Guaranteed Student Loans:

Analysis of Student Default Rates at 7,800 Postsecondary Schools

HRD-89-63BR: Published: Jul 5, 1989. Publicly Released: Jul 5, 1989.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the: (1) types of schools attended by and default rates of approximately 1.2 million borrowers who obtained student loans from the Department of Education's Stafford Student Loan Program in 1983; and (2) borrower default rate, total default dollars, and total number of defaulters for each of the approximately 7,800 schools the borrowers attended.

GAO found that: (1) 4-year public and private school borrowers had the lowest percentage of loans in default, at 10 percent each; (2) 2-year public and proprietary school borrowers had the highest default percentages, at 25 percent and 39 percent, respectively; (3) 4-year private and public school students had the lowest percentage of dollars in default, at 8 percent and 9 percent, respectively; (4) 2-year public and proprietary school students had the highest percentage of dollars in default, at 21 percent and 34 percent, respectively; (5) 4-year public schools had the highest percentage of borrowers, at 36 percent, while 2-year private schools had the lowest percentage, at 4 percent; and (6) about 1,200 of the 7,800 postsecondary schools that 1983 borrowers attended had borrower defaults rates higher than 40 percent, although the vast majority of those schools had less than 25 defaulters.

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