Undergraduate Course Allocation through Competitive Markets

60 Pages Posted: 9 Aug 2021 Last revised: 8 Aug 2023

See all articles by Daniel Kornbluth

Daniel Kornbluth

Carnegie Mellon University

Alexey Kushnir

Carnegie Mellon University - David A. Tepper School of Business

Date Written: June 8, 2021

Abstract

We consider the problem of allocating courses to students in post-secondary institutions. We propose a mechanism that assigns course seats based on student preferences and respects course priorities. This mechanism uses fake money and competitive equilibrium to allocate courses without transfers and has desirable theoretical properties in terms of stability, efficiency, fairness, and strategy-proofness. In simulations drawing from real-world university data, we demonstrate that its outcomes improve student satisfaction and allocation fairness over the outcomes of several celebrated mechanisms.

Keywords: market design, matching, many-to-many assignment, deterministic assignment, course allocation, approximate competitive equilibrium, random serial dictatorship, set-asides

JEL Classification: D47, D63, D82, C63, C78, I21

Suggested Citation

Kornbluth, Daniel and Kushnir, Alexey I., Undergraduate Course Allocation through Competitive Markets (June 8, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3901146 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3901146

Daniel Kornbluth

Carnegie Mellon University ( email )

Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890
United States

Alexey I. Kushnir (Contact Author)

Carnegie Mellon University - David A. Tepper School of Business ( email )

5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890
United States

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