Nov 102003
Authors: Tillie Trujillo Director of Operations for Admissions, Alan Tucker Provost for Faculty Affai

During an ASCSU-sponsored panel discussion on Oct. 2, a question

was asked regarding the percentage of minority and majority

students in “the window” (students with index scores below 101) who

were admitted to the university. Subsequent discussion posited the

data in such a way as to suggest that over 90 percent of minority

students at the university do not meet the minimum standards for


A follow-up statement suggested that half of (the admissions

below the 101 index) are ethnic minorities even though ethnic

minorities account for less than 12 percent of CSU students. We

would like to clarify information on this point. The data provided

by the panelist referred to the percentage of minorities admitted

among those who apply with an index below 101 thus, of the 1,837

students with an index score below 101 who were admitted “through

the window” to the university in the fall semester of 2003, only

392 (21 percent) were students of color. In other words,

four-fifths of students (1,445) who enter the university with an

index below 101 are “majority” students. In the case of both

majority and minority students, most students admitted to the

university have index scores above the 101 baseline. There is not

significant difference between students of color (49 percent) and

“majority” students (42 percent) when examining the percentage of

those considered and ultimately admitted under the “window”


The primary goal of the university’s admission process is to

evaluate and admit students who are realistically capable of

succeeding at CSU. As part of this process, the university also

seeks to enhance the educational experience by recruiting and

admitting a diverse group of qualified students. The 101 index

provides a baseline that uses test scores, class rank and grades to

begin this assessment. This standard is applicable to all students,

irrespective of race. Other attributes are then brought to bear to

assist the university in determining the probability of success and

contribution to diversity for students who do not meet the baseline

scores. This holistic approach is one that is used by many

prestigious universities, including ours, and has served well in

bringing together students who will succeed and be a credit to

their institutions. Neither the university, nor students of any

race, benefit from admitting students who are realistically unable

to succeed at the university. Indeed, we believe all students

admitted to the university, regardless of index score or race, have

the capability to be successful.

Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court provided additional guidance to

universities regarding the value of diversity and the appropriate

use of race and other factors in admission decisions. The

university is continuously assessing its admission process and such

assessment will include elements to ensure that the process meets

legal requirements and furthers the land-grant educational mission

of the university. This assessment process also provides the

university with the opportunity to reaffirm its commitment to

creating a diverse academic environment that offers a quality

educational experience to all its students.

Office of Admissions

Office of the Provost

Comments and questions directed to Dr. Tucker at




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