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College tuition fees may go down in USA due to fall in enrollment

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The declination in the enrollment in colleges in USA has given a hope to students and their parents that college tuition fees also may go down with the enrollment.

If we go by the law in economics, lower demand automatically generates lower price, until small fishes in the business merge together or go offline and shrink supply. In higher education business, it might not work that way, though.

Decline in enrollment may cause fall in fees

In the fall of 2012, published tuition and fees in-state students at four-year US public schools rose just 2.9% from a year earlier, the smallest increase in 33 years, the College Board reported. At private schools, published prices have risen to 3.8%, lower than the increase in recent years.

After two decades, the population of students enrolling in colleges and universities has dropped substantially by half a million, according to the US Census Bureau.

Enrollment was certainly on the minds of 916 college administrators and consultants attending a recent strategic enrollment management conference hosted by Chicago by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admission Officers.

"Everybody - two year, three year, four year, private, public, Christian schools; they all raised concern about meeting their enrollment goals," says Michael Reilly, the association's executive director.

"The lower enrollment mostly reflect a better economy, which lured students into the workforce and away from two year and for profit schools," says Jennifer Ma, a policy research scientist for the college board.

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