Monday, November 15, 2010

The Faculty Flutie Factor

As we're in the midst of college football season, I thought I'd send along this paper, The Faculty Flutie Factor: Does Football Performance Affect a University’s US News and World Report Peer Assessment Score? Here's the abstract:
Analyzing the peer assessment portion of the US News and World Report’s college rankings, we find that administrators and faculty rate more highly universities whose football team receives a greater number of votes in either the final Associated Press or Coaches Poll. Controlling for unobserved heterogeneity, our estimates suggest that a one standard deviation increase in the number of votes received in either the Associated Press or USA Today Coaches’ Football Poll is viewed as positively as a forty point increase in a school’s SAT score at the 75th percentile.
I think there are all sorts of educational side effects that can be teased out by a school's athletic performance-- data can generally be had by the boatload...definitely some low hanging fruit.

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