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Student Selection: Art, Science & Emerging Trends

January 22-24, 2017 (Marina del Rey Marriott)

The attributes of a successful college student go well beyond measures of the ubiquitous and at times misapplied components of standardized tests, class rank, and high school grades. The abilities to adapt, persist, interpret, lead, be creative, handle disappointment and difficulty, negotiate complex systems, and engage and have empathy for others often make the difference between a student who is a good choice or a poor one in admission, and a student who is engaged and successful on campus or one who is not.

Over 180 participants from around the country joined us in Marina del Rey, CA to address these matters and ask the following questions. What does the latest research tell us about how admission decisions are made and what biases and practices remain unexamined? What new approaches show the greatest promise for equity and for understanding of the qualities that matter in a successful student? How are so called “non-cognitive factors” considered in college admissions and how can they be given their due? How might college preparation change if these attributes were more widely understood to be critical in college admission and success?

For the full Conference 2017 Agenda, click here

Conference Blog
Conference Speakers
Reading and Additional Resources

Conference Blog

Please click on the Conference Blog pages for a summary of the conference proceedings, speakers, and presentation slides.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Day 1: Conference Blog

  • Opening Keynote: Turning the Tide (Weissbourd)

Monday, January 23, 2017

Day 2: Conference Blog

  • Welcome and Morning Keynote Address-How Admissions Decisions are Made and Why (Lucido & Baker Tew)
  • Panel Session I-History and Future of Nonacademic Factors in Admission Decisions (Hossler, Lucido & Chung)
  • Master Class 1-Importance of Context in Admissions Decision Making (Bastedo)
  • Panel Session II-The Systematic Identification of Disadvantaged in Educational Opportunity (Ballinger & Perfetto)
  • Master Class II-The Systematic Identification of Personal Attributes in Admissions (Rikoon & Wright)
  • Dinner and Keynote Address-Meeting Institutional and Student Needs in Admissions: Recipes for Selecting Qualified & Diverse Applicants (Payne)

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Day 3: Conference Blog

  • Panel-Practioners Speak: Learning from Each Other (Goecker, McAnuff, Romero da Silva & Wesley Cash)
  • Reporting Out: Research Agenda

Conference Speakers

Keynote and Master Class Speakers

  • Michael Bastedo, Professor; Director, Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education, University of Michigan
  • Jerome A. Lucido, Professor of Research; Associate Dean for Strategic Enrollment Services; Executive Director, Center for Enrollment Research, Policy, and Practice, USC Rossier School of Education
  • David Payne, Vice President & COO, Global Education, Educational Testing Service (ETS)
  • Richard Weissbourd, Senior Lecturer on Education; Faculty Director, Human Development and Psychology, Harvard Graduate School of Education


  • Laurel Baker Tew, Chief Enrollment Officer, Viewpoint School
  • Philip Ballinger, Associate Vice Provost, Enrollment Management, University of Washington
  • Emily Chung, Program Director, Center for Enrollment Research, Policy, and Practice, USC Rossier School of Education
  • James Goecker, Vice President of Enrollment Management and Strategic Communication, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
  • Donald Hossler, Senior Scholar, Center for Enrollment Research, Policy, and Practice, USC Rossier School of Education
  • Courtney McAnuff, Vice President, Enrollment Management, Rutgers University
  • Samuel Rikoon, Associate Research Scientist, Educational Testing Service (ETS)
  • Yvonne Romero da Silva, Vice Dean, Director of Admissions, University of Pennsylvania
  • Greg Perfetto, Executive Research Scientist, College Board
  • Arlene Wesley Cash, Vice Dean for Enrollment Management, Guilford College
  • Keith Wright, Director of Psychometrics, The Enrollment Management Association


Reading and Additional Resources

Turning the Tide: Inspiring Concern For Others And The Common Good Through College Admissions (Weissbourd, R. & Thacker,L., 2016). Access the full report, related articles and resources, along with a digital toolkit by the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Making Caring Common Project.

Holmes, D. (2015). Overdue revolution: Character strengths in the admissions equation. The Journal of College Admission, 227: 47-51.

Institute on Character and Admission (2016). The report of the Institute. Columbus, OH.

A Federal Legal and Policy Primer on Scholarships: Key Non-discrimination Principles and Actionable Strategies for Institutions of Higher Education and Private Scholarship Providers (Coleman, A., & Taylor, T., 2016) Provided courtesy of the National Scholarship Providers Association (NSPA), The College Board, and EducationCounsel.


We gratefully acknowledge our sponsors whose generosity makes our 2017 conference possible:

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