External reviews cast doubt on UCLA professor's analysis of campus admissions practices
By Ricardo Vazquez February 25, 2013
Two scholars who recently conducted independent reviews of UCLA professor Richard Sander's report on race and UCLA's admissions process have found fault with Sander's methodology and use of data and have disputed the validity of his conclusions.
Sander's report, "The Consideration of Race in UCLA Undergraduate Admissions," released in October 2012, alleged that race has been a factor in the university's holistic review admissions process, in contravention of Proposition 209, which banned the use of race in admissions at public colleges and universities.
Working independently of each other, Richard Lempert, a professor emeritus of law and sociology at the University of Michigan, and David Stern, a professor emeritus of education at the University of California, Berkeley, concluded that Sander's allegations were not based on solid evidence or research.
Summarizing his findings, Lempert asserted that Sander's report does not present "any data or arguments that either alone or together compel the conclusion that UCLA's holistic (admissions) system discriminates based on applicant race."
The external reviews of Sander's work were commissioned by the UCLA Bunche Center for African American Studies on behalf of faculty members calling for an objective analysis of Sander's claims about the use of race in UCLA admissions.
Lempert and Stern were chosen to conduct the reviews of Sander's report because of their previous research on college admissions; both scholars have explored many of the same issues raised in Sander's writings on admissions and affirmative action. Stern is also an expert on UC admissions policies.
Read the critiques of Sander's report: