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The Institute for College Access & Success

Learn about our work

The Institute for College Access & Success is a trusted source of research, design, and advocacy for student-centered public policies that promote affordability, accountability, and equity in higher education.


Our Work

We try to understand college opportunity through careful research and by listening to the students and those who serve them. We combine concrete, tailored policy recommendations with passionate, sophisticated advocacy, nationally and in California.

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Affordability

We advocate for more accessible and effective Pell Grants and Cal Grants, more affordable student loans, greater and more equitable state funding, and better consumer information for students.

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Accountability

We work to hold predatory colleges accountable for deceptive and illegal conduct, reducing the number of students left worse off by burdensome student debt, and other steps to improve student outcomes.

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California

California’s Master Plan for higher education guarantees a place in college for every eligible student. We seek to ensure students have the financial aid and student services they need to succeed.

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Recent Work

Bittersweet Relief: Strengthening California’s Tuition Recovery Fund to Better Support

We examine the history of California’s Student Tuition Recovery Fund and student loan forgiveness programs, describe the impact of school closures, and provide policy recommendations informed by student testimony.

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Short-Term Programs in the Shadows: What Data Show About Program Length, Cost, and Payoff

We analyzed select state- and system-level data on short-term programs under consideration for expanded Pell Grant eligibility, finding a diverse landscape.

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Key Projects

College InSight

College InSight is a unique and valuable data resource for policymakers, journalists, and researchers interested in college affordability, student debt, economic and racial diversity, student success.

Project on Student Debt

We document unaffordable levels of student debt facing many low-income students and students of color. We promote reforms to reduce risky debt and work to ensure all borrowers are treated fairly.

To Graduate, File a Fafsa, More High School Seniors Are Told | The New York Times
TICAS in the News

To Graduate, File a Fafsa, More High School Seniors Are Told | The New York Times

"The correlation is particularly strong for low-income students, who stand to benefit most from financial aid, said Jessica Thompson, director of policy and planning at the Institute for College Access & Success, a nonprofit group."

Statement on California Complaint Process for Out-of-State Online Colleges
News & Media

Statement on California Complaint Process for Out-of-State Online Colleges

Today’s announcement from the California Department of Consumer Affairs is reassuring news for tens of thousands of Californians whose federal financial aid eligibility was jeopardized…