Department of Educational Administration


Date of this Version

Winter 12-1-2014

Document Type



Smith, K. (2014). The predictive validity of pre-admission measures on podiatric medical school performance. PhD dissertation, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.


[A dissertation] Presented to the Faculty of the Graduate College at the University of Nebraska in Partial Fulfillment of Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy, Major: Educational Studies (Educational Leadership and Higher Education), Under the Supervision of Professor James Griesen. Lincoln, Nebraska: December, 2014

Copyright (c) 2014 Kevin M. Smith


This study explored the influence of pre-admission measures on podiatric medical school performance. The purpose of the study was to predict which students are most likely to succeed in podiatric medical school when admitted, and potentially decrease the cost of attrition experienced by the student and institution. A review of the literature on medical school admissions was completed and used to develop this research.

Podiatric medical students from a Midwestern institution who enrolled between the years 2000 and 2015 were included as the sample for the study (n = 804). Pre-admission measures that were available for the subjects included Medical College Admission Test scores, Undergraduate Grade Point Average, Science Grade Point Average, ethnicity, age, gender and institutional selectivity of undergraduate institution attended. These measures served as independent variables. The first year podiatric medical school GPA was used as the dependent variable. A multivariate linear regression was used to assess the relationship between performance during the first year of podiatric medical school and the independent variables.

The study also described the use of a composite index for selectivity that was constructed by averaging the Barron’s Admissions Selector Rating and Peterson’s Four-Year College rating. To the author’s knowledge, a composite index for selectivity has never been described in medical school admission research.

The regression analysis revealed that for the sample of podiatric medical students in this study that UGPA, MCAT biological science, SGPA, composite index for selectivity, gender and age together had a significant effect on the dependent variable (F = 30.54, P < .001). These independent variables accounted for 29.7% of the variance in first year GPA.

The study demonstrated that some pre-admission variables such as UGPA, SGPA, MCAT biological science, age, gender and composite index for selectivity were statistically significant in predicting first year podiatric medical school performance and should be considered when screening podiatric medical school applicants in an effort to decrease attrition and future research should include a uniform dependent variable such as national board scores.

Advisor: James Griesen