be repaid. You cannot dismiss student loans by via bankruptcy.

Central College Student Loan Payments
Example Payments
Monthly Loan Payment$859.69
Amount Borrowed$83,144.00
Interest Rate4.5%
Term10 years
Number of Monthly Payments120
Total Interest Cost$20,018.64
Sum of All Payments over 10 years$103,162.64

Affording Student Loan Payments and Post Graduation Salary

Can I afford to attend Central College? In the end, the answer comes down a determination if you will earn enough to comfortably pay back a student loan with your post graduation salary. This is an extremely important point to consider. In order to afford student loan payments and still meet all your other costs of living, it is recommended not to borrow more than you can pay back using 10% of your monthly income earned after graduation. If you're considering attending Central College, you need to carefully consider if it will be realistic to make the post graduation loan payments based on your expected salary.

Using the 10% of salary threshold, an annual income of $103,162.64 would be needed to afford a $859.69 monthly payment in the example $83,144.00 loan modeled above. You will need to determine if it is at all realistic that you will be earning this type of salary after graduation. This assumes a loan payback over 10 years. You can change the terms of this example loan using the student loan calculator below.

Estimated Future Cost and Expected Tuition Increase

What will it cost to send your child to Central College in the future? In the past four years, this school's published in-state tuition and fee total rose from $29,060 to $35,930. This amounts to an average annual price increase of 4.7%. Nationally, university tuition prices are rising around 5% per year. Looking out five, ten, fifteen or eighteen years, these are CollegeCalc's estimates how much you could expect to pay for a 4 year degree assuming tuition increases at the national average rate. Estimated future prices are based on the current 4 year cost of $202,188.00. Use the college savings plan calculator below to perform a more comprehensive analysis on future costs and how much you will need to save for Central College.

Annual4 Year Degree
Estimated Cost in 5 years for students enrolling in 2024$69,514$278,056
Estimated Cost in 10 years for students enrolling in 2029$88,719$354,877
Estimated Cost in 15 years for students enrolling in 2034 $113,231$452,923
Estimated Cost in 18 years for students enrolling in 2037 $131,079$524,315

Tuition History

What was tuition at Central College five, ten, fifteen or twenty years ago? Hop into our time machine and take a look. Pay attention to how aggressive the school has been with price increases in the past as it provides indication as to how the school may raise tuition in the next few years. Historical tuition and fees for all available data years back to 1987 follows.

YearTuitionAnnual Increase

Comparable Cost for Popular Majors

We've compared the out of state cost of the most popular undergraduate areas of study at Central College to the national average for all other colleges offering the same major. Use this comparison to determine particular programs where this school offers value relative to other colleges.

Area of Study Graduates vs National Avg
Elementary Education and Teaching Bachelor's Degree 24 42% costlier
Speech Communication and Rhetoric Bachelor's Degree 18 27% costlier
General Studies Bachelor's Degree 14 49% costlier
Environmental Studies Bachelor's Degree 13 3% costlier
Physics, General Bachelor's Degree 8 15% costlier
Computer Science Bachelor's Degree 6 20% costlier
Spanish Language and Literature Bachelor's Degree 5 17% costlier
Chemistry, General Bachelor's Degree 4 21% costlier
Psychology, General Bachelor's Degree 4 25% costlier
Mathematics, General Bachelor's Degree 4 23% costlier
Linguistics Bachelor's Degree 4 2% costlier
Music Teacher Education Bachelor's Degree 4 33% costlier
Social Sciences, General Bachelor's Degree 4 32% costlier
Business Administration and Management, General Bachelor's Degree 4 46% costlier
Information Science/Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 29% costlier
Athletic Training/Trainer Bachelor's Degree 3 34% costlier
Accounting Bachelor's Degree 3 36% costlier
International/Global Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 15% costlier
English Language and Literature, General Bachelor's Degree 3 26% costlier
Economics, General Bachelor's Degree 3 13% costlier
Actuarial Science Bachelor's Degree 1 20% costlier
Kinesiology and Exercise Science Bachelor's Degree 1 31% costlier
Sociology Bachelor's Degree 1 23% costlier
Art/Art Studies, General Bachelor's Degree 1 29% costlier
Anthropology Bachelor's Degree 1 12% costlier
French Language and Literature Bachelor's Degree 1 10% costlier
Political Science and Government, General Bachelor's Degree 1 22% costlier
History, General Bachelor's Degree 1 24% costlier
Religion/Religious Studies Bachelor's Degree 1 6% costlier
Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts, General Bachelor's Degree 1 19% costlier
Biology/Biological Sciences, General Bachelor's Degree 1 25% costlier
Music, General Bachelor's Degree 1 22% costlier
Natural Sciences Bachelor's Degree 1 25% costlier
German Language and Literature Bachelor's Degree 1 7% costlier


Use the calculators below to formulate a college savings plan for Central College or model a student loan.

College Savings Calculator

Plan and Save for College

Discover how much will you need to start saving now to afford Central College in the future.

Student Loan Calculator

Estimate Loan Payments

Modify the loan assumptions to fit your financial situation and likely tuition price. Then calculate your payoff and loan payments for a Central College student loan.

Prepayment Option

About Central College

Central College is a four year private college located in Pella, Iowa.  The school is affiliated with the Reformed Church in America faith.  Full time enrollment is 1,204 and part time is 44.

Only undergraduate degrees are offered at this school.

Central College
812 University
Pella, Iowa

For Profit / Not For Profit Status

Central College is a private not for profit institution.

Central College cost and financial aid data source: U.S. Department of Education https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?id=153108 IPEDS survey data.