INOVAS designed and developed the state-of-the-art CATC website to facilitate compliance with requirements in the Higher Education Opportunity Act and to provide better information to student and parent consumers about college costs. It serves as a central point to several tools that allow users to compare colleges’ tuition and fees, net price, and other characteristics. In addition to providing links to helpful tools like the College Scorecard and National Center for Education Statistics’ (NCES) College Navigator website, the site is comprised of four main portals — each designed and developed by the INOVAS team — and outlined below:
• The College Affordability and Transparency Lists. This portal allows users to access the full set of College Affordability and Transparency lists (outlined above). In addition, users can enter the name of a career or vocational program and quickly generate a list of institutions that offer the specified program, along with the tuition and net price charged at each institution. In an effort to provide consumers with additional resources to aid in the college search process, links are also provided to both the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and NCES’ College Navigator website.
• State Spending Charts. This utility allows users to quickly generate reports related to state and local appropriations for postsecondary education; state and local government grants for students; and average public tuition and fee amounts by individual state or nationwide.
• 90/10 Information. This utility provides users with quick and easy access to a list of for-profit, proprietary postsecondary institutions that receive more than 90% of their revenues from federal student financial aid programs.
• Net Price Calculator Center. This portal includes general information for consumers related to net price and the Net Price Calculator. This includes a dynamic index of links to colleges’ online net price calculators — searchable by full or partial institution name, and embedded videos of the winners of the ED-sponsored Net Price Calculator Student Video Challenge — enabling students to learn more about net price through peer-provided resources.
The College Affordability and Transparency Center can be accessed online at http://collegecost.ed.gov/.