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ERIC Number: ED512151
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Sep
Pages: 36
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Student Loans: Federal Web-Based Tool on Private Loans Would Pose Implementation Challenges and May Be Unnecessary. Report to Congressional Committees. GAO-10-990
Scott, George A.
US Government Accountability Office
In this report, the author and his colleagues respond to a mandate in the Higher Education Opportunity Act requiring GAO (Government Accountability Office) to study the feasibility of developing a national clearinghouse of federal and private student loans on the Department of Education's (Education) Web site. They addressed the following questions: (1) What are some options for establishing a tool on Education's Web site that provides real-time information on federal and private student loans, and what is the perceived need for such a tool?; and (2) What challenges would Education need to address in implementing such a tool? In summary, they found: (1) Education has a range of options for providing prospective borrowers with a Web-based tool containing real-time information--such as interest rates and loan terms--on federal and private student loans, but such a tool may be unnecessary. Providing information on private student loans also may not align with Education's role in administering and promoting federal student aid; and (2) To implement such a tool, Education would have to address several challenges--including securing a high rate of lender participation and ensuring completeness, accuracy, and objectivity of information presented--to avoid the appearance of bias or endorsement. Furthermore, minimizing costs to the federal government would be challenging because developing a tool would require a considerable investment, and many stakeholders ruled out a system funded by lenders. Appended are: (1) Briefing Slides; (2) Comments from the Department of Education; and (3) GAO Contact and Staff Acknowledgments. (Contains 2 footnotes.)
US Government Accountability Office. 441 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20548. Tel: 202-512-6000; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: US Government Accountability Office
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Higher Education Opportunity Act 1970