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History of Higher Education

A guide to support the EDHE 5300 Course

Funding and Financial Aid

Research Guide Overview:

Financial aid is seen as both a blessing and a curse in college admissions.  On the one hand, it is an opportunity for those who may not be able to afford college.  On the other hand, with that opportunity comes staggering debt and a lack of understanding of how that debt works.  As the years have gone one, higher education has seen an incredible increase in costs.  These sticker prices tend to scare off students from lower-income backgrounds or those that are first-generation college students.  Understanding the process of financial aid and higher education is key to breaking this cycle of inequality.  Below you will find resources to understand the economics behind financial aid, get information on the student loan debt crisis, and see how financial aid affects those from different backgrounds. 

Financial aid awareness fair 2017 (67 of 101)

"Financial aid awareness fair 2017 (67 of 101)" by MDC-EPC is marked with CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

Funding and Financial Aid Resources


Sample List of Journal Articles- Please email or set up a consultation with any questions! 

Perna, L. W., & Steele, P. E. (2011). The role of context in understanding the contributions of financial aid to college opportunities. Teachers College Record113(5), 895–933.


Pulcini, B. (2018). Financial aid policies and practices impede low-income students access to higher education. College & University93(2), 61–65.


Renbarger, R., & Long, K. (2019). Interventions for postsecondary success for low-income and high-potential students: A systematic review. Journal of Advanced Academics30(2), 178–202.


Ziskin M, Fischer MA, Torres V, Pellicciotti B, Player-Sanders J. Working students’ perceptions of paying for college: Understanding the connections between financial aid and work. The Review of Higher Education. 2014;37(4):429-467. doi:10.1353/rhe.2014.0028