College Guide

Blog

August 12, 2010 10:00 AM Grade Gambling

By Daniel Luzer

cards.jpg

National Collegiate Athletic Association rules prohibit college athletes from betting on their own performance. But the field is apparently wide open for academic games of chance.

According to an article by Jason Thomas in the Indianapolis Star:

Indiana University students have a new incentive to cram for exams: They can make money on their performance through a newly launched website.

The website is Ultrinsic and, according to the article,

Here’s how the site works: A student registers, uploads his or her schedule and gives Ultrinsic access to official school records.
The site then calculates odds based on the student’s college history and any information it can dig up on the difficulty of each class, the topic and other factors. The student decides how much to wager, up to a cap that starts at $50 and increases with use.

So far students at 36 American colleges can bet on, or against, their own grades.

While Indiana University, which was recently added to the website, emphasizes that is “in no way… cooperating” with Ultrinsic, it really doesn’t need to in order for the project to work. The attitude of the actual colleges is irrelevant.

According to the Huffington Post, Ultrinsic founder Steven Wolf says this new concept isn’t online gambling, which is illegal, “because wagers with Ultrinsic involve skill.” [Image via]

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer