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Higher admission standards proposed for KU

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Administrators at the University of Kansas have submitted a proposal to the Kansas Board of Regents requesting stricter admissions requirements that would distinguish KU from the state's other Regents system public universities.

Currently, the criteria for admission is the same for all six of the Regents universities (Emporia State University, Fort Hays State University, Kansas State University, Pittsburg State University, University of Kansas, and Wichita State University). Specifically, a Kansas high school student is admissible if he/she:

  • has earned a composite ACT score of 21 or higher or has scored a combined 980 or higher on the SAT
  • ranks in the top third of the high school graduating class
  • has a cumulative 2.0 GPA or higher on a 4.0 scale in the Kansas Qualified Admissions curriculum

The proposal before the Board of Regents suggests that in order to automatically qualify for admission to KU under the new standards, students would have to:

and meet one of the following additional criteria:

  • graduate from high school with a 3.0 or higher cumulative GPA and a composite ACT score of 24 or higher (or the equivalent 1090 combined score on the SAT) or
  • graduate from high school with a minimum of a 3.25 cumulative high school GPA and a composite ACT score of 21 (or the combined 980 SAT equivalent)

Students who do not automatically qualify for admission could appeal for review by a special committee that would look at student files and any extenuating circumstances on an individual basis. This additional review also aims to determine support services students might need if they are admitted and choose to enroll at KU.

According to KU's Chancellor, Bernadette Gray-Little, institutional studies show that students who apply by February 1 historically are more successful at KU. In addition, over the last two academic years, 81 percent of students who applied by February 1 came back for a second year at KU versus just 58 percent of students who applied for admission later.

That same study revealed that 65 percent of current KU students would have met the proposed new automatic admissions requirements.

The Board of Regents is scheduled to vote on the new standards at its June meeting. If the proposed standards are approved, the new admission criteria would take effect in the fall of 2016.

**To read additional Examiner articles written by Steph Hart, click here or visit Essential Elements: Comprehensive College Planning. You may also find Steph on Facebook and Twitter.

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