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New Study Finds FAFSA Completion Campaigns Don’t Boost Enrollment

A new study finds that efforts to nudge students to complete FAFSA have “no impacts on aid receipt or college enrollment overall or for any subgroups.” The randomized controlled trail reached more than 800,000 students. The researchers found “no evidence that different approaches to message framing, delivery, or timing, or access to one-on-one advising affected campaign efficacy.”

Some states are taking another approach. With FAFSA completions down 10 percent from last year, the Wall Street Journal examined a growing number of states are moving to make FAFSA mandatory for high school seniors. In Louisiana, FAFSA completion jumped 20 percentage points in the year following it becoming a high school graduation requirement. Last year, just over half of high school seniors completed FAFSA nationally.

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