The stratification of higher education in the USA and Taiwan: a comparative analysis of students’ college-choice outcomes

Patricia Yu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This comparative study modifies Cabrera and La Nasa’s model to examine social and class stratification in students’ college-choice outcomes in the USA and Taiwan, and compares the mechanisms that perpetuate this stratification between the two systems. Students’ college-choice outcomes are defined by both institutional selectivity and control, in order to test not only stratification in the quality of institution students attend but also their financial burden of college costs. The findings show that students from lower-socioeconomic backgrounds are less likely to attend high-selective institutions and institutions that embrace better resources and provide more subsidies to students. Current financing structures embedded in both systems increase stratification, but through different ways. In addition to enhancing academic preparation for socioeconomically disadvantaged students, fundamentally rethinking the financing structures–especially the distribution of public funds–is imperative to increase equality for both countries in the cost-sharing era.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)700-722
Number of pages23
JournalCompare
Volume49
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Sep 3

Keywords

  • college choice
  • comparative analysis
  • financing higher education
  • Social stratification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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