Student Financing, Opportunity Growth, and Equity In Access to Higher Education; A Czech-Dutch Comparative Study of Student Support Systems
32 Pages Posted: 13 Aug 2009
Date Written: August 11, 2009
This article explores the possible effects of student financing on the development of inequalities in access to higher education. Though it is recognized that financial issues like tuition fees and student support are only a few among the many factors that influence student choice and access, financial policies are an important instrument that can influence student choice. This article analyzes the impact of financial conditions on higher education participation among students from different socio-economic backgrounds by comparing the Czech Republic and the Netherlands. These are two countries with important similarities and differences in education systems, student financing and participation patterns in higher education. It is found that the context of steadily increasing tuition fees, accompanied by an efficient student support system (the case of the Netherlands), does not generate inequalities in access, whereas a tuition free system accompanied by mainly indirect (parent-based) student support did not manage to reduce high inequalities in participation after the fall of the communist regime in the Czech Republic.
Keywords: higher education, student support system, inequality, access to education
JEL Classification: D61, D63
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation