Tuesday, August 23, 2011
A study found that black and Latino students with academic credentials equal to those of white students are slightly more likely than their white counterparts to apply to and enroll at selective colleges
The main reason why minorities are less likely to go to elite colleges is that black and Latino applicants don't have the same academic credentials as their white counterparts. On average, Asian Americans apply to colleges with SAT averages 50 points higher than those to which white applicants apply; white applicants, in turn, apply to colleges with SAT averages about 50 points higher than those to which black and Latino students apply. The data shows that 30% of Asian American applicants apply to competitive colleges, compared to 18% of white students and 10% of black and Latino students. When academic background is controlled for, the study found that while Asians are more likely to apply to and enroll at selective colleges than are all other groups, black and Latino applicants are slightly more likely to apply to and enroll in selective colleges than are white students. The main factor keeping minorities out of elite colleges appears to be the relatively small number of black and Latino applicants with academic backgrounds comparable to those of white students.