Cost Accounting at a Research University

Cost Accounting at a Research University

by Charles Schwartz, UC Berkeley

My previous study on this topic, with the title, “The Cost of Undergraduate Education at the University of California – Improved Calculation”, was posted in late 2007 at It concluded that the current level of mandatory fees for resident undergraduate students is very close to 100% of the University’s actual expenditure for undergraduate education, averaged per student.  In contrast, University officials said that student fees covered 30% of the cost of education.

New results reported here, for the year 2011-12, show University expenditures of:
$1.296 Billion for Undergraduate Education = $6,910 average cost per student; and
$2.117 Billion for Faculty Research (unsponsored) and related Graduate Programs.

The mandatory fee level for resident undergraduate students was $13,181, which is nearly twice what it cost the University to provide their education.  In this paper, I shall review the method used before, then go through the steps with the latest input data. At the end is a critical discussion of the implications of these financial facts, including an indictment of the University leadership for their dishonesty.

The full paper is posted at

1 Comment

  1. Links for March 12, 2013 | Youth Vote, Technology, Politics said,

    March 12, 2013 @ 11:00 am

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