Take Two! Sat Retaking and College Enrollment Gaps

61 Pages Posted: 28 Aug 2018 Last revised: 6 Sep 2018

See all articles by Joshua Goodman

Joshua Goodman

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Oded Gurantz

University of Missouri at Columbia - Truman School of Public Affairs

Jonathan Smith

Georgia State University

Date Written: August 2018

Abstract

Only half of SAT-takers retake the exam, with even lower retake rates among low income and underrepresented minority (URM) students. We exploit discontinuous jumps in retake probabilities at multiples of 100, driven by left-digit bias, to estimate retaking’s causal effects. Retaking substantially improves SAT scores and increases four-year college enrollment rates, particularly for low income and URM students. Eliminating disparities in retake rates could close up to 10 percent of the income-based gap and up to seven percent of the race-based gap in four-year college enrollment rates of high school graduates.

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Suggested Citation

Goodman, Joshua and Gurantz, Oded and Smith, Jonathan, Take Two! Sat Retaking and College Enrollment Gaps (August 2018). NBER Working Paper No. w24945. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3239281

Joshua Goodman (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.hks.harvard.edu/about/faculty-staff-directory/joshua-goodman/

Oded Gurantz

University of Missouri at Columbia - Truman School of Public Affairs ( email )

101 Middlebush Hall
Columbia, MO 65201
United States

Jonathan Smith

Georgia State University ( email )

GA
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/site/jonathansmithphd/

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