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The 10 most expensive public universities for students from out of state

University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia
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University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia

Many Americans assume that public universities are their cheapest option, but that is not always the case.

According to the College Board, the average cost to attend a private university for one year in the U.S. is $43,870. On average, it costs $34,220 for an out-of-state student to attend a public university, but some public institutions charge out-of-state students just as much — or more —than private colleges do.

U.S. News & World Report found that some of the most prestigious public universities charge non-residents over $40,000 a year to attend.

The University of Virginia (UVA), for example, charges students who are not from Virginia $45,066 in tuition and fees to study for one year. Students from Virginia, on the other hand, pay just $15,722 a year. That means that out-of-state-students are paying 187 more percent than Virginians are.

For the undergraduate class of 2019, 70 percent of UVA students come from Virginia. Graduate students, however, are far more likely to hail from another state. Only 20.7 percent of graduate students are Virginia residents. This means that a majority of graduate students are paying a big price for their chance to study at UVA.

University Of California, San Diego
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University Of California, San Diego

Six of the top 10 most expensive schools are part of the University of California system. University of California, San Diego, the most expensive public university from California, charges nonresidents $41,387 a year. In-state tuition for the UC San Diego, however, is just $13,573.

The massive difference in out-of-state and in-state tuition at public universities is because of their funding model. Since public universities are subsidized by state governments, they charge nonresident students high rates in order to keep costs low for state residents. Private colleges do not receive state funding and thus charge students the same rate regardless of what state they are from.

Both public and private universities offer financial aid which can help counter some of these high costs. At the University of Virginia, for instance, 53 percent of undergraduate students receive some form of financial aid.

Missing from U.S. News & World Report's list is The University of Michigan. For the 2017-2018 year, out-of-state freshmen and sophomores will pay $47,476 in tuition and juniors and seniors will pay $50,808.

Check out the full list of the 10 most expensive public universities in the country:

10. University of California, Berkeley

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $40,191

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $13,509

9. University of California, Santa Cruz

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $40,241

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $13,559

8. University of California, Riverside

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $40,263

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $13,581

7. University of Vermont

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $40,364

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $17,300

6. University of California, Santa Barbara

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $40,704

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $14,022

University of California, Davis
Billy Hustace | Getty Images
University of California, Davis

5. University of California, Davis

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $40,728

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $14,046

4. University of California, San Diego

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $41,387

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $14,705

3. College of William and Mary

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $41,718

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $18,687

2. Virginia Military Institute

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $41,801

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $17,492

1. University of Virginia

2016-2017 out-of-state tuition and fees: $45,066

2016-2017 in-state tuition and fees: $15,722

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