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“小奖励”、“Z名单”:哈佛招生秘密标准曝光

作者 : 知行翻译 发布时间 : 08-08 10:23

他的SAT考试、三次SAT专科考试和九次大学先修课程考试成绩无懈可击,在592名高中同届同学里排名第一。负责审核其哈佛大学申请书的招生官员称他是公认的尖桩篱笆-也就是美国梦的化
他的SAT考试、三次SAT专科考试和九次大学先修课程考试成绩无懈可击,在592名高中同届同学里排名第一。负责审核其哈佛大学申请书的招生官员称他是“公认的尖桩篱笆”-也就是美国梦的化身,这位官员说,“我猜我们得和普林斯顿争这个人。” 但是到最后,这名学生被列入候补名单,最终没有进入哈佛大学。
  向哈佛提出申请的几代高中生们都认为,如果他们符合所有标准,就会被录取。但在幕后,哈佛大学令人畏惧的招生官员还有另外一整套标准,是那些雄心勃勃的高中生和他们的父母所不知道的-就算知道,他们或许也无法满足这些标准。这些官员讲的是一种秘密语言-“备审表”、“缩减名单”、“小奖励”、“DE”、“Z名单”和“院长关注名单”-他们还有一个筛选系统,其中的条件包括申请者来自哪里、父母是否从哈佛毕业、他们有多少钱,以及他们是否适合学校的多样性目标,这一切可能跟SAT考1600分满分一样重要。
 这一神秘的遴选过程因一项诉讼而受到关注,该诉讼指控哈佛在招生过程中利用种族平衡,以一种歧视亚裔美国人的方式来调整招生工作,违反了联邦民权法。哈佛说自己没有歧视行为。在诉讼过程中,不顾哈佛大学以透露商业机密为由的反对,数百份入学文件得以提交,最近几周,法庭还要求公开许多之前涂黑过的部分。
这场诉讼由一个名为大学生公平录取(Student for Fair Admissions)的反歧视行动小组提起,它重新启动了在入学录取时考虑种族因素的全国性辩论,其范围涵盖了从大学直到小学。
 哈佛大学表示,对于一些申请人来说,它也会考虑“小奖励”或者说招生优势。原告称,学院向五个群体提供小奖励:少数族裔;继承群体,即哈佛或拉德克利夫校友的子女;哈佛捐助者的亲属;工作人员或教职员工的子女;以及学校招募的运动员。
哈佛是否在惩罚亚裔美国人群体-实际上就是“小奖励”的反面-是当前诉讼的核心。教育部1990年的一份报告表明,哈佛没有对亚裔美国人给予奖励。哈佛大学2013年的一份内部报告表明,亚裔美国人身份与入学率呈负相关,原告的专家分析也是如此。但哈佛大学的专家使用不同的统计方法,认为亚裔美国人中的两个亚群体(女性和来自加利福尼亚州的申请人)入学率的适度上升可以证明,歧视主张从整体而言是站不住脚的。
哈佛周五提交给法庭的回应中说,申请文件中的所有信息都是在“剥夺优先权”期间考虑的,而且剥夺优先权并不是为了控制班级的种族构成。
 原告称,针对申请者的性格和个性的个人评分,是哈佛大学最为隐秘可疑的招生标准。他们说,亚裔美国人通常被描述为勤奋、聪明,但不突出、难以区分,对于许多亚裔人士来说,这让人想起令人痛苦的刻板印象(那个被称为“公认的尖桩篱笆”的申请者就是亚裔美国人)。
哈佛大学本科生院长库南纳承认,哈佛并不总是完美,但表示它在努力用正确的方式行事。“我非常谦卑地知晓,历史总有一天会评判我们,”库南纳说。“我想这就是我们为什么反复自问这样一个问题的原因:我们要怎样才能做得更好?我们要如何变的更好?我们漏掉了什么?我们的盲点在哪里?”
He had perfect scores - on his SAT, on three SAT subject tests and on nine Advanced Placement exams - and was ranked first in his high school class of 592. An admissions officer who reviewed his application to Harvard called him “the proverbial picket fence,” the embodiment of the American dream, saying, “Someone we’ll fight over w/ Princeton, I’d guess.” 
But in the end, the student was wait-listed and did not get in.
Generations of high school students have applied to Harvard thinking that if they checked all the right boxes, they would be admitted.    
But behind the curtain, Harvard’s much-feared admissions officers have a whole other set of boxes that few ambitious high school students and their parents know about - or could check even if they did. The officers speak a secret language - of “dockets,” “the lop list,” “tips,” “DE,” the “Z-list” and the “dean’s interest list” - and maintain a culling system in which factors like where applicants are from, whether their parents went to Harvard, how much money they have and how they fit the school’s goals for diversity may be just as important as scoring a perfect 1600 on the SAT.
  This arcane selection process has been illuminated by a lawsuit accusing Harvard of violating federal civil rights law by using racial balancing to shape its admissions in a way that discriminates against Asian-Americans. Harvard says it does not discriminate. Hundreds of admissions documents have been filed in the suit - over the university’s objections that they could reveal trade secrets - and many sections that were previously redacted have been ordered unsealed in recent weeks.
  The lawsuit, brought by an anti-affirmative action group called Students for Fair Admissions, has revived the national debate over race-conscious admissions, which is playing out from colleges down to elementary schools.
  Harvard says it also considers “tips,” or admissions advantages, for some applicants. The plaintiffs say the college gives tips to five groups: racial and ethnic minorities; legacies, or the children of Harvard or Radcliffe alumni; relatives of a Harvard donor; the children of staff or faculty members; and recruited athletes.
  Whether Harvard gives a penalty - in effect, the opposite of a tip - to Asian-Americans goes to the heart of the current litigation. A 1990 report by the Education Department found that Harvard was not giving tips for being Asian-American. A 2013 internal report by Harvard found that being Asian-American was negatively correlated with admission, as did an expert analysis for the plaintiffs. But using a different statistical approach, Harvard’s expert found a modest bump for two subgroups of Asian-Americans - women and applicants from California - belying, Harvard said, the overall claim of discrimination.
    In a response filed in court Friday, Harvard said that all information in an application file is considered during the lop, and that lopping is not used to control the racial makeup of the class.
    The plaintiffs say that the personal rating - which considers an applicant’s character and personality - is the most insidious of Harvard’s admissions metrics. They say that Asian-Americans are routinely described as industrious and intelligent, but unexceptional and indistinguishable - characterizations that recall painful stereotypes for many people of Asian descent. (The applicant who was the “proverbial picket fence” was Asian-American.)
   Khurana, the Harvard College dean, acknowledged that Harvard was not always perfect, but said it was trying to get its practices right.
    “I have a great deal of humility knowing that some day history will judge us,” Khurana said. “I think that’s why we are constantly asking ourselves this question: How can we do better? How could we be better? What are we missing? Where are our blind spots?”

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