Group-blind admissions and the college GPA gap

It is relatively well-known that blacks and Hispanics perform worse in college than whites and Asians do. This, some people propose, is an obvious consequence of affirmative action. By allowing disadvantaged groups to gain admission to college with lower test scores, lots of underqualified applicants will be admitted. This will then generate the aforementioned inequality in college performance.

But would race-blind admissions help eliminate this inequality? On the one hand, such an admission policy would evaluate students with the same standards regardless of race. On the other hand, if there’s a more fundamental inequality among students that already exists prior to college (like inequality in high school performance), then even race-blind policies can’t prevent unequal performance in college.

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How is cultural assimilation affected by community leaders?

Why do certain immigrant groups tend to assimilate, while others don’t? This post argues that immigrant institutions (such as religious communities or foreign language media) have an important role in determining the degree of assimilation.

Moreover, altruistic institutions (those who care about their group’s identity and wealth) and extractive institutions (those who only care about the group’s identity to the extent that it increases their own revenue) may have different effects.

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Should Google hire more women?

So the NYT came out with an editorial detailing how Silicon Valley firms should become more diverse.

It seems wrong to blame firms for their hiring decisions in this case, however. Firms are rational players and they won’t (and neither should they) hire more diverse employees as long as the applicant pool itself doesn’t change.

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The effects of an affirmative action ban

Affirmative action policies at universities are being challenged more and more often nowadays. And actually, some states have already banned them. So what lessons have we learned from these bans?

The question is not only whether minority enrollment rates decrease, but also whether many minorities will actually not even bother applying after such a ban, and whether schools are able to maintain their current level diversity.

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Are boys better at math?

There definitely tend to be more male scientists, and in general males are more numerous than females in math-heavy fields. Is this because boys are better at math, which is the foundation for all these fields?

This post examines whether this is the case. And if boys are better at math, then is it due to biological or environmental factors? Can we do something to change this, or is it just how we evolved?

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