Archive for Monday, November 26, 2012

Legislative committee hears proposed KU admissions standards

November 26, 2012


Kansas University’s tougher admission standards are inching closer to reality.

On Monday, state and KU officials briefed the House-Senate Committee on Rules and Regulations about the proposed standards, and the Kansas Board of Regents will probably put the finishing touches on them next month.

The proposed standards are “designed to encourage student achievement and student success,” said Sara Rosen, senior vice provost for academic affairs at KU. “The current standards do not reflect what it takes to succeed at the University of Kansas.”

Currently, admission criteria are the same for all six regents universities. A Kansas high school graduate can be admitted if he or she meets one of these:

• Has an ACT score of at least 21 or SAT score of at least 980.

• Ranks in the top one-third of the high school class.

• Has a 2.0 grade point average on a 4.0 scale in the Kansas Qualified Precollege Admissions curriculum.

Under the proposed standards, to be automatically admitted to KU, graduating high school students would have to complete the pre-college curriculum along with one of these:

• A minimum 3.0 GPA and an ACT score of at least 24 or SAT of at least 1090.

• A minimum 3.25 GPA and an ACT score of 21 or SAT of 980.

Students would also have to apply by Feb. 1 before their freshman year at KU to be considered for automatic application.

Students who don’t meet the criteria will have their applications reviewed by a committee that will look at numerous considerations, including whether the applying student would be a first generation college student or is the child or grandchild of KU graduates, and whether he or she has the potential to succeed academically.

If given final approval by the regents next month, the standards would take effect for the entering freshman class in fall 2016. Rosen said the new standards would “result in more students successfully earning degrees from the University of Kansas.”

Matt Melvin, KU’s associate vice provost for recruitment and enrollment, said the goal is not to deny access but to get students enrolled who are better prepared for the rigors of KU. He said the school is not so much interested in recruiting freshmen but “recruiting graduates-to-be.”


SnakeFist 1 year, 4 months ago

I'd like to see some numbers that indicate the impact of the proposed new standards. For example, how many of this year's freshman class would not have been admitted, how much lower will the new standards drive enrollment, and what will be the expected effect on the Lawrence economy? For example, a thousand fewer students would mean a lot of empty rental housing.


irtnog2001 1 year, 4 months ago

They do that through scholarships


Tracy Rogers 1 year, 4 months ago

Why don't they just have a tiered tuition scale? The lower your ACT score, the higher the tuition.


cowboy 1 year, 4 months ago

If they could sober up the freshman class they might have a higher retention rate.


bananarama89 1 year, 4 months ago

This makes perfect sense to me. KU's graduation and retention rates are so low because they are accepting mass amounts of people who are not ready to perform at a college level. It doesn't help those people to admit them and then set back their progress by suspending them due to academic probation, when they probably should have gone to a community college or smaller school to gain the skills that would allow them to thrive at a large university like KU.

Honestly, I think we should be looking more at the high schools in the state to make sure they are properly preparing students for higher education.


KS 1 year, 4 months ago

As a taxpayer funded university, any Kansas high school graduate should be able to enroll. There are late bloomers. They don't have to keep them, but they should be given an opportunity. Bad decision on behalf of KU.


konzahawk 1 year, 4 months ago

I thought this was already a done deal last summer. Why are we now discussing this again with the politicians, many of which don't have a college education? The fact of the matter is, that these new admissions standards will help weed out those students who have no business attending an AAU university. Every KU graduate can name at least ten people they started out with as freshman who flunked out after the first or second semester.. There are many other universities in the state where those students can attend and be very successful without wasting taxpayer and family dollars.

I actually think these standards are too low. They have dumbed them down to gain the approval of the BOR. Initially, the task force determined that students were supposed to have at least, a 25 on the ACT and a GPA of 3.25. Plus, they were required to write an essay for scholarship purposes.

Another thing that is puzzling is the fact that it will take four years to implement all of the changes. I can understand the GPA and curriculum criteria. I don't understand why the ACT component can't be implemented within two years. I doubt many high school freshmen and sophomores are taking the ACT.


voevoda 1 year, 4 months ago

Students who enroll at KU and other public universities without the requisite academic background are wasting the public's money, as well as their own. So I'm all in favor of the higher admissions standards. They will result in education that is more cost-effective for both the state and the students, and that makes better use of faculty time and expertise.

Maybe some of the students who don't meet the more stringent criteria actually are more capable than their record indicates. In that case, they can begin at a community college, prove their academic qualifications, and transfer to KU.


Steven Gaudreau 1 year, 4 months ago

This will not increase enrollment which has been down the last 7 yrs.


Gary Denning 1 year, 4 months ago

Let's get to the real issue here: How will these new standards affect football and basketball recruiting?


sigephandy 1 year, 4 months ago

firebird27. That is an interesting observation considering with the exception of Pitt State, Washburn, Fort Hays, and even Baker have higher graduation and retention rates than KU. 3 out of 5 also have equal or higher average undergraduate gpa rates comparable to KU in the last 6 semesters. Also, guess who has seen an larger increase in enrollment in Fall 2011 and Fall 2012, in order: Washburn, Fort Hays State, Pittsburg State, KU, Kansas State, and Emporia State.

On a personal note, If they raise these standards I wouldn't have been eligible to go to KU. As a first gen college student I choose Emporia because it was easier to afford. A Masters and Doctorate since, I guess I was an exception to your rule coming from that 2nd tier undergraduate school.


Clara Westphal 1 year, 4 months ago

Kansas has many small schools that may have few students in a graduating class. To be in the top 1/3 of that class does not compare to the competition of a student who graduates with one hundred or more in the class.


firebird27 1 year, 4 months ago

Sorry, I meant to say that grades are not a good indicator for academic capabilities.


firebird27 1 year, 4 months ago

In response to oldbaldguy, there is a big difference in the quality of education that one receives in regard to where you gain your education. Having taught graduate students for many years, my colleagues have found a definite rank order average for who are the best students:

Rank 1 - Students who attended a private college or university. Rank 2 - Students who attend a state's 1st tier universities, such as KU and KSU Rank 3 - Students who attend a state's 2nd tier universities, such as Pitt, Emporia, or Hays

The Rank 3 students typically have lower Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores than students in the other 2 tiers. We rarely have to be concerned about students for the first 2 ranks, but students from Rank 3 schools are typically the ones we find who are put on probation for not performing sufficiently. The GRE exam is a rather good measure. Grade point averages are the best indicators for a student's capabilities. Grades are a good measure of how hard a student may work, however.

You may pay more to attend KU or KSU, and this follows a more general philosophy in life. You get what you pay for.

Oldbaldguy, sorry to burst your bubble, but I see how good of an education students actually receive.


oldbaldguy 1 year, 4 months ago

All this will do is nothing. Frankly you have a a better shot at getting a good education at Pitt, Emporia or Hays. Why a kid would want to go to KU as an undergrad is beyond me. KU is a good grad school.


irtnog2001 1 year, 4 months ago

The real problem with low retention and graduation rates at KU are the huge freshman lecture hall classes taught primarily by TA's.


oldexbeat 1 year, 4 months ago

and what the heck is a vice provost or a senior vice provost or -- see -- that's what I'm saying.


oldexbeat 1 year, 4 months ago

how much money will be spent to filter the applicates ? Time and people ? As one that graduated from KU, but probably might not have be admitted ? (Guess I'm saying, this is a basis for expansion of employeess, offices, and another assistant to the associate dean of admissions.... etc.) What evidence is there that this will help graduation rates ?


Commenting has been disabled for this item.