Have you ever heard the famous Benjamin Franklin quote, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”? As workers in a preventive dental care specialty, dental hygienists demonstrate that truth daily. And you can enter the profession with a relatively small down payment – just two years of dental hygienist school tuition.

Dental Hygiene Programs
In order to become a licensed dental hygienist, you must complete an undergraduate dental hygiene program. There are currently more than 300 entry-level (certificate, associate degree, or bachelor’s degree) programs that are accredited by the Commission of Dental Accreditation (CODA) of the American Dental Association, an accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Dental hygiene master’s degree and degree completion programs are accredited by CODA as well.

An associate degree in dental hygiene requires about 86 credits (about 2,666 total clock hours of instruction) to complete, and a bachelor’s degree requires about 122 credits (about 3,093 total clock hours) to complete. The majority of dental hygiene programs are available in junior and community colleges, though four-year colleges and universities and vocational/technical schools also offer dental hygiene degrees.

The Cost of Dental Hygienist School
According to the American Dental Association and the American Dental Hygienists’ Association , the average estimated total cost of tuition and fees for an associate degree is $30,155; for a bachelor’s degree, $40,207; and a master’s degree, $23,133. Of course, you can find a small community college that charges just $5,000 for a degree program, or you could choose a program in a big city and pay upward of $70,000 for dental hygienist school tuition.

Typical dental hygienist school fees include uniforms, lab coats, shoes, professional association dues, computer fees, malpractice insurance, and licensing board exams. Textbooks also factor in to the cost of dental hygienist school, as do room and board if you choose to live on campus.
Other essential items that may not be included in the listed cost of dental hygienist school are instruments and clinical lab supplies. If you are required to purchase supplies on your own, they may include hand mirrors, hand magnifying-glass, cart with drawers, safety glasses, clipboards, disposable gloves and face masks/shields, handpiece, radiation badges, dental typodonts, and more.

Dental Hygienist School Cost-Saving Opportunities
If you don’t want to pay bachelor’s-level dental hygienist school tuition now, you can become a dental hygienist by completing a certificate or associate degree program and enrolling in a degree completion program in the future. Your bachelor’s degree can be in dental hygiene or a related area, such as health science or health services administration. CODA has accredited about 60 dental hygiene degree completion programs.

Another way to defray the cost of dental hygienist school is to pursue a bachelor’s degree that allows you to earn a certificate in dental hygiene first and then complete your four-year degree once you’re working and drawing a salary. Some bachelor’s degree programs are designed for this very purpose, with class schedules tailored to your work schedule.

And when you do earn a bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene, your bank account can benefit from opportunities to move beyond the dental office and work in dental hygiene education, administration, sales, and research.

If you want to prevent patients’ health problems and your own potential financial distress, pay the relatively low cost of dental hygienist school. That’s certainly something worth smiling about.

You may already know how to cook, but if you really want to make it in the culinary industry, culinary education is essential. Culinary schools offer invaluable instruction in cooking styles, advanced techniques, and menu planning but, as with any education program, it comes with a price. So how much dough are we talking about?

Culinary Programs
The cost of culinary school depends largely on program length, which can range from a couple of months to four years. Many culinary schools offer certificate and diploma programs, which are the least expensive option, requiring just two months to two years of training. Associate degrees take nine months to two years to complete, and bachelor’s degrees take four years. Culinary master’s and doctoral degree program are available as well.

Culinary Tuition
Culinary tuition often mirrors traditional college tuition, though specialized, long-term culinary institute costs can be much higher. Culinary tuition at a community college or vocational/technical school usually ranges from $2,000 to $5,000, while public universities charge anywhere from $3,000 to $18,000. At the other end of the spectrum, specialized culinary institute tuition ranges from $7,000 to $35,000. Of course, private universities are typically the most expensive option, with culinary tuition ranging from $14,000 all the way up to $45,000 per year.

Be aware that some culinary school costs are listed per semester rather than per year. Be sure to read the financial fine print because, if you’re not careful, your culinary tuition may be double what you planned for.

Culinary School Fees
The cost of culinary school may or may not include room, board, and other fees. Culinary school fees generally include application, registration, exam, student activity, and graduation fees. You will also have to pay for books, transportation, and insurance, and you will be responsible for purchasing uniforms and supplies such as culinary tool kits, knives, and more.

Offsetting Culinary School Costs
If the numbers seem scary, remember that you can get a variety of culinary scholarships through recipe contests and traditional academic achievement. Accredited culinary schools are eligible to offer federal scholarships, grants, and loans. Schools that have been regionally accredited offer culinary education at the bachelor’s degree level or higher. Schools that have been nationally accredited by the American Culinary Federation (ACF), which is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, may offer all levels of culinary education as long as the program consists of more than 1,000 hours of theoretical and practical instruction.

Culinary organizations like ACF also offer their own culinary scholarships to high school students as well as current college students. Culinary scholarships may be applied to any accredited school, though some are designated for one school in particular.

Before committing to the cost of culinary school, make sure you’re serious about a culinary career. If you decide you’re in it for the long haul, you’ll find that culinary tuition is worth penny.

If you’re a registered nurse (RN) who wants to advance in your career and provide a high level of individualized care, start training to become a nurse practitioner. Want to know how much nurse practitioner school costs will set you back? Find out here.

Nurse Practitioner Programs
First, understand that most states require nurse practitioners to hold a master of science in nursing (MSN) degree. To gain entrance to an MSN degree program for this advanced practice specialty, you’ll need a bachelor of science degree in nursing (BSN) and/or at least one or two years of clinical RN experience. If you have a diploma or associate degree in nursing (ADN), you can enroll in a BSN-to-MSN program.

Once you complete an MSN degree, you may also choose to enroll in a post-graduate certificate program that will enable you to specialize in a particular area of nurse practitioner care (e.g., acute care, neonatal, women’s health, etc.).

Nurse Practitioner School Costs
Let’s break those degree program requirements into dollars and cents. A nurse practitioner master’s degree consists of about two years of full-time study, which translates into 40 to 60 credits. Post-graduate certificate programs consist of about 40 credits and charge tuition comparable to MSN degree costs.

Nurse practitioner tuition at a state university averages about $200 per credit for state residents and jumps to $500 per credit for out-of-state students. Total nurse practitioner tuition for a 60-credit program would then be $12,000 for in-state students and $30,000 for out-of-state students.

If your heart is set on a private university, be aware that these schools charge as much as $1,000 per credit – amounting to $60,000 for total nurse practitioner tuition.

Nurse Practitioner School Fees
That’s not all. Additional nurse practitioner school fees often include lab, library, student services, activity, and clinical placement fees. Plus, you need to factor liability insurance (on top of regular health insurance) as well as textbooks into your budget for each semester. And nursing textbooks tend to be pricier than liberal arts books.

Remember that you’ll be paying these nurse practitioner school costs on top of your BSN degree tuition. On the other hand, you may have fulfilled some of your MSN degree requirements during the course of your BSN program, in which case you’ll be able to save some money on nurse practitioner tuition.

Nurse Practitioner Financial Aid
Given the never-ending nursing shortage, nurse practitioner financial aid is widely available. Academic nurse practitioner scholarships are usually available through nursing schools and may be based on your standardized test scores and/or undergraduate GPA. Nurse practitioner scholarships based on financial need are available as well. Professional organizations such as the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners also offer a number of nurse practitioner scholarships.

Employer tuition assistance is another common source of nurse practitioner financial aid. In light of the nationwide demand for skilled nursing care, many employers will bear the brunt of nurse practitioner school costs so that their RNs can put their training to use in their health care organization.

Finding money to pay nurse practitioner school costs can be as simple as talking to your boss or applying for a scholarship online. And the personal and professional fulfillment you’ll experience as a nurse practitioner will make your investment worthwhile.

How Much Does a Design Degree Cost?

Gina L | December 6, 2009

Design is a broad industry, encompassing such fields as interior design, fashion design, and graphic design, to name a few. As you can imagine, design degrees come in all shapes and sizes, and with all kinds of price tags.  

How Much Does an Interior Design Degree Cost?
Interior design school costs vary — an associate degree program in interior design may cost up to $45,000, and a bachelor’s degree program may cost up to $85,000.

Accreditation is particularly important in the field of interior design, as it not only impacts your eligibility for federal financial aid, but it also affects your credentials for professional certification. The primary accrediting agency for interior design is the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA), which only accredits bachelor’s and master’s degree programs.

The prices may be steep, but good interior design schools can help you find scholarships and other financial aid opportunities to offset your design degree tuition. Organizations such as the American Architectural Foundation, the International Furnishings and Design Association, and the American Society of Interior Designers, for example, offer interior design scholarship programs to consider.

How Much Does a Fashion Design Degree Cost?
Fashion design degree costs vary among community colleges, traditional colleges, career schools, and art schools. Specialized fashion design schools may cost upward of $30,000 per year. You can also get a good education at a public school for about $5,000 per year, but the price goes up several thousand dollars if you’re an out-of-state student. Room and board averages about $10,000 at each school.

One of the major fashion design degree cost considerations is location. Since New York and L.A. are the fashion capitals of the U.S., it makes good career sense to choose a school on either coast. But schooling in these cities does have its financial drawbacks, as the cost of living in either location is sky-high. Design schools in smaller cities offer more opportunities to save on living and other personal expenses.

No matter which type of design school you choose, make sure it’s regionally accredited or nationally accredited by an agency like the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

How Much Does a Graphic Design Degree Cost?
Graphic design tuition can be as low as $5,000 at a two-year college and as high as $50,000 at a four-year college. Community colleges and vocational/technical schools typically fall on the low end of the cost spectrum, offering associate degrees as well as diplomas and certificates in graphic design. Enrolling in one of these short-term programs can be a great way to save money on a design degree.

Specialized art and design schools are typically the most expensive education option, offering studio-centered graphic design instruction as well as industry-centered courses such as advertising, art history, business, marketing, and writing. The expense may be significant, but you can reap the benefits of a well-rounded education that will place you ahead of your peers.

Thankfully, financial aid is available from a variety of sources, particularly the schools themselves, which may offer full design degree tuition scholarships. To qualify for one of these awards, you will need to wow the design school with a diverse, professional portfolio.

When you request information from design schools that interest you, be sure to check the price tag. From there, only you can decide which design degree costs are best for you.