Students who enter college but drop out without a degree are an important target for those who wish to increase educational attainment. Dropout rates are especially high at community colleges, where poor students are concentrated. Interventions that increase persistence in community colleges are therefore a sensible focus if the goal is to increase the educational attainment of the poor. The Opening Doors demonstration projects provide strong evidence that pairing financial incentives with support services can increase college persistence among low-income students attending community colleges. This chapter reviews the evidence from experimental and high-quality quasi-experimental studies on a key tool available to policy makers: reducing college costs.
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