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Education News

Study Finds Link Between Financial Aid And Academic Performance

Many students are receiving their college acceptance letters and figuring out how to pay for school. One study finds a link between financial aid and student performance.


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FAFSA and TXFSA application graphic

The priority deadline for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, was March 15, but students can still apply through the end of the year.

Lyle McKinney is an assistant professor of higher education at the University of Houston. He says students who file now will probably receive less funding.

“Late applicants might apply when there is no money left in the pot or the average award amount that’s distributed from these programs would be less,” McKinney says.

McKinney’s recent study examined FAFSA filing trends among first-year college students. According to his research, financial stability affects academic success. If students are stressing about paying for textbooks or tuition, their grades may suffer. McKinney says many students’ who apply for aid late had worse academic performance.

“Those students who did not file for FAFSA or who filed late and received less financial aid had a greater likelihood of dropping out of college,” he says.

McKinney says students should complete the FAFSA as soon as possible to maximize the amount of aid they receive.


FAFSA Filing Study



FAFSA Study (Text)

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