Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Promoting or perturbing access: An event history analysis of the effects of financial aid on Latino students' educational attainment
by Gross, Jacob P.K., Ph.D., Indiana University, 2008, 130; 3344621
Abstract (Summary)

At a time when Latinos make up an increasing proportion of the U.S. school population and increasingly seek entrance to postsecondary education the role of financial aid in postsecondary access remains in flux and uncertain. Though federal, state, and institutional grants have historically helped the lowest income students pay for their educational costs, grants have generally not kept pace with increasing costs (Advisory Committee on Student Financial Assistance, 2001; Ficklen & Stone, 2002). Therefore, education costs have increasingly shifted to students and their families via loans. This shift has a disproportionately negative effect on Latinos (as well as African Americans), who are more likely to come from low- to low-middle income families (Price, 2004). Moreover, recent data suggest that concerns about affordability and access are not the sole domain of low-income families. While the net price (total costs less total grant aid) paid by low-income (<$40,000) students as a proportion of total income remained constant between 1992-1993 and 2003-2004 for students enrolled at public four-year institutions, students from low-middle income ($40,000 to $69,999) families in the same sector paid more as a proportion of total income. Although low-income students still pay a disproportionately high percent of family income for school (particularly when room and board is included), grant aid helps reduce the net price relatively more for them than for low-middle income students (Baum, Brodigan, & Ma, 2007).

It is in this context that this study responds to calls from Carter (2006) and others (Nora, 1990; Nora & Cabrera, 1996; St. John, Paulsen, & Carter, 2005) for more research on the effects of financial aid on underrepresented students. Specifically this study asks, “To what extent do loans, grants, institutional aid, and work-study affect the educational attainment of Latinos and how do these effects change over time?” In addition, this study seeks to address limitations in cross-sectional approaches to studying financial aid use among underrepresented students by employing event history analysis (EHA), a longitudinal method to ascertain the effects of aid in differing time periods. The goal, therefore, is to not only understand more about whether aid promotes or perturbs access for Latinos, but as importantly when those effects occur and how they may vary over time.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Hossler, Don
Commitee: Rubin, Barry, Torres, Vasti, Toutkoushian, Robert
School: Indiana University
Department: School of Education
School Location: United States -- Indiana
Source: DAI-A 70/02, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Education finance, Hispanic American studies, Higher education
Keywords: Education attainment, Event history analysis, Financial aid, Latinos
Publication Number: 3344621
ISBN: 9781109027655
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