Evaluering af optagelsessystemets betydning for social mobilitet på CBS

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Evaluering af optagelsessystemets betydning for social mobilitet på CBS

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Titel: Evaluering af optagelsessystemets betydning for social mobilitet på CBS
Forfatter: Nielsen, Michael Møller
Resume: This study examines the effect of the admission rules on the social composition of students admitted at CBS in 2015. The study is initiated by the Dean of Education to fulfil the Development Contract between CBS and the Minister of Higher Education and Science 2015-17. Social inequality still exists in the Danish higher educational system. While 53% of all Danish families with children in 2009 were skilled or unskilled labours only 36% of the applicants to CBS came from such families. On the other hand 24% of the applicants came from families with an academic degree while only 15% of all Danish families with children had an academic degree. Social inequalities in higher education in Denmark are thus largely established in the early schooling. But admission rules to higher education also contribute to further inequality. Applicants from families with an academic degree have 48% chance of being admitted at CBS while applicants from unskilled families only have 29% chance. This selection of students from more privileged families is not a special feature for CBS. Compared to other Danish universities – and especially the universities in Copenhagen – CBS does not have a more socially skewed student population. The predominant reason why the admission system favours applicants from socially privileged homes is that the admission systems selection rules are closely linked to the candidates’ grades (GPA) from their entrance exam. Grades in the upper secondary school system greatly favour the socially privileged. 34% of the applicants to CBS from families with an academic degree apply with a GPA from entrance exam at 10 or more, while only 16% from this social segment have a GPA below 7. Only 22% of the applicants from skilled or unskilled families have a GPA at 10 or more while 30% have a GPA below 7. It has for a long time been recognized that it is more difficult for children from socially disadvantaged families to achieve high grades at upper secondary school. Partly because of this the Danish Government has established a secondary admission quota dedicated to applicants with alternative, extra-curricular entrance qualifications (Quota 2). Admission via Quota 2 is less linked to grades from entrance exam, but depends more on the applicants’ documented activities after high school. Particular attention is paid to permanent work, stay abroad and other educational activities. In addition, admission to some CBS programmes includes an assessment of the applicants’ written applications. However, this study reveals that Quota 2 does not favour applicants from socially disadvantaged families. If quota 2 was abolished and all admission thus solely made dependent on grades, it would not affect the social composition of those admitted to CBS. The only effect would be that fewer applicants from abroad would be admitted. Of course the Quota 2 system allows applicants with low grades a chance to be admitted at CBS, and this means for the greater part applicants from socially more disadvantaged families. But there are some opposing effects that in particular prevent applicants from less privileged homes from applying via Quota 2: First, a Quota 2 application requires that the study start is postponed with at least one year after the completion of the entrance exam. This study reveals that applicants from homes with less educated parents and applicants with non-Western origin are less likely to postpone their study start. Since it is the educational level and the cultural background and not the family income that is relevant to the tendency to postpone the study start, the explanation appears to be socially defined differences in the attitude to pausing the education process. Second, a break in the education process must be used for permanent employment, stay abroad and/or other educational activities (e.g. folk high school stay). This study reveals that among those who pause after completion of their entrance exam, it is less likely for applicants from low-income families and applicants with non-Western origin to apply via Quota 2. Since it is income rather than educational level that is relevant to the propensity to make use of the Quota 2 opportunity, it is likely that economic barriers to long-term stay abroad or folk high school stays etc. would be the main explanations. Furthermore it could be more difficult for young people with non-Western origin to get (and keep) a permanent job. It does not matter for the socially-dependent propensity to apply via quota 2, whether or not a motivated application is required. For those who apply through Quota 2, social background in itself have no bearing on whether they are admitted or not. The main factor that affects whether a Quota 2 application is successfully met is still the GPA from the entrance exam, which also in Quota 2 plays a major role in the overall assessment of the application. Therefore, it is still less likely that an applicant from a socially disadvantaged home will be admitted in Quota 2 than an applicant from a more privileged home. Grades are equally important in those programmes where a written motivated application is included as in the programmes where there is no. However, the importance of the admission criteria through quota 2 seems limited. Even though admission through quota 2 was made entirely independent of the grades, it would in absolute numbers only be a few more from socially less privileged homes that would be admitted to CBS. The effect of a complete abolition of grades as a criterion for admission through quota 2 would be that approximately 15-20 more from less privileged homes would be admitted to CBS. This is only 2-3% of those who are admitted via Quota 2.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10398/9587
Dato: 2018-01-04

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