Author(s)

Albert Betts Jr

Date Approved

9-6-2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ed.D. Educational Leadership

Department

Educational Leadership

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Chin, Steven

Subject(s)

SAT (Educational test);Universities and colleges--Admission

Disciplines

Higher Education Administration

Abstract

The use of SAT scores in the college admissions process has been increasingly criticized in recent years for a variety of reasons. There are those who continue to support the use of the SAT in the college admissions process, those who oppose its use, and those who believe the best option is to make the submission of standardized tests scores optional. Currently, all applicants for undergraduate admission to Rowan University with less than 24 college credits earned must submit standardized test scores along with their high school and college transcripts when applying for admission to the university. The purpose of this mixed methods research study was to determine whether SAT scores should continue to be a required component of the freshman admission decision-making process at Rowan or if a change to an SAT-optional admissions policy should be considered by the university. Data was collected using qualitative interviews, a focus group, an online survey, and quantitative statistical analyses. A SWOT analysis of the findings indicated support for a change to SAT-optional admissions at Rowan from university admissions officers, current students, faculty members, academic advisors, and the high school guidance counselors of the state of New Jersey. The quantitative analyses showed that high school GPA is a much stronger predictor of freshman academic success at Rowan than SAT scores. After reviewing the findings, the author recommends that Rowan University consider a potential change to SAT-optional admissions. Keywords: SAT-optional, mixed methodology, SWOT analysis, educational leadership.

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