Ways to Save Money

This 8-Question Quiz Could Help You Make One of the Toughest Financial Decisions of Your Life

January 22, 2016
by Jamie Cattanach
Contributor

You may have already resigned yourself to spending a ton of money to put yourself or your child through college.

You don’t have to go into deep debt to do it, but a college education is a serious investment, no doubt.

Considering those five- and six-figure sums you’re preparing to dish out, isn’t it worth taking a few minutes to answer eight questions that might help you financially prepare for this major decision?

How to Choose a College While Keeping Cost in Mind

If you answered that question with a resounding “yes,” head over to the Wall Street Journal to take the full eight-question quiz.

It’ll only take you about a minute to complete, and 10 minutes to read through the helpful stats you’ll access with each answer you provide — whether you’re correct or not.

There’s a ton to learn, including the right answers to questions you didn’t even know had right answers, like “What is the maximum amount students should borrow to attend college?” (I got that one right by chance, but I won’t spoil it for you!)

The quiz also suggests awesome, pragmatic resources, like ionMatch, which helps compare schools by the estimated cost of degrees and potential post-graduation salaries.

College Tuition: Footing the Bill

Even if the idea of choosing a school based solely on financial metrics skeeves you out, look into alternative ways to foot the bill.

Student loan debt might not seem like a big deal now.

But once you’ve graduated, it can become a serious hassle — so serious that some kids skip town entirely to get rid of it.

So if your dream school isn’t exactly cost-effective, seek out scholarships and apply, apply, apply.

I actually learned from the quiz that “for every 10 scholarships a student applies to, they’re likely to win at least one, according to Edvisors.”

To get you started on your search, here are 100 scholarships to check out… and 100 weird ones for you fearless types.

And if you’re a 4.0 student, you might be happy to learn that top-tier and Ivy League schools like Princeton and Stanford have deeply decreased — and sometimes eliminated — the cost of their tuition for worthy scholars.

Don’t forget: You can find flexible side gigs to help you pay your way through college.

This guy paid off his debt before he graduated just by blogging, and this college student earns $35,000 a year as a freelance writer.

Your Turn: What did you score on this WSJ quiz?

Jamie Cattanach (@jamiecattanach) is a junior writer at The Penny Hoarder. She also writes other stuff, like wine reviews and poems.

by Jamie Cattanach
Contributor for The Penny Hoarder

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