Education Costs Must Include Gas Expenses

In 1963 Bob Dylan sang "the times they are a-changin'." He was correct then and his words are still true today. In the 21st century Dylan would probably sing "the times are forever changin'."

On 23 February 2003, I wrote GDT::Speaks:: I Say No to MCCCD Tuition Increases. The note contained the following list itemizing the cost for taking a 3-credit computer class at SCC.

   tuition ............ $153  [3-credit course @ $51 per credit]
   registration fee ... $  5
   computer lab fee ... $  9
   book ............... $ 50
   gas* ............... $ 53
   -------------------------
   total .............. $270

   * Gas expenses were computed using a vehicle that gets
     20 miles to the gallon; 22 miles round-trip to/from 
     campus;  32 round-trips to/from campus; and a gas 
     price of approximately $1.50 per gallon.

On 8 March 2003 (13 days after I wrote about tuition rates), gas was at $1.85 per gallon. Using $1.85 instead of $1.50 caused the cost of a 3-credit computer course to increase 4.4% to $282.

Fast forward to 5 April 2005...

Tuition rates have increased from $51 per credit hour to $60 per credit hour and the price of gas in the Valley of the Sun approximates $2.23 per gallon.

Exercises

  1. Update the following table using the increased tuition rate and gas price.

       tuition ............ $???  [3-credit course @ $60 per credit]
       registration fee ... $  5
       computer lab fee ... $  9
       book ............... $ 50
       gas* ............... $ ??
       -------------------------
       total .............. $???
    
  2. Calculate the percentage increase in the cost of education from spring 2003 to spring 2005.

Update::16 January 2006

Gas prices are virtually unchanged from 5 April 2005. The issue of tuition rates will be re-visited during the Spring 2006 semester.

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Creator: Gerald D. Thurman [gthurman@gmail.com]
Created: 05 April 2005

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