Understanding Your Package

CMC is committed to meeting 100% of a family’s determined need. Need-based financial aid is distributed in an equitable and fair manner through established federal and institutional methodologies. The amount of financial aid a student receives is determined by the Cost of Attendance minus the expected family responsibility, which is calculated by the FAFSA, CSS Profile, and tax returns.

The cost of attendance (COA) minus expected family contribution (EFC) equals Eligibility for Financial Aid (Determined Financial Need).

Cost of Attendance

The Cost of Attendance (COA) is the sum of direct and indirect costs, which vary every academic year. Direct costs, such as tuition & fees and room & board, are directly charged to the student’s billing account. Indirect costs, such as books & supplies, transportation, and miscellaneous expenses, are not charged to the student’s billing account. However, these indirect costs are accounted in the total COA when determining financial aid since these are costs a student may incur during the academic year. Note that although indirect costs are taken into consideration in the equation when determining aid, any indirect costs that a student does incur during the academic year must be paid by the student.

Cost of Attendance for 2024 - 2025 
Tuition & Fees (Full Time)$67,980
Housing & Meals$20,830
Books & Supplies$1,200
Average Cost of Attendance$91,510


Expected Family Responsibility

The expected family responsibility is determined by the information provided on the FAFSA, CSS Profile, and tax documentation. The FAFSA is used to determine the federal aid a family may be eligible for, such as federal grants, federal loans, and federal work-study. The CSS Profile is used to determine the institutional aid a family may be eligible for, which include institutional grants, institutional loans, and institutional work-study. While both the FAFSA and CSS Profile gather information about a family’s income and assets, the CSS Profile gathers more in-depth information about a family’s financial situation.

Claremont McKenna College expects all students to contribute to their education. The student contribution, which is a portion of the expected family responsibility and also known as Summer Savings, is determined by the minimum student contribution set by the college or by the assessment of income and assets, whichever is higher. The minimum student contribution varies by class level:

Class Level Minimum Student Contribution
Freshman $2,200
Sophomore $2,300
Junior $2,400
Senior $2,500


Financial Need

The financial need, which is the COA minus the expected family responsibility, is the amount the Office of Financial Aid uses to package a student with the aid they are eligible for. The financial need is covered by different forms of financial aid, which most commonly include grants, work-study, loans, and scholarships. For more details of each form of financial aid, please visit Types of Aid.

When the financial need is determined, the standard package will be as follows:

Financial Need = $3,600** Work-Study + $6,000* Loan + Remainder in grant

For example, Student A was determined to have an expected family responsibility of $15,000.

2024-25 Cost of Attendance$91,510
Expected Family Responsibility$15,000
Financial Need (COA - Family Responsibility)$76,510


Type of AidAmount
Total Aid$71,500


*Loan amount will vary from $3,000 to $6,000 based on the student’s need level.

**Work-study amount will vary from $3,600 to $4,200 based on class level.

To get an estimate of your net cost, please use our Net Price Calculator.