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ERIC Number: EJ851069
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0010-0889
The Predictive Power of Personal Statements in Admissions: A Meta-Analysis and Cautionary Tale
Murphy, Sara C.; Klieger, David M.; Borneman, Matthew J.; Kuncel, Nathan R.
College and University, v84 n4 p83-86, 88 Spr 2009
Personal statements are a widely used and popular predictor in academic admissions; however, relatively little is known about their effectiveness as a predictor of student performance. This study involved a meta-analysis of the relationships of personal statements to measures of student performance (e.g., GPA) and other predictors. An initial search was done in PsychINFO (1872-2006), ERIC (1966-2006), Education Full Text (1994-2006), and Dissertation Abstracts International (1861-2006) to identify potential relevant sources. Each of the relevant articles was coded for the relationship between personal statement and any subsequent school outcome variable. The relationship between personal statement and prior grades, test scores, or any other alternate predictor of performance also was coded. Data were analyzed using the Hunter and Schmidt (2004) psychometric meta-analytic procedure. This method allowed for quantitative aggregation of the effect sizes that were coded from primary studies. Results suggest that while they have little overlap with other predictors, personal statements also have small predictive relationships with grades and faculty performance ratings. In addition, once standardized test scores and prior grades are taken into account, they provide no incremental validity. (Contains 2 tables.)
American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO). One Dupont Circle NW Suite 520, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-293-9161; Fax: 202-872-8857; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A