Thursday, November 1, 2018

Harvard admissions on trial--dualing economist expert witnesses, interesting details

The Chronicle of Higher Ed has the story:
Dueling Economists: Rival Analyses of Harvard’s Admissions Process Emerge at Trial
There are many strands to this story (and it seems to be ungated), but here I'll just note a few interesting admissions stats.

"Of the 37,000 applicants for admission to the Class of 2019, for instance, 8,200 had perfect grade-point averages, and more than 2,700 had perfect scores on the verbal section of the SAT. But Harvard had only about 1,700 spots to offer. Even if the university wished to consider only grades and test scores, it would be hard-pressed to select a freshman class using those variables alone.
"The two economists’ analyses vary in several ways. Perhaps most significant, their respective models include different kinds of applicants. Arcidiacono excludes recruited athletes, the children of alumni, the children of Harvard faculty and staff members, and students on a special list that includes children of donors.

"Card includes them. Though the total number of students who fit those descriptions represents a small fraction of the applicant pool (5 percent), they account for a large proportion of accepted students (29 percent).

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