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Download Inside Graduate Admissions: Merit, Diversity, and Faculty by Julie R. Posselt PDF

By Julie R. Posselt

How does graduate admissions paintings? Who does the method paintings for, and who falls via its cracks? extra humans than ever search graduate levels, yet little has been written approximately who will get in and why. Drawing on firsthand observations of admission committees and interviews with school in 10 top-ranked doctoral courses within the humanities, social sciences, and ordinary sciences, schooling professor Julie Posselt pulls again the curtain on a strategy often carried out in secret.

Inside Graduate Admissions provides admissions from choice makers’ perspective, together with thought-provoking episodes of committees debating the method, interviewing candidates, and grappling with borderline circumstances. Who finally makes the admit checklist finds as a lot approximately how professors see themselves―and each one other―as it does approximately how they view scholars. Professors in those courses say that they admit on benefit, yet they act on varied meanings of the time period. Disciplinary norms form what counts as benefit, as do professors’ rules approximately intelligence and their aversions to chance, clash, ambiguity, and alter. Professors additionally say that they search variety, yet Posselt exhibits that their solid intentions don’t translate into effects. in truth, school weigh range in just a small fraction of admissions judgements. frequently, they rely on standards that retain longstanding inequalities in place.

More equitable results happen whilst admissions committees are themselves varied and whilst individuals take a clean examine inherited assumptions that impact their judgment. to aid educational departments advertise transparency and responsibility, Posselt closes with concrete techniques to enhance admissions review.

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Extra info for Inside Graduate Admissions: Merit, Diversity, and Faculty Gatekeeping

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4-point rating scale used. Notes 8 6 Political Science Economics Sociology 5 2 2 2 800/65/25 350/25/16 225/22/10 3 or more 2–4 1–3 Quant GRE, math coursework Committee discouraged from heavy reliance on GRE Committee members free to use their own criteria Male, domestic Male, international Male, domestic No interviews Rarely, usually intl. students via video conference No interviews Additional consultation occurs outside of committee meetings. 10-point rating scale. Program chair adjudicates final decisions.

But anyway it’s one thing that we can standardize in the sea of variability in these applications. As the applicant pool increases, so does the burden of holistic review, and with it, the difficulty of sorting out who should have a place on the short list. The GRE’s standardization thus becomes central to justifications about its utility and appropriateness. Applicant ratings. A second form of quantification involves rating individual applicants. 21 As one participant described it, ratings offer “the most efficient way to focus in on the people that really need to be thought about”—that is, the applicants whose admissibility was debatable.

Chair has strong managerial role. 5 6 Philosophy 2 Linguistics Committee Size (Continued) Department Table 3 5 2 Number of Committee Meetings 105/8/4 225/20/5 Number who Applied / Were admitted/ Enrolled 4 1–2 Rounds of Review Grades/ coursework, college reputation, alignment of research interests with department vision Writing sample, letters of recommendation Key Evaluation Criteria Male, international Male, domestic Admissions Chair’s Gender & Nativity Very short list, via recruitment weekend No interviews Interview (of whom & how) Initial review of each application by 2 committee members; then, full committee reads applications on short list.

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