ERIC Number: ED268928
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986
Reference Count: 0
Concepts of Cost and Cost Analysis for Higher Education.
Brinkman, Paul T.; Allen, Richard H.
AIR Professional File, n23 Spr 1986
Concepts of costs and cost analysis in higher education are examined, along with how to prepare for a cost study. Specific cost analysis techniques are identified, along with types of data generated and potential problems. In preparing for cost studies, it is important to consider: purpose, types of cost analysis, types of cost, common calculations of cost, and cost measurements. The first step is to determine the decisions/policy implications that will be addressed. Any study will consider how much something costs and why it costs that much. Possible kinds of costs that can be calculated are: cost objectives (e.g., input); cost basis (e.g., historical); cost variability (e.g., fixed); cost-activity relationship (e.g., total); cost-determination method (e.g., specific service); and cost-time relationship (e.g., time period). In higher education, the most common costing approaches are the calculation of: historical, full, average cost of outputs; and historical, total, indirect costs of inputs. Formula budgets based on costs studies are widely used by states and systems. Four ways of measuring costs of a program or activity are addressed, along with three stages of a cost-benefit analysis. An extended example of how to think through a proposed study of the costs of enhanced student recruitment is included. (SW)
Descriptors: College Administration, Cost Effectiveness, Educational Finance, Higher Education, Measurement Techniques, Money Management, Operating Expenses, Program Costs, Regression (Statistics), Statistical Analysis, Unit Costs
Association for Institutional Research, 314 Stone Bldg., State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306.
Publication Type: Collected Works - Serials; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Association for Institutional Research.