Last Thursday, Bev Taylor authored an article on Huffington Post, claiming “Need Blind Admissions Is a Lie.” Its publication ignited a flurry of responses among college admissions professionals both publicly and privately. On Thursday, we posted part one of a response to her article, which offered a rebuttal to some of her proscribed actions and clarified some of the terms surrounding “need” in admissions and financial aid. Today, we continue with part two, which challenges Taylor’s central claim that need blind admissions just doesn’t make logical sense.
Good use of data vs. “logic”
Enrollment management practices at colleges and universities are based on historical trends. For example, if I want to yield a class of 1,600 students this year and I know that an average of 40 percent of students have accepted my offer of admission over the last five years, I will admit 4,000 students. Sometimes this leads to over-enrolling a class and a scramble to find extra beds on campus, and other times it leads to under-enrolling a class and use of the waitlist. The guess is imperfect, but it’s as close to accurate as colleges can be, and it often turns out to be a pretty good guideline.