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The dubious utility of the value-added concept in higher education: the case of accounting

Economics of Education Review Volume 24, Number 3, ISSN 0272-7757 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


Using data on CPA exam pass rates and various institutional variables, this research examines the potential usefulness of the value-added concept in accounting higher education. For a sample of 548 US colleges and universities, predicted pass rates were computed from regression equations relating observed pass rates to institutional variables. The value-added (or “adjusted”) pass rate is the difference between the observed (“unadjusted”) pass rate and the predicted pass rate. Because of the low explanatory power of the pass rate regression equations, a strong positive correlation exists between the adjusted pass rate and the unadjusted pass rate. Thus, a ranking of institutions by adjusted pass rate would be very similar to a ranking by unadjusted pass rate. In addition, for conventional levels of statistical confidence, judgments about relative CPA exam pass rate performance based on value-added statistics can only be made for a small number of institutions.


Yunker, J.A. (2005). The dubious utility of the value-added concept in higher education: the case of accounting. Economics of Education Review, 24(3), 355-367. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved February 19, 2020 from .

This record was imported from Economics of Education Review on March 1, 2019. Economics of Education Review is a publication of Elsevier.

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