How Concerns About ‘Undermatching’ Perpetuate Higher Ed’s Caste System
Undermatching theory — the idea that smart but disadvantaged students pass up important opportunities by attending less-selective colleges — is well intentioned. On the surface, opening pathways for more low-income, high-achieving students to attend elite colleges seems like an important step forward for equality in American society. Too many prestigious colleges enroll disturbingly low percentages of Pell grantees and students of color, so we should applaud initiatives such as Princeton’s recent commitment to improve its socioeconomic diversity.
Originally published: July 5, 2018
Author: Patricia McGuire
Institution: Trinity Washington University
Published by: The Chronicle of Higher Ed