round 1: rating the applicants

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College Admissions & Financial Aid Simulation, round 1, Fall 2015
Who should be admitted to The College? What qualities do we value in making our decision?

Background: The College is a selective liberal arts institution, similar to the one described by Mitchell Stevens in Creating a Class. The student body is made up of 1,800 undergraduates, with even proportions of women and men. Students come from 42 states and territories, and 31 other countries. About 14 percent are multicultural students.

4,500 total applicants (this simulation concentrates on a set of 15)

34% admittance rate (the number admitted/total applicants)

30% enrollment rate (the number who enroll/total admitted)

Admissions policy: There is no single determining factor in whether an applicant is admitted or not. The admissions committee rates a candidate’s potential for success at The College based on the evaluation and consideration of ALL submitted application materials. Although many students who apply are capable of handling the academic rigor, they may not necessarily be offered admission due to the limited number of available places in the entering class. Applicants must submit at least one of the following standardized tests: the current SAT, or any two SAT II subject tests, or the ACT. An interview is strongly encouraged, but not required.

Our seminar will play the role of the Admissions Committee, which must evaluate 15 applicants and agree on a decision-making process to arrive at a target goal of 3 students for our entering class. The Admissions Committee may vote to admit, deny, or place applicants on a wait list.

Total Applicants 15
Target goal for entering class 3

Reminder: For each applicant the seminar admits, there is a 30% chance that s/he will enroll in The College. If the final yield is higher than the target goal, there will be insufficient space in the residential halls; if the final yield is too low, the College will have insufficient tuition funds. Therefore, if the Admissions Committee misses the target goal at the conclusion of this simulation, the entire seminar will be penalized 2 points in your final grades.

Round 1 assignment from your Associate Dean of Admissions, Jasmine Gentry:

1) During Labor Day weekend, each of three teams must arrange to meet in a mutually convenient time and place, in order to work on the following:
– Before your team meeting, review all 15 applications (PDF).
– Discuss strengths and weaknesses of your assigned subset of 5 applicants, and summarize this in two sentences in our shared Google Spreadsheet.
– Recommend a set of categories to help the entire Admissions Committee make decisions about what qualities we value in creating the entering class. Write up your team recommendations in a Google Doc, or a copy of our Google Spreadsheet (File > Make a Copy) to share at our Wed Sept 9th session.

2) During the second half of our Wed Sept 9th seminar, each team must share their proposed set of categories, and the entire Admissions Committee must agree on a uniform set of categories to rate the applicants. (If the seminar cannot agree by the end of class, there will be consequences.)

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