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ERIC Number: ED532006
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 214
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1094-4647-0
Three Essays on Chinese Higher Education after Expansion and Reform: Sorting, Financial Aid, and College Selectivity
Loyalka, Prashant Kumar
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Stanford University
Since the late 1990s, China has dramatically increased its college enrollments, the number and diversity of its higher education institutions, university tuition fees, and financial aid. Now students from a wider range of backgrounds have significantly more opportunities to attend college and also compete for entry into more selective institutions. At the same time, low-income students have become increasingly concerned about the costs of going to college. In order to understand the situation that Chinese students face in light of the recent expansion and reform of the country's higher education system, the three main essays of this dissertation look respectively at student sorting, the distribution of student financial aid, and the importance of college selectivity on students' college and expected post-college outcomes across the four-year university system. The analyses in these essays rest upon a unique data set collected by the author--a large, simple random sample of senior college students from one province in China who attend one of the four-year universities in that province in 2008. The first essay shows how students are sorted by SES, gender, and ability across China's higher education system and relates this sorting to a series of complex institutional mechanisms that exist both in pre-tertiary schooling, as well as the stage of college application and admissions. The second essay describes how the main types of student financial aid and net college fees are currently allocated across the tracks, tiers, universities, and majors of the four-year university system. It also examines whether or not aid is successfully targeted to low-income students and whether or not other student characteristics explain the distribution of financial aid. This essay finds that government-financed aid is for the most part allocated evenly across more and less selective universities and is reaching its target population of low-income students. At the same time, non-government aid is allocated towards more selective institutions. Within universities, the different types of aid are distributed to individuals not only in consideration of student SES, but also in consideration of other factors such as college entrance exam score, gender and party membership. The last essay focuses on measuring the causal effects of attending a first-tier versus a second-tier higher education institution on students' college and expected post-college outcomes. This essay finds that just getting into and attending a first tier institution versus a second-tier institution makes little difference in terms of class ranking, the net tuition that students pay, expected wages after graduation, or the likelihood that students prepare to apply for graduate school just after graduating college. Attending a first tier institution does make it less likely that a student will get into their preferred major choice. A final chapter of the dissertation summarizes the results of these essays and discusses their policy implications. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China