How the U.S. Supports Higher Education

Research and analysis on state and federal policies to aid students, families, and institutions

Higher Education Spending
Higher Education
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The federal government and the states provide substantial resources for higher education, through direct spending and tax provisions that reduce revenue. This collection of resources explores how postsecondary education is funded at both levels of government and how that support varies by state.

Issue Brief

Two Decades of Change in Federal and State Higher Education Funding

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Issue Brief

States and the federal government have long provided substantial financial support for higher education, but in recent years, their respective levels of contribution have shifted significantly.


Supporting Higher Education Through the Tax Code

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To maximize the impact of higher education investments and achieve desired policy goals, policymaker should have knowledge of the full range of assistance provided to institutions and students. This means having an understanding of the billions of dollars made available through spending programs and the tax code.

Additional Resources

The front facade of the Supreme Court of the United States in Washington, DC.

Agenda for America

Resources for federal, state, and local decision-makers

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Data-driven policymaking is not just a tool for finding new solutions for emerging challenges, it makes government more effective and better able to serve the public interest.

For the first time in at least two decades, federal funding for higher education surpassed state funding in 2010. Learn More