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November 30, 2003

Evangelical colleges

The LA Times has an article up about Christian colleges. First, they state the following:

The median SATs of incoming freshmen have climbed from 1030 in 1995 to 1113 last year, mirroring a trend of rising qualifications at evangelical institutions

The SATs were recentered in 1995, so I'm not sure what this means. Look at a conversion table and you'll see that the difference is almost exactly what you see above between pre- and post-recentering.

Also, the "acceptance" of evangelical schools almost certainly is a harbinger of their decline as distinctive institutions. After all, Harvard was founded to train Puritan ministers, but within 150 years it became a fortress of liberal placid Unitarian thought, and today is one of the capitals of American secularism. In the 18th century Princeton was founded as a rebuke of Harvard by Presbyterians who hewed to a more orthodox theology, but today is it little different than the other Ivies. The Catholic colleges like Georgetown, Boston College and Notre Dame were founded as alternatives that inculcated Catholic values, but today they have shifted to meet the other elite institutions in their intellectual climates. A few years ago, William Dembski was fired from a position at an institute at Baylor University because of his aggressive espousal of Intelligent Design. Evangelical colleges need to be cautious in what sort of respectability they want....

Posted by razib at 12:23 AM