Graduate Admission

Living Costs

Tuition and fees are not the only costs associated with attending Emerson. You may need to relocate to Boston or the surrounding suburbs to begin your coursework. Because of housing costs, many students choose to live in the surrounding neighborhoods of Boston rather than downtown near our campus. However, Boston is easily navigable and the MBTA provides an excellent transportation system with the subway, bus, and commuter rail system to get you from home to campus and just about anywhere else in the Greater Boston area.


Estimated living expenses compiled by Office of Financial Aid:

  • Off-campus living expenses: $13,950/year or $1,162.50 each month for rent, utilities, food, and other similar costs
  • Books and supplies: $1,298/year or $649 each semester
  • Miscellaneous: $1,431/year or $119.25 each month

We are fortunate in the Office of Graduate Admission to have a number of graduate student employees. An informal survey of our current employees found these average monthly living expenses:

  • Rent: ranging from $600/month in Somerville, MA to $812.50 in Brighton, MA. The average is $660. Our graduate student employees live in neighborhoods all over the city, including Allston, Brighton, Somerville, Jamaica Plain, Quincy, Cambridge, Back Bay, and East Boston. Some live in the outer suburbs of Boston such as Beverly, Malden, and Billerica to name a few. All of these locations are accessible by the MBTA (the "T") or commuter rail.
  • Utilities (electricity, water, cable, and Internet, etc.): ranging from $30 to $150/month. This fluctuates throughout the year due to the seasons (electricity bills tend to be much higher in the winter) and the number of roommates each graduate student had. This is also depends on the number of amenities you choose, such as extended cable, landline telephone, etc.
  • Food: budgets range from $100 to $300/month. This varies depending on how often you eat out versus cook at home, and where you shop (Whole Foods vs. Shaw’s).
  • Entertainment: budgets range from $50 to $100/month. There are several free and discounted entertainment options in the city, including museums, movie screenings, live music performances, theater, ballet, and college and professional sporting events. Many students take advantage of BosTix, which offers half-priced day-of tickets to arts events in the city or student rush tickets to other performances.