Most highly-industrialized countries spend less, both overall and per student, than the United States. There are significant differences in such critical policy arenas as tuitions and fees, financial assistance, and student loan programs.

Part of a series of papers from The National Commission on Financing 21st Century Higher Education exploring different dimensions of higher education policy and funding. The series ultimately will include 10 papers. These first four papers focus on the outlook for states’ spending, transformations affecting higher education, lessons from other countries, and best practices in state finance policy.