How Public Universities Close Budget Gaps Matters For States

December 2012

Cuts to support for higher education have prompted some universities to attempt to offset reductions in state funds by raising tuition, shifting admission spots to more out-of-state students, and increasing enrollment.

For a given budget gap, these strategies should be weighed both for their revenue-generating capacity and for their impact on the university’s mission to serve the state’s students.

This analysis considers how these three revenue-generating options compare for use in public flagship universities, first in terms of the relative magnitude needed to close a gap in state funds, and then in terms of the extent to which they contribute to degree production for students in their state.