NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED510111
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Jan
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 8
Assessing the Usefulness of SAT and ACT Tests in Minority Admissions
Micceri, Theodore
Online Submission
This study sought to determine whether the use of standardized test scores contributes any useful information regarding First Time in College (FTIC) students' probable success at USF, using more detailed analysis of underrepresented minorities and women, who Micceri (2009) shows, experience substantial negative bias relative to males and whites on such tests. Methods: Combined historical USF admissions, degrees granted and enrollment data from Academic Year (AY) 1999 through 2008 were analyzed for FTIC matriculants from AY 1999 through 2003 thereby allowing a minimum of six complete academic years for graduation. Academic progress was defined by a six level progress variable ranging from 1, failure to complete three USF hours or maintain a 2.0 GPA to 6, earning a USF BA or BS. Pre matriculation predictor variables included a concordance of the highest of SAT or ACT total scores (Dorans, 1997), high school GPA, high school class rank, transfer hours, geographical region, race/ethnicity and sex. All of these, except the tests, have previously shown at least minimal relationships with various definitions of academic progress. Descriptive and multiple regression analyses were conducted. Findings: Consistent with all historic research on the topic, in this study, standardized tests failed to relate with academic progress at USF. The SAT/ACT regression beta weights were slightly negative (Table 1, Table 2), and, as Figure 2 indicates, the highest SAT/ACT scores occurred among the lowest two progress levels, while the lowest test values occurred at the highest academic progress level (BA/BS). Further, as Figure 1, Figure 2, Figure 6 and Figure 7 show, use of these tests as criteria perpetuates discrimination against both women and all minorities, including Asians, and a greater level of discrimination against underrepresented minorities when viewed from this more thorough academic progress definition. Figure 6 and Figure 7 show that tests are almost completely flat across academic progress levels for African American and Hispanic students and therefore provide no useful information regarding college performance. Perhaps the only group for whom tests may possibly be of some value is Asians, where the only technically meaningful differences (60 points or more, ETS, 2001) occurred between those in the lowest progress group (less than 3 hrs/less than 2.0 USF GPA) and those in the highest (USF BA/BS earned). Note that both high school GPA and class rank exhibit a comparatively monotonic positive upward trend as the academic progress level increases for all racial/ethnic groups and both sexes (Figure 3 through Figure 7). None of the differences between adjacent progress levels are meaningfully different, it is the trends that are important and meaningful. Appendix A provides details for these findings. Conclusion: Consistent with Micceri (2009), it appears that the use of test scores as admissions criterion for either females (from any racial/ethnic group), or underrepresented minorities (from any racial/ethnic group), negatively discriminates in favor of whites and males when viewed from the perspective of academic progress at USF. It would appear that ceasing to use such measures for females and minorities would be the most egalitarian admissions approach given current and historical research findings. (Contains 6 footnotes, 7 tables, and 7 figures.)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Florida
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: SAT (College Admission Test)