But over all, the papers are more a cacophony of competing recommendations than they are a coherent policy agenda. The ideas that frequently recur might be politically ambitious (requiring colleges to disclose more data on graduates' employment and earnings, or automatically enrolling all student borrowers in income-based loan repayment), but they are discrete, small-bore policy prescriptions, not a broad vision for the future of federal financial aid.
In the end, many papers warned explicitly against such an approach, arguing that colleges and the federal government need to do more to increase completion without compromising access. Many papers (a full list with links is here, and the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators has created achart comparing recommendations) call for a radical overhaul of financial aid. All share some assumptions critical of financial aid in its current, access-oriented form. The organizations describe the system as broken: “inefficient, inequitable and inadequate,” in the words of the Education Trust; “based on a set of assumptions that no longer hold,” according to the Committee for Economic Development; a system that the National College Access Network wrote “cannot continue without change.”