Community Colleges in California have a fee structure that is similar to that of the UC and State Colleges. The key difference is that in a CC (or JC) you only have to pay tuition for the classes you take. Generally speaking, residents of California don't have added fees and only pay for tuition, a college service fee, and health fee. With $46 a per unit, students end up paying a fraction of the cost of attending a 4-year college. At the UC-level, full-time tuition is around $13,000, and does not change whether the student takes on more or less classes—unless of course they fall below full-time. Having gone to a CC myself, I remember paying about $1200 or so per year to attend college; since I was eligible for financial aid, I essentially was given a free education and saved a lot of money, compared to my colleagues.