Low-income, Black, and Latinx students are underrepresented at selective colleges and universities. Only 34 percent of low-income students with high standardized test scores will enroll at the nation’s most selective colleges, compared to 78 percent of students in the highest economic quartile. And only 19 percent of Black and Latinx students with high test scores will go to selective public colleges, compared to 31 percent of white students.
Barriers, including a lack of access to college counseling resources and college admissions policies, contribute to preventing high achieving low-income, Black, and Latinx students from applying to, enrolling in, and succeeding at selective institutions. But several policy interventions at the state and institutional level have shown some progress towards improving diversity at selective institutions.