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ERIC Number: EJ905712
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0884-9153
What Matters in Student Loan Default: A Review of the Research Literature
Gross, Jacob P. K.; Cekic, Osman; Hossler, Don; Hillman, Nick
Journal of Student Financial Aid, v39 n1 p19-29 2009
Federal higher education policy has shifted over the past few decades from grants to loans as the primary means for providing access to postsecondary education for low- and moderate-income families. With this shift, policy makers have begun tracking student loan default rates as a key indicator of the efficacy of student loan programs. This effort requires a closer examination of how to define default and what default signifies: What is an acceptable rate of default? What factors contribute to default? Should default rates be used as indicators of institutional quality or loan program efficacy. These questions lead to further investigation of factors influencing default, such as whether default is a function of the characteristics of students or of the institutions they attend, and whether the types of loans borrowed influence the probabilities of default. To help answer these and related questions, this study reviewed the literature of research on student loan default conducted between 1978 and 2007, and identified 41 of the higher quality studies, the findings of which are summarized here.
National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators. 1101 Connecticut Avenue NW Suite 1100, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-785-0453; Fax: 202-785-1487; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Journal Articles
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A