Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


Every year thousands of young Americans apply for admission to four-year colleges and universities. Colleges and universities set goals for the number and quality of students they wish to admit and enroll. The admission or denial of admission is partially determined by the prospective college student's high school performance. A variety of methods are used to evaluate prospective students for admission. Grade point average (GPA), rank-in-class (RIC), standardized test scores (SAT and ACT), essays, institutional entrance tests, and personal interviews are used in various combinations by the more than 3,000 institutions of higher education across the country. RIC is becoming one of the more popular criterion used by institutions of higher education for admissions decisions. According to Miller, Riven, and Walker (1991), the number of colleges and universities using GPA and RIC as admission criteria increased from 33% in 1979 to as many as 70% by 1989. This paper will examine the use of RIC in the admissions process, review the changes occurring in education that have an effect on RIC, and discuss the effectiveness of using RIC as a predictor for college success.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Department of Educational Administration and Counseling

First Advisor

Michael D. Waggoner


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