The Diffusion of Merit Aid Programs Across State Lines
Journal of Higher Education Theory and Practice, (Forthcoming).
17 Pages Posted: 8 Nov 2021
Date Written: November 4, 2021
States award merit aid scholarships to motivate student achievement. Merit aid programs also eliminate the movement of high-performing students to out-of-state institutions and increase access to post-secondary education for low-income families. Despite the perceived benefits of adopting a program, only 34 states have chosen to do so. Using an event history analysis approach and data for all 50 states from 1992 to 2015, we explore how external mechanisms influence the decision of a state to adopt a program. The results show that states adopt to gain a competitive edge. However, that decision is heavily influenced by the decisions of others, with trends in regional and national adoptions increasing the likelihood of a state adopting.
Keywords: merit aid scholarships, education policy, policy diffusion, event history analysis
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation