Capable and Smart Decisions about Student Loans

No Thumbnail Available
Ehret, Amberly
Major Professor
Committee Member
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Research Projects
Organizational Units
Journal Issue
Is Version Of
Symposium on Undergraduate Research and Creative Expression
Iowa State University Conferences and Symposia

The Symposium provides undergraduates from all academic disciplines with an opportunity to share their research with the university community and other guests through conference-style oral presentations. The Symposium represents part of a larger effort of Iowa State University to enhance, support, and celebrate undergraduate research activity.

Though coordinated by the University Honors Program, all undergraduate students are eligible and encouraged to participate in the Symposium. Undergraduates conducting research but not yet ready to present their work are encouraged to attend the Symposium to learn about the presentation process and students not currently involved in research are encouraged to attend the Symposium to learn about the broad range of undergraduate research activities that are taking place at ISU.

The first Symposium was held in April 2007. The 39 students who presented research and their mentors collectively represented all of ISU's Colleges: Agriculture and Life Sciences, Business, Design, Engineering, Human Sciences, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Veterinary Medicine, and the Graduate College. The event has grown to regularly include more than 100 students presenting on topics that span the broad range of disciplines studied at ISU.

Human Development and Family Studies

Using data from the 2014-2015 National Student Financial Wellness Study with 5,892 student-loan borrowers from 50 universities in the United States, this study examines the impact of student loan decision making strategies and financial capability on financial efficacy and student loan stress. Financial capability includes financial knowledge, financial behavior, and financial stress. Findings suggest that the strategies that students use in making student loan decisions impacted both outcomes. In particular, borrowing the maximum was a risk factor-- decreasing financial efficacy and increasing stress. As overall predictors of outcomes, financial capability was more impactful that decision making strategies. The findings have important implications for students, family members, and practitioners in higher education because identifying the relationship between financial capability and student loan decision making, can help practitioners to better counsel students. Based on findings, students, their family members, and financial counselors should focus on making students more financially capable by encouraging positive financial behaviors, teaching financial knowledge skills, and helping to alleviate negative financial stress. Students, family members, and practitioners should also focus on utilizing positive student loan decision making strategies when considering borrowing a student loan.

Subject Categories