Sunday, March 10, 2013

Student Spending Habits at Kalamazoo College

In this study, 51 Kalamazoo College students were surveyed about their spending habits. We took into consideration: Age, housing, food, alcohol, entertainment, transportation, work, and parental contribution. Our goal was to determine whether or not having parental allowances affected spending habits. We looked at where student’s spending money comes from, where they spend the most, and whether services provided by the school, such as meal plans and munch money, affected spending. Unfortunately, we did not find very much correlation between any of our variables. The spending habits of students surveyed changed very little when anything was varied. For example, student’s spending on groceries and meals out barely changed depending on the number of meal swipes a student had in their meal plan. We also tested the effect of money received from parents on groceries, eating out, and alcohol purchases. Groceries varied by about $1 while eating out and alcohol purchases varied by $4 and $3.50. Even given these numbers, the test showed very little correlation between these figures. In all, we discovered that student spending is fairly random and not affected much by outside factors. This is most likely due to the fact that most students are still learning to manage money on their own. Many will not have had to keep a budget before and will spend money as they have it. If we had been able to survey the entire on-campus student population our findings may have been different. Our sample consisted of almost entirely freshmen and sophomores. If more seniors and on-campus juniors had been surveyed these numbers may have been much different.

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