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Article

Deserving Poor: Are Higher Education Bursaries Going to the Right Students?

UCL Institute of Education, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT, UK
Academic Editors: Anna Vignoles and Neil Murray
Educ. Sci. 2016, 6(1), 5; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci6010005
Received: 4 September 2015 / Revised: 26 January 2016 / Accepted: 29 January 2016 / Published: 24 February 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Widening Participation in Higher Education)
After the abolition of student maintenance grants in 2016, higher education bursaries will be the major source of non-repayable aid for poor students in England, with £300 m spent per year. The aims of the bursary system were never explicitly laid out by government, making it challenging to evaluate this unique form of aid. In this paper, I examine the bursary system on the grounds of equity and efficiency, using a unique dataset collected from 22 universities. I show that the bursary system is inequitable; as a direct consequence of the decentralized nature of the system, there are vast inequalities in aid receipt among poor students. Nevertheless, I find that the poorest, most able students tend to receive the most bursary aid, suggesting the system could be seen as efficient. Clearer guidance from government on the purpose of bursaries is required in order to understand whether the system is meeting its aims, and how it could be improved. View Full-Text
Keywords: widening participation; higher education funding policies; higher education bursaries; decentralisation widening participation; higher education funding policies; higher education bursaries; decentralisation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Wyness, G. Deserving Poor: Are Higher Education Bursaries Going to the Right Students? Educ. Sci. 2016, 6, 5. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci6010005

AMA Style

Wyness G. Deserving Poor: Are Higher Education Bursaries Going to the Right Students? Education Sciences. 2016; 6(1):5. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci6010005

Chicago/Turabian Style

Wyness, Gill. 2016. "Deserving Poor: Are Higher Education Bursaries Going to the Right Students?" Education Sciences 6, no. 1: 5. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci6010005

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