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ERIC Number: ED553230
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Jan-7
Pages: 51
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 87
Accelerating College Knowledge: Examining the Feasibility of a Targeted Early Commitment Pell Grant Program. IRP Discussion Paper No. 1405-13
Kelchen, Robert; Goldrick-Rab, Sara
Institute for Research on Poverty
The persistently low college enrollment and completion rates of youth from poor families are partly attributable to their uncertainty about whether college is affordable. In the current system, concrete information about college costs arrives at the end of high school and is only available to those who complete a complex application. Evidence suggests this timing affects students' motivation and ability to adequately prepare for college. We evaluate the feasibility of addressing this problem by using a simplified eligibility process to make an early commitment of the full Pell Grant to eighth graders from needy families. Our analyses suggest substantial benefits relative to the predicted costs. Our simulation of the estimated fiscal effects suggests that Pell program costs would grow by approximately $1.5 billion annually and the benefits would exceed the costs by approximately $600 million. Two appendices provide data tables on Federal Program Receipt by 8th Grade Cohort and Educational Attainment by Family Income.
Institute for Research on Poverty. Publications Department, 1180 Observatory Drive, Madison, WI 53706-1393. Tel: 608-262-6358; Fax: 608-265-3119; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 8; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools; Elementary Education; Secondary Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: University of Wisconsin-Madison, Institute for Research on Poverty
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Pell Grant Program