Course Title: 
Access & Choice in American Higher Education

        Instructor Professor Greg Dubrow
       Institution Florida International University
Office Number 305-348-3208
E-mail address
Course Level Doctoral

EDH 6925   Fall 2001 
Thursdays, 5pm-7:40pm
University Park Campus, DM 192

Office: ZEB 358-B
Office Hours: MT 2-5 and by appointment.

Syllabus url:

**syllabus subject to change

Reading Material

The Student Aid Game and Chilling Admissions are available at the FIU Bookstore in the Graham Center.

A bulk-pack will be available at the FIU Bookstore in the Graham Center. Some material will be read on-line via the links provided in the syllabus. Other materials to be handed out as necessary.


* 30% 1 three-page paper (due October 11)

Choice of subjects:

Does financial aid promote equality of access?

You are the Director of Admissions at a selective college or university. The President of your institution has asked you to write a memo explaining the possible effects of your institution's recent drop from 8 to 13 in the US News rankings.

* 50 % 1 ten-to-twelve page paper (due December 13)

This paper will be an examination of a subject of your choosing relevant to the overall themes of the class. Paper topics should be discussed in advance with, and approved by, the instructor.

**Paper format guidelines: 1-inch margins on all sides, 10 or 12 point font. Please number pages. Submit stapled.

* 20% attendance/class participation (includes turning in 1-minute notes.)


Readings and Discussion Topics

Thursday, August 30 -- Introduction of course. Syllabus review.

Thursday, September 6
-- The Lay of the Land: Why do students go to college? Who Goes Where?


from bulk-pack:

"Why Freshmen Enroll in College." (1995, July). Postsecondary Education Opportunity, 1-7.

Baker, T. and Velez, W., "Access to and Opportunity in Postsecondary Education in the United States." Sociology of Education, 1996 (extra issue), pp. 82-101.

Outtz, Janice Hamilton. (1995) "Higher Education and the New Demographic Reality." Educational Record, 76 (2,3), 65-69.


Astin, A., "The Changing American College Student: Thirty-Year Trends, 1966-1996." The Review of Higher Education, v21, n2 (1998) . Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

ETS Report on Inequality of Opportunity of Access

Thursday, September 13
-- Theories of College Choice


from the bulkpack:

Hossler, D., Braxton, J., and Coopersmith, G. (1989) "Understanding Student College Choice." in Higher Education: Handbook of Theory and Research, Vol. V., edited by J.C. Smart. New York: Agathon Press.

Zemsky, R. and Penney Oedell, "A Sense of Place: Students, Families & Communities", chapter 3 from "The Structure of College Choice", New York: College Entrance Examination Board.


McDonough, P. (1994) "Buying and Selling Higher Education: The Social Construction of the College Applicant". Journal of Higher Education, 65, (4):427-446, July/August 1994. Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

Hossler, D., Hou, S. (2000) "Willingness to Pay and Preference for Private Institutions". Research in Higher Education 41 (6):685-701, December 2000. Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

Thursday, September 20
-- College Prep Courses, College Rankings and Market Segmentation


from the bulkpack:

Machung, Anne, (1998) "Playing the Rankings Game." Change Magazine, July/August 1998.

Wright., B.A., (1991) "The Rating Game: How Media Affect College Admission." The College Board Review, 158 (Winter 1990-91), pp. 12-32.

Wright., B.A., (1992). "A Little Learning is a Dangerous Thing: A Look at the Popular College Rankings." The College Board Review, Spring 1992 (163) pp. 6-16. [and response in same issue: "Satisfying a Hunger for Information: A Response to B. Ann Wright." (J. Gilbert), pp. 16-17, 35-36.

Zemsky, Robert., Shaman, Susan., and Iannozzi, Maria. (1997) "In Search of a Strategic Perspective: A Tool for Mapping the Market in Post-Secondary Education." Change, Nov/Dec 1997, pp. 23-38.


McDonough, Patricia M., Korn, J., Yamasaki, E., "Access, Equity, and the Privatization of College Counseling." Review of Higher Education, v20, n3. Spring 1997. Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

"Early Intervention: Expanding Access to Higher Education." The ERIC Review, v8, n1. Fall 200. (choose either the .pdf or the word version) Concentrate on Intro, Sections 1 & 2, conclusion. Skim section 4. Ignore section 3 unless you have lots of time.

Thursday, September 27
-- Financial Aid: State and Federal Models (History and Overview)


from the bulkpack:

Hauptman, A., (1996) "Federal and State Macro Policies for Financing Higher Education in the United States."

McPherson, M., Schapiro, M., and Winston, G., (1994) "How Can We Tell if Federal Student Aid is Working?" Chapter 6 in Paying the Piper; Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.


National Commission on the Cost of Higher Education Final Report

Read the following sections:

Thursday, October 4
-- Financial Aid: Does it Promote Equality of Access?



McPherson, M. and Schapiro, M., The Student Aid Game: Meeting Need and Rewarding Talent in American Higher Education. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1998.

from the bulkpack:

Fischer, Frederick., "State Financing of Higher Education: A New Look at an Old Problem." Change, Jan/Feb 1990, pp. 42-56.


Heller, D., "The Effects of Tuition and State Financial Aid on Public College Enrollment." The Review of Higher Education, v23, n1. Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

Thursday, October 11
-- The SAT


from the bulkpack:

Fremer, J., "Ensuring Quality and Fairness in Testing." The Long Term View, September-October 1993 (1,4) pp 21-27.

Rosner, J., "Discrimination is Built into Standardized Aptitude Tests." The Long Term View, September-October 1993 (1,4) pp 14-20.

Willingham, W., (1990) ˇ§Conclusions and Implicationsˇ¨, chpt 3 in Predicting College Grades: An Analysis of Institutional Trends Over Two Decades, Willingham, Lewis, Morgan and Ramist, eds., Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service.

Vars, F. and William G. Bowen, (1998) "Scholastic Aptitude Test Scores, Race and Academic Performance in Selective Colleges and Universities.", chpt 13 in The Black-White Test Score Gap., Washington, D.C.: The Brookings Institution.


Glazer, N and Thernstrom, A., "The End of Meritocracy -- Should the SAT Account for Race? Opposing Viewpoints." The New Republic, September 27, 1999.

** 3 page paper due **

Thursday, October 18
-- Athletics and Access


from the bulkpack:

Nathan, J., "Sports Rules -- Deserving Students and School Reformers Suffer: The Tragic Impact of the NCAA's Efforts to Impose Standards on High Schools." Teachers College Record Fall 1998 (100,1) pp. 150-163.

Haworth, K., "Lawsuit Says NCAA's Eligibility Standards Are Racially Biased." Chronicle of Higher Education, January 17, 1997, p A46.


Basinger, J., "Black and Low-Income Students Feel Impact of More Rigorous NCAA Eligibility Rules." Chronicle of Higher Education, September 19, 1997, p A48.

Suggs, W., "Fight Over NCAA Standards Reflects Long-Standing Dilemma." Chronicle of Higher Education, April 9, 1999.

Thursday, October 25
-- The Functions of Community Colleges: Vocational Training, College Prep and Remediation


from the bulkpack:

Shaw. Kathleen. (1997) "Remedial Education as Ideological Battleground: Emerging Remedial Education Policies in the Community College." Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 19 (3): pp. 284-296.


Dougherty, Kevin. (1992) "Community Colleges and Baccalaureate Attainment." Journal of Higher Education. 63 (2), Mar-Apr 1992, 188-214. Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

Nora, A. Reexamining the Community College Mission. Issue paper from the Kellogg Foundation Initiative "New Expeditions: Charting the Second Century of Community Colleges"

Nettles, M and Millett, C. ˇ§Student Access in Community Collegesˇ¨. Issue paper from the Kellogg Foundation Initiative ˇ§New Expeditions: Charting the Second Century of Community Collegesˇ¨

Thursday, November 1
-- The Role of Women's and Black Colleges


from the bulkpack:

Talbot, M. (1994). "Where The Boys Aren't: What's Right and Wrong With Women's Colleges Today." The Washington Post Magazine, November 20, 1994, pp. 12-19 & 30-35.


Wagener, Ursula., (1992) "Academic Achievement and Retention of Minority Students: What We Know.

Wagener, Ursula., and Smith, Edgar., (1994). "The Historically Black Colleges and Universities: Current Status." pp. 23-27 & 43-54.


Freeman, K., "HBCs or PWIs? African American High School Students' Consideration of Higher Education Institution Types." The Review of Higher Education, v23 n1 (1999). Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

Smith, D. "Women's Colleges and Coed Colleges: Is There a Difference for Women?" Journal of Higher Education, 61 (2): 181-197. Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

Riordan, C. (1994). "The Value of Attending a Women's College: Education, Occupation and Income Benefits." Journal of Higher Education, 65 (4):486-510. Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

Kim, M., Alvarez, R. (1995). "Womens-Only Colleges: some Unanticipated Consequences". Journal of Higher Education, 66 (6):641-668. Available on-line via a link thru the FIU Library web site.

Tuesday, November 8 -  Project updates

** Project plan outlines due **

Thursday, November 15
-  No Class

Thursday, November 22
-  No Class (Thanksgiving)

Thursday, November 29 - Affirmative Action: History and Current Research


* History:

from the bulkpack:

Kaplin, W., & Lee, B., The Law of Higher Education., Section 4.2.5, pp 400-418.


Brown v Board of Education, Topeka, Kansas. Text of Supreme Court decision. Available on-line at

Bakke v Board of Regents, University of California

* Research

from the bulkpack:

"Are the Doors Closing? Assessing Affirmative Action at Selective Colleges and Universities." Change Magazine, July/August 1998, pp 43-46.

Feinberg, W., "Affirmative Action and Beyond: A Case for a Backward-Looking Gender and Race-Based Policy." Teachers College Record Spring 1996 (97,3) pp 362-399.

Thursday, December 6 - Affirmative Action, cont'd -- Current Events


Chilling Admissions: the Affirmative Action Crisis and the Search for Alternatives, Gary Orfield and Edward Miller, (eds).

Thursday, December 13 - Class wrap-up

Presentations of final projects

** 10-12 page project due **



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