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Redesigning the Financial Aid System: Why Colleges and Universities Should Switch Roles with the Federal Government

Overview

As the cost of higher education continues to rise, students and their families find it increasingly difficult to navigate the financial aid maze. In Redesigning the Financial Aid System, economist Robert Archibald examines the history of the system and its current flaws, and he makes a radical proposal for changing the structure of the system.

Archibald argues that one of the problems with the current model—in which universities are responsible for the majority of grants while ...

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Overview

As the cost of higher education continues to rise, students and their families find it increasingly difficult to navigate the financial aid maze. In Redesigning the Financial Aid System, economist Robert Archibald examines the history of the system and its current flaws, and he makes a radical proposal for changing the structure of the system.

Archibald argues that one of the problems with the current model—in which universities are responsible for the majority of grants while the federal government provides student loans—is that a student cannot know the final price of attending a given institution until after he or she has applied, been accepted, and received a financial aid offer. As a result, students remain largely uninformed about the cost of their college educations until very late in the decision-making process and so have difficulty making a timely choice. In addition, financial aid information is kept private, creating confusion over the price of a college education and the role of financial aid.

Under Archibald's proposed reforms, the federal government would assess a student's financial need and provide need-based grants, while institutions would be responsible for guaranteeing student loans. Not only would this new system demystify financial aid and allow students to be better informed about the cost of college earlier in the process, but it would greatly simplify the application procedure and prevent financial aid allocation from contributing to the problem of rising tuition costs. Archibald's clear explanation of the current system—its impact, strengths, and weaknesses—as well as his plans for reform, will be of interest to educators, administrators, students, and parents.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Pennsylvania Association of Student Financial Administrators Newsletter
Offers an interesting series of ideas around a general premise that the roles and responsibilities of government and schools in higher education subsidies should be changed.

— David R. Smedley

University Business - Jennifer Patterson Lorenzetti
[An] exhaustively researched and meticulously reasoned argument.
Pennsylvania Association of Student Financial Administrators Newsletter - David R. Smedley
Offers an interesting series of ideas around a general premise that the roles and responsibilities of government and schools in higher education subsidies should be changed.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801871238
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/2002
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 238
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.92 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert B. Archibald is professor of economics and director of the Thomas Jefferson Program in Public Policy at the College of William and Mary.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Table of Contents

Contents:

Lists of Tables and Figures

Preface and Acknowledgements1. Introduction

2. The History of Financial Aid in the United States

3. The Financial System: How It Works and How Well It Works

4. Theoretical Considerations: Access, Choice, Affordability, and Merit

5. Institutionally Funded Grants

6. Federal Loan Gaurantees

7. Eligibility for Financial Aid and Other Redesign Issues

8. Evaluating the Redesign Proposals

9. On Political Feasibility

10. Final Thoughts: Facing Trade-offs

Notes

References

Index

Johns Hopkins University Press

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