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Subject: AI bands

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Date Posted: 13:15:00 12/17/21 Fri

Harvard has announced it will not use SATs or ACTs through 2026, extending the prior pandemic suspension, and joining Cornell and Columbia to varying degrees.


(Separate subtopic, note the effect on applications and admissions)

Perhaps this has been asked and answered before, but can someone explain whether bands for athlete recruitment will still be used, and if so how will they be calculated? Or does this action presage dumping the whole concept?

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[> Subject: Re: AI bands

An Observer
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Date Posted: 14:05:18 12/17/21 Fri

Very interesting.

I remember a couple decades ago when Harvard Business School announced with great fanfare that they would no longer even accept, let alone require, GMAT scores from applicants. The rationale was the same as the one being voiced now: We want to get away from all the emphasis being placed on standardized testing.

A few years later, Harvard quietly reintroduced the GMAT requirement.

Being an admissions officer cannot be an easy job. I mean, sure, it's easy to nominally go through the process of picking applicants who are to receive the thick envelope. But if you're really, really committed to the task of choosing tomorrow's leaders and doers from a bunch of 17-year-old kids, you should have the humility and self-awareness to admit that it's very difficult to predict who will succeed.

The job is akin to selecting in the NFL draft. Scouts have every conceivable bit of data on every top-ranked college player in America. And yet, over half of first round picks will be out of the League in a few years. We all know the stories of the quarterbacks who were selected before Tom Brady and the many anecdotes which show how fallible the evaluation is.

If you're an admissions officer, why make your job even tougher by downplaying the SAT?

I would tell applicants, "We consider the SAT as just one bit of data among many. If your score is low, you can make it up elsewhere. If your score is high, know that we could fill the class with perfect scores, but we obviously choose not to." If applicants don't want to believe you, that's on them.

I would hope that all Ivy League recruited athletes will still be required to submit their SAT scores.

We don't need any more dumbing down of America -- or Ivy League sports.

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[> [> Subject: Re: AI bands

Joe Friday
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Date Posted: 19:19:23 12/17/21 Fri

The whole test optional thing is nearly a total fiction. If you want to be admitted to an Ivy you’d better submit very competitive SAT or ACT scores along with all other aspects of being an academic high achiever unless you are somehow a true rockstar in some area/discipline. The vast, vast majority of kids who applied for the 21-22 academic year without a standout standardized test score never really had a chance. They really thought they had a shot. It is, and will continue to be, a key criteria in whether a non-athlete kid goes into the “maybe” pile or not.
As some posters here know from personal experience when they (or their child) went through the process, the Ivy Athlete AI used to be very formulaic with very hard cutoffs between the four bands and very finite limits on the number of players within each band. With SAT subject tests going away and now with the SAT/ACT optional, it’s not as clear. Still, the kid who wants that Ivy offer - regardless of the fact that the NCAA has waived the SAT/ACT requirement through 22-23 - will have the usual 4.0+ unweighted, some APs, etc…and, a strong SAT or ACT score by the Summer prior to their senior year. That allows the program to go to Admissions way early and get the go ahead to make the offer. That kid effectively is in the top band or at the top of the second band for recruiting class purposes and allows more flexibility for other prospects later in the cycle who are not as academically strong. The bands may not be as formalized as they once were, but they still exist, though probably not quite as objectively as they existed in the past. Hope this helps, and sorry for telling anyone anything they already know.

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[> Subject: Re: AI bands

Ivy Inquisitor
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Date Posted: 02:07:22 12/20/21 Mon

Every year Ivy football is allowed two recruiting spots for “lower” academic bands.I don’t know about the other sports . These lower bands are considered a risk. I presume if the AI arrangement is being phased out it probably will happen to athletic recruiting also. The Ivy’s have never created a separate standard for the athletes-which is a good thing.

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[> [> Subject: Re: AI bands

Joe Friday
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Date Posted: 20:13:36 12/20/21 Mon

That may not be totally accurate? Unless it’s changed(?), my understanding is that Ivy football athletes are allowed “one standard deviation” (I still don’t know how to really define that) below in terms of what will be accepted for admission. I do know of a ‘21 IL football ED commit who was supposedly a high band recruit, but his very solid academic credentials put him only barely in the middle 50th percentile of non-athlete students who were admitted - right around the 25th percentile overall. So, the assumption is that there were definitely a fair number of admits who were admitted with lower academic credentials, especially when you factor in the “one standard deviation.”

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