Feb 272008
Authors: Kayla Huddleston

A new holistic application review process to be implemented in fall 2008 requires applicants to submit more documentation. Transcripts and test scores are no longer a determining factor.

“The university made a decision to move toward a more holistic application review to ensure that each applicant to CSU receives the utmost consideration for admission,” said Renee Orlick, director of operations Office of Admissions. “This approach recognizes that academic preparation may take several forms and that students contribute to the campus community in a variety of other ways.”

Previously, students only needed to submit a transcript, test scores and a processing fee with an application. Under the new process, an essay and recommendation from a teacher or high school official is required.

“This helps us gain a better understanding of all students’ achievements and aids in the review of files for scholarship consideration,” Orlick said.The holistic review system was used previously on select files where a decision couldn’t be made solely on a student’s grade point average and test scores. The new process allows completed applications to be evaluated by members of the admissions review committee.

“Priority consideration is given to students with a minimum of a 3.25 GPA and successful completion of four units of English, four units of mathematics, three units of natural science, three units of social studies and two units of the same foreign language,” Orlick said.

Other factors considered for admission include academic rigor, trends in grades, preparation for preferred major, ACT and/or SAT results, community service and leadership, an ability to contribute to a diverse campus community and any special circumstances.

The university is still required to report admission index scores to the Colorado Department of Higher Education but the score is no longer directing admission decisions. A strong candidate for admission would lie within required guidelines.

“CSU will continue to admit students who are academically prepared for the rigors of our classrooms,” Orlick said. “The new holistic review approach emphasizes course selection, rigor and academic performance.”

Review of applications has taken longer than in the past because of an increase in submitted materials.

“There are more items to read for each file and we are looking at a more robust description of academic performance,” Orlick said. “Applicants are waiting a little longer for a decision than in the past, but generally we are able to render a decision and send a letter to the applicant within one to two weeks of the file becoming ready for review.”

Students currently enrolled will not be affected by the change, but transfer applicants will go through the process with college level academic performance being taken into account.

“We are still looking for the same academic profile and preparation,” Orlick said. “A holistic review will aid in the selection of a diverse student body.”

Staff writer Kayla Huddleston can be reached at news@collegian.com.

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