Higher Education Economics

Feeling PrivilegeAnyone interested in the economics of U.S. higher education ought to read yesterday’s analysis by Adam Davidson in The New York Times. Like my division of the post-secondary education market into three segments — luxury brand, experience value, and bargain bin — Davidson separates schools into three bands: the highly selective privates and publics, the mid-tier publics, and the non-selective everyone else. Different factors drive tuition pricing within each category, but overall the amount of financial aid that is available to students varies inversely with need. The poor are being priced out of the market.