ERIC Number: ED202447
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980
The Financing of Public Higher Education. AAHE-ERIC/Higher Education Research Report No. 9, 1980.
In the United States, society and individuals share the expenses of collegiate education, making it possible to provide higher education for a much larger percentage of youth than in many countries. At the same time, maintenance of low tuitions through public subsidies has provided reasonable assurance of accessibility and equality of public education, institutional autonomy, and support for institutional programs. The effectiveness and equity of socially subsidized low tuitions have been challenged by economists in recent decades. Among arguments: since students benefit directly from education, they should be required to pay a larger portion of the costs, despite foregone earnings and existing expenses, and further, tax laws cause the poor to subsidize the rich. More recently these arguments have been challenged on both economic and philosophical grounds; recent evidence suggests low tuition supplemented by student aid serves accessibility and maintains academic quality better than high tuition and large amounts of student aid. The challenges have not justified or resulted in great modifications to the public low-tuition system, but the basic funding pattern adopted by the federal government will be critical to societal quality and essentially irreversible. Three questions stand out for further study: (1) How effective is need-based student aid in increasing participation of low-income students? (2) How can student aid programs be refined so need analysis and aid distribution can be simplified and student, institutional, and government accountability be clarified? and(3) Is it feasible to maintain high access levels with low tuition and stable or declining student aid? (Author/MSE)
Descriptors: Access to Education, Accountability, Educational Economics, Educational Philosophy, Educational Policy, Educational Quality, Equal Education, Federal Aid, Higher Education, Need Analysis (Student Financial Aid), Public Education, Public Policy, State Aid, State Colleges, Student Costs, Student Financial Aid, Theories, Tuition
Publicatons Department, American Association for Higher Education, Suite 780, One Dupont Circle, Washington, DC 20036 ($3.00 members, $4.00 nonmembers).
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Higher Education, Washington, DC.; American Association for Higher Education, Washington, DC.