PDA

View Full Version : 1936 College Entrance Requirements



MaLanie1971
04-08-2009, 12:16 AM
Does anyone know if there was an age requirement?

Or if a person had to have a high school diploma, take entrance exams for a public university in the thirties?

suki
04-08-2009, 12:43 AM
Does anyone know if there was an age requirement?

Or if a person had to have a high school diploma, take entrance exams for a public university in the thirties?

I know the SAT first was given in the mid 1920s (@1926, I think) and throughout 1930s started to replace each college's separate entrance exams. But I would think a highschool diploma/passing entrance exam was still necesary at many schools.

Also, I'm not sure if there were different standards for men and women, but I would think fewer women went to college then, and I'm not sure how prevalent it was for a girl to go to college.

This book might be a good place to start researching more in depth the standards, though you probably want to look for other sources as well, especially for girls going to college:
http://books.google.com/books?id=8fk2yE1a0PEC

~suki

donroc
04-08-2009, 12:47 AM
In California in the 1940s, a B average qualified you for Cal and UCLA, no exams except a 500 word essay to qualify for regular English and Speech classes -- fail and you took a special no credit course in writing essays.

A C average qualifed you for the State colleges like San Francisco State. I believe it was the same in the 1930s.

No SAT exams in those days, and, as I recall, only 6% of entire U.S. population had attended even one semester of college in 1954.

Ken
04-08-2009, 01:07 AM
... must be a caucasian and gentile male, with rare exception :-(

StephanieFox
04-08-2009, 08:37 PM
My dad started college when he was 16 years old, but he had skipped three or four grades. I'm sure he had a 4.0 or near that. After a year, he transfered from City College of NY to Tulane and would have been just 17 years old. He always felt very greatful to Tulane for letting him in since most colleges (Tulane included) had a 10 percent quota on Jews and despite his grades, he had limited options.

I have no idea what he got on his SATs or any other tests.

Bayou Bill
04-08-2009, 08:50 PM
Does anyone know if there was an age requirement?

Or if a person had to have a high school diploma, take entrance exams for a public university in the thirties?
The rules would vary state-by-state. However, what donroc said about California would probably be close to the norm. With the depression rolling along, most public colleges were not very picky.

Bayou Bill :cool:

donroc
04-08-2009, 09:03 PM
A high school diploma and grades meant something in the 1930s and 40s unlike today with grade inflation, watered down and feel good courses, except for the APs. A B average was not all that easy to achieve. Not picky? Cal and UCLA required a solid B average in academic subjects. If you were a few units short, you could make them up in advance at summer school. or at a community college. Cost in 1949 at Cal was $37.50/semester ( no charge for units). S.F. City college was part of the school system and charged $2.00 tuition/semester.

PastMidnight
04-09-2009, 04:23 AM
In my own research, I was able to find digital archives on many university library websites with course catalogs and admission brochures for various years. You might have luck there.

ideagirl
04-09-2009, 11:44 PM
... must be a caucasian and gentile male, with rare exception :-(

My grandmother and her twin sister, both Hispanic women, went to college in Washington State in the early 1930s. I suspect the type of policies you're talking about were more prevalent in private universities, especially fancy ones. Also, it was a lot more prevalent in the 19th century, and I think also more prevalent in professional schools (medicine/law) than in other faculties.

That being said, Harvard admitted its first African-American student (male) in about 1870. I remember reading in Bartlett's Quotations something from the president of Harvard who was there at the time: in response to student opposition to the admission of a black student, he refused to renege on the admission and said something to the effect of, "If the entire student body wishes to resign in protest, they may do so, in which case the entire resources of this university will be solely dedicated to the education of this boy."

What a great guy that president must have been...

FinbarReilly
04-10-2009, 06:29 AM
A lot of colleges seemed to require that you needed just to be able to pay the tuition; otherwise, there were no real qualifying exams or such. Testing wasn't really important until the 40's and 50's.


... must be a caucasian and gentile male, with rare exception :-(

Although the PC history would agree with you, the facts of the situation are obviously different. A lot of women had some college training (prep schools and nursing), and a lot more non-whites had college education than the PC police would care to admit. Also, a lot of colleges had a higher foreigner element than they do now.

FR