ERIC Number: ED453722
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2001-Jun
Debts and Decisions: Student Loans and Their Relationship to Graduate School and Career Choice. New Agenda Series[TM], Volume 3, Number 4.
Heller, Donald E.
This report examines the relationship between the amount of loans students take out during their undergraduate years and the decisions they make regarding careers and enrollment in graduate school. It uses data from the Baccalaureate and Beyond Survey (National Center for Education Statistics) of approximately 11,000 students who completed their baccalaureate education in the 1992-1993 academic year. It is noted that the racial profile of the graduating class of 1993 did not mirror the enrollment of all students in 4-year colleges and universities that year. While African-Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans represented 18% of all undergraduates, they were only 12% of the graduating class. Fifty percent of all undergraduates borrowed to finance their undergraduate education, with the average loan balance on graduation being approximately $10,100. African American, Hispanic, and Native American students were more likely to have borrowed, as were students from lower income families and students who were independent of their parents and guardians. Students at for-profit proprietary schools were more likely to have borrowed, as were students who attended private nonprofit institutions. The tuition price did not influence whether the student borrowed, but did influence the amount borrowed. Thirty percent of the class of 1993 had enrolled in graduate school by the time the 1993 follow-up survey was conducted, and borrowing for graduate school greatly increased student loan balances. Average balances rose to as high as $57,000 for students enrolled in a first professional degree program. Undergraduate academic characteristics were the most influential predictor of graduate school enrollment, and undergraduate borrowing had little impact by itself. An appendix contains logistic regression coefficients and standard errors for two tables. (Contains 2 figures, 20 tables, 37 references, and 27 endnotes.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Michigan Univ., Ann Arbor. Rackham Graduate School.
Authoring Institution: Lumina Foundation for Education, Indianapolis, IN.