Friday, May 11, 2007

Holistic Crap, Batman!

Officials attributed some of those changes to a more "holistic" admissions process this year in which applicants' grades and test scores were reviewed more fully in context of their life experiences and achievements. UC leaders say that process was race-blind.

UCLA says that their "holistic" admissions process is race-blind. Perhaps they can explain why that lead to a significant drop in the number of Asian-American admitted students. If they claim it has to do with "life experiences", then why didn't white students experience a similar drop?

This is reminiscent of when my beloved UC Berkeley tried to justify their admissions process prior to Proposition 209. They said that without Prop 209, the number of white students would go down because they would be forced to admit more qualified Asian students. The alumni association, upon hearing this, and seeing statistics (the family incomes of white students were double those for Asian students and the average SAT for admitted white kids was 150 points lower than for admitted Asian kids), said that the old method was tantamount to affirmative action for rich white kids. They could not support that old system.

Well, Prop 209 went into effect and UC Berkeley is now a majority Asian campus. The world didn't stop. UC Berkeley did not become any less interesting or academically rigorous. Maybe UCLA can learn from this.

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