Cover: Inside Graduate Admissions: Merit, Diversity, and Faculty Gatekeeping, from Harvard University PressCover: Inside Graduate Admissions in HARDCOVER

Inside Graduate Admissions

Merit, Diversity, and Faculty Gatekeeping

Product Details

HARDCOVER

$39.00 • £33.95 • €35.95

ISBN 9780674088696

Publication Date: 01/11/2016

Text

272 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

12 tables

World

Also Available As

Jacket: Inside Graduate Admissions

PAPERBACK | $23.00

ISBN 9780674984042

Trade

Add to Cart

Educators: Request an Exam Copy (Learn more)

Media Requests:

Related Subjects

How does graduate admissions work? Who does the system work for, and who falls through its cracks? More people than ever seek graduate degrees, but little has been written about who gets in and why. Drawing on firsthand observations of admission committees and interviews with faculty in 10 top-ranked doctoral programs in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences, education professor Julie Posselt pulls back the curtain on a process usually conducted in secret.

Inside Graduate Admissions presents admissions from decision makers’ point of view, including thought-provoking episodes of committees debating the process, interviewing applicants, and grappling with borderline cases. Who ultimately makes the admit list reveals as much about how professors see themselves—and each other—as it does about how they view students. Professors in these programs say that they admit on merit, but they act on different meanings of the term. Disciplinary norms shape what counts as merit, as do professors’ ideas about intelligence and their aversions to risk, conflict, ambiguity, and change. Professors also say that they seek diversity, but Posselt shows that their good intentions don’t translate into results. In fact, faculty weigh diversity in only a small fraction of admissions decisions. Often, they rely upon criteria that keep longstanding inequalities in place.

More equitable outcomes occur when admissions committees are themselves diverse and when members take a fresh look at inherited assumptions that affect their judgment. To help academic departments promote transparency and accountability, Posselt closes with concrete strategies to improve admissions review.

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Composite photograph showing (top) entrance to the Prudential Center in Boston and (bottom) an internal construction partition/wall printed with the words 'Opening Day 2023' and other decorative text

A New Chapter for Harvard Book Store

Starting in the summer of 2023, for the first time in almost thirty years, Harvard Book Store will have two locations: the flagship store in Harvard Square, and a large new store in the Prudential Center in Boston. For University Press Week we wanted to show some bookseller love, so we reached out to Rachel Cass, General Manager of the Harvard Book Store, to see what’s planned for their exciting new location