Are Students Shopping Enough?
“As the Obama administration has talked more in recent months about tuition pricing and the value of a college education, Education Secretary Arne Duncan has seized on one statistic: that 75 percent of students who fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, Duncan says, have their results sent only to one college. And that, the secretary says, is a problem. Among the thousands of colleges and universities in the country, students should be applying to more than one to find their best fit, he said at several meetings and on conference calls with reporters in recent weeks — both doing more comparison shopping before applying and comparing financial aid packages from different institutions. One problem: They already are. An annual study of first-time, full-time freshmen — the most likely group to go through a traditional admissions process — finds that the vast majority apply to more than one college, and more than half apply to at least five different colleges.”