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Do College Entrance Examination Scores Predict Undergraduate GPAs? A Tale of Two Universities

  • Bai, Chong-en
  • Chi, Wei
  • Xiaoye, Qian

Each year, millions of Chinese high school students sit the National College Entrance Examination (CEE). For the majority of students, the CEE score is the single determinant in whether they gain admission into a college and to what college they enter. The purpose of this paper is to determine whether and how well the CEE score predicts college academic success. We also consider high school achievement and admission route in predicting college grades. We obtain administrative data on CEE and undergraduate GPAs from two Chinese universities with very different rankings. We find that, for both universities the CEE total score predicts undergraduate GPAs for all four years in college. Even the size of the estimates for CEE is similar for the two universities. High school achievement and admission routes are also significant predictors of college grades. However, we do not find consistent results as to which CEE subject test scores predict students’ academic performance in college.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 48731.

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Date of creation: 30 Jul 2013
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:48731
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  1. Christopher Avery & Jonathan Levin, 2009. "Early Admission at Selective Colleges," Discussion Papers 08-031, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  2. Niu, Sunny Xinchun & Tienda, Marta & Cortes, Kalena, 2006. "College selectivity and the Texas top 10% law," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 259-272, June.
  3. Yao Amber Li & John Whalley & Shunming Zhang & Xiliang Zhao, 2011. "The Higher Educational Transformation of China and Its Global Implications," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 34(4), pages 516-545, 04.
  4. Robinson, Michael & Monks, James, 2005. "Making SAT scores optional in selective college admissions: a case study," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 393-405, August.
  5. Jensen, Elizabeth J. & Wu, Stephen, 2010. "Early decision and college performance," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 517-525, August.
  6. Han, Li & Li, Tao, 2009. "The gender difference of peer influence in higher education," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 129-134, February.
  7. Dickson, Lisa M., 2006. "Does ending affirmative action in college admissions lower the percent of minority students applying to college?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 109-119, February.
  8. Li, Tao & Zhang, Juyan, 2010. "What determines employment opportunity for college graduates in China after higher education reform?," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 38-50, March.
  9. Rothstein, J.M.Jesse M., 2004. "College performance predictions and the SAT," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 121(1-2), pages 297-317.
  10. Eric P. Bettinger & Brent J. Evans & Devin G. Pope, 2013. "Improving College Performance and Retention the Easy Way: Unpacking the ACT Exam," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 26-52, May.
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