The University of California is considering raising its “automatic enrollment” standards to include only the top 4% of graduates in an effort to increase minority enrollment.
Currently, any applicant who is ranked in the top 12.5 percent of her or his graduating class is automatically admitted to the school. Since affluent, largely white schools send a lot of students and schools with lower budgets send only a few, toughening the admissions standards to include only the top 4% of students would help to increase the number of minority students and eliminate positive biases for white and economically privileged students. Students who do not graduate in the top 4% of their classes would still be eligible for admission on the basis of other criteria.
UC psychology professor and faculty admissions committee Chair Keith Widaman said that the new proposal would constitute “the most radical redefinition of eligibility criteria at the University of California in the last 30 years.” The UC Board of Regents will vote on the proposal in July.
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