Cumulative Debt Among Students Beginning Postsecondary Education in 2003-04 by Degree Attainment Levels, 2009

Among individuals who began their postsecondary studies in 2003-04, 43% had not accumulated education debt by 2009. Another 25% had borrowed $10,000 or less, while 2% had borrowed more than $50,000.

Figure 11C: Total Amount Borrowed by 2009 by Students Beginning Postsecondary Education in 2003-04, by Degree Attainment
Notes & Sources 

NOTE: Percentages in the parentheses on the vertical axis correspond to the percentage of all students in the specified attainment category. Percentages may not sum to 100 because of rounding.

SOURCES: Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study (BPS), 2009; calculations by the authors.

  • The absence of debt was most common among those who left school without a credential (52%) and least common among those who earned bachelor’s degrees (36%). Borrowing $30,000 or more was most common among bachelor’s degree recipients (15%) and least common among those who earned certificates (1%).