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Study shows students have lower GPA when parents provide funding

By KSL.com | Posted - Jan 17th, 2013 @ 7:15am



SALT LAKE CITY — When parents send their their child off to college, they might not want to pay the majority of their child's tuition cost. If the parents do foot the bill, it may cost their child a good GPA.

According to a surprising new study, children that receive more financial help from their parents during college tend to receive lower grades.

The study published in this month's American Sociological review suggests students who contribute their own money may work harder while students whose parents take on more of the financial support are free to take on a more social and extracurricular life which usually comes at a cost to their GPA.

When parents pay for their children's tuition, the impact on GPA is relatively small, but still has a definite effect.

"The reason it was so shocking, however, is that all the research on parental investments from pre-school through (college) assumes you give something to your kids, particularly money, it leads to good things," said author Laura Hamilton of the University of California, Merced. "This is one case where it not only doesn't have the expected good effect, it has a small negative effect."

According to this study, parents may want to think twice before relieving all the financial burden from their college students.

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