UW-Madison's Nicholas Hillman was quoted in a Wall Street Journal article
reporting a 6 percent increase in applications for federal student aid in the latest cycle, reversing a four-year decline.
Among the possible reasons for the increase is an expansion of the submission window for aid forms in the latest round. Students could submit forms "as early as Oct. 1 for aid they hoped to receive in the 2017-2018 academic year," the article explains, "rather than the prior Jan. 1 opening date."
Hillman said the longer window for submission "is particularly valuable for high school seniors. ... Many of them need to compare aid offers before committing to a college."
He continued that "the changes didn’t require a significant financial investment from the government but yielded positive returns."
Hillman is an associate professor with the School of Education's Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis
who researches higher education finance and policy. He also is a Wisconsin Center for the Advancement of Postsecondary Education