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February 18, 1998

Affirmative Action and Special Consideration Admissions to Medical School

Author Affiliations

Margaret A.WinkerMD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 1998;279(7):508-510. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-279-7-jbk0218

To the Editor.— Amid a growing national debate on affirmative action, Drs Davidson and Lewis1 gathered information to advise policymakers on the outcomes of admissions decisions. While the authors did not investigate affirmative action per se,2 they studied a proxy group of special consideration admissions students with low undergraduate GPAs, MCAT scores, or both. Their methods of assessing medical school performance seem reasonable; however, the measurements of some postgraduate outcomes are questionable. The conflicting findings between medical school performances and outcomes, such as residency ratings, board certification, and faculty status, are overlooked.

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