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Statistical Summaries

General Information | 2005-2006

2. Admission

A comprehensive college education depends on a robust exchange of ideas, exposure to differing cultures, preparing for the challenges of an increasingly diverse workforce, and acquiring competencies required of future leaders. The University handles a very large number of applications and must select from among this highly qualified pool only the number of students it can accommodate. In addition to an assessment of the academic strength of an applicant's record, admission decisions result from an individualized, holistic review of each applicant, taking into consideration the many ways the academically qualified individual might contribute to, and benefit from, the rich, diverse, and challenging educational environment of the University.

The procedures and criteria for admission given in this chapter are effective as of the date of publication but are subject to change by action of the Texas Legislature or the Board of Regents.

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Undergraduate Admission

The Office of Admissions is responsible for the admission and readmission of undergraduate students to the University. Application procedures for freshman, transfer, former, international, and transient students are outlined later in this chapter.

Prospective students are encouraged to apply early for the enrollment period in which they are interested. Although no preference is given for early application, beginning the process early allows ample time for applicants to assure that their applications are complete by the deadline.

Because there are more qualified applicants than can be instructed by the faculty or accommodated in the facilities, it is often necessary to admit a limited number of applicants from among those who are qualified. Information about additional admission requirements for some undergraduate programs is given later in this chapter.

An applicant who has undertaken coursework at another collegiate institution (including freshman, transfer, reentry, and international applicants) may not disregard any part of his or her academic record. Such coursework must be reported on the appropriate section of the State of Texas Common Application. Applicants who fail to report all college coursework or who otherwise falsify any part of their application or the documents required to complete the application process are subject to disciplinary action. Disciplinary action will include a one-year ban on enrollment and a permanent statement on the student's record about the failure or falsification. Action may include expulsion and loss of credit for work taken subsequently at the University, as well as appropriate action by the dean of students.

In compliance with the Federal Student Right-to-Know Act, information about graduation rates and crime statistics is available from the Office of Admissions.

Questions about undergraduate admission may be addressed to the Office of Admissions by telephone or by e-mail. The Office of Admissions may also be contacted by mail at The University of Texas at Austin, Office of Admissions, P O Box 8058, Austin TX 78713-8058.

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Application deadlines. All application materials must be received in the Office of Admissions by the following deadlines.

New students:
freshmen, international
February 1 February 1 October 1
Transfer students March 1 March 1 October 1
Former students May 1 July 1 December 1
Transient students May 1 not applicable not applicable
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Application processing fee. A nonrefundable fee of $60 is required with each application for undergraduate admission. International applicants (those who are not United States citizens or permanent residents) must submit a nonrefundable fee of $75.

To request an exemption from the application processing fee, an applicant must submit a copy of one of the following:

  1. A financial award letter
  2. An approved test fee waiver from the ACT, SAT, GRE, or GMAT
  3. The applicant's parent's or guardian's income tax returns for the past two years or the applicant's own returns, if he or she was not claimed as a dependent by another taxpayer
  4. A financial aid transcript from an institution the applicant previously attended
  5. Documentation from a high school counselor showing financial need. For example, the counselor might submit a statement that indicates the applicant's free-lunch status.

Enrollment deposit. Any applicant admitted to the University as an undergraduate for the summer or fall must pay an enrollment deposit of $200 to indicate that he or she accepts the offer of admission. The deposit is applied to the payment of fees when the student enrolls. Students who demonstrate financial need may qualify for assistance to cover the amount of the deposit.

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Freshman Admission

The Office of Admissions offers a variety of services and resources to assist prospective students with the freshman application process. Freshman applicants are encouraged to use all available resources, especially the resources of the University's four admissions centers, where admissions counselors provide detailed information about and assistance with the admission process. Centers are located in Austin on the University campus in John Hargis Hall, in Dallas, in Houston, and in San Antonio. Admissions counselors travel throughout the state, visiting high schools and participating in events designed to encourage prospective students to continue their education after high school.

Prospective students may also communicate with admission counselors through Be a Longhorn. This Web site offers a counselor finder; event registration; secure access to personal information like application status and admission decisions; and details about admission, academics, financial aid, housing, and more.

High School Preparation

High school students who intend to apply to the University should take a college preparatory curriculum. Entering freshmen must have at least 15 1/2 units of high school work (grades 9-12), as described in the following table. At least 14 of these units must be in areas A through E. The number in the "Units" column is the minimum number of units the student must take in that area. One year's work in a subject is counted as one unit. A semester's work is counted as a half unit.

Students may enter the University under the provisions of Texas Education Code section 51.803 without meeting the high school unit requirements, but they must remove any unit deficiencies before they graduate from the University.

  Area Units


Language arts

  Required: Four units of English, one of which may be writing, world literature, speech, or journalism. English for speakers of other languages may not be used to fulfill the language arts requirement but may be counted as an elective in area F.  
  Strongly recommended: At least one unit of English should include the development of writing skills.

B. Foreign language 2
  Required: Two units in a single language; three units are recommended. American Sign Language may be used to fulfill the foreign language requirement.

C. Mathematics 3
  Required: Three units at the level of Algebra I or higher: algebra, plane geometry, trigonometry, analytic geometry, elementary analysis, probability and statistics, solid geometry, calculus with analytic geometry, number theory. Informal geometry and prealgebra are below-achievement-level courses and may not be counted toward the mathematics requirement; they may be counted as electives in area F.  
  Strongly recommended: Prospective students interested in studying architecture, business, natural sciences, engineering, or other technical fields are advised to prepare by taking math every year of high school. The additional unit may be counted as an elective in area F.

D. Science 2
  Required: Two units of physical science, biology, chemistry, physics, physiology and anatomy, geology, meteorology, marine science, astronomy.  
  Strongly recommended: Prospective students interested in studying architecture, business, natural sciences, engineering, or other technical fields are advised to prepare by taking science, including chemistry and physics, every year of high school. The additional unit may be counted as an elective in area F.

E. Social studies 3
  Required: Three units of anthropology, area studies, ethnic studies, economics, geography, government (civics), philosophy, social science, psychology, sociology, Texas history (advanced), United States history, world history, work/study programs.

F. Electives 1 1/2
  Required: One and one-half units, including (1) any units beyond the minimum required in areas A through E; (2) any units in area G; (3) vocational and other subjects, except drill subjects (such as driver training and military training) and physical education.

G. Fine arts  
  Strongly recommended: One-half unit of theatre arts, art, music, dance.  
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Admission deficiencies. Admission is not granted to applicants who have not completed the required units listed above unless they are qualified for admission on the basis of graduation in the top 10 percent of their high school class. Students may enter the University under the provisions of Texas Education Code section 51.803--the top 10 percent law--without meeting the high school unit requirements, but they must remove any unit deficiencies before they graduate. Students whose high school curriculum does not include the courses necessary to complete the unit requirements may apply to the director of admissions for an exception. To graduate from the University, students who are admitted by exception must remove any unit deficiencies as described in the next paragraph.

A deficiency in foreign language must be removed by earning credit for foreign language or classical language courses numbered 506 and 507 (or the equivalent) or by earning a passing score on the appropriate placement examination. A deficiency in mathematics must be removed by earning credit for Mathematics 301 (College Algebra) or 303D (Applicable Mathematics) or an equivalent transfer course. For all other subjects, one semester of college credit is required to remove a deficiency of one year or less of high school credit. Courses taken to remove a deficiency do not count toward the student's degree.

Freshman Application Procedures

To be considered for admission as a freshman, the applicant must submit

  1. A completed State of Texas Common Application for Freshman Admission, including at least two required essays
  2. An official high school transcript showing rank and class size and coursework through at least the junior year, or a transcript and a statement that the school does not rank its students
  3. An official test score report (SAT Reasoning Test or ACT), sent directly from the testing agency (see "Admission Tests" below)
  4. An application fee or request for fee exemption

A freshman applicant may not disregard any part of his or her academic record, including college credit earned as dual credit. Such coursework must be reported on the Texas Common Application, and the applicant must submit official transcripts of the coursework.

Applications may be completed online at the Texas Common Application Web site. Printed application forms are available at most Texas high schools.

Admission Tests

All applicants for admission as freshmen in the summer of 2006 or later must submit scores on either the SAT Reasoning Test, including the student-written essay, or both the ACT Assessment and the ACT Writing Test. Official scores must be sent directly from the testing agency; a photocopy of test results and results listed on a high school transcript are not acceptable. Because official scores must arrive in the Office of Admissions by the deadline, applicants should take the tests no later than December of their senior year.

Applicants seeking admission to the College of Engineering as freshmen must submit scores on the SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 1 or Level 2. Scores must be received by the Office of Admissions by the application deadline. Most applicants to other fields are not required to take SAT Subject Tests for admission purposes, but they may be required or may prefer to take such tests for placement purposes. Most applicants must take the SAT Subject Test in Writing and the SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 1 or Level 2 before they register, to determine their placement in rhetoric and composition and mathematics courses.

Information and registration materials are usually available from the student's high school counselor. Information about SAT tests and the ACT is available online. Online test registration is also available.

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Freshman Application Review Process

Freshman admission decisions are dependent on the applicant's academic strength and an individualized, holistic review of all submitted applications. As required by state law, class rank is a deciding factor for some applicants.

Texas high school graduates ranked in the top 10 percent of their class. In accordance with Texas Education Code section 51.803, students are admissible to the University as first-time freshmen if they (1) graduated in the top 10 percent of their class from an accredited Texas high school and (2) submit all required credentials by the appropriate deadline. Applicants must have graduated from high school during one of the two school years preceding the academic year for which they seek admission and must not have attended an institution of higher education in the interim.

Admission under the top 10 percent law does not guarantee admission to the applicant's requested major or entry semester.

Applicants who are admitted because they are in the top 10 percent of their high school class may be required to complete additional preparatory work before they enroll; they are required to remove any deficiencies in units of high school coursework before they graduate from the University.

Texas high school graduates not ranked in the top 10 percent of their class, homeschooled students, and all graduates of out-of-state high schools. To be considered for freshman admission, applicants who are not eligible for consideration under the provisions of Texas Education Code section 51.803 must normally have graduated from high school and have completed the unit requirements prescribed above.

Applications received by the deadline are evaluated individually. No specific class rank, test score, or other qualification by itself--other than automatic admission based on Texas Education Code section 51.803--ensures admission. Admission decisions are based on an assessment of the following:

  1. Class rank
  2. Strength of academic background, including the number of courses taken in mathematics, science, and foreign language
  3. SAT Reasoning Test or ACT scores
  4. Record of achievements, honors, and awards
  5. Special accomplishments, work, and service both in and out of school
  6. Essays
  7. Special circumstances that put the applicant's academic achievements into context, including his or her socioeconomic status, experience in a single parent home, family responsibilities, experience overcoming adversity, cultural background, race and ethnicity, the language spoken in the applicant's home, and other information in the applicant's file
  8. Recommendations (although not required)
  9. Competitiveness of the major to which the student applies

As a state-assisted institution, the University reserves a majority of its spaces for Texas residents. Consequently, the admission of nonresidents is highly competitive.

Enrollment pressures at the University may not permit admission of all who qualify for certain academic programs. When this occurs, the Office of Admissions will, within applicable law, admit those students who are judged to be most able to contribute to and benefit from the University's rich, diverse, and academically challenging environment. Additional admission requirements for some undergraduate programs are described later in this chapter.

The director of admissions may admit to the University recipients of bona fide scholarships designated by the president.

Before applying for admission, homeschooled students should review the information available on Be a Longhorn, including details about the information that should be submitted with the student's application.

Under Texas law, graduates of unaccredited high schools may seek admission to the University.

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Students who did not graduate from high school. Texas residents who did not graduate from high school and are at least twenty-one years old may seek admission through special consideration. In addition to all application material, the student must provide a copy of GED results. It is important for the student to provide as much information as possible in support of the application. Some important indicators of the student's academic competitiveness are SAT Reasoning Test and SAT Subject Test scores, Advanced Placement courses, and grades in college-level courses the student took while in high school.

Admission Decisions

When making admission decisions, admissions representatives initially consider individual applicants for their first-choice major for the requested semester. Applicants not admitted to their first-choice major are then considered for their second-choice major. Applicants who do not qualify for admission to either their first- or their second-choice major because of space limitations are then considered for admission as undeclared majors in the College of Liberal Arts for the requested semester.

Admission to the Summer Freshman Class. Because space is limited during the fall semester, some fall applicants may be admitted to the Summer Freshman Class. Summer Freshman Class students are regularly-admitted freshmen who begin their studies in a ten-week summer program for incoming freshmen. All students admitted to the Summer Freshman Class are admitted to the College of Natural Sciences or the College of Liberal Arts.

The Coordinated Admission Program. A Texas resident who meets the University's high school course requirements and completes an application for admission by the required deadline, but is not offered regular admission for the summer or fall, is eligible to participate in the Coordinated Admission Program (CAP). (Nonresidents are not eligible to participate in CAP.) CAP students spend their freshman year in residence at a University of Texas System component institution other than UT Austin. Students who are offered participation choose from a list of institutions open to them when they complete the CAP agreement.

To receive guaranteed admission to UT Austin following CAP participation, a CAP student must meet the following requirements:

  1. Complete at least thirty hours of approved coursework with a grade point average of at least 3.20 in residence during the fall and spring semesters at the UT System component institution at which the student enrolls
  2. Complete at least one mathematics course from the list of approved courses as part of the required thirty hours
  3. Complete requirements 1 and 2 by June 1 of the year in which the student participates in CAP

Although applicants offered CAP participation do not need to apply to the UT System component institution, they must meet the admission requirements of the institution they choose to attend.

Students who meet the CAP requirements are guaranteed admission to the University of Texas at Austin as regular students in the fall semester of the following year. Students are guaranteed admission into either the College of Liberal Arts or the College of Natural Sciences. CAP participants may request admission to restricted programs or to majors in other colleges or schools, but they are guaranteed admission only to liberal arts or natural sciences. (Because many freshman admission decisions for the fall have been made by the time CAP participants complete their first-year requirements, some programs may not accept applications from CAP students.) Students who request admission to another program do not jeopardize their admission to liberal arts or natural sciences.

CAP participants who do not complete the program requirements may seek admission to the University for a subsequent semester by applying for transfer admission. Such applicants are evaluated as part of the competitive transfer applicant pool; CAP participation is not considered when the transfer admission decision is made.

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General Information | 2005-2006 page 1 of 5 in Chapter 2
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