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DOCUMENTS OF THE GENERAL FACULTY

RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE ADMISSIONS AND REGISTRATION COMMITTEE ON THE PROPOSAL TO CONTROL ENROLLMENT BY REDEFINING THE PROVISIONAL ADMISSION PROGRAM

 

Dan L. Wheat (civil engineering), on behalf of the Admissions and Registration Committee, has filed the following recommendations concerning the proposal to control enrollment by redefining the Provisional Admission Program.

The secretary has classified these recommendations as general legislation. These recommendations will be presented to the Faculty Council for action at its meeting on October 16, 2000.

 

<signed>

John R. Durbin, Secretary
The Faculty Council

 

 

This legislation was posted on the Faculty Council web site (http://www.utexas.edu/faculty/council/) on October 13, 2000. Paper copies are available on request from the Office of the General Faculty, FAC 22, F9500.


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RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE ADMISSIONS AND REGISTRATION COMMITTEE ON THE PROPOSAL TO CONTROL ENROLLMENT BY REDEFINING THE PROVISIONAL ADMISSION PROGRAM

 

The Admissions and Registration Committee has met four times this semester to address the proposal to control enrollment by redefining the Provisional Admission Program (D 793-796). Following are the committee’s recommendations to the Faculty Council on the proposal:

 

  • The provisional program as currently structured needs to be revised or eliminated.

Rationale: The provisional program originally was intended to give students, who had not been regularly admitted to the University, a chance to prove themselves in the highly-competitive UT Austin academic environment. However, in recent years, the quality of the provisionally admitted students has improved to a point where many of them perform at a level equivalent to students who were regularly admitted; also, concerns have arisen for the student’s sense of pride and accomplishment.

  • The provisional program should be retained in some form.

Rationale: The uniqueness of the provisional program among peer institutions was looked upon as positive. Students with a strong desire to succeed at the highest level should be given the chance to do so, even when their entry academic credentials do not signal success.

  • The provisional program should exist totally off the UT Austin campus.

Rationale: Increased enrollment pressures have led to a dramatic increase in enrollment in the provisional program at UT Austin. The consequence is that the University has a reduced ability to control its admissions. A template for the provisional program would be developed at UT Arlington, but the eventual inclusion of other System campuses is anticipated.

A provisional student at another System campus would know exactly what performance standard is required to enter UT Austin. The student whose GPA is not sufficient to enter UT Austin still may have a respectable GPA at his/her institution and, thus, other avenues of opportunity.

  • The proposed three-tiered freshman admission policy to control enrollment is recommended by the committee.

Rationale: Encouraging approximately 600 students to be enrolled in the summer relieves pressure on the available teaching resources in the fall semester.

  • Provisional students should be required to complete 30 semester hours with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in order to be guaranteed admission to UT Austin.

Rationale: A 30 semester hour year is a full one, but that, along with the 3.0 GPA requirement, may be used by the student to demonstrate his/her true abilities. The GPA requirement may have to be adjusted, depending on many parameters.

  • Students in the summer enrollment plan should be required to take a minimum of 12 semester hours, but there should be a plan to monitor the actual number of hours taken.

Rationale: A study of the characteristics of last year’s freshman class indicates that students in the summer enrollment plan are quite capable academically of taking 12 semester hours. However, it is recognized that some students may have to take fewer than 12 hours, some for academic reasons and


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others for non-academic reasons. The number of students requiring a reduced load should be monitored.

The premise of the 12-hour recommendation is that most of the courses taken in the summer would be whole-session courses, with the exception of foreign languages.

Marketing of the summer enrollment plan might include: the early acclimatization to UT Austin; the potential to graduate earlier; and smaller class sizes in some cases.