Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Human Development and Family Studies

Committee Chair(s)

Yoon Lee


Yoon Lee


Aryn Dotterer


Sarah Tulane


The student loan crisis has been an important area of personal, political, and research discussion. Many individuals must make the decision to attend college with the help of student loans and millions are currently in repayment on their student loan. However, it can be difficult to understand what factors may play a role the decision to take out a student loan and how managing one’s student loan could affect their personal financial well-being. Thus, this study examined factors that could be related to how an individual may decide to take out a student loan, such as if they participated in a financial education course, their level of financial literacy, and their own personal characteristics. It also studied how one’s management of their student loan, such as making their payments on time, being concerned about their student loan debt, and other characteristics could impact their financial well-being.

The findings of this study suggest that financial literacy and some personal characteristics could play an important role in whether or not someone takes out a student loan. Additionally, the characteristics of how someone manages their student loan could affect their financial well-being. These finding of this study can help financial educators and professionals understand how the student loan decision is made and assist certain individuals who may be more prone to take out a student loan. This study can also help policy makers comprehend the impacts of a student loan on the individual and provide them with more information to confront the US student loan crisis.