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Predicting the Long-Term Performance in College of Minority and Nonminority Students: A Comparative Analysis in Two Collegiate Settings SAT

Wilson, Kenneth M.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Bulletin
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
College Board, Academic Achievement, Aptitude Tests, College Entrance Examinations, College Students, Comparative Analysis, Higher Education, Longitudinal Studies, Minority Groups, Predictive Validity, Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), Student Records, Validity Studies


The data for cohorts of minority and nonminority students in two different undergraduate settings were used to determine the predictive validity of admissions tests and school rank in determining long range and short range outcomes for college students. It was also hypothesized that the performance of minority students would improve as the college record accumulates. The results showed that substantial across-cohort increases in average grades relative to average ability levels were greater for minority students in the college setting. Consequently, in later cohorts, minority and nonminority students were less sharply differentiated by their average grades than were their counterparts in earlier cohorts, and grade point average trends suggested the possibility of "late blooming." The report states that the results did not explain the increases in average grades across cohorts and suggests that increases in the average level of grades awarded across cohorts did not necessarily reflect increases or invariances in the average quality or quantity of academic achievement. The report also states that admissions variables were valid success predictors for both minority and nonminority students. The ambiguity of these findings is said to further point to the need for special consideration of problems involved in setting and maintaining standards for evaluation of student achievement in future, comparative across-cohort studies.

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