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Why do state schoolers outperform private schoolers at university? Watch


    No. The Royal Grammar High Wycombe.

    You have to be careful taking the headline analysis at face value. There are several assumptions that I'm not sure are controlled for:

    1) The assumption that a given A level grade in one subject is equivalent to the same grade in another. We know this is not true: http://www.score-education.org/media...difficulty.pdf

    2) The assumption that different universities and courses are of equal difficulty. This is almost certainly not true.

    So, for example, if private schoolers were more likely to do easier A levels, but go to harder universities and do harder degrees, this could make them look like underachievers.

    Nevertheless, I think the suggestion that private schools give you an advantage that disappears when you leave it plausible. After all, parents are hoping for some advantage aren't they?

    Some universities use these data to justify contextual admissions i.e. easier requirement for those from state schools. Interestingly, the same data show that women tend to outperform men with the same A level grades, and that minority ethnic groups tend to underperform. But no-one is calling for pro-female or pro-white admission policies...

    Haha a nice way of looking at this is to remember that private schoolers pay essentially more than university fees. So if someone from the state sector matched them, I would use this analogy. Its like someone (the private schoolers) is a university student who is not only paying the full 15000, 16000, whatever amount per year and getting quite a lot of support; being caught up with someone who is at home, not paying, self studying! Then if you put them both into a particular university its fascinating to see what happens.
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