This Glossary provides definitions of common terms and provides overviews of many of the programs referenced in this website. You may also Download our Glossary. The download provides a full copy of the entire glossary listings.
There are currently 16 names in this directory beginning with the letter C.
A service by the college admissions office for prospective students, allowing them to visit various campus buildings, meet key institutional personnel, and get a firsthand look at campus life. See Virtual Tour
Federal student aid programs under which funds are provided to participating institutions for awards to eligible students. The Campus-Based Programs include: the Federal Work Study Program and the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant Program.
Capitalized Interest (Capitalization)
Unpaid interest that has been added to the principal balance of a loan.
The office in charge of billing students for college related expenses such as tuition, fees, room, and board. Sometimes called the Bursar’s Office of Business Office.
A non-degree credential that proves knowledge or skill in a specific area. Valued credentials vary by industry and job title.
A measurement of how your academic achievement compares with that of other students in your grade. This number is usually determined by using a weighted GPA that takes into account both your grades and the difficulty of the courses you’ve taken.
Cohort Default Rate
The number of students in a cohort who default on their loans during a fiscal year divided by the total number of students in the cohort, expressed as a percentage. The lower the CDR, the fewer students are defaulting on their loans.
An event at which colleges, universities, and other organizations related to higher education present themselves in an exposition atmosphere for the purpose of attracting and identifying potential applicants. It also allows students to learn about different schools and what they have to offer.
The Common Application makes it possible for students to use one admissions application to apply to any of the hundreds of member colleges and universities. There is a Common Application for First-Year Admission and a Common Application for Transfer Admission. Both versions allow the application to be filled out once online and submitted to all schools with the same information going to each. Sometimes called the Common App.
A written agreement between two or more eligible schools. Consortium Agreements between schools can allow students to take classes at both schools while still receiving financial aid at one.
Cost of Attendance
The cost in dollars, of a period of enrollment (such as an academic year). The COA for a student is an estimate of that student’s educational expenses for the period of enrollment. Defining a student’s COA is the first step in establishing a student’s financial need. It sets the limit on the total need-based federal student aid a student may receive. This include tuition and fees, room and board, books, supplies, transportation, and personal expenses.
A unit to measure the amount of schoolwork a student has enrolled in or completed. In a credit hour system, each course is assigned a specific number of credit hours. This number is usually based on the number of classroom meetings per week. Thus, a course that meets for one hour, three times a week, is a three-credit hour course.