Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Family Environment


The purpose of this study was to analyze the resources and expenditures of undergraduate postsecondary students and to assess the impact of financial behavior on academic performance. Microeconomic theory was used to develop the model which predicts the impact of a student's resources and expenditures on academic performance;Data were gathered from 243 single undergraduate students using a telephone survey. Students reported their financial resources and expenditures for the academic year, the number of hours they worked per week and their type of housing;Descriptive statistics were used to compare the resources, expenditures and academic performance of different groups of students. Regression analysis was used to test the hypothesis that academic performance is predicted by the student's resources, expenditures and selected exogenous variables;Results of the study indicated that students and families have financial choices, there are financial trends that families can anticipate and certain financial patterns affect academic performance. Men had higher total costs than women but men contributed more to their own education and received more financial aid than women. Students had fewer total resources and higher parent contributions in their freshman and sophomore years than in their junior and senior years. Students living in off-campus housing had greater flexibility in their living costs than students living in residence halls or in fraternities and sororities. Employment did not affect academic performance for students working 15 hours or less per week. Students with higher expenditures had lower grade point averages. Twenty-four percent of the variance in academic performance is explained in the model by the student's resources and expenditures. Student expenditures had a mediating affect on academic performance and served as an intervening variable between resources and academic performance.



Digital Repository @ Iowa State University,

Copyright Owner

Ardys Deichmann Ulrichson



Proquest ID


File Format


File Size

185 pages

Included in

Economics Commons