Gifted Bulletin Board

Welcome to the Gifted Issues Discussion Forum.

We invite you to share your experiences and to post information about advocacy, research and other gifted education issues on this free public discussion forum.
CLICK HERE to Log In. Click here for the Board Rules.

Links
DITD Logo

Learn about the Davidson Academy’s online campus for profoundly gifted students living anywhere in the U.S.

The Davidson Institute for Talent Development is a national nonprofit dedicated to supporting profoundly gifted students through the following programs:

  • Davidson Fellows Scholarship
  • Davidson Young Scholars
  • Davidson Academy
  • THINK Summer Institute
  • DITD FaceBook   DITD Twitter   DITD YouTube
    The Davidson Institute is on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube!

    How gifted-friendly is
    your state?

    Subscribe to the Davidson Institute's eNews-Update

    Who's Online
    1 registered (1 invisible), 0 Guests and 281 Spiders online.
    Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
    Newest Members
    Jenny04, JamesD, SandyC8, Fer, Dilan294335
    10865 Registered Users
    November
    Su M Tu W Th F Sa
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7
    8 9 10 11 12 13 14
    15 16 17 18 19 20 21
    22 23 24 25 26 27 28
    29 30
    Page 48 of 72 < 1 2 ... 46 47 48 49 50 ... 71 72 >
    Topic Options
    #201091 - 09/16/14 09:29 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: NotSoGifted]
    22B Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/10/13
    Posts: 1228
    Originally Posted By: NotSoGifted
    22B, there are plenty of applicants to elite schools with SAT scores of 2250+ or ACT scores of 34+. Once you get to scores like that, the difference between the great score and the perfect score is just a few questions (just a couple of silly mistakes). There really is nothing to choose between the great score kid and the perfect score kid (and you would see lots of kids with tons of 5s in AP exams in this group too).

    The schools need some reason to choose one kid over another. Sometimes it may come to something really random, but there have been Ivy admissions folks that have stated that probably 75-80% of the kids are qualified applicants. That is why ECs come in to play.

    I also get the impression that in other countries one attends a rather specialized university. My eldest is going to study abroad next semester, and she was choosing between a university that specializes in political science versus one that specializes in economics. Maybe this is wrong, but I have the impression that other countries don't have/don't value the LAC experience, and instead expect the kids to specialize at an early age. Those schools can have special admission exams. But if most kids go into US colleges undeclared, it isn't really useful to base admissions on some insane math test mentioned in previous posts...most kids will never do (or need to do) that kind of math.


    I think someone needs to write a contradict-o-bot to trawl the internet and contradict this meme wherever it appears. The current standard tests have way too low of a ceiling for the top students and the top unis. They may be okay for all but the top few percent of students, and for all but the top few dozen unis, but they are woefully inadequate for distinguish those in the upper ranges. It is an absolute myth that non-academic criteria are needed as a tie-breaker. What is needed is tougher tests, for those who are not separated by the low ceiling tests.

    Also I never understood the philosophy of wanting students to be jack of all trades master of none.

    Top
    #201098 - 09/16/14 10:43 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    arlen1 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/20/12
    Posts: 113
    Originally Posted By: 22B
    The current standard tests have way too low of a ceiling for the top students and the top unis. They may be okay for all but the top few percent of students, and for all but the top few dozen unis, but they are woefully inadequate for distinguish those in the upper ranges. It is an absolute myth that non-academic criteria are needed as a tie-breaker. What is needed is tougher tests, for those who are not separated by the low ceiling tests.

    Do Cambridge International Examinations (IGCSE, O, A, AS level ?) do a better job in this respect than the standard US exams (SAT, ACT, AP) ?

    http://www.cie.org.uk/programmes-and-qualifications/

    Top
    #201100 - 09/16/14 11:09 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    Tigerle Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/14
    Posts: 602
    Loc: Europe
    Not sure about Cambridge international exams but the same problem has cropped up with regular A-levels where almost 30% of students received As, so they had to introduce a new A* grade. Which 8,6% of students achieve.
    So Oxford and Cambridge colleges receive more applicants with nothing but A grades than they have places, too.

    Top
    #201103 - 09/16/14 11:16 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    Tigerle Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/14
    Posts: 602
    Loc: Europe

    Top
    #201105 - 09/16/14 11:26 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: Tigerle]
    arlen1 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/20/12
    Posts: 113
    Originally Posted By: Tigerle
    Not sure about Cambridge international exams but the same problem has cropped up with regular A-levels where almost 30% of students received As, so they had to introduce a new A* grade. Which 8,6% of students achieve.
    So Oxford and Cambridge colleges receive more applicants with nothing but A grades than they have places, too.

    Are there other standard exams that places like Cambridge and Oxford use which may differentiate among those top 8.6%?

    I see TSA (Thinking Skills Assessment) but it has to be taken at the (Cambridge in-person) interview.

    http://www.study.cam.ac.uk/undergraduate/apply/tests/

    ETA: TSA seems to be Cambridge specific, and only for some disciplines.


    Edited by arlen1 (09/16/14 11:28 AM)

    Top
    #201107 - 09/16/14 11:27 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    Tigerle Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/14
    Posts: 602
    Loc: Europe
    Just interviews afaik.

    Top
    #201108 - 09/16/14 11:29 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: arlen1]
    Val Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/01/07
    Posts: 3290
    Loc: California
    The exams you cited are part of a transparent admissions sytem (the Irish Leaving Cert, the French Bac, and the Swiss Matura are similar).

    All these exams expect students to synthesize knowledge from a (mostly) standardized curriculum and aren't based on memorization (an example of a test of memorized information is the AP US History exam).

    Sample A-level English literature question:

    Analyse (Emily) Brontë’s presentation of Nelly Dean, Joseph and Zillah in Wuthering Heights and analyse their importance in the novel as a whole.


    Sample question, Irish Leaving Certificate, Higher Level Maths:

    NOTE from Val: most of this stuff is in vector notation, which I can't reproduce here.

    2. (a) Find the value of s and the value of t that satisfy the equation
             s(i - 4j) + t(2i + 3j)= 4i - 27j

        (b) OP = 3i - 4j and OQ = 5(OP) where O is the origin.

           (i) Find OQ in terms of i and j.

           (ii) Find cos|angleOPQ| in surd form.

         (c) (I have omitted a proof using a triangle diagram)


    Sorry, but you just don't see stuff like this on the SAT, because it a) can't be graded with a Scantron-like device or by a $10 per hour grader in two minutes or less (ideally much less), and b) is quite simply asking too much of American students and their schools.

    The purpose of these exams is to identify students who are capable of college-level work. They're hard, and they require those "critical thinking skills" that get lip service but not much else in American schools. In many countries, secondary school exams are the sole gatekeepers of university admissions. No one at Trinity College, Dublin or University College, Cork cares about what you do after school is out. They care about your academic ability.


    Edited by Val (09/16/14 11:33 AM)
    Edit Reason: Clarity

    Top
    #201109 - 09/16/14 11:34 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    HowlerKarma Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/05/11
    Posts: 5181
    Originally Posted By: 22B

    Also I never understood the philosophy of wanting students to be jack of all trades master of none.



    I don't think that such institutions ARE looking for jacks of any trades. Mostly they are seeking those who are masters of multiple domains, and it certainly makes sense to me why that should be so.

    We've all (in this community anyway) seen this-- the really interesting thing about HG kids is that so many of them are SO good at multiple domains. If you are given the choice, having only ONE seat available, and you can choose:

    a) student with top grades and test scores, with a set of three or four possible majors, interest in a wide variety of activities and skill at most of them, and who has leadership potential and clearly pro-social behavior beyond his/her years, versus...

    b) student with top grades and test scores, a clear obsession for the stated major, and who has a competitive win-streak and is a bit of a social misfit and loner.



    Which of those two applicants is the better choice, really?

    The former. They are statistically more likely to graduate, and graduating, more likely to find stable gainful employment. Now, the latter is a person that COULD turn out to be a Steve Jobs, but most of them don't.


    It is easy to assume that mathematicians, scientists, or engineers "don't really need" skills in the humanities or in communications. But that's profoundly untrue in the real world, where those skills open into a vast chasm between those who lack them and those who possess them.
    _________________________
    Schrödinger's cat walks into a bar. And doesn't.

    Top
    #201111 - 09/16/14 11:37 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    Tigerle Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/14
    Posts: 602
    Loc: Europe
    And the levels attained for music and sports extracurriculars at places where admissions are focused on academic excellence are pretty [SPAM] amazing anyway. (About the only thing I disagree with in Pinker's text - no, you cannot find that level of excellence,that energy, that focus in extracurricular at tailgate uni. But it still shouldn't drive admissions - unless it is a to a music program, or a specialized school, such as juillard.

    Top
    #201114 - 09/16/14 12:06 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: HowlerKarma]
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2595
    Loc: MA
    Originally Posted By: HowlerKarma
    a) student with top grades and test scores, with a set of three or four possible majors, interest in a wide variety of activities and skill at most of them, and who has leadership potential and clearly pro-social behavior beyond his/her years, versus...

    b) student with top grades and test scores, a clear obsession for the stated major, and who has a competitive win-streak and is a bit of a social misfit and loner.

    Hey smile. Speaking for the b's, being a very good chess player helped me get my first job in finance. A large fraction of Ivy League graduates go into finance, where employers value a "competitive win-streak". A big reason Harvard and Princeton can find families willing to pay $65K per year is the perceived inside track to finance and consulting jobs. The absence of engineering, accounting, nursing, and other pre-professional majors means that many Ivy league graduates are not qualified to do much else, except go to graduate school or Teach for America. Rich alumni in finance and other fields helped build those 11-figure endowments. And a reason the Ivies recruit athletes is that Wall Street likes them. With the exception of "leadership potential", I'm not sure that the most selective schools value (a) over (b).

    Top
    Page 48 of 72 < 1 2 ... 46 47 48 49 50 ... 71 72 >


    Moderator:  M-Moderator 
    Recent Posts
    Algebra 2 in one semester?
    by Kai
    Today at 06:08 PM
    Contemplating the journey
    by MumOfThree
    Today at 05:59 PM
    Need Input re Transition Evaluation
    by Pemberley
    11/21/20 08:01 AM
    NEA playbook of educational priorities
    by indigo
    11/19/20 12:01 PM
    Looking for advice on how to proceed...
    by sj4iy
    11/15/20 07:40 AM
    Davidson Institute Twitter