Research

Selection Bias in Validation Studies of Academic Performance

This article shows how admission and enrollment processes affect the interpretation of simple validation studies of academic performance. In a competitive market for students, optimal behavior of admissions committees and applicants drives the simple correlation between test scores and performance toward zero, regardless of the relationship in the population of prospective students. Data from our university's MBA program support the prediction that applicants exhibit a higher correlation between test scores and undergraduate GPAs than do current students. This suggests that standard validation studies will understate the importance of GMAT scores in predicting performance of potential MBA students.

Publication Information
Article Title: Selection Bias in Validation Studies of Academic Performance
Journal: Economic Inquiry (Apr, 2004)
v. 42 iss. 2 pp. 319-322
Author(s): McGarvey, Mary G;  Cushing, Matthew J
Researcher Information
    
McGarvey, Mary G
McGarvey, Mary G
Associate Professor of Economics
Expertise:
  • Applied Econometrics
  • Public Policy Analysis
  • Economics of Obesity
  • Labor Markets
Economics
CoB 525 P
P.O. Box 880489
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, NE 68588-0489, USA
Phone: (402) 472-9415
mmcgarvey1@unl.edu
Cushing, Matthew J
Cushing, Matthew J
Professor of Economics
Expertise:
  • Labor Economics
  • Econometrics
  • Macroeconomics
Economics
CoB 525 U
P.O. Box 880489
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, NE 68588-0489, USA
Phone: (402) 472-2323
Fax: (402) 472-9700
mcushing1@unl.edu