Take Two! SAT Retaking and College Enrollment Gaps

57 Pages Posted: 5 Sep 2018 Last revised: 19 Oct 2018

See all articles by Joshua Goodman

Joshua Goodman

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Oded Gurantz

Stanford University

Jonathan Smith

Georgia State University

Date Written: August 27, 2018

Abstract

Data on millions of SAT-takers show only half retake the exam, with even lower retake rates among low income and underrepresented minority students. Scoring below multiples of 100 increases retaking, implying some students have round number target scores. Regression discontinuity evidence finds retaking once improves admissions-relevant SAT scores by 0.3 standard deviations on average. Likely by strengthening college applications, retaking substantially increases four-year college enrollment, particularly for low income and underrepresented minority students. Eliminating disparities in retake rates could close up to 20 percent of the income gap and 10 percent of the racial gap in four-year college enrollment.

JEL Classification: I20, J24

Suggested Citation

Goodman, Joshua and Gurantz, Oded and Smith, Jonathan, Take Two! SAT Retaking and College Enrollment Gaps (August 27, 2018). HKS Working Paper No. RWP18-031. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3239325 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3239325

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

Stanford University ( email )

Jonathan Smith

Georgia State University ( email )

GA
United States

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

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
22
Abstract Views
733
PlumX Metrics