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ERIC Number: ED586387
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Oct
Pages: 32
Abstractor: ERIC
Trends in Student Aid, 2017. Trends in Higher Education Series
Baum, Sandy; Ma, Jennifer; Pender, Matea; Welch, Meredith
College Board
This report provides a detailed look at the sources and distribution of grants, loans, and other student aid for the most recent academic year and how this funding has changed over time. The federal government provided two-thirds of all student aid in 2016-17, but only one-third of the grant aid. In the context of uncertainty about the timing of the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act and the impact of federal budget changes on student aid, focusing on the evolving sources of grant aid and the distribution of that aid is critical to evaluating the effectiveness of the billions of dollars spent each year on making postsecondary education more accessible. Trends in Student Aid reports on a complex array of grant, loan, tax-based, and work programs that support postsecondary students. Grant aid and tax benefits lower the overall price of education for students and families, making the net price of college less than the published price. Education loans do not lower the price, but they do make it possible to spread payments out over time. The Federal Work-Study program is small relative to other federal programs: only 619,000 students benefited from the $990 million federal allocation to this program in 2016-17. From the students' perspective, these dollars are compensation for their work, not financial assistance. Work-Study earnings frequently replace other earnings, but may increase the employment opportunities available for students. Understanding how these forms of funding--grants, loans, tax benefits, and Work-Study aid--are distributed and how the distribution has changed over time is critical to understanding the effectiveness of the student aid system and evaluating potential changes. The student aid system is continually evolving. Actions by Congress and the current administration may alter the amount, form, and distribution of available federal funds, as well as the institutions in which students enroll and where they use their federal aid. Monitoring impending policy changes is vital to the future of the federal funding available to support students' postsecondary pursuits. [For "Trends in Student Aid, 2016. Trends in Higher Education Series," see ED572538.]
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Publication Type: Reports - Research; Numerical/Quantitative Data
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: College Board
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Pell Grant Program; Federal Direct PLUS Loan Program; Federal Direct Student Loan Program