CollegeCalc Highest List Price Rank - 36th

Annual Costs

Undergraduate Tuition

Tuition for Brown University is $52,231 for the 2017/2018 academic year. This is 88% more expensive than the national average private non-profit four year college tuition of $27,755. Brown University is one of the 100 most expensive colleges in the America, coming in 36th on our Expensive 100 Ranking. The cost is 55% more expensive than the average Rhode Island tuition of $33,724 for 4 year colleges. Tuition ranks 10th in Rhode Island amongst 4 year colleges for affordability and is the most expensive 4 year college in the state. Price does not vary by residence.

The school charges an additional fees of $1,188 in addition to tuition bringing the total effective in-state tuition to $53,419.

Housing Costs

On campus room and board is provided by the school at a cost of $14,020 per academic year. Students electing to live off campus elsewhere in Providence should budget at least this amount.

Books and Supplies

The estimated annual cost for books and supplies is $1,571.

Other Living Expenses

If living on-campus, students should budget for $2,040 in additional living expenses. Off-campus students should budget for $0 in other miscellaneous living expenses.

Total Costs

The annual tuition and living expense budget to go to Brown was $71,050 for the 2017/2018 academic year. The cost is the same for all students regardless of Rhode Island 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 Brown University and represent reported costs for the 2016-2017 and 2015-2016 academic years.

Costs and Tuition for Brown University
Estimated Budgets
Rhode Island Resident Total Budget $71,050
   In-State Tuition$52,231
   Other Fees$1,188
   Room and Board$14,020
   On-Campus Other Budget$2,040
   Books and Supplies$1,571
Non-Resident Total Budget $71,050
   Out-of-State Tuition$52,231
   Other Fees$1,188
   Room and Board$14,020
   On-Campus Other Budget$2,040
   Books and Supplies$1,571


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 $71,050 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 Brown net price for in-state students is $21,193* for the 2014/2015 academic year. This net price includes housing and meal expenses.

Pell Grants and other Grant Aid

46% of Brown University students received grant aid in 2014/2015. The average total aid amount was $39,267. 19 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 $4,281. To apply for a Pell Grant to attend Brown University, the first step is to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Net Price and Financial Aid for Brown University
Financial Aid Summary
Average Annual Net Price$21,193*
Percent of Students Receiving Grant Aid46%
Average Total Grant Aid$39,267
Percent of Students Receiving Pell Grants19%
Average Amount of Pell Grant Aid$4,281

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$3,186
$30,001 to $48,000$7,129
$48,001 to $75,000$10,700
$75,001 to $110,000$22,282

Average Financial Aid Mix - $71,050 In-State Total Cost

CollegeCalc has estimated typical coverage of the annual in-state tuition and living expenses of $71,050. Breakdown is based on average grant aid and federal loan aid which will vary based on your family income.


Grants and Scholarships

 57% - $39,267

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

Federal Loans

 8% - $5,384

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

Out of Pocket

 35% -  $24,359

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.

Is it Worth the Cost?

To make a comparative assessment if Brown is worth the price, measures of it's relative value for tuition dollar can be examined. We've calculated an academic national percentile rating of 99/100 for Brown University. Considering an average net price paid of $22,743, this leads to an overall value ranking of 78/100. This places the school 54th on our national Best Value Colleges ranking as a provider of a very high value education compared to actual overall price paid.

Tuition Comparison to Similar Private Colleges in the Region

School Cost vs. Brown University
Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering7% less expensive
Boston College0.5% more expensive
Brandeis University1.5% less expensive
Harvard University13.9% less expensive
Massachusetts Institute of Technology5.1% 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 Brown University.

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 Brown is $284,200 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 $22,743 in-state net price as the basis. Applying this cost over 4 would estimate the cost of a degree at $90,972**

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 $355,250 or $113,715 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 Brown University.

Rhode Island Resident Tuition Per Semester$26,116
Rhode Island Resident Total Cost Per Semester$35,525

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 Brown University 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 Brown University
Price per credit hour$1,632
Cost for one class (3 credit hours)$4,896
Cost for one class (4 credit hours)$6,528


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. 23% of Brown University students receive U.S. Federal Student Loans with an average annual Federal Loan aid amount of $5,384. The reported average student debt upon graduation is $23,521.

Example Loan Payments and Costs

How much are student loan payments for Brown University? 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 $90,972, 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 $112,875.39. This could be your effective total out of pocket cost of an education at Brown University. Note that this calculation assumes you don't pay full list price tuition, are part of the reported 46% of students at this school who receive financial aid and you are paying an average annual net price of $22,743. If you do not financially qualify for a reduced net price, your student loan payments could be significantly higher than this example. Use our Brown University 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.

Brown University Student Loan Payments
Example Payments
Monthly Loan Payment$940.63
Amount Borrowed$90,972.00
Interest Rate4.5%
Term10 years
Number of Monthly Payments120
Total Interest Cost$21,903.39
Sum of All Payments over 10 years$112,875.39

Affording Student Loan Payments and Post Graduation Salary

Can I afford to attend Brown? 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 Brown University, 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 $112,875.39 would be needed to afford a $940.63 monthly payment in the example $90,972.00 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 Brown University in the future? In the past four years, this school's published in-state tuition and fee total rose from $42,808 to $52,231. This amounts to an average annual price increase of 4.4%. 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 $284,200.00. 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 Brown University.

Annual4 Year Degree
Estimated Cost in 5 years for students enrolling in 2024$97,710$390,841
Estimated Cost in 10 years for students enrolling in 2029$124,706$498,824
Estimated Cost in 15 years for students enrolling in 2034 $159,160$636,639
Estimated Cost in 18 years for students enrolling in 2037 $184,247$736,990

Comparable Cost for Popular Majors

We've compared the out of state cost of the most popular undergraduate areas of study at Brown University 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
Economics, General Bachelor's Degree 77 59% costlier
Neuroscience Bachelor's Degree 63 24% costlier
International Relations and Affairs Bachelor's Degree 21 51% costlier
History, General Bachelor's Degree 21 74% costlier
Biochemistry Bachelor's Degree 20 53% costlier
Creative Writing Bachelor's Degree 17 54% costlier
Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering Bachelor's Degree 15 39% costlier
Cognitive Psychology and Psycholinguistics Bachelor's Degree 15 13% costlier
Education, General Bachelor's Degree 14 66% costlier
Art History, Criticism and Conservation Bachelor's Degree 14 44% costlier
English Language and Literature, General Bachelor's Degree 13 77% costlier
Public Policy Analysis, General Bachelor's Degree 12 28% costlier
Classics and Classical Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics Bachelor's Degree 9 34% costlier
Urban Studies/Affairs Bachelor's Degree 9 52% costlier
Biology/Biological Sciences, General Bachelor's Degree 8 76% costlier
Archeology Bachelor's Degree 8 33% costlier
Mathematics, General Bachelor's Degree 8 73% costlier
Political Science and Government, General Bachelor's Degree 8 71% costlier
Philosophy Bachelor's Degree 8 57% costlier
Multi-/Interdisciplinary Studies, General Bachelor's Degree 8 77% costlier
Environmental Studies Bachelor's Degree 7 45% costlier
African Studies Bachelor's Degree 7 24% costlier
Computational Mathematics Bachelor's Degree 7 27% costlier
Community Health and Preventive Medicine Bachelor's Degree 6 106% costlier
Psychology, General Bachelor's Degree 6 76% costlier
Art/Art Studies, General Bachelor's Degree 6 81% costlier
Human Biology Bachelor's Degree 6 27% costlier
Environmental Science Bachelor's Degree 6 66% costlier
Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts, General Bachelor's Degree 6 67% costlier
Hispanic and Latin American Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics, General Bachelor's Degree 6 22% costlier
Computer and Information Sciences, General Bachelor's Degree 5 93% costlier
American/United States Studies/Civilization Bachelor's Degree 5 37% costlier
Anthropology Bachelor's Degree 5 57% costlier
Cognitive Science Bachelor's Degree 5 32% costlier
Development Economics and International Development Bachelor's Degree 4 32% costlier
Music, General Bachelor's Degree 4 72% costlier
Italian Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 14% costlier
Multi-/Interdisciplinary Studies, Other Bachelor's Degree 3 70% costlier
Religion/Religious Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 49% costlier
East Asian Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 25% costlier
Marine Biology and Biological Oceanography Bachelor's Degree 3 71% costlier
Engineering, General Bachelor's Degree 3 56% costlier
Engineering Physics/Applied Physics Bachelor's Degree 3 45% costlier
Latin American and Caribbean Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 43% costlier
Entrepreneurship/Entrepreneurial Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 77% costlier
Comparative Literature Bachelor's Degree 3 28% costlier
Computational Biology Bachelor's Degree 3 36% costlier
Mass Communication/Media Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 87% costlier
Science, Technology and Society Bachelor's Degree 3 25% costlier
French Studies Bachelor's Degree 3 21% costlier
Sociology Bachelor's Degree 2 73% costlier
Biophysics Bachelor's Degree 2 30% costlier
Ethnic Studies Bachelor's Degree 2 46% costlier
Portuguese Language and Literature Bachelor's Degree 2 52% costlier
Chemistry, General Bachelor's Degree 2 71% costlier
Slavic Studies Bachelor's Degree 2 2% costlier
Classical, Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Studies and Archaeology Bachelor's Degree 2 20% costlier
Physics, General Bachelor's Degree 2 61% costlier
Near and Middle Eastern Studies Bachelor's Degree 2 19% costlier
Applied Mathematics, General Bachelor's Degree 1 58% costlier
Geophysics and Seismology Bachelor's Degree 1 46% costlier
Statistics, General Bachelor's Degree 1 58% costlier
Linguistics Bachelor's Degree 1 43% costlier
Medieval and Renaissance Studies Bachelor's Degree 1 20% costlier
Social Sciences, Other Bachelor's Degree 1 51% costlier
Geology/Earth Science, General Bachelor's Degree 1 72% costlier
German Studies Bachelor's Degree 1 28% costlier
Econometrics and Quantitative Economics Bachelor's Degree 1 35% costlier
Jewish/Judaic Studies Bachelor's Degree 1 43% costlier
Chemical Physics Bachelor's Degree 1 22% costlier


Use the calculators below to formulate a college savings plan for Brown University 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 Brown University 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 Brown University student loan.

Prepayment Option

About Brown University

Brown University is a four year private college located in Providence, Rhode Island.  Full time enrollment is 9,196 and part time is 585. Learn more about getting accepted at Brown University at CollegeSimply.

Students attending this school may pursue both undergraduate and graduate degrees.

Brown University
One Prospect Street
Providence, Rhode Island

For Profit / Not For Profit Status

Brown University is a private not for profit institution.

Brown University cost and financial aid data source: U.S. Department of Education https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?id=217156 IPEDS survey data.