Untested Admissions: Examining Changes in Application Behaviors and Student Demographics Under Test-Optional Policies
Untested Admissions: Examining Changes in Application Behaviors and Student Demographics Under Test-Optional Policies
 
Print

Published Online in:
American Educational Research Journal
April 12, 2021

Christopher T. Bennett, Vanderbilt University

This study examines a diverse set of nearly 100 private institutions that adopted test-optional undergraduate admissions policies between 2005–2006 and 2015–2016. Using comparative interrupted time series analysis and difference-in-differences withmatching, I find that test-optional policies were associated with a 3% to 4%increase in Pell Grant recipients, a 10% to 12%increase in first-time students from underrepresented racial/ethnic backgrounds, and a 6% to 8% increase in first-time enrollment of women. Overall, I do not detect clear evidence of changes in application volume or yield rate. Subgroup analyses suggest that these patterns were generally similar for both themore selective and the less selective institutions examined. These findings provide evidence regarding the potential—and the limitations—of using test-optional policies to improve equity in admissions.

Read the full open-access article

Read the study snapshot.

Study citation: Bennett, C. T. (2021). Untested Admissions: Examining Changes in Application Behaviors and Student Demographics Under Test-Optional Policies. American Educational Research Journal. Prepublished April 12, 2021. https://doi.org/10.3102/00028312211003526

 
Designed by Weber-Shandwick   Powered by eNOAH