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ERIC Number: ED531673
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Apr
Pages: 77
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Simplifying Student Aid: What It Would Mean for States
Baum, Sandy; Little, Kathleen; Ma, Jennifer; Sturtevant, Anne
College Board Advocacy & Policy Center
Like the federal Pell Grant program, need-based state grant programs are designed to increase access to higher education among low- and moderate-income students. A growing body of research indicates that adequate funding is a necessary but not sufficient condition for successfully achieving this goal. Aid programs that are easy to understand and to apply for are more effective than the same dollars devoted to more complex, less predictable programs. Consistent with this evidence, the federal government has taken steps to simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and to make it easier for students and families to provide the required information. With support from Lumina Foundation for Education and assistance from researchers at the University of Michigan, the College Board undertook this study on the implications of simplification of the FAFSA for state grant programs. The goal is to quantify the potential impact of removing data elements from the Federal Methodology, including the assets that remain in the formula and all financial information not included on federal income tax forms. This study also explores possible strategies for counteracting the effects of these changes if states and/or institutions should find that necessary. The importance of a simpler application process led the Rethinking Student Aid Study Group, sponsored by the College Board and funded by the Lumina, Mellon and Spencer foundations, to recommend in 2008 that the federal government eliminate the existing form for applying for federal student aid and instead have the IRS provide the needed information to determine Pell Grant awards. Appended are: (1) Authors, Researchers, Advisory Committee Members; (2) The Study Population--Excerpts from State Reports; (3) Impact of Formula Changes on Applicants with Incomes of $75,000 or More; and (4) Tuition Trends. (Contains 3 figures, 26 tables, and 56 footnotes.)
College Board Advocacy & Policy Center. 45 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10023. Tel: 212-713-8165; Fax: 212-713-8143; e-mail:; email:; email:; Web site:
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Lumina Foundation for Education
Authoring Institution: College Board Advocacy and Policy Center
Identifiers - Location: Kentucky; Minnesota; Ohio; Texas; Vermont
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Pell Grant Program