College Costs

NORMAL, Ill. (AP) -- A study released today says high tuition is forcing more lower-income students to trade their dream college for less expensive universities or community colleges.

The study by Illinois State University's Center for the Study of Education Policy recommends states bolster student financial aid programs to counter rising costs.

The study examined how student access to college was affected by tuition costs that jumped after states trimmed college funding during four recessions dating back to the early 1980s.

The study found that 44 of 50 states have cut spending for colleges since the last recession in 2001, but only 15 boosted financial aid.

As a result, about half of states say high costs are keeping more lower-income students out of their first-choice college.