College costs keep rising, here's how Americans are coping

As the cost of college continues to rise, American families are looking for ways to keep up.

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The average American family spent $26,458 on college tuition during the 2017-2018 school year, according to a new report from Sallie Mae.

Income and savings from parents and students comprised nearly half (47 percent) of spending, Sallie Mae found. Parents contributed about one-third of college costs out of pocket, about $8,891 on average. Meanwhile, students contributed about $3,300 of their own money.

Families also relied on scholarships and grants to cover about 28 percent of college costs. Sallie Mae found that scholarships, of which the average total award in 2017-2018 was $7,760, were the most utilized resource to pay for expenses.

More than half of Americans turned to loans to supplement 24 percent of expenses, of which parents contributed about 10 percent of borrowed funds while students contributed 14 percent.

This comes as the student loan debt crisis is deepening and college costs continue to rise.

The median tuition and fee price for full-time students attending a private nonprofit four-year school in the 2018-2019 school year was $36,890, according to the CollegeBoard, while those attending out-of-state public four-year institutions faced tuitions and fees valued at an estimated $21,370.

Through the second quarter of this year, there were more than $1.5 trillion in outstanding student loans, according to data from the Federal Reserve.

Sallie Mae found that most families expected the student to help pay off loans when borrowing was shared by the parent, though when the burden fell squarely on the student, 63 percent expected the borrower would be held solely responsible for repayment.