A study put out by Rasmussen finds that only 3% of persons polled found that Ivy League graduates make better workers. According to Rasmussen Reports, the study specifically finds: “79% do not think Ivy League students make better workers. Eighteen percent (18%) are undecided.” We at Ivy Coach call big time foul on this study.
In one question (“Generally speaking, are people who go to Ivy League universities such as Harvard and Yale better workers than people who went to other colleges?), those surveyed are asked quite a leading question. Unless you went to an Ivy League university, chances are you are going to say no! Why would someone admit that other workers might be better than them? They have pride. It’s like asking the question: Generally speaking, do people who live in mansions lead better lives than those who live in modest homes? Chances are the person who lives in the modest home is going to say no…even if he/she doesn’t wholeheartedly believe that to be true.
Additionally, the priming effect is at play in this flawed study. The questions plant within one’s mind that an Ivy League education is not at all tied with hard work. The questions allude that Ivy Leaguers are not hard workers and rely instead only on their elite educations. While there certainly are exceptions, we believe that most graduates of Ivy League colleges tend to be hard workers because in order to gain admission to these highly competitive universities, they had to show performance superior to others. Are there extremely smart, hard-working graduates of non-Ivy League schools? Of course! Take a look at the list of Fortune 500 CEOs. Many attended colleges that most people have never heard of. But to discount Ivy Leaguers as non-hard workers as this study seems to suggest (even if unintentionally), is incorrect.
Check out the Rasmussen study here.