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The effectiveness of the methods of selection for admission to Victoria college Wallace, Robert Thomas

Abstract

This study investigated the effectiveness of the methods used to select British Columbia students for admission to Victoria College. During the course of the study the writer recorded and analyzed available data regarding scaling of marks and accrediting of high schools. The subjects used in the investigation were the students who entered Victoria College during eleven of the years from 1928 to 1945. The thesis includes a survey of many studies dealing with the relationship of high-school success and first year college success. As a result of this survey the writer decided to use the student's university entrance record as the best measure of his high-school achievement, and to define first year college success in terms of the average mark obtained in the full course at the end of the college year. In the light of the data studied the investigator arrived at a number of conclusions, including: (i) There was a remarkably high correlation between the average mark made on the written university entrance examination and the average mark made at the end of the first year at Victoria College. The correlations of .71,.73 and .74 which were obtained are much higher than those shown in most other studies. (ii) The correlations between average university entrance mark and average first year college mark remained consistently high despite the reduction in the number of university entrance papers written, the gradual, although not complete change from essay-type to new-type examinations, and the adoption of a system of scaling. (iii) A student's chance of passing first year at Victoria College is very closely related to his university entrance average; for instance, if his average is between fifty-three and fifty-six per cent he has one chance in two of passing while if his average is above sixty-five per cent his chances are nine in ten. (iv) The bases of accrediting certain high schools was shown to be satisfactory if the purpose of accrediting is to permit high schools to select, without departmental examinations, students capable of doing college work. The writer found that if a student was recommended by an accredited school in five or all six of the compulsory subjects his chances of passing first year at Victoria College were ninety-eight in one hundred. It was also found that the fact that a student was trained by an accredited school gave him a better chance of passing at Victoria College than if he came from a non-accredited school; the chances were eighty-seven in one hundred and and seventy-nine in one hundred respectively. The writer feels that the data presented in this study would justify the conclusion that the British Columbia system of selection for university entrance is adequate.

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