In a startling trend, the new standard for private college tuition has hit $50,000 per year, according to data compiled by the Chronicle of Higher Education.
Last year, only five colleges reported charging $50,000 for tuition, fees, room and board. Today, 58 private institutions charge that much per year and more, according to the Chronicle.
Of course, many colleges and universities are stepping up their financial aid packages, especially as a result of the recession, which means that a significant number of students do not pay full tuition. But the tuition does not include books and travel for students to and from school - those are added expenses - and the cost of a college education is rising fast than other goods and services in the economy, the Chronicle reports.