The UNC System Board of Governors approved new minimum admission plans that will go into effect this fall. The relaxed standards will remain in place, starting with the class of 2021 and will stay through the high school graduating class of 2024. The admissions plan will then revert to the previous standard.
University of North Carolina system spokesperson Jason Tyler explained the rationale behind the decision in a short interview with Campus Reform. "Choosing to begin these new admissions standards this fall is due to the coronavirus canceling the SAT and the ACT this spring," Tyler said.
"Many North Carolina, high school students, take their standardized testing for the first time in their junior year and then for the second time in the spring of their senior year. By taking this second test, they are able to improve their scores," Tyson added. "However, as the coronavirus canceled the SATs and ACTs for this spring, high school seniors are at a disadvantage."
"There are three key measurements of students' achievement: high school courses, high school grade point average (GPA), and test scores." - The University of North Carolina System
Six-course units in language, including
4 units in English emphasizing grammar, composition, and literature, and
2 units of a language other than English.
Four-course units of mathematics, in any of the following combinations
Algebra I and II, Geometry, and one unit beyond Algebra II,
Algebra I and II, and two units beyond Algebra II, or
integrated Math I, II, and III, and one unit beyond integrated math III.
The University strongly encourages future students to take at least one mathematics course unit in the 12th grade.
Three-course units in science, including
at least one unit in a life or Biological Science (for example, Biology),
at least one unit in physical sciences (for example, Physical Science, Chemistry, Physics), and
at least one laboratory course.
Two-course units in social studies, including
at least one unit in U.S. History
*Students who do not have the unit in U.S. history may be admitted on the condition that they pass at least three semester hours in that subject by the end of the sophomore year.
Before the change in the minimum requirements for the UNC-system schools, recent high school graduates were required to achieve at least a 2.5 GPA and at least a 17 on the ACT (or the SAT equivalent). The new minimum admissions requirements now have an "either-or" option for students.
Prospective students now need either a 2.5 high school GPA OR at least a 17 on the ACT (or the SAT equivalent.)
Students will still be required to submit both their GPA and standardized test scores when they apply to one of the University of North Carolina campuses.
Keep in mind that meeting these minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to a college or university. While the minimum requirements have changed, getting admitted to individual institutions and some academic programs within institutions may be more competitive. In addition, these schools may demand additional requirements beyond the minimums listed above.
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