Center for Equal Opportunity

The nation’s only conservative think tank devoted to issues of race and ethnicity.


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CEO Responds to University of Oklahoma Statement School Makes Misleading Comments on CEO’s Admissions Study

(Oklahoma City, OK) A study released earlier today by the Center for Equal Opportunity (CEO) documented evidence of racial discrimination in law, undergraduate, and medical school admissions at the University of Oklahoma. The study, which analyzes data obtained from the University itself, found that African Americans were admitted to all three schools with lower academic qualifications than students from other racial and ethnic groups. There was some evidence of preferential treatment for American Indian applicants as well.

The University responded today in a statement, expressing disappointment that CEO did not allow the school to participate in the study and dismissing the strong evidence of racial discrimination our findings show. The school implies in its statement that African Americans make up for gaps in test scores and grades with stronger “writing ability,” “volunteerism,” and “work experience” than their Asian and white counterparts.

CEO president Roger Clegg responded: “As an independent organization doing an independent study, we analyzed data from the university and of course did not work with the University to prepare our study. The University did not challenge the data nor does it point out any errors in our analysis of it. The university’s statement and the various statements on its website fall short of saying admissions decisions are made on a race-blind basis.” Clegg continued, “Furthermore, the University says that it is following and will continue to follow federal Supreme Court decisions in this area, however, the Supreme Court’s case law in this area is relevant only if the University is using racial preferences. “

CEO chairman Linda Chavez added: “The university’s references to soft variables such as interviews and volunteerism are unpersuasive, since it is extremely unlikely that these variables would favor African American and American Indian applicants over white, Asian, and other applicants at such an overwhelming degree that they would explain the statistical patterns that our study documents (such as the gaps in standardized test scores and GPA).”

The study was written by Dr. Althea Nagai, a research fellow at CEO. It is available on CEO’s website, The Oklahoma Association of Scholars helped CEO obtain the data. CEO has published similar studies of racial and ethnic discrimination in admissions to dozens of universities since it was founded in 1995.

The Center for Equal Opportunity is a nonprofit research and educational organization that studies issues related to civil rights, bilingual education, and immigration and assimilation nationwide.