FAFSA and Beyond
Access to financial aid is crucial in ensuring that students can afford college. Students must file the FAFSA to access federal financial aid and usually the FAFSA is also required for state and institutional aid (U.S. Department of Education, n.d). Prior research has shown, however, that the FAFSA is complicated and burdensome to complete and often acts as a barrier instead of an entry point to college (Bettinger et al., 2012; Bird & Castleman, 2016; Dynarski & Scott-Clayton, 2006, 2008; Dynarski et al., 2013). Given these barriers in accessing aid, some high schools employ college advisers or other school staff to assist students in the financial aid process (Civic Enterprises, 2011; Dunlop Velez, 2016). This single case study explores how College Advising Corps (CAC) advisers perceived their role in the financial aid process and how they discuss college expenses, financial aid, and debt with students. Guided by social capital theory (Coleman, 1988) and administrative burden framework (Herd & Moynihan, 2018), we find that CAC advisers, in their role as a social capital resource, experience learning, psychological, and compliance costs when assisting students to navigate the financial aid bureaucracy. They employ different strategies to overcome, manage, and cope with these costs.
Billings, Meredith S.; Clayton, Ashley B.; and Worsham, Rachel
"FAFSA and Beyond: How Advisers Manage Their Administrative Burden in the Financial Aid Process,"
Journal of Student Financial Aid: Vol. 51
, Article 1.
Available at: https://ir.library.louisville.edu/jsfa/vol51/iss2/1