College Admissions as Non-Price Competition: The Case of South Korea
This paper examines non-price competition among colleges to attract highly qualified students, exploiting the South Korean setting where the national government sets rules governing applications. We identify some basic facts about the behavior of colleges before and after a 1994 policy change that changed the timing of the national college entrance exam and introduced early admissions, and propose a game-theoretic model that matches those facts. When applications reveal information about students that is of common interest to all colleges, lower-ranked colleges can gain in competition with higher-ranked colleges by limiting the number of possible applications.
Roth’s work was partially supported by NSF Grant 1061889. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Christopher Avery receives funding from The College Board to support his work as Co-Principal Investigator of a research collaboration between the College Board and the Center for Education Policy Research at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.