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Paying Parents for Performance: The Performance-Based Scholarship Demonstration in Ohio Paulette Cha MDRC Reshma Patel MDRC

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Presentation on theme: "Paying Parents for Performance: The Performance-Based Scholarship Demonstration in Ohio Paulette Cha MDRC Reshma Patel MDRC"— Presentation transcript:

1 Paying Parents for Performance: The Performance-Based Scholarship Demonstration in Ohio Paulette Cha MDRC Reshma Patel MDRC Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness 2010 Conference: Research into Practice Washington, D.C. Thursday, March 4, 2010

2 Outline 2 I. Project Background II. The Program III. Program Impacts IV. Summary and Next Steps

3 The Problem: Many Community College Students Do Not Persist Among students who intend to earn a credential or transfer to a four-year institution, only half meet that goal within 6 years. Major obstacles: Competing work and/or family obligations Insufficient financial aid Inadequate students support services Lack of academic preparation 3

4 Why performance-based scholarships? Performance-based scholarships: Need-based grants Contingent on academic performance and/or student services Paid directly to students Paid in addition to other financial aid, such as Pell Goals: Address unmet need Incentivize behavior Enable students to have more time on task 4

5 Student Achievement and Retention (STAR) Project: Randomized experiment with three treatment groups Found an increase in credits earned, an increase in GPA, and a reduction in academic probation for women Angrist, Joshua et al Incentives and Services for College Achievement" Georgia HOPE Project: Merit-based aid program in Georgia Evidence of increased college attendance and shift toward 4-year institutions Dynarski, Susan The New Merit Aid and Hope for Whom? Financial Aid for the Middle Class and Its Impact on College Attendance 5 Literature Review

6 H&R Block FAFSA Experiment: Randomized experiment with two treatment groups Initial findings suggest increased FAFSA submission and enrollment in college Bettinger, Eric P. et al The Role of Simplification and Information in College Decisions: Results from the H&R Block FAFSA Experiment Wisconsin Scholars Longitudinal Study: Randomized study on the impact of private need-based financial aid Currently underway under the direction of Sara Goldrick-Rab and Douglas N. Harris 6 Literature Review (continued)

7 Opening Doors Louisiana Randomized experiment testing the impact of a performance-based scholarship on low-income parents Study found that program group students were more likely to enroll in college and earned more credits Richburg-Hayes, Lashawn et al Rewarding Persistence: Effects of a Performance-Based Scholarship Program for Low-Income Parents The Performance-Based Scholarship in Ohio: A Replication of Opening Doors Louisiana study Similarities: TANF Funding, target population Differences: State need-based aid, economy 7 Literature Review (continued)

8 Program Model Student-Level Random Assignment Evaluation conducted at three Ohio institutions: Lorain County Community College Owens Community College Sinclair Community College Enrolled 2,285 students in total: 60% in the program group, 40% in the control group 8

9 Scholarship Model Award Benchmarks: Full-time award: $900 per semester or $600 per quarter for a C or better in 12+ credits Part-time award: $450 per semester or $300 per quarter for a C or better in 6-11 credits Maximum total scholarship was $1,800 for all schools One-time, lump-sum payment at end of term Program duration: 2 semesters / 3 quarters 9

10 Eligibility Parent of a minor child Expected Family Contribution = years of age U.S. citizen and Ohio resident Not incarcerated 10

11 Early Analysis Fall 2008 cohort only: 1,300 study students, about 60% of total sample Follow-up period covers duration of scholarship period: 2 semesters / 3 quarters No post-program analysis 11

12 Baseline Characteristics 12 CharacteristicFall 2008 Cohort Female (%)89.6 Married (%)21.1 Has one child or more (%)99.8 Average age (years)30.1 Race (%) White Black, non-Hispanic Hispanic / Latino Other Employed at baseline (%)49.8 Household receiving govt benefits (%)70.4 Sample Size1,329

13 Scholarship Receipt Almost three-quarters of students received an award in the first term of the scholarship Over 60% of students received an award in the second term of the scholarship Over 80% of students received an award in at least one term of the scholarship 13

14 Financial Aid Outcomes Financial Aid AwardedProgramControlDifference Total amount ($) 4,5044,164340*** Federal Pell grant 1,6991, Performance-Based Scholarship 6760 *** Other grants Subsidized loans *** Unsubsidized loans ** Federal work study * Statistical significance levels are indicated as: *** = 1 percent; ** = 5 percent; * = 10 percent. 14

15 Academic Outcomes: 1 st Program Term OutcomeProgramControlDifference Registered (%) Enrolled full-time (%) Credits attempted Credits earned *** 15 Statistical significance levels are indicated as: *** = 1 percent; ** = 5 percent; * = 10 percent.

16 Academic Outcomes: 2 nd Program Term OutcomeProgramControlDifference Registered (%) Enrolled full-time (%) ** Credits attempted ** Credits earned *** 16 Statistical significance levels are indicated as: *** = 1 percent; ** = 5 percent; * = 10 percent.

17 Academic Outcomes: Program Year OutcomeProgramControlDifference Registered (%) Credits attempted Credits earned *** Earn 24 or more credits *** 17 Statistical significance levels are indicated as: *** = 1 percent; ** = 5 percent; * = 10 percent.

18 Summary Reduction in educational debt: Program group students were awarded $237 fewer loan dollars Increased number of credits attempted: Program students attempted more credits in 2 nd program term Increased number of credits earned: Program students earned 2 credits more over the first program year No impact to date on term-to-term persistence: Both groups persisted at high rates 18

19 Ohio is one of the states being studied in a wider demonstration testing variations of performance-based scholarships at seven colleges and one intermediary: Target group Dollar amount and duration of scholarships Counseling and service components All programs are random assignment evaluations Early reports for each state in the coming months, and final reports in 2011 – Next Steps

20 Questions? Paulette Cha Operations Associate Reshma Patel Research Analyst 20


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