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Spring 2-13-2023


Introduction Situational judgment tests have been adopted by medical schools to assess decision-making and ethical characteristics of applicants. These tests are hypothesized to positively affect diversity in admissions by serving as a noncognitive metric of evaluation. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the performance of the Computer-based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics (CASPer) scores in relation to admissions interview evaluations. Methods This was a cohort study of applicants interviewing at a public school of medicine in the southeastern United States in 2018 and 2019. Applicants took the CASPer test prior to their interview day. In-person interviews consisted of a traditional interview and multiple-mini-interview (MMI) stations. Between subjects, analyses were used to compare scores from traditional interviews, MMIs, and CASPer across race, ethnicity, and gender. Results 1,237 applicants were interviewed (2018: n = 608; 2019: n = 629). Fifty-seven percent identified as female. Self-identified race/ethnicity included 758 White, 118 Black or African-American, 296 Asian, 20 Native American or Alaskan Native, 1 Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and 44 No response; 87 applicants identified as Hispanic. Black or African-American, Native American or Alaskan Native, and Hispanic applicants had significantly lower CASPer scores than other applicants. Statistically significant differences in CASPer percentiles were identified for gender and race; however, between subjects, comparisons were not significant. Conclusions The CASPer test showed disparate scores across racial and ethnic groups in this cohort study and may not contribute to minimizing bias in medical school admissions.


This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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