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Archive for Thursday, September 16, 2010

K-State mistakenly cited as one of 25 best large public universities in country

School had been erroneously reporting statistics that skewed rankings

September 16, 2010

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Kansas State is one of the nation's 25 most desirable large public universities based mostly on selectivity, endowment, test scores — and oh, yeah, Manhattan's climate.

The Kaplan/Newsweek 2010 college rankings listed the Manhattan campus as the 16th most desirable.

But it turns out that Newsweek researchers drew that conclusion based on information that had been misreported by K-State for two years in a row. Oops.

After learning of the error, researcher Courtney Kennedy ran the data again, using corrected information.

Her conclusion?

K-State "would have been knocked out of the top 25," said Kennedy, who helped compile the ranking.

The piece of information causing the gaffe was not the Kansas weather, but K-State's reported admission rate. The school's planning and analysis office mistakenly reported to the National Center for Education Statistics that of all the students who applied in 2008, only 56 percent were admitted.

That would make K-State a selective institution. It's not.

The actual admission rate at K-State is about 98 percent, said Pat Bosco, vice president for student life.

Like the University of Kansas and other four-year public institutions in Kansas, in-state students at K-State are automatically admitted if they score at least 21 out of a possible 36 on the ACT, are in the top third of their graduating class, or have at least a 2.0 grade-point average.

Cheryl May, a K-State spokeswoman, said someone at the university misunderstood which percentage the federal database was requesting and instead gave the percent of students who, after acceptance, attend the university.

In selecting the top 25 most desirable public institutions, Newsweek considered 11 criteria, including campus dining, housing and climate. The most weight was given to admission rates, graduation rates, test scores and endowment.

"We appreciate that the overall criteria ranked us among the 25 most desirable large schools," May said.

"We win lots of awards. We earn them. We don't want to get any award that we don't deserve. We want to make sure any recognition of K-State is based on accurate and real data."

Comments

Benjamin Roberts 3 years, 7 months ago

The Manhattan Mercury article is not quite as informative. I wonder why?

http://www.themercury.com/News/article.aspx?articleId=d3b3472eb34b4506aa0159426cef7c56 :

K-State ranking based on incorrect data Kimber Wallace

Kansas State University is backing away from its claim to the No. 16 spot in Kaplan-Newsweek's list of the 25 most desirable large schools in America, acknowledging that the ranking was based on incorrect admission data.

Cheryl May, of the university's information office, said a school officer mistakenly reported that only 56 percent of students who apply to K-State are admitted. The actual admission rate to K-State is about 98 percent, she said."

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OldEnuf2BYurDad 3 years, 7 months ago

I love the wonderfully deep sarcasm in this story. WOW, she really let KSU have it. Like, she's been waiting for a legitimate professional reason to jump on KSU for her whole career. Clearly, this woman did not graduate from KSU.

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puddleglum 3 years, 7 months ago

so now does that make EMAW stand for:

every man and woman accepted?

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notajayhawk 3 years, 7 months ago

Being neither a Jayhawk nor a Wildcat, I'm not going to get into the 'my professor can beat up your professor' thing. But I do think it's amusing that they accept 98% of the applicants, but only half of them enroll.

In the words of Groucho Marx, "I would never belong to any club that would have me for a member."

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KU_cynic 3 years, 7 months ago

"In any other industry that would somehow be called discrimination. "

What industry would that be? It's called quality control. KU and KSU don't practice it, and suffer because of it.

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Benjamin Roberts 3 years, 7 months ago

"The school's planning and analysis office mistakenly reported to the National Center for Education Statistics that of all the students who applied in 2008, only 56 percent were admitted.

That would make K-State a selective institution. It's not."

So being "selective" improves a college's ranking. In any other industry that would somehow be called discrimination.

Still a great headline!

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matthewjherbert 3 years, 7 months ago

K-State rejects 2% of applicants? I'd hate to be one of those 2%.

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Alabamastreet 3 years, 7 months ago

The good news for K-State is they still rank in the list of the top 25 schools in the State of Kansas, just above Friends and below Allen County.

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Bob Forer 3 years, 7 months ago

All college ranking systems are misleading in that the level of selectivity is a factor in determining the "best" colleges and universities. Many state institutions, such as KU and K-State, have open or quasi-open admission standards, which is usually sufficient, in itself, to exclude them from eligibility. Just because a school is not highly selective in admissions does not necessarily mean you can't get a quality education, unless one can prove that the presence of mediocre students detracts from the educational experience.

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GUMnNUTS 3 years, 7 months ago

The only thing good to come out of Manhattan is Tallgrass Brewing Co. everything else.......

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Majestic42 3 years, 7 months ago

Cue the KSU haters (and I'm certainly rooting for KU everyday no days off) saying that this incident means everyone who went to K-State is an idiot. It's a silly mistake. A really silly one. Hehe.

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slappedyomomma 3 years, 7 months ago

in a related story, the AP revealed that KSU's basketball team was mistakenly given higher rankings than they should have this past year...

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nobody1793 3 years, 7 months ago

"K-State mistakenly cited as one of 25 best large public universities in country"

Best headline ever!

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Aiko 3 years, 7 months ago

I am sorry but that is funny!

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LivedinLawrence4Life 3 years, 7 months ago

She earned a math degree at K-State! :)

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persevering_gal 3 years, 7 months ago

How does one "mistakenly" report 56% instead of 98%?

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