11 September 2018
UCCS acceptance rates are higher than both the Boulder and Denver campuses for the University of Colorado system.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator, UCCS acceptance rates for the Fall 2017 semester were 93 percent, with Denver and the Anschutz Medical Campus having a 65 percent acceptance rate, and Boulder having an 80 percent acceptance rate. Last fall, UCCS had around 9,900 applicants, and roughly 9,200 of them were accepted.
Chris Beiswanger, director of Admissions at UCCS who has worked in admissions at UCCS since 1995, has insight on how these numbers function.
“About two years ago we merged with the office of admissions to create a more traditional office of admissions,” said Beiswanger. “All admissions related activities from documentation, to processing examinations, and recruitment all operate out of the… Office of Admissions.”
Beiswanger notes the importance of keeping admissions as straightforward as possible.
“We take your high school GPA and test scores into account as a preliminary review,” said Beiswanger. “Depending on the student situation we might ask for a letter of recommendation, or an essay.”
The Office of Admissions uses base admission standards, and Beiswanger notes that Colorado has recently changed the standards that all universities in Colorado must use noting that the new policies do not fundamentally change the admissions process.
“It’s just a slight adjustment with how we were looking at class rank and things like that,” said Beiswanger.
Beiswanger says that “part of the reason for such a high acceptance rate is [that] we do have a marketed application that we use, so we are directly contacting students that we identified as having the test scores or GPA scores that fit our criteria, so when you do more direct approach… you’re pretty much guaranteeing a higher acceptance rate.”
This approach to recruitment and admissions not only results in a high acceptance rate for students, but it also means the students that come to UCCS are also generally a better fit for UCCS. Beiswanger says that “The big change that we’ve made this past year is really having a better process for, instead of denying a student, redirecting them to [other schools].”
According to Beiswanger, a rough estimate for student demographics on an entering class is that about 75 percent of admitted students have a 3.0 GPA and about 75 percent have an SAT score of 1100 or above.
“This are a very kind of rough stats,” said Beiswanger.
Beiswanger says that information for the current class of 2023 will be known once the admissions office does a detailed analysis of information after the census date.
While freshman students are an obvious focus for admissions, Beiswanger notes that their admission standards for transfer students are different.
“We’re looking at over a thousand transfer students this year,” said Beiswanger.
As a point of note, despite the 93 percent admission rate for the Fall 2017 semester, only 22 percent of those who admitted were enrolled after the census date according to the College Navigator.
A major priority at the admissions office is making sure each student finds their fit; whether it’s at UCCS, or another institution, such as Pikes Peak Community College. Beiswanger says that the goal is “…to build a stronger path for them back to UCCS. We don’t want to just flat out say no. We want to put you in the right situation to be successful.” This is done intentionally to make sure that UCCS doesn’t just deny a student application, but rather, that the student in question has an idea of how to adjust their educational trajectory moving forward.