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Building an Evidence Base: Important Foundations for Institutions of Higher Education Advancing Education Goals Associated with Student Diversity

The evidence guide provides an actionable roadmap—framing key questions, suggesting key kinds of evidence, and pointing to illustrative sources—that can guide institutional deliberation and action for advancing education goals associated with student diversity. The guide is a resource for institutions where race is a consideration in enrollment decisions, as well as for institutions where such practices may be prohibited.

Download the Guide


The Access & Diversity Collaborative has collaborated with the National Scholarship Providers Association to create guidance for higher education institutions and private scholarship providers on the legal boundaries in the awarding of assistance to students and their families.

The document provides an update on the current state of Federal law related to non-discrimination regulations in the awarding of financial aid and scholarships in higher education. It provides key takeaways past Federal circuit court cases and offers a ‘Guide to Action’ for institutions to follow to review their mission-driven financial aid and scholarship awarding practices.

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The Access & Diversity Collaborative has studied the most recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Fisher v. University of Texas and summarized the Court’s guidance regarding race-conscious enrollment practices.

The document provides key takeaways from the majority opinion and that of the dissent. It also offers a ‘Guide to Action’ for institutions to follow to review their mission-driven diversity enrollment goals and practices.

This guidance will form the core of an ADC sponsored Colloquia session at the CB Forum in Chicago in October scheduled for Wednesday, October 26 at 1:15 PM.

Download the Brief


Listen to the Recording of the Access & Diversity Collaborative’s webinar “Unpacking Fisher II and Its Possible Implications for Institutions” conducted on July 14, 2016, at noon ET

On June 23, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court (the Court) announced its second decision in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, which upheld the University of Texas's (UT) race-conscious admissions program under federal law. Notably, in affirming prior Court precedent, the decision also provided significant insight regarding policy development considerations and key evidence, which should inform the efforts of public and private institutions that consider race in enrollment practices moving forward.

This webinar included discussion of the elements of the decision as well as its potential implications for other institutions.

  • Art Coleman, Managing Partner, EducationCounsel
  • Terri Taylor, Senior Legal and Policy Advisor, EducationCounsel
  • Brad Quin, Executive Director, Higher Education Advocacy & Special Initiatives, The College Board

Register now 


Review the Latest National Research on Policies and Practices to Achieve Diversity and Inclusion on College Campuses

Bridging the Research to Practice Gap: Achieving Mission-Driven Diversity and Inclusion Goals is the latest offering from the College Board’s Access & Diversity Collaborative and is designed to assist institutions in the design and evaluation of their diversity-related enrollment goals.

The report is divided into three parts: 1) an exhaustive survey of current research related to student diversity, areas of strength and areas needing additional attention; 2) suggestions for additional research which could inform individual institutional actions; and 3) identifying policy and practice implications for institutions within the shifting political and legal landscape.

The report is intended to be used in conjunction with other resources and materials made available through the Access and Diversity Collaborative.


U.S. Supreme Court Rules in Favor of the University of Texas in the Second Fisher Case Challenging the Use of Race-Conscious Policies in College Admissions

Read the initial analysis of the Court’s decision to affirm Texas’s limited use of race and ethnicity in college admissions in order to achieve its mission-driven enrollment diversity goals. The Court affirms the need for such practices to pass the strict scrutiny test as articulated in its previous ruling in Grutter, and affirmed the goal of achieving the educational benefits of diversity as a ‘compelling interest.’ Additional analysis of the decision will follow in subsequent posting.

Read the College Board's amicus brief.

Read the full decision from the U.S. Supreme Court.


UNC and Harvard Lawsuits; OCR Complaint Against Harvard; Implications for Fisher II

On July 7, both the University of North Carolina and Harvard University filed requests to delay litigation in their separate lawsuits until the U.S. Supreme Court hands down a decision in its rehearing of Fisher v. the University of Texas. Also, in June, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) dismissed a complaint against Harvard University’s undergraduate admissions program because of the similar lawsuit against Harvard pending in federal court. The complaint had been filed by more than 60 Asian American groups in May.