so why aren't low income students applying to elite schools and does it matter?

A recent report from Brookings Institute discusses how and why students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are not applying for some of the US's most elite colleges.

Some questions to consider:
  1. Why aren't low SES students applying for elite schools?
  2. Why is access to elite schools important? Don't students who don't attend elite schools receive equally good educations?
The answers are of course complicated. But one thing that becomes clear is that part of the reason students of low SES backgrounds do not apply to elite colleges is lack of knowledge and information about these schools-- in particular students worry that 1) they can't afford these schools and 2) they don't think they belong and don't think they'll be accepted. In other words, to some extent, these students lack the cultural capital of their wealthier counterparts. 

In my own research, I found similar responses by 2nd generation French students about why more did not apply for the elite Grands Ecoles. This report raises an additional interesting point for my own research-- if this is the case in the US, is it better/worse in France? When that chapter is finished, I'll let you know.

Also view my Pearltrees collection on this topic.