Here's some tips to keeping college debt down:
Don't charge educational expenses on a credit card if you can take out a cheaper student loan. Most credit cards charge more than 13 percent.
Don't rule out a private school just because it charges higher tuition. Many students take five years to graduate because they can't get into prerequisite courses at clogged public schools. Many private schools guarantee students can graduate in four years.
Don't defer paying interest on student loans for more than a year. That can double the cost of borrowing.
Don't be afraid of student loans. College graduates tend to earn higher salaries over their lifetime. "To me, it's an investment loan, not a consumption loan," said Jacqueline King, the director of policy analysis for the American Council on Education.