UC system eases admissions requirements by eliminating SAT test scores, minimum grades amid coronavirus crisis

Education

A man wears a mask while walking past Sather Gate on the University of California at Berkeley campus in Berkeley, Calif., Wednesday, March 11, 2020. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

OAKLAND, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) — The University of California announced Wednesday it will ease admissions requirements for undergraduate students enrolling for fall 2020 and beyond by eliminating SAT test scores and minimum grades amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

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The UC said the measures were made to help alleviate “the tremendous disruption and anxiety that is already overwhelming prospective students” due to the coronavirus.

The university system said it reacted after some schools adopted “pass/fail” or “credit/no credit” grading instead of letter grades for required general education “A-G” courses needed to qualify for admission to its nine campuses.

Those changes had the potential to adversely affect not only incoming freshmen but all high school students seeking a UC education, making it difficult to meet entry requirements.

The UC also cited the cancelation of K-12 standardized testing and college entrance exams.

“The university’s flexibility at this crucial time will ensure prospective students aiming for UC get a full and fair shot — no matter their current challenges,” said UC President Janet Napolitano.

The UC Board of Regents have enacted the following measures:

  • Suspending the letter grade requirement for A-G courses completed in winter/spring/summer 2020 for all students, including UC’s most recently admitted freshmen.
  • Suspending the standardized test requirement for students applying for fall 2021 freshman admission.
  • Providing that there will be no rescission of student admissions offers that result from students or schools missing official final transcript deadlines, and student retention of admission status through the first day of class until official documents are received by campuses.
  • For transfer students, temporarily suspending the cap on the number of transferable units with “pass/no pass” grading applied toward the minimum 60 semester/90 quarter units required for junior standing.

The UC said it wil also award university credit for 2020 Advanced placement exams completed with scores of 3, 4 or 5, consistent with previous years.

Final transcripts need to be submitted by July 1, according to the UC.

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