In The News - Texas Legislature Changes the Top 10% Law

Revised Top 10% Bill

[SB 175] Passed by the 81st Texas Legislature on May 30, 2009.



"As an Alternative Race, Wealth is Best" New York Times, April 27, 2014

"Alternatives Emerge to Affirmative Action" NPR, April 25, 2014

"High Noon in Austin" Inside Higher Ed, March 7, 2013

"Tracing the Effects of Guarenteed Admission Through the College Process: Evidence from a Policy Discontinuity in the Texas 10% Plan" National Bureau of Economic Research, January 2013.

"Scrutiny for Affirmative Action" Inside Higer Ed, October 11, 2012.

"Race Con-Conscious Admissions in Texas" The New York Times, October 10, 2012.

"Supreme Court Is Flooded With Briefs Defending Race-Conscious Admissions" The Chronicle of Higher Education, August 14, 2012.

"U. of Texas Aims at Supreme Court's Likely Swing Vote in Defending Race-Conscious Admissions" The Chronicle of Higher Education, August 7, 2012.

"Texas Lawsuit Complicates Presidential Race" The Chronicle of Higher Education, July 30, 2012.

"Supreme Court to hear Fisher vs. UT in Ocotober" The Daily Texan, July 25, 2012.

"The Other Big Supreme Court Case" The New Yorker, May 1, 2012.

"Defending UT Austin's admission standards? Pricey." AP, April 22, 2012.

"Does the Texas Top-10-Percent Plan Work?" The Chronicle, April 20, 2012.

Texas Affirmative Action Ban: Study Finds Hispanics Are More Underrepresented In Texas Universities" Huffington Post, April 12, 2012.


"Bill Changing Top 10% Law in House's Hands" Houston Chronicle, March 30, 2009.


"At a Glance: New Top 10 Percent Proposal"   Dallas Morning News, March 25, 2009.

More News »



THEOP, 2000 – 2010

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

The Texas Higher Education Opportunity Project, which began in 2000 with a pilot grant from the Ford Foundation, officially ended on 31 December 2010. The January (2010) issue of the Annals of the Academy of Political and Social Sciences co-edited with Mark Long is devoted to findings from THEOP. I summarize several key lessons from the Texas top 10% law in “Equity, Diversity and College Admission: Lessons from the Texas Uniform Admission Law,” which appeared in a volume edited by Eric Grodsky and Michal Kurlaender, Equal Opportunity in Higher Education: The Past and Future of Proposition 209 (Cambridge: Harvard University Education Press).

We will continue to update the website as new papers are produced. The key restricted use data files have been transferred to ICPSR; these include the senior and sophomore merged Wave 1 and Wave 2 files, and administrative data for UT and TAMU.  We look forward to seeing many more scholarly articles from users in the coming years.

Thanks to all the program officers at Ford, Hewlett, Mellon, and Spencer Foundations, and to the National Science Foundation for financial support; to Jorge Balan, Michael McPherson and my co-principal investigator Teresa Sullivan for intellectual support, and to the public and research advisory committees for their judicious advice during the early stages of the study. I am in debt to all the collaborating investigators who contributed to the project over the past decade and especially to the core team at Princeton—Sunny Niu and Dawn Koffman—whose dedication to the highest standards of data production and analysis multiplied the contributions of every analyst.

Marta Tienda, Principal Investigator




The Texas Higher Education Opportunity Project (THEOP) investigates college planning and enrollment behavior under a policy that guarantees high school seniors who graduate in the top 10% of their class admission to any Texas public college or university. The study is based on a two-cohort longitudinal survey of sophomores and seniors who were enrolled in Texas public schools as of spring, 2002. The senior cohort was re-interviewed in 2003 and again in 2006. Sophomores were re-interviewed in 2004, when most were high school seniors. [Survey Overview]

The investigators have also assembled administrative data from 7 public and 2 private universities in Texas. The administrative data files, which include applicant records and term files for enrollees, have been standardized for maximum comparability over time and across institutions. The baseline applicant files provide data on personal background, educational background, and application data. [Administrative Data Overview]





Funding for THEOP is provided by the Spencer Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Hewlett Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, the National Science Foundation and Princeton University.






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