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Title: Disparities in Debt: Parents' Socioeconomic Resources and Young Adult Student Loan Debt
Resulting in 1 citation.
1. Houle, Jason N.
Disparities in Debt: Parents' Socioeconomic Resources and Young Adult Student Loan Debt
Presented: Denver CO, American Sociological Association Annual Meeting, August 2012
Cohort(s): NLSY97
Publisher: American Sociological Association
Keyword(s): College Education; Debt/Borrowing; Income Level; Parental Influences; Socioeconomic Status (SES); Student Loans

Permission to reprint the abstract has not been received from the publisher.

In an era of rising college costs and declining grant-based student aid, many young adults rely on their parents’ resources and student loans to pay for their postsecondary education. This study asks how parents’ socioeconomic status (parents’ income and parents’ education) is linked to student loan debt. This study develops and tests three hypotheses about the link between two key elements of parents’ socioeconomic status—income and education—and young adults’ student loan debt. Study findings reveal that young adults from well-educated or high-income families are relatively protected from debt, in support of the reproduction of advantage hypothesis. Moreover, the relationship between parents’ income and student loan debt is nonlinear, such that young adults from middle-income families have a higher risk of debt than those from lower and higher income families, supporting the middle income squeeze hypothesis. The study findings suggest that student loan debt plays an important role in the early process of status attainment. In an era where debt has become ubiquitous, student loan debt may help reproduce inequalities across generations.
Bibliography Citation
Houle, Jason N. "Disparities in Debt: Parents' Socioeconomic Resources and Young Adult Student Loan Debt." Presented: Denver CO, American Sociological Association Annual Meeting, August 2012.