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Minority Report: the impact of predicted grades on university admissions of disadvantaged groups

Murphy, R; Wyness, G; (2020) Minority Report: the impact of predicted grades on university admissions of disadvantaged groups. Education Economics , 28 (4) pp. 333-350. 10.1080/09645292.2020.1761945. Green open access

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Abstract

We study the UK's university application system, in which students apply based on predicted examination grades, rather than actual results. Using three years of UK university applications data we find that only 16% of applicants’ predicted grades are accurate, with 75% of applicants having over-predicted grades. However, high-attaining, disadvantaged students are significantly more likely to receive pessimistic grade predictions. We show that under-predicted candidates are more likely to enrol in courses for which they are over qualified. We conclude that the use of predicted rather than actual grades has important implications for labour market outcomes and social mobility.

Type: Article
Title: Minority Report: the impact of predicted grades on university admissions of disadvantaged groups
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/09645292.2020.1761945
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/09645292.2020.1761945
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions
Keywords: Higher education, university application, information, mismatch
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Learning and Leadership
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Learning and Leadership > Centre for Education Policy and Equalising Opportunities
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10096670
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