Washington Post -A new report by Making Caring Common, a project of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, takes a major step in trying to change the college admissions process to make it more humane, less super-human.
Parents, educators and college administrators have long wrestled with the unintended negative side effects of the admissions process, like the intense focus on personal achievement and the unfair advantages of more affluent students. The report, entitled Turning the Tide: Inspiring Concern for Others and the Common Good Through College Admissions,lays out a blueprint for addressing three of the most intractable challenges facing college applicants today: excessive academic performance pressure, the emphasis on personal achievement over good citizenship, and the uneven opportunities available to students of varying income levels and backgrounds.
Many colleges have tried to address these concerns over the years but it takes a unified effort to make a big impact, says lead author Richard Weissbourd. More than 80 stakeholders, including admissions officers (like Harvard’s), deans, professors and high school counselors have endorsed the report.
“It’s the first time in history that I’m aware of” that a group of colleges is coming together to lay out what is and what isn’t valued in the admissions process, says Weissbourd.