The University of Texas at Austin to Automatically Admit Top 8 Percent of High School Graduates for 2011

The University of Texas at Austin will automatically admit all eligible 2011 summer/fall freshman applicants who rank within the top 8 percent of their high school graduating classes, with remaining spaces to be filled through holistic review.

William Powers Jr., president of the university, said that automatically admitting students in the top 8 percent of their high school graduating class to the 2011 entering freshman class would fill 75 percent of available spaces. A new state law, Senate Bill 175, passed by the 81st Legislature, modified the university's admissions program, which previously had been required to automatically admit students in the top 10 percent of their high school class.

Under the new law, the university is to admit automatically enough students to fill 75 percent of available spaces set aside for Texas residents in an entering freshman class, beginning with the 2011 summer/fall class.

The university was mandated by the bill to notify Texas school districts, in a manner prescribed by the Texas Education Agency, about the change in the university's admissions process. The agency prescribed that a letter by the university's president, explaining which percentile ranks of high school senior-level students qualify for automatic admission, would be sent by the university to executive directors of Texas Education Agency education service centers requesting that they assist in dissemination of the information to all Texas schools.