On Undermatching

An excellent piece on undermatching that lends further perspectives to the three books I reviewed yesterday. We need to focus on multiple factors in college admission, not just one or two.

Jon Boeckenstedt's Admissions Weblog

About July 28th, I was asked to participate on an August 4th panel at The American Enterprise Institute, a think tank in DC, to react to two papers presented at their invitation-only conference, Matching all students to post secondary opportunities: How college choice is influenced by institutional, state, and federal policy.  With just a week to prepare, I juggled some schedule commitments and agreed to participate.

The premise of the conference was to move away from the traditional discussion of “undermatch,” which was made popular by a University of Chicago report on the Chicago Public Schools.  Since then, many definitions of undermatch have surfaced, but essentially the issue focuses on high-achieving, low-income students who don’t apply to, or don’t attend the most selective institutions they should consider or were admitted to, respectively.  It was hoped we could focus on a larger group, rather than just the very high-ability…

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About Will Dix

I am currently writing a book about college admission. I'm interested in the intersection of the college process and American culture. I attended Amherst College in the 1970s, taught high school English and theater at The Hill School in the '80s, returned to Amherst in the '90s as an admission dean, and began the '00s as a college counselor at the University of Chicago Laboratory School. I then joined Chicago Scholars as Program Director. Currently, I blog about college admission for Forbes.com. I also help community organizations serving low income students understand the college admission process so more students can consider gaining access to higher education. I have a few private college counseling clients that I take by referral only. The views expressed in this blog are mine alone.
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