Law School Admissions


Still Hazy After All These Years: The Data and Theory Behind 'Mismatch'

Document Type

Law Review Article

Publication Date



affirmative action, race-neutral alternatives


In the context of reviewing the book "Mismatch" by Sander and Taylor, the authors provide a comprehensive review and synthesis of dozens of social science research studies regarding affirmative action, mismatch, graduation rates and labor market earnings. In addition, the authors look at the recent graduation rates of nearly two hundred thousand black and Latino students at one hundred U.S. research intensive universities (Table 1). The authors conclude that the social science research overall, and particularly the best peer-reviewed studies, do not support the mismatch hypothesis with respect to affirmative action and African American and Latino college graduation rates and earnings (Table 2). The authors find that Sander and Taylor's contrary claims are the result of cherry-picked data.