IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/cdl/cshedu/qt6sp9787j.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Student Debt Dilemma: Debt Aversion as a Barrier to College Access

Author

Listed:
  • Burdman, Pamela

Abstract

Though the rise in college student debt often has been blamed on rising tuition, a radical shift in student financial aid--from a system relying primarily on need-based grants to one dominated by loans--has been equally important. Numerous reports have highlighted the burdens faced by students who borrow large sums, but less is known about students who are averse to borrowing. For these students, the increasing prominence of loans could actually narrow their options and decrease their chances of attending and completing college. Given the increasingly important role of student loans in financial aid packages, perceptions about debt influence the ability of loan programs to achieve their goal of equalizing opportunity for students at all income levels. Based on interviews with students, counselors, outreach professionals, and financial aid directors, as well as a review of relevant research, this discussion paper offers an initial gauge of the debt dilemma and recommends four broad strategies: (1) making more grant money available for low-income and first-generation students, (2) making loan programs more attractive and efficient through income-based repayment strategies, (3) better integrating financial aid awareness into high school counseling, and (4) providing more pathways for students who prefer to attend part-time. Loans are likely to remain a mainstay of federal financial aid programs, so as interest rates begin to rise for the first time in years, foreshadowing higher future payments, the problems faced by students who borrow as well as the barriers confronted by those who are averse to borrowing are only liable to increase.

Suggested Citation

  • Burdman, Pamela, 2005. "The Student Debt Dilemma: Debt Aversion as a Barrier to College Access," University of California at Berkeley, Center for Studies in Higher Education qt6sp9787j, Center for Studies in Higher Education, UC Berkeley.
  • Handle: RePEc:cdl:cshedu:qt6sp9787j
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.escholarship.org/uc/item/6sp9787j.pdf;origin=repeccitec
    Download Restriction: no

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Darragh Flannery & Cathal O’Donoghue, 2011. "The Life-cycle Impact of Alternative Higher Education Finance Systems in Ireland," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 42(3), pages 237-270.
    2. Rothstein, Jesse & Rouse, Cecilia Elena, 2011. "Constrained after college: Student loans and early-career occupational choices," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(1-2), pages 149-163, February.
    3. Judith Scott-Clayton, 2012. "Information Constraints and Financial Aid Policy," NBER Working Papers 17811, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Rita Asplund & Oussama Ben Adbelkarim & Ali Skalli, 2008. "An equity perspective on access to, enrolment in and finance of tertiary education," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(3), pages 261-274.

    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:cdl:cshedu:qt6sp9787j. 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: (Lisa Schiff). General contact details of provider: http://www.escholarship.org/repec/cshe/ .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.