Most high school students and their parents are unaware of the actual cost of college, according to a new report from the National Center for Education Statistics. And when they do hazard a guess as to how much it will take to enroll, they often overestimate the price of higher education.
“There may be serious consequences to being uninformed and unsure about college costs and financial aid,” according to the report. “For example, uncertainty about college costs and the availability of financial aid has been associated with underenrollment among low-income and minority students.”
The study looked at students’ perceptions of tuition and fees at a public, four-year college in their state. The findings suggest teens need earlier and better information related to college costs.
A little over half of all students who were eligible for the Pell Grant were selected for verification in 2015-16.
The procedure, which requires students to submit additional paperwork to prove their income, inserts an extra step into the financial aid process. And in an op-ed published by The Hill this week, Justin Draeger—president and CEO of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators—voiced concerns that verification keeps some students from attending college.
The number of colleges still accepting applications for Fall 2018 continues to grow.
More than 550 institutions have openings, financial aid, and housing available to qualified freshmen and/or transfer students, according to NACAC’s College Openings Update.
When survey data was first posted on May 3, the list included 422 colleges and universities. Since that time, dozens of additional institutions have added their information. The update, which includes public and private schools, will continue to be modified by colleges and universities through July 2.
Editor’s note: A version of this post was originally published on Admitted in March 2016. It’s being republished as part of NACAC’s Best of the Blog series.
Getting into college is only half the battle for teens living in poverty.
To prove eligibility for financial aid, many colleges ask low-income students to submit a mountain of paperwork — going beyond what is required of their middle- and upper-income peers, NACAC member Joshua Steckel wrote in a 2016 opinion column published by The Boston Globe.
The process is burdensome, he noted. Worst of all, it can discourage talented students from accessing the financial support they need to attend college.
Editor’s note: This post originally appeared on Admitted in November 2016. It’s being republished as part of NACAC’s Best of the Blog series.
You may be advising a student who lives with their grandmother or aunt, but was never legally adopted. In other instances, an older brother, sister, or family friend is raising a child but no official adoption took place.
For some families, this approach may have offered a way to handle conflicts and crises without involving the court system. However, complications can arise when it comes time to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).