would be the SAT scores of their high school classmates.
Newsflash: College football/basketball athletes have lower SAT scores than the average student
Whose high school classmates? The athletes'? It'd take an awful lot of patience on a reporter's part to dig up those numbers.
High schools keep track of such things. Public schools have to report assorted test numbers for NCLB. Setting up an appropriate proxy for school quality would not be that hard.
How many high schools did the 85 scholarship players at Michigan attend? 60? 70? Now multiply that by 119 schools. That's a lot of work to prove . . . what, exactly? I don't think you can find any statistical analysis that makes UM athletes look academically comparable to non-athletes, no matter how many factors you try to control. Most of our athletes aren't UM material in the classroom. Same goes for every other school (including Ivy League schools, incidentally). It doesn't need to be rationalized away. That's just how it is. Society has decided that sports is important enough to allow people of otherwise substandard qualifications to attend good schools.
the research in the original article was done? the AJC indicates that this is a "study" and thereby is doing what it considers to be legit research. if it was too much effort to do it right, then they shouldn't have done it at all. this is contextless half-assery unless they didn't think of holding the high school or wealth constant, which makes them stupid. either way, it's crap.
i don't care at all about their conclusion one way or the other, i care about the difference between what they represent their research as versus what it actually is. it's not like the AJC needs an excuse to talk about the weirdness of amateur sports, they're a friggin' newspaper with a sports section.
You seem oddly defensive about the revelation that athletes are worse students than non-athletes at the same school. Do you seriously disagree with that point?
As for what they did, I would imagine that they contacted the NCAA clearinghouse for the data. And there's hardly anything surprising in their findings. Most top athletes score just a little over the NCAA minimum on the SAT.
per the AJC:
"While it’s commonly known that admission standards are different for athletes, the AJC study quantifies how wide the gap is between athletes and the general student body at major universities."
they sought to quantify and failed miserably.
What are you talking about? They offer the data in one of their links. Here it is:
you're not keeping up here. i'm well aware at this point what's in the data and what isn't, as i've been corresponding with the author regarding his lackluster research.
I'm following your reasoning; it just isn't particularly logical. There's nothing wrong with the study. The fact of the matter is that athletes have consistently lower grades and test scores than non-athletes, and that schools must lower their standards to admit them. You are not refuting this in the least. You are simply making excuses for the athletes, claiming that their comparatively poor academic performance it's a function of being poor and attending poor schools.
It probably is true that athletes are disproportionately poorer and have attended worse high schools than non-athletes. That doesn't change the fact that they are (on the whole) much worse students than non-athletes. You cannot dispute that fact.
A kid who comes out of a Detroit high school with a 2.7 and 900 SAT is not considered UM material in the eyes of our admissions staff - unless he/she is an athlete. Whether the kid
is poor, or went to a good school, or finished in a high percentile, is irrelevant; that's not considered a good enough record of academic achievement to attend Michigan. Unless he/she is an athlete.
There's a reason why the SAT has little going for it as far as most educators are concerned these days. If you'd like to think I'm actively trying to make excuses, that's fine. Beyond that, I've already had these arguments with the author. So whatevs.
was look at average family income for major universities and then the football players, they'd have a useful proxy for school quality.
That would not refute the findings of this study. That would just try to explain them away. The article is not condemning the athletes, or arguing that they shouldn't have been admitted. It just points out that their academic profile is well beneath that of a non-athlete. That is indisputable.
which is the SAT. The author himself admits "there aren't any very good metrics for student success or even any commonly accepted definitions of it." Ta da.
a quote from an email. Should have specified.
of the entire student body has below aaverage test scores?
By definition, 50%.
Not exactly. By definition, 50% are below the median, not the average.
I knew as soon as I typed that that someone would call me out on that. In practice, there's not going to be much difference here. We're talking about the SATs of thousands of students.
I agree, with a large sample size like this the median and average are likely close. There's also a relatively small range of scores, and outliers are usually what pull an average away from the median. But if you are going to define something, it should probably be the correct term.