Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Literature Review #5

My source is called "Why Parents Pay for College: The Good Parent, Perceptions of Advantage, and the Intergenerational Transfer of Opportunity." This source talks about three types of parent's consciousness about paying for college. It first talks about how parents think their children will benefit from college. Next, it talks about how parents feel obligated to pay for their children's college education. And lastly is discusses what parents feel they deserve in return for paying for the their child's education. Parents feel that they need to help their children out with paying for college but why? " Conventional wisdom would suggest that money spent on one thing cannot be spent on another. Such a presumption holds that the money parents allocate for their children's education cannot be spent on themselves"(pg. 267). Parents feel that they need to pay for their children's education to take care of them. It's a physiological thing, parents feel like they need to take care of their "children" (even though most college students are 18 and older making them adults) because they raised them and this is letting them still play a large role in their lives. Some parents want to be seen as "the good parent" and paying for college is a way that they feel will help them succeed at that. "Although parents may not be able to articulate precisely the idea, their words suggest that paying for college maximizes the likelihood of their maintaining a core identity. The emotional, occupational, and financial success of their children sustains and nourishes heir own status as a 'good parent'"(267). Parents also want to help their children with college because children are often reflections of their parents. So if parents want their children to succeed and make them look good and feel good about themselves as parents, some parents will want their children to go to college. And it's difficult to pay for college as a student so the parents will help. "Because children are seen as reflections of their parents, the parents are evaluated by significant others in terms of their children's successes and failures. Seen this way, the purchase of a college education is an insurance policy against negative self-concepts for children and parents alike" (268). So this source really talks about what the "good parent" is and why parents try to act this way. This was written by Lynda Lytle Holmstrom, David A. Karp and Paul S. Gray. Holmstrom is a professor of sociology at Boston College and specializes in applying to college and how families are involved. Karp is also a professor of sociology at Boston College. Paul S. Gray is also a professor of sociology at Boston College. So all of these professors have a lot of experience with sociology and how people think. This is directly related to my topic of the sociological aspect of paying for college. This is exactly the information that I need. 

The "good parent"- a parent who pays for their child's college education
Social Class- people who have the same educational or economic status 

Holmstrom, Lynda L., David A. Karp, and Paul S. Gray. "Why Parents Pay for College: The Good Parent, Perceptions of Advantage, and the Intergenerational Transfer of Opportunity." Symbolic Interaction 34.2 (2011): 265-89. Print.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Argument and Counter- Argument

I think I'm going to go with the sociological argument for my paper. The source you found for me really has some great information that I think will really make my argument strong. I still need to find more sources but the bibliography for the source has many good sources. My argument is going to be why are parents paying for college at all? most students who go to college begin at the age of 18. This is the age when people become legal so why do colleges assume that parents are going to help their children pay for college? When applying for college and loans, many questions are asked about your parents income. This is an assumption that parents are going to help their children with college tuition. But even if the 18 year old is claimed as an independent to try to get more financial aid for school, parents information and income is still needed. This is very interesting and I want to find out more about why this is part of the process of applying to college. Why is it that it is assumed that our parents are going to help us pay for college even though we are the legal age when we apply to college? I think it's because it's so expensive now a days that colleges know that most 18 year olds can't handle it on their own. But is that right? Technically 18 year olds should be taking care of college payments by themselves since they are legal. Other sources say that parents shouldn't pay for college and that students should take out loans or go to community college. I have yet to find a source that is truly against students paying or at least helping with some of their college tuition. I think it's because today's society is unable to help their children pay for college. So then why is it that when applying to college, the students are asked so many questions about their parents income? My argument is that colleges shouldn't ask for parent information when students apply to college because it seems like they are assuming that parents are paying for college and why is that when most college students are legal adults?

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Literature Review #4

I found a really good source written by Laura Hamilton. Laura Hamilton is a sociology professor at the University of California and has her Ph.D from Indiana University, her M.A. from Indiana University and her B.A. from DePauw University. Her paper is based off a study she conducted in which she lived in a college dorm to observe student's behaviors. Her paper is based on a study that she did about the results of parents paying for college. Her paper is called  "More is More or More is Less? Parental Financial Investments during College." This paper talks about parents paying for their child's education and the problems with that. Hamilton uses data from "five nationally representative postsecondary datasets to determine what effect financial parental investments have on student GPA and degree completion." She found that student's who's parents pay for their education are more likely to graduate but have a lower GPA. "While parental aid decreases student GPA, it increases the odds of graduating — net of explanatory variables and accounting for alternative funding." "Students with parental funding often perform well enough to stay in school, but dial down their academic efforts." Hamilton thinks this has to do with a social factor, that students who pay for college on their own work harder and socialize less often than students who parents pay for their education. She suggests that students who pay for college on their own take it more seriously and work harder for a good GPA. 

Another article I found is written by Maureen Downey called "College students post lower grades when parents pay more toward their educations." This article pretty much just gives excerpts from Laura Hamilton's paper. Maureen Downey is a reporter for AJC and she has written articles about local, state and  federal education for twelve years. She also taught college classes about communications and journalism. Talking about Laura Hamilton:
“There were some affluent families who thought their children were spoiled and didn't pay the whole cost, and there were some families who had scrimped and saved and borrowed from family members and taken out loans,” she said. “And the affluent families aren't hurt the most by the lower grades, because they had the connections to call the head of NBC or the N.F.L. and get their child a job. It’s more of a problem for the middle-class parents, who worked hard to pay the college costs, used up their retirement funds and are out of money by graduation time.” 

I think this is the perfect article for my paper. I think this is the best one I have found so far and I think it will really help with me my paper. I think it will help my argument that students should pay for their own education and Laura Hamilton gives many points as to why they should.

postsecondary- any education beyond high school
dissertation- A long essay on a particular subject, one written as a requirement for the Doctor of Philosophy degree

This is Laura Hamilton.

This is Maureen Downey.

Works Cited:

Hamilton, Laura. "Laura Hamilton, Assistant Professor." Laura Hamilton. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Apr. 2013.

Downey, Maureen. "College Students Post Lower Grades When Parents Pay More toward Their Educations." Get Schooled RSS. N.p., 15 Jan. 2013. Web. 02 Apr. 2013.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

My Case

Because of all of my research, my case is going to be that less parents are paying for college. My case is going to be that parents aren't really paying for college anymore and that the students are actually paying for it by themselves. I've found many articles online that really help my case and also personal stories within these articles. Some articles say that parents do still pay for college but more sources say that students are paying. So my case is going to be that more and more students are paying for their own higher education now a days. I need to find out more details about percentages of students who get loans and scholarships here at Rutgers by meeting with someone who works here but I am still having a difficult time knowing who I should meet with at the university.

Here are some of my sources that have helped me form my case:






Monday, March 11, 2013

Literature Review #3

Another very useful article I chose to use for my research is entitled "Parents Worried About Funding Costs of College Education." This is a different type of article that I'm used to reading thought because it isn't really written by one author. This article is written by Petersen International Underwriters (PIU). Petersen International Underwriters provides insurance solutions for different problems that people may have such as medical issues, life, and contingency risks. So they are very informed about insurance for many different situations so their article is very factual and full of information based solely off facts which is great so there's no bias. For almost forty years PIU has been recognized nationally and internationally for their experience in the insurance industry so I trust that this article has correct information. This is why they wrote this article about parents paying for college because it is considered a contingency risk. This article is the most factual article I have found so far so I think it will be really important for my research. It provides statistics about parents paying for college and how many parents do and do not help their children with college. This is exactly what my paper is about so this article is a wonderful addition to my sources. This article will really help me with the statistical aspect of my paper. This article discusses how parents are really not able to help their children as much as parents could in the past when it comes to paying for a college education. "34 percent of these parents have either decreased the amount they are saving or have stopped saving completely for their children's future college education." This is a pretty large amount of parents who aren't helping their children out anymore. There's a reoccurring theme I am seeing in many articles that I am finding and it's in this one as well. How parents are risking retirement for their children's college education. "35 percent of all parents fear they will need to delay retirement to meet college expenses." Having children pay for their own education seems to be becoming more and more popular as the economy is getting worse. The idea of student loans are also becoming more popular and many parents are having their children take out these student loans. "more parents (62 percent in 2008 vs. 53 percent in 2007) are planning to rely on student loans to help fund expenses." 

Key Terms:
contingency- "A future event or circumstance that is possible but cannot be predicted with certainty"
expenses- "The cost required for something; the money spent on something"

This is the Petersen International Underwriters shield.

Petersen International Underwriters. "Parents Worried About Funding Costs of College Education." Parents Worried About Funding Costs of College Education 104.1 (2009): 32. Print.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Literature Review #2

The article I chose to review for this blog post is titled "The Parent Trap: Paying for College vs. Retirement" by Christine Dugas. This article is from USA Today and it talks about parents decisions when paying for college. This article states that "Yet last year the number of parents who withdrew or took a loan from their 401(k) plans more than doubled, to 7.4% from 3.4% in 2009, according to a recent Sallie Mae and Gallup study." So many parents are tapping into their 401(k) plans and taking away from their retirement funds just to help their children pay for college. College has just become so expensive and some parents are willing to risk their future plans with retirement to help their children out. According to this article, "Among parents who are planning for their children's college, 24% say that they tap their retirement accounts." This is a risky choice that many parents are making because many parents are willing to do anything for their children now a days. Many parents think of their children coming first and their children's plans to be more important than their own. "Parents are often willing to put their children's needs before their own. "If you look at human behavior, they are going to address the issue of concern that is most immediate," says Jean Setzfand, financial security director at AARP." So this article pretty much talks about how so many parents are indeed helping their children pay for college and in many cases the parents are taking money out of their retirement plans. But the article also talks about how parents don't need to do this because there are many ways that kids can pay for their own higher education. They can take a year off in between high school and college and save money for college or they can go to a community college for the first two years and live at home to save money. 

Christine Dugas is a personal finance reporter. So she is definitely knowledgeable about spending money and the importance of money in today's society. She specializes in the topic of retirement which isn't my topic but it can definitely effect my topic and relate to it. Many parents are spending their retirement money on their children's higher education so these two topics are closely related in this article. Christine Dugas writes for USA Today. This article directly relates to my topic and my research  I think this is the best article I've found so far because it really gives statistics about the amount of parents who are helping their kids pay for college. This is a reliable source with statistical information that relates to my topic.

401(k)- "A qualified plan established by employers to which eligible employees may make salary deferral (salary reduction) contributions on a post-tax and/or pretax basis"

Savings- "An economy of or reduction in money, time, or another resource"

This is a photo of Christine Dugas.

Dugas, Christine. "The Parent Trap: Paying for College vs. Retirement." USA Today 23 Aug. 2011: n. pag. Academic Search Premier. Web. 25 Feb. 2013. <http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=J0E177424689411&site=ehost-live>.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Research Proposal

Working Title: How are you Paying for College?

I will explore the different ways that students are paying for college now a days. I think I am going to survey a certain amount of students on how they pay for college. I think I want the survey to contain information from various students who do different things at Rutgers. Such as the athletes and see how they are paying as opposed to a non-athlete. I need to brainstorm a little more about the survey aspect of my project and see if it’s going to help me at all. I might have to come up with a more specific survey but I haven’t thought of it yet. I need to do more research from articles and books to see what they say. This will help me discover how many students receive help from the college to pay for their schooling. The surveying of students will help me see who is paying for college entirely by themselves, or with the help of their parents or not at all and their parents are taking care of the whole thing. My main interest in my research is how many parents are paying for college now a days? I want to know if more students are paying for college alone or if more students’ parents are still paying.

Research Question

How are students paying for college in today’s society? Are parents mostly paying for their children’s higher education? Or is it a group effort and both the student and the parents are sharing the payment?

Theoretical Frame

In the article, The parent trap: Paying for college vs. retirement, the topic of parents spending their money saved for their retirement on their kid’s college payments. This article talks about how parents are starting to save money for their children’s higher education when their children are as young as three years old. The price of college has just continued to rise. O over the years so starting that young might not even be as crazy as it sounds. I want to know if all parents do this though. Should the students be paying? This article also talks about how parents shouldn’t be using their retirement funds to pay for their child’s higher education. This article talks about how there are other ways besides using parent's saved retirement funds. “‘Because of the loss of home equity and the tighter credit market, families are eyeing their retirement funds for other uses,’ says Kent Allison, a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers' financial education practice. But that, say financial planners, is not a good move because there are a number of ways to fund a college education, such as loans, scholarships and financial aid. Saving for retirement should be a bigger priority.” This author’s theory is that there are other ways for college to be paid for instead of solely by parents. So does this mean that most families are trying this theory of taking out loans and having their child help pay for their own education or are parents still trying to take on the payments by themselves? My theory is that it must depend on the family’s financial situation. I’m sure there are many families who can afford to pay for their child’s education but I also think that there are more families who cannot afford to do that. My theory is that it also has to do with how many children are in the family. If there are more kids in a family, the parents will most likely be less able to pay for their education. If there are two or less children in the family, maybe it is more possible to pay for it or to help their children pay for it. My theory is going to be assessed through both the articles and books I read and from the survey I come up with. My theory will be based off of the percentages of students whose parents pay for college or the other way around. I think I will have to make this survey very public in some way, maybe posting on the internet and around campus about it to get as much information as possible to make my theory as accurate as I possibly can.  

Research Plan, Case or Additional Questions

I plan on doing a lot of research from recent articles while also interviewing students. I think the interviewing part is very crucial to my topic. I am going to use three articles I found that greatly relate to my topic. The first one being The Parent Trap: Paying for College Vs. Retirement by Christine Dugas. This article really helps answer my question about just who is paying for college. There are also helpful tips and tools in this article to help parents spend less money on their children’s education by helping them receive scholarships and taking out loans. I will also be using an article entitled, Who Pays for College? by Janet Bodnar. This article is perfect for my research. My research question is the title of this article so it has great information and answers to my research question. The last article I found so far is called College Saving Plan: A Bad Gamble by Kevin Carey. This article goes along with the first paper I wrote about the risk of going to college and to pay so much money for a degree that might not make the student enough money. This also goes along with my question though because this article talks about whether spending so much money is worth it and who indeed is paying for the higher education.
I am also going to look into using some books I found at the library. I found them on the online search so I still have to go find them and see if they’re useful. I might just have to end up finding and using more articles since my topic is more of a recent issue that hasn’t really been written about in books yet.