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Test Scores, Educational Opportunities, and Individual Choice

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  • Steven F. Venti
  • David A. Wise

Abstract

A model combining student preferences for college with university admissions decisions is estimated to provide information on the role of test scores in the determination of post-secondary educational opportunities. In contrast to implications of much of the recent criticism of tests and their use, we find that scholastic aptitude test scores are more strongly related to student application and choice of college "quality" than to college admissions decisions. In addition, although there is a substantial correlation between test scores and high school performance, we find that both post-secondary school preferences and ultimate opportunities are related as much to performance in high school as to test scores themselves. Although SAT scores certainly exclude some persons from schools, our findings indicate that they do not represent a dominating constraint on the college opportunities of high school graduates.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w0710.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 0710.

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Date of creation: Jun 1983
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:0710

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  1. Robert J. Willis & Sherwin Rosen, 1978. "Education and Self-Selection," NBER Working Papers 0249, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Steven F. Venti & David A. Wise, 1981. "Test Scores and Self-Selection of Higher Education: College Attendance versus College Completion," NBER Working Papers 0709, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Lewis C. Solomon, 1975. "The Definition of College Quality and Its Impact on Earnings," NBER Chapters, in: Explorations in Economic Research, Volume 2, number 4, pages 537-587 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Duncan, Gregory M, 1980. "Formulation and Statistical Analysis of the Mixed, Continuous/Discrete Dependent Variable Model in Classical Production Theory," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 839-52, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Hessel Oosterbeek & Dinand Webbink, 1997. "Is there a Hidden Technical Potential?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 97-012/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  2. Epple, Dennis & Romano, Richard & Sieg, Holger, 2000. "Peer Effects, Financial Aid, and Selection of Students into Colleges and Universities: An Empirical Analysis," Working Papers 00-02, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  3. MONTMARQUETTE, Claude & MAHSEREDJIAN, Sophie & HOULE, Rachel, 1995. "The Determinants of University Dropouts: a Sequential Decision Model with Selectivity Bias," Cahiers de recherche 9558, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
  4. Montmarquette, Claude & Mahseredjian, Sophie & Houle, Rachel, 2001. "The determinants of university dropouts: a bivariate probability model with sample selection," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 475-484, October.
  5. Porter, Stephen R. & Toutkoushian, Robert K., 2006. "Institutional research productivity and the connection to average student quality and overall reputation," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(6), pages 605-617, December.
  6. Curs, Bradley & Singell, Larry Jr., 2002. "An analysis of the application and enrollment processes for in-state and out-of-state students at a large public university," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 111-124, April.
  7. Stephen L. DeJardins & Dennis A. Ahlburg & Brian McCall, . "An Integrated Model of Application, Admission, Enrollment, and Financial Aid," Working Papers 0104, Human Resources and Labor Studies, University of Minnesota (Twin Cities Campus).

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