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"Race" in College Applications FAQ & Discussion 12

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Replies to: "Race" in College Applications FAQ & Discussion 12

  • granny2granny2 Registered User Posts: 237 Junior Member
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 11,293 Senior Member
    edited January 2016
    @granny2 It is true that whites and Asians score higher on the SAT on average than Hispanic and black students.

    However, it is not true that there's some yawning gap between the scores by race in elite college acceptances.

    Fewer black and Hispanic students are accepted to elite colleges than whites and Asians. Perhaps partly because of that score discrepancy.
    And, as has been the case for years, students from wealthier families score better than do those from disadvantaged families.

    ....and there are more wealthy students accepted to elite colleges too.
  • granny2granny2 Registered User Posts: 237 Junior Member
    Thank you, @OHMomof2....I think I'll just go back to my crocheting now.
  • rlpak14rlpak14 Registered User Posts: 169 Junior Member
    @NickFlynn You should double check your Harvard Crimson SAT data that you reported in post #33. It is wrong. Hint, the graph of SAT by ethnicity is incorrect, the correct information is posted just below the graph. Apparently Harvard's Crimson editors are fallible.

    Once the corrected information is posted, a proper discussion is possible.
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 11,293 Senior Member
    Why don't you post it, @rlpak14 ?
  • class0f2017class0f2017 Registered User Posts: 923 Member
    @NickFlynn Wow that gap is actually much smaller than what I thought it would be. AA really has been hyped up on CC.
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 11,293 Senior Member
    @rlpak14
    @NickFlynn You should double check your Harvard Crimson SAT data that you reported in post #33. It is wrong. Hint, the graph of SAT by ethnicity is incorrect, the correct information is posted just below the graph. Apparently Harvard's Crimson editors are fallible.[/qupte]

    Hint: He posted "the correct information below the graph" in post #36. Which we've referred to in several posts since.
  • class0f2017class0f2017 Registered User Posts: 923 Member
    Are South Asians(Indians) considered seperate from the Asian population? Why is it seperated on the Harvard profile?
  • rdeng2614rdeng2614 Registered User Posts: 1,818 Senior Member
    Correct me if I am wrong, but I think you are leaving out the fact that Harvard superscores. You could get 2 2000~ scores and still wind up with a 2200~ superscore.
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 11,293 Senior Member
    Yes indeed Harvard does superscore. It says so right on the Crimson article.

    But the real problem with @rlpak14 's ACT data and assertions that black people score lower on the ACT (which no one is contesting here), is that the super elites, like Harvard can indeed cherry pick the highest scoring students of any race and approximately 80% will enroll.

    Using self reported data is an issue, though I wouldn't compare it with the significant issues with Espenshade's study (which uses data form the 1980s and 1990s). In any case, Espenshade warned against concluding that his study proved that colleges improperly discriminated. He knew the limitations of his data and his study. Not everyone does....
  • rlpak14rlpak14 Registered User Posts: 169 Junior Member
    @rdeng2614 The effects of superscoring at Harvard would not have any affect on the relative scores of the different ethnic groups since it is available to all students. Thus it is a non-factor in relative scoring, but I agree it may lead to slightly higher overall average scores for all ethnic groups. According to the College Board, the average gain is only 40 points.

    @OHMomof2 Your responses are the reason why I asked @NickFlynn to correct his mistake on post #36. His data shaped the view of many such as @ShouldBeWorking who now believes the SAT gap between different ethnicity is not very large. This individual would like to believe the "Harvard Crimson Data" was representative of other top schools. So I wrote at length to provided a reasoned response with actual DATA why the Crimson survey results may not be very accurate and are clearly not what was reported by the Crimson.

    You have not provided any data to substantiate your claims to @granny2 that "it is not true that there's some yawning gap between the scores by race in elite college acceptances." You make this assertion without any data to back it up. I and others would like to see you support your beliefs.

    The SAT gap between ethnicity is widening. In post #46 granny2 referenced the article from insidehighereducation providing data that SAT scores having dropped for every ethnicity with the exception of Asians over the past 10 years. You have helped confuse granny2 and others as a result of your unfounded statements based upon NickFlynn's posting of bad data.

    Please present valid references for your assertions that the racial gap is small and not as large as stated by Prof. Espenshade et. al. at Harvard or any other top school. Best of luck finding such data.

    BTW Espenshade's 230 point gap between Blacks and Whites is out of 1600 (CR+M), if it was out of 2400 (CR+M+W), the gap would be 345 points which is more than just a few correct answers on the SAT per @Nedcone's comments.
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 11,293 Senior Member
    The SAT gap between ethnicity is widening. In post #46 granny2 referenced the article from insidehighereducation providing data that SAT scores having dropped for every ethnicity with the exception of Asians over the past 10 years. You have helped confuse granny2 and others as a result of your unfounded statements based upon NickFlynn's posting of bad data.

    Simply asserting that there is a gap in average SAT scores between racial and ethnic groups (which again no one is denying here) doesn't say anything about elite college acceptances, other than that it might partially explain why there are so few black and Hispanic and Native American students at elites, which is true.

    Rich kids do better on the SAT than poor kids. This isn't news to us either, except that it might partially explain why there are more rich kids in elite colleges than poor ones.

    But again this isn't relevant at all to elite college admissions.
    "it is not true that there's some yawning gap between the scores by race in elite college acceptances." You make this assertion without any data to back it up. I and others would like to see you support your beliefs.

    Please present valid references for your assertions that the racial gap is small and not as large as stated by Prof. Espenshade et. al. at Harvard or any other top school. Best of luck finding such data.

    Espenshade's data is 20-30 years old and it was lacking in several important respects which he enumerates when he cautions against drawing the conclusions from it that you seem to be drawing. It's not relevant.

    Maybe you'd like to read the Office of Civil Rights report on Princeton's admissions process. It's from just 3 months ago: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/investigations/02086002-a.pdf - you might just search "SAT" and find accounts of Native students with super high scores who were rejected, that over 50% of 2400 SAT scorers were rejected, that 85% of valedictorians were rejected, and records of Asian and white applicants who were admitted with lower scores than the P-ton applicant average.

    But until schools feel like releasing accepted student data in its entirety, I suppose we won't ever know for sure what the actual gaps in SAT between races are. We do know they are one piece of the puzzle only and for that reason won't matter much even if we ever do, IMO.
  • rlpak14rlpak14 Registered User Posts: 169 Junior Member
    @OHMomof2 You realize that elite schools like Harvard, Yale et al. did provide the data showing the SAT gaps between races. What do you think Espenshade and others were using to get their SAT gap numbers. They didn't just make it up.

    It was in the early 90's that these elite schools stopped providing the SAT data for their students sorted by ethnicity. I'll give you one guess "WHY?"

    As to the OCR's response to a complaint of discrimination against Asian applicants, it found "insufficient evidence" was provided. And strangely, rather than address the specific complaint that Asian student were held to a different standard, OCR's investigation outlined how difficult it was for anyone to get into Princeton. What OCR did not do was request data from Princeton so they could place the applicants of different ethnicity and place them in similar buckets based upon test scores, grades, ec, etc. to see the relative acceptance rates of each ethnicity.

    Had OCR done this, using your example of "that over 50% of 2400 SAT scorers were rejected, then the admit rate should be about the same for any ethnicity with such a score if admission was not affected by racial preferences. But my guess is that nearly 100% of Black students would have been accepted, but less than 50% of Asians and Whites would get their acceptance notices.

    I believe that such data would be similar to American Association of Medical Colleges acceptance data which provides a matrix of MCAT scores by College GPA for each ethnicity.

    Here is the Matrix for Black students:
    https://www.aamc.org/download/321514/data/factstablea24-2.pdf

    Here is the Matrix for White students
    https://www.aamc.org/download/321518/data/factstablea24-4.pdf

    Here is the Matrix for Asian students
    https://www.aamc.org/download/321516/data/factstablea24-3.pdf

    As you can see, at each bucket (MCAT + GPA) Blacks are accepted at higher rates than similarly qualified Whites and Asians.

    Picking a middle bucket of 3.0-3.19 GPA and 27-29 MCAT (but you could take any bucket) the results are as follows:

    Asian acceptance rate is 8,5%
    White acceptance rate is 15%
    Black acceptance rate is 58.9%

    Blacks are accepted at nearly 700% higher than Asians and about 400% higher than Whites with similar qualifications. In order for an Asian student to have a similar acceptance rate, she would have to have a 3.2-3.29 GPA and 39-45 MCAT. Conversely, for a Black student to have similar acceptance rate as an Asian student, she would need only a 2.4-2.59 GPA and 21-23 MCAT.

    Doesn't this MCAT data seem very similar to Espenshade's SAT gap data for college admission?

    Elite colleges could and should provide data much like AAMC, but will not because it will show this type of GAP between ethnicity.
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