Matching Students to Opportunity

Matching Students to Opportunity Expanding College Choice, Access, and Quality

Andrew P. Kelly, Jessica S. Howell, and Carolyn Sattin-Bajaj
paper, 280 Pages
Pub. Date: August 2016
ISBN-13: 978-1-61250-947-1
Price: $34.00

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Matching Students to Opportunity expands on the discussion of a critical issue in college access and success: the match between prospective students and the colleges in which they enroll. Research indicates that ensuring a good match significantly increases a student’s chance of graduating.


Matching Students to Opportunity widens the college match and fit conversation to be more inclusive and impactful. This volume challenges us to take a more global and comprehensive view of college match—a view that is critical if we want to make serious progress in improving educational attainment and increasing opportunity for all of our nation’s students. — Nicole Hurd, founder and CEO, College Advising Corps

This book is a powerful exploration of inadequate matching between students and colleges. It provides important insights to all parties in the college admissions process—students, counselors, college administrators, and policy makers. — Christopher Avery, Roy E. Larsen Professor of Public Policy and Management, Harvard Kennedy School

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About the Editors

Andrew P. Kelly is the director of the Center on Higher Education Reform and a resident scholar in education policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute. His research focuses on higher education policy, innovation, financial aid reform, and the politics of education policy. Previously, he held a National Science Foundation research training fellowship at the University of California, Berkeley, and served as a research assistant at AEI. His scholarly work has appeared in the American Journal of Education, Teachers College Record, Educational Policy, Policy Studies Journal, and Education Next, and he has also published in popular outlets such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, National Review, Education Week, and Inside Higher Education. He writes a regular column on higher education reform on Forbes Opinion. He is coeditor of multiple edited volumes, including Reinventing Financial Aid: Charting a New Course to College Affordability (Harvard Education Press, 2014), Stretching the Higher Education Dollar: How Innovation Can Improve Access, Equity, and Affordability (Harvard Education Press, 2013), and Getting to Graduation: The Completion Agenda in Higher Education (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2012). In 2011, Kelly was named one of “16 Next Generation Leaders” in education policy by the Policy Notebook blog on Education Week.

Jessica S. Howell is executive director of policy research at the College Board, which conducts rigorous quantitative research on a variety of topics related to college readiness, access, affordability, admissions, and collegiate outcomes. Before joining the College Board in 2011, Howell was an associate professor of economics at California State University, Sacramento. Engaged in quantitative research on pressing education policy issues, she focuses on access and success throughout the educational pipeline for different socioeconomic and racial groups. Her current research projects focus on the match between students and colleges, the role of community colleges in achieving national degree-completion goals, and higher education policy levers for improving student outcomes.

Carolyn Sattin-Bajaj is an assistant professor in the Department of Education Leadership, Management, and Policy and codirector of the Center for College Readiness at Seton Hall University. Her research focuses on school choice and issues of educational equity and access for Latino, immigrant-origin students and families across the preK–20 educational spectrum. Sattin-Bajaj’s work has appeared in a variety of academic journals and popular media outlets including the Peabody Journal of Education, Journal of School Choice, American Journal of Education, the Huffington Post, and SchoolBook. Her most recent book is Unaccompanied Minors: Immigrant Youth, School Choice, and the Pursuit of Equity (Harvard Education Press, 2014). Previously, Sattin-Bajaj worked on secondary school reform at the New York City Department of Education.

Table of Contents



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