Edwin Leuven, University of Oslo

Sorting, Screening and College Admission


Quantitative measures of academic preparedness play a key role in college admissions around the world. We study the use of high-school GPA as opposed to the use of alternative objective and subjective criteria in college admission. Our context is the Danish higher education system where many programs admit applicants in two quotas. In a first quota priority admission is based on high-school GPA. If rejected, applicants can also compete in a second quota that relies on alternative criteria such as the subjective evaluation of CVs, essays and interviews, or objective criteria such as specific grades or college entry tests. Applicants in both quotas are ranked and admitted based on their rank priority score. We build on these features of the admission process to implement a regression discontinuity design across the two quotas to estimate the return to admission on program and college completion, and investigate how these returns depend on evaluative criteria. We also investigate the role of individual admission criteria and perform counterfactual policy analyses.

Edwin Leuven is Professor of Economics at the University of Oslo. He was previously Professeur at the ENSAE in Paris, and senior researcher at the University of Amsterdam. He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Amsterdam. Before his graduate studies he worked two years as a full-time consultant at the OECD.

His main research interest is in applied econometrics, with a special focus on education and labor.

You can read more about Edwin Leuven and his research here

CEBI contact: Torben Heien Nielsen