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State Need-Based Grant Aid 1979 to 2012. Postsecondary Education Opportunity, 2013 (August) pp. 1-16.

Data from the National Postsecondary Student Aid Studies demonstrates that college affordability is a growing problem: between 2000 and 2008, unmet financial need rose from $23.9 billion to $47.1 billion, the student work/loan burden rose from $40.2 billion to $88.4 billion, and the net price to families rose from $121.3 billion to $224.8 billion. Meanwhile, the states have cut back their investment in higher education from $10.47 per $1,000 in personal income in 1080 to $5.58 in 2013. During the 2011-12 academic year, the states awarded only $7.0 billion in need-based grants, compared to the $33.5 billion that the federal government awarded in Pell Grants, and the average state grant was 81.3 percent of the average Pell Grant. The state need-based grant coverage of federal Pell Grant recipients declined from 72.4 percent to 25.6 percent between 1979 and 2012. Only eight states (Vermont, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Maine, New York, Colorado, and North Dakota) awarded need-based grants to over half of their undergraduates that also received Pell Grants.

Scholarships

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Nankervis, Bryan. Gender Inequity in the National Merit Scholarship Program. Journal of College Admission, 2013, 291 (Spring) pp. 20-25.

PSAT scores are used as a selection criterion in the National Merit Scholarship competition. The PSAT, like the SAT, was designed to measure the probability of early college success, and this purpose, along with the PSAT's underestimation of women's performance, makes the test unsuited as a determinant of merit. An analysis of PSAT scores and data from the National Merit Scholarship Program showed that, because of the much higher scores of men on the mathematics section and the much greater variability of men's scores, the practice of using a simple cutoff score in determining who survives the first phase of the scholarship competition gives men an unfair advantage. (16 ref)—Texas State University.