Composition of Total Aid and Nonfederal Loans over Time

Between 2007-08 and 2017-18, loans (including both federal and nonfederal borrowing) fell from 50% to 34% of the funds used by undergraduate students to supplement their own and their family resources. Grants rose from 44% to 57% of total funding over the decade.

Figure 2: Composition of Total Aid and Nonfederal Loans, 1997-98 to 2017-18

Notes & Sources 

NOTES: Nonfederal loans are included to show the total education borrowing by students and parents. “Other Aid” includes Federal Work-Study (FWS) and federal education tax credits and deductions. Percentages may not sum to 100 because of rounding.

SOURCE: Table 4.

  • In contrast, between 1997-98 and 2017-18, loans consistently made up about two-thirds of the funds used by graduate students to supplement their own resources to finance their studies.
  • In 2017-18, the combination of federal tax credits and deductions and Federal Work-Study (FWS) made up 8% of all student aid and nonfederal loans for undergraduate students and 3% for graduate students.