Bucknell University is latest college to admit to inflating admissions data

Bucknell University officials announced Friday that the school had inflated admissions statistics to U.S. News & World Report for seven years – the fifth college in a year to report false data.

The university misreported SAT and ACT average scores from 2006 to 2012, officials said, just one day after the publication unranked Tulane University’s business school for data discrepancies.

Over the last seven years, the central Pennsylvania college left off an average of 32 students’ SAT scores when calculating the average. That boosted the overall mean by 7 to 25 points on the 1600-point scale, Bucknell President John Bravman wrote in a letter to the community.

Bravman said the false data was created by “enrollment management leadership no longer with the University.”

“These numerical omissions, as relatively small as they were, violated the trust of every student, faculty member, staff member and Bucknellian they reached,” Bravman wrote in the letter. “What matters is that important information conveyed on behalf of our University was inaccurate.”

Bucknell holds the No. 32 position on the “National Liberal Arts Colleges” ranking, which Bravman said he was confident his institution would maintain despite the misreporting.

While GW and Tulane’s business school were “unranked” by the publication after coming clean on data misreporting, Emory University and Claremont McKenna College kept their slots because corrected data did not alter the schools’ positions.

GW was booted from the best colleges rankings in November after the University disclosed that its freshmen class rank data had been wrong for at least a decade.

U.S. News & World Report corrected Bucknell’s data online, but has yet to release a statement.

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