Toronto, September 10, 2008 – The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) is pleased to announce the release of two commissioned research papers by the Educational Policy Institute (EPI). The first deals with access and persistence within Ontario’s postsecondary system. The second, a joint project with the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation (CMSF), explores the financial grants and awards for students provided by colleges and universities. Together, these papers represent an important contribution to HEQCO’s ongoing research on the accessibility of higher education in Ontario.
“Today’s release provides important foundation research on postsecondary access and persistence, as well as on the student financial aid provided by colleges and universities,” said Dr. Ken Norrie, vice president of research for HEQCO. “These papers enhance our knowledge of the barriers to participation in higher education, and how postsecondary institutions are working to provide financial support to their students.”
The papers released today are:
- Access, Persistence, and Barriers in Postsecondary Education: A Literature Review and Outline of Future Research serves as an overview of the current state of social science research on access to, and retention within, postsecondary education systems. It identifies gaps in our present knowledge and recommends ways in which they can be filled through a program of research.
- Institutional Student Financial Grants in Ontario analyzes the need- and merit-based financial awards provided to students by Ontario colleges and universities. Ontario leads the country in both the value and number of institutional need-based grants, thanks to the influence of several key government policies.
This paper represents one part of a joint project with the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation (CMSF) to study need- and merit-based grants at Canadian postsecondary institutions.
“The Council is pleased to work with the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation on this important project” said Dr. James Downey, president and CEO of HEQCO. “The participation of The Foundation has enriched the depth and breadth of our research into institutional student financial aid in Ontario and Canada.”
In the coming months, HEQCO will conduct research into postsecondary access for Aboriginal individuals, first generation students, and students with disabilities. The council will also be conducting a major study into how financial awards can be used to improve student performance and persistence in higher education.
About the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario
The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario is an arm’s length agency of the Government of Ontario dedicated to ensuring the continued improvement of the postsecondary education system in Ontario. The Council was created through the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario Act, 2005. It is mandated to conduct research, evaluate the postsecondary education system, and provide policy recommendations to the Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities with a view to enhance the quality, access, and accountability of Ontario’s higher education system.
For further information, please contact:
Events and Communications Coordinator
Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario
(416) 212 5248