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College Access

Our current research topics related to college access include college admissions, affirmative action, financing, diversity, and underrepresented students in higher education.

Two thousand-eight marked the 30th anniversary of the Supreme Court's Bakke decision, which legally upheld the consideration of race as a factor in admissions decisions for the purpose of promoting diversity in higher education. Such affirmative action policies have opened the doors of selective colleges and universities to many more minority students than might have otherwise had opportunities. While access to higher education has improved for minorities in this country, that progress is still severely threatened due, in part, to a series of very serious attacks on affirmative action. In 1996, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, in Hopwood v. University of Texas Law School, ended all considerations of race in admissions, recruitment, and scholarships at the undergraduate and graduate school level at all public institutions under its jurisdiction (i.e., Texas, Mississippi, and Louisiana). In 1996, California voters passed Proposition 209, a ballot initiative that also eliminated affirmative action in education, employment, and contracting throughout the state. And, the University of Michigan faced legal challenges in 2003 to both its undergraduate and law school admissions policies that give consideration to race/ethnicity.

 

Recent College Access Research

Research Item Asian Americans and Race-Conscious Admissions: Understanding the Conservative Opposition’s Strategy of Misinformation, Intimidation & Racial Division
 
Research Item How accountability can increase racial inequality: The case of federal risk-sharing
 
Research Item Alternative Paths to Diversity: Exploring and Implementing Effective College Admissions Policies
This report explores the issues before the Supreme Court of race-conscious affirmative action for college admissions, the continuing responsibilities of universities, and introduces a series of new studies, most commissioned by a collaboration between the Civil Rights Project and ETS.
Research Item Texas Top Ten Percent Plan: How It Works, What Are Its Limits, and Recommendations to Consider
 
Research Item The Promise and Peril for Universities Using Correlates of Race in Admissions in Response to the Grutter and Fisher Decisions
 
Research Item Can Socioeconomic Status Substitute for Race in Affirmative Action College Admissions Policies? Evidence From a Simulation Model
 
Research Item Two Decades After the Affirmative Action Ban: Evaluating the University of California’s Race-Neutral Efforts
 
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