IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/spr/reihed/v57y2016i6d10.1007_s11162-015-9402-y.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Does Financial Aid Impact College Student Engagement?

Author

Listed:
  • Angela Boatman

    () (Vanderbilt University)

  • Bridget Terry Long

    (Harvard Graduate School of Education and NBER)

Abstract

Abstract While increasing numbers of students have gained access to higher education during the last several decades, postsecondary persistence and academic success remain serious concerns with only about half of college entrants completing degrees. Given concerns about affordability and resources, policymakers and administrators wonder how financial aid impacts student outcomes, particularly among low-income students. We investigate this question looking at a range of outcomes beyond just academic performance by focusing on the Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) Program, a generous grant program that provided a renewable scholarship to talented undergraduate students of color with financial need. We isolate the impact of financial aid on academic and community engagement by comparing the outcomes of GMS recipients to similar non-recipients who were likely to have comparably-high levels of motivation and potential for success. With information about the application process, we use similar applicants not selected for the award as a comparison group. We then employ a Regression Discontinuity research design to provide causal estimates of the effects of GMS. The results suggest that GMS recipients were more likely to engage with peers on school work outside of class. Additionally, GMS recipients were much more likely to participate in community service activities and marginally more likely to participate in other extracurricular activities than their non-GMS peers.

Suggested Citation

  • Angela Boatman & Bridget Terry Long, 2016. "Does Financial Aid Impact College Student Engagement?," Research in Higher Education, Springer;Association for Institutional Research, vol. 57(6), pages 653-681, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:reihed:v:57:y:2016:i:6:d:10.1007_s11162-015-9402-y
    DOI: 10.1007/s11162-015-9402-y
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://link.springer.com/10.1007/s11162-015-9402-y
    File Function: Abstract
    Download Restriction: Access to the full text of the articles in this series is restricted.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Dynarski, Susan, 2000. "Hope for Whom? Financial Aid for the Middle Class and Its Impact on College Attendance," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 53(3), pages 629-662, September.
    2. Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz & Ilyana Kuziemko, 2006. "The Homecoming of American College Women: The Reversal of the College Gender Gap," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(4), pages 133-156, Fall.
    3. Stratton, Leslie S. & O'Toole, Dennis M. & Wetzel, James N., 2006. "Are the Factors Affecting Dropout Behavior Related to Initial Enrollment Intensity for College Undergraduates?," IZA Discussion Papers 1951, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Ralph Stinebrickner & Todd R. Stinebrickner, 2003. "Working during School and Academic Performance," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(2), pages 449-472, April.
    5. James Wetzel & Dennis O’Toole & Steven Peterson, 1999. "Factors affecting student retention probabilities: A case study," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer;Academy of Economics and Finance, vol. 23(1), pages 45-55, March.
    6. Susan M. Dynarski, 2003. "Does Aid Matter? Measuring the Effect of Student Aid on College Attendance and Completion," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 279-288, March.
    7. Jeffrey S. DeSimone, 2008. "The Impact of Employment during School on College Student Academic Performance," NBER Working Papers 14006, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Eric Bettinger, 2004. "How Financial Aid Affects Persistence," NBER Chapters,in: College Choices: The Economics of Where to Go, When to Go, and How to Pay For It, pages 207-238 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Imbens, Guido W. & Lemieux, Thomas, 2008. "Regression discontinuity designs: A guide to practice," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 615-635, February.
    10. Stephen L. DesJardins & Dennis A. Ahlburg & Brian P. McCall, 2002. "Simulating the Longitudinal Effects of Changes in Financial Aid on Student Departure from College," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 37(3), pages 653-679.
    11. Brian Jacob & Brian McCall & Kevin M. Stange, 2013. "College as Country Club: Do Colleges Cater to Students' Preferences for Consumption?," NBER Working Papers 18745, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Thomas J. Kane, 2003. "A Quasi-Experimental Estimate of the Impact of Financial Aid on College-Going," NBER Working Papers 9703, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. McCrary, Justin, 2008. "Manipulation of the running variable in the regression discontinuity design: A density test," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 698-714, February.
    14. Judith Scott-Clayton, 2011. "On Money and Motivation: A Quasi-Experimental Analysis of Financial Incentives for College Achievement," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 46(3), pages 614-646.
    15. Darolia, Rajeev, 2014. "Working (and studying) day and night: Heterogeneous effects of working on the academic performance of full-time and part-time students," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 38-50.
    16. Susan Dynarski, 2008. "Building the Stock of College-Educated Labor," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(3), pages 576-610.
    17. Yoram Ben-Porath, 1967. "The Production of Human Capital and the Life Cycle of Earnings," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 352-352.
    18. DesJardins, Stephen L. & McCall, Brian P., 2014. "The impact of the Gates Millennium Scholars Program on college and post-college related choices of high ability, low-income minority students," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 124-138.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:spr:reihed:v:57:y:2016:i:6:d:10.1007_s11162-015-9402-y. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.