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Thinking Seriously about Paying for College: The Large Effects of a Little Thought

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  • Goethals, G.R.
  • McPherson Frantz, C.
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    Abstract

    The high price of attending college has generated a great deal of discussion and some heated controversy in recent years. Popular opinions generally depict college prices as unreasonable, unjustified, and unpayable. In the context of thinking seriously about the ways colleges and universities ought to approach the difficult issue of pricing in higher education, we survey students at various institutions in order to seek insight into how students think about the amount they pay, and what they get for their money. More specifically, we ask students to seriously consider the subsidy associated with their educational program, and the effect that a change in the size of this subsidy might have on this program. As a result of this exercise, we find that students tend to regard the price of their education as significantly more reasonable than they had prior to thinking seriously about its cost.

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    File URL: http://sites.williams.edu/wpehe/files/2011/06/DP-44.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Department of Economics, Williams College in its series Williams Project on the Economics of Higher Education with number DP-44.

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    Length: 19 pages
    Date of creation: 1997
    Date of revision:
    Publication status: Published in American Association for Higher Education and Accreditation Bulletin, April 2008, Vol. 50, Issue 8, pp. 3-7
    Handle: RePEc:wil:wilehe:44

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    Keywords: EDUCATION ; PRICING;

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