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Want to go to University of Texas at Austin? Get in line!


I have a good number of students every year who would like to attend the University of Texas at Austin.  There are a lot of great reasons to go to Austin (weather, cool city, great sports teams, world-class programs), but my students are always surprised to find out just how competitive UT Austin actually is when compared to similar schools. 

For example, last year UT Austin admitted around 50% of its applicants.  That's an incredible difference from Brigham Young's 75% admission rate or Arizona State's 90%+ rate, two more typical rates when looking at large state schools that have strong academic programs. UT's low rate is much closer to Occidental College (45%), a small private college than it is to any of these other state schools!

I've always known that UT Austin has a strong preference for in-state students and assumed that they have gotten more selective over the years, a typical position for a school that has raised standards and built a brand that appeals to parents and students. But this week, some information came out of the UT campus that redefined the discussion quite a bit.

The University of Texas at Austin President, William Powers, revealed to the Texas Associated Press that 81% of entering freshman at UT: Austin were admitted under the "10% law" and called for the law to be rewritten to give his admissions staff more discrection in the process.

That's right.  More than 80% of the entire entering class has to meet only two requirements to be automatically granted admission:

  1. Graduate from a Texas High School
  2. Be in the top 10% of the class

That leaves the admissions office at UT Austin in a bind.  They can't deny admission to any of these students, so they have to get more selective with the remainder of their class. 

Therefore, unless you are a stand out student, it's going to be difficult to gain admission, not because the student body is getting more selective overall, but because they are simply so few spots left! (You'll find the same sort of situation over in the Ivy Leagues, where admission rates have fallen in half because the number of applicants has doubled without a significant increase in open spots.)

Powers is going to continue to fight this battle, but he's not doing it to ensure that they can get more out of state students.  In fact, he's more concerned about Texas students that don't meet the requirements being denied admission and the efficiacy of this program in regards to minority applicants.

So, what can you do about the low admission rate for out of state students?  Not much.   As you now know, there aren't a lot of spots left every year for out of state kids. You've got to treat UT Austin as if it was an incredibly selective school.

But now that you know how tough the battle will be, you can get ready for it.  Improve your ACT or SAT score, get some help with your college essay, and keep your grades high!  If you've set a goal like UT Austin, make you are getting all the help you need!


What are you doing to get ready for applications this year?  Let us know in the comments!


Gods! Haven't been even near UT since Darryl Royal was running the Wishbone. Left Texas then and never had a desire to go back, for all sorts of reasons
Posted @ Monday, January 26, 2009 11:35 PM by jrandom42
Texas is an interesting place. I've noticed that my students have strong reactions to it. 
However, I think Austin is a lot different from the rest of Texas. My visits there have helped to convince me that Austin is refreshingly weird!
Posted @ Wednesday, January 28, 2009 9:30 AM by Mark Truman
This is obsurd. The top 10% is crucial.. let it go.
Posted @ Wednesday, March 18, 2009 5:05 PM by Emily ROLL
@emily - Do you mean to say that I shouldn't report on the 10% law? I personally don't have a problem with it, but it's making it difficult for the UT admissions office to function...
Posted @ Wednesday, March 18, 2009 5:11 PM by Mark Truman
Consider this... 
I am in the top 10.3% of my graduating class, and I was offered in UT's CAP program. In simple terms it means I got denied admission to UT Austin's Fall 2009 freshman class.  
Now, it seems a understandable for me to be denied entry if I were in the top 25% of my class. But, currently there are two people between me and the top 10% rule. I have a higher SAT score than almost half of the "top ten percenters" in my class (all of whom I know), and I am a competitive student, who attended a small (small as in graduating class of four people small) private high school for two years, and then transfered to a large public high school with no rank and no academic GPA, and I worked very hard to get where I am. So how is the top 10% rule "crucial" to admissions? Crucial in the sense that it causes the University to deny well-qualified students? That just doesn't seem right. 
The top 10% rule assumes a lot of things about an applicant, and leaves out many other important details. And what happens, if, like this year, so many top 10% students (there are over 24,000 of them) applied that the University has to fill up their freshman class with only top ten percenters and reject everyone else? How is that a good idea?
Posted @ Saturday, March 21, 2009 5:58 AM by Laura B
@laura - I think your case is exactly why the 10% admission policy is probably a bad idea. 10% is a wide swath of wide that it's taking students that probably don't belong. 
I think the best quote from your comment is this: 
"The top 10% rule assumes a lot of things about an applicant, and leaves out many other important details." 
Where did you end up deciding to go to school?
Posted @ Saturday, March 21, 2009 1:41 PM by Mark Truman
How does this work if you have been out of High School for over ten years and have taken classes at two different Comunity Colleges? I was number 3 in my Texas public high school, class of 35 persons, back in 1996 with a 93.7 GPA. I joined the USMC after high school and served for 8 years. After the USMC I took a few classes, five to be exact, at TCC (in Fort Worth)and my GPA was 4.0. What are my chances at getting in to UT? I will be using the new GI Bill which will pay for the full tuition and books. What is the best approach for me to get accepted into UT? Thank You!
Posted @ Wednesday, June 03, 2009 6:25 PM by Gabe
@Gabe - Hello! Thanks for visiting the site.  
As far as your individual case goes, I don't believe you will qualify under the 10% plan because you've already taken college classes. In fact, I believe that UT may treat you as a transfer student. 
If you've like more information, I'd be happy to chat with you on the phone or via email. Hit us up through our contact page on the site!
Posted @ Wednesday, June 10, 2009 4:11 PM by Mark Truman
There is hope for the 11%ers, but beware. My son (a little out of the top 10 percent) was not initially accepted to UT Austin, but was offered an opportunity to be on a small(250 I think) waitlist. He found out May 29 that he got in. We're now stuck in the nighmare of trying to figure out financial aid (that office is impossibly far behind), housing (dorms are full and student apts are confusing) and he won't even register until a day before classes begin. It's very stressful having everything up in the air and not even knowing the size of the check you'll have to write for it.
Posted @ Monday, August 03, 2009 2:20 PM by Jane K
@Jane - Congrats! I'm so glad to hear that your son got in. Try to keep in mind how wonderful that is as you get buried in a mountain of paperwork. :) 
Last minute work is always stressful, but in the case of college admissions it can eventually feel like you are snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. Hang in there and you'll reap the benefits down the road. 
In the meantime, let us know if we can help!
Posted @ Monday, August 03, 2009 2:41 PM by Mark Truman
My daughter is a senior this year with a weighted grade average of 92.6 and this puts her in the 19th percentile of her class. A slow start in the 9th grade started her in the 36th percentile but hard work in 10th an 11th grade improved her standing significantly. Her SAT score (first attempt) was 1860 (620 critical reading, 590 math and 650 writing). She has taken a very challenging schedule each year, completing 7 units in English (4 yrs AP + 1 unit Creative Writing + 2 units of Journalism and Newspaper); 4 Units each of AP math and science (1 Pre-AP), 4 units of AP history and economics, 2 units of French; 3 units of Art (1 AP) and Orchestra; and units in Speech, Health, Computer, Graphic Design. She has taken two years of Independent study classes where she has written a novel (550 pages), to include doing all the formatting to prepare the manuscript for publication. 
As a parent it is frustrating to know that the 10% rule and only the 10% rule, might cause her to not be accepted to UT Austin. As a Texan, it frustrates me to know that we could lose this potential young talent to another state. 
Posted @ Friday, August 28, 2009 1:05 AM by jan
@Jan - Yes, it is frustrating that your student sees stiffer competition because of the 10% rule. It looks like she's done a lot to build a fantastic resume and it would be a pity for her to be denied based on a large scale program. 
However, I wouldn't be too quick to jump the gun and declare her out of luck. It sounds to me like she has a significantly above average application. While she might only be in the top 19% of her class, her AP Classes, test scores, and accomplishments are fantastic!  
The 10% program has a purpose. It helps students who go to high schools that don't have the AP classes and internship opportunities that your daughter has had. It's a valuable program for bringing low-income and minority students into college. 
Please, let us know what happens!
Posted @ Friday, August 28, 2009 12:40 PM by Mark Truman
What are my chances of getting into UT as a transfer student with 3.5 GPA. I am transferring from UTD. I have some volunteer hours and am involved in 3 campus clubs. I want to get into the school of natural sciences.
Posted @ Friday, September 25, 2009 3:34 PM by Archana
@Archana - It's really tough to say what your chances are without knowing more about your application. If you'd like you can contact me at, I would be thrilled to talk with you in more detail. 
That said, 45% of transfer students are admitted at UT Austin. Given your GPA and involvement, I would rate your chances as fairly good!
Posted @ Friday, September 25, 2009 3:48 PM by Mark Truman
People who complain that the 10% rule is bad because they didn't get in need to stop. Sure, it makes admission more difficult, and I don't agree with the law, but UT Austin still reviews all "non-top-10%" applicants. If you aren't good enough, you don't make the cut. I applied for admission fall 2010, and am a resident of Maryland. Yes, out of state, where the odds are even slimmer. I was offered admission for fall 2010 before winter break. So, I don't agree with the law, but it does ensure diversity and it does bring lots of competitive students to the school. Just maintain your GPA and be involved in your community and school. (That doesn't mean "I have a decent GPA and am pretty involved.") Plus, when you get in, it's all the sweeter. 
@ mark truman, I couldn't have said it better!
Posted @ Tuesday, January 05, 2010 6:53 PM by Gordie
Updating my Aug. 28th post.... 
My daughter increased her SAT to 1910 and took the ACT and scored a 29 (33 on the writing/english section). She was accepted early admission to Tulane and much to our surprise she was accepted today to UT Austin eventhough she was in the 19th percentile when she applied (she's 16th percentile now). She was accepted to three other safety schools and she is waiting to hear from two others. So its been a very exciting time. Thanks for your encouragement.
Posted @ Friday, February 19, 2010 12:14 AM by Jan
@Jan - Great! As I said before, she has an outstanding application overall. I'm not at all surprised to hear she was admitted. Good luck to her in the fall! 
Also, thanks a lot for checking back in with us...
Posted @ Friday, February 19, 2010 5:15 PM by Mark Truman
I agree that those who are complaining about the top 10% rule stop complaining. I moved from a school with a class of 200 people of which I was #5 to a class with 700 people that was much more academically competitive my junior year and worked my hardest with all AP classes to get in the top 8% of my class. I really believe that anyone who is in the top 10% deserves to be automatically admitted. You either worked hard enough or you didn't and that's the harsh reality of it.
Posted @ Sunday, February 28, 2010 8:40 PM by Tiffany
Wow... I had totally forgotten I had posted a comment to this blog. I posted almost a year ago, right after I had gotten denied admission to UT and had been offered the CAP program. I stated above that I had chosen to appeal the decision. I told you, Mark, that I would keep you posted on whether or not I got in... 
Well, I am writing to you as I sit in my dorm room in Austin, Texas as a TEXAS LONGHORN! I got in through the appeals process and I am so glad I did. 
As you know, I was not in the top 10% of my school. Many people say if you're not in the top 10% you don't deserve to be here. I definitely disagree. I had a 3.5 GPA last semester here at Texas and I made the Dean's List. Having to work so hard to get here has made me really appreciate it. 
I encourage everyone who gets in automatically to really be grateful, but also recognize that being a good college student has more to do with study habits and initiative than where you sat in your high school class ranking. I have several friends here who were in the top 10 percent of my graduating class and are now on academic probation.  
Anyways, that was my spiel... Just thought I should share. 
Hook 'em \m/
Posted @ Sunday, February 28, 2010 11:54 PM by Kaylie Williams
My son just had a similar experience to yours. We found out this weekend that he was denied admission and offered the CAP. It is encouraging to hear of your success in the appeals process. I would be very interested in your appeal strategy.
Posted @ Monday, March 01, 2010 9:16 AM by Jon Brickey
@Kaylie - Great job! I'm so pleased to hear that your appeal led to results. Well done! Please share anything you felt made the difference. 
@Jon - Kaylie's example is a great place to start. Don't give up and let me know if there's anything we can do to help.
Posted @ Monday, March 01, 2010 9:44 AM by Mark Truman
My best advice to your son is to get in touch with his admissions counselor. Ka'rin (my admissions counselor) was extremely helpful in telling me what the appeals board is looking for. Also, I'm not positive and they won't tell you for sure, but I believe your son's admissions counselor can rally for your son if he or she feel like he really deserves to get in. Therefore, make friends with him or her, because they're on your side. 
Also, one thing Ka'rin stressed was that the appeals board is looking for NEW information. It's a huge turnoff if you ask them to "reconsider your original application". 
The process is definitely competitive. Last year, Ka'rin told me many people (over a thousand I believe she said) appeal, but only a handful will have their original decision overturned. For that reason, it's important to really make your appeal stand out. Many people only send in a letter and I have a feeling that's not too impressive to the appeals board, but that's just me. Get creative and put some work into it and I'm sure it will pay off.  
For me personally, the appeals process was grueling, emotional and stressful, but in the end, it was absolutely, totally worth it to get in.  
Hope this helps! Tell your son good luck and let me know if there's anything else I can do :) 
P.S. The appeals process is very hush hush so you'll probably find it hard to get in depth information about it. Again, your son's admissions counselor will be loads of help in this area.
Posted @ Monday, March 01, 2010 4:23 PM by Kaylie Williams
I just googled the appeals process for UT and apparently, just this year, they formalized the process and published information about it... Lucky you (or your son, rather)! Here's the link to the information: 
And feel free to email me with any other questions you have at
Posted @ Monday, March 01, 2010 4:29 PM by Kaylie Williams
The 10% rule is stupid because that assumes that all high schools are equally rigorous. Some high schools are clearly better and more "college prep" than others, meaning someone could be ranked in the top 50% at one school and have had tougher courses and competition than someone in the top 10% at another school. Plus, it doesn't take into account difficulty of the course load. Some students may be loading up on home ec and band while others are taking honors physics and honors calculus. To not even look at the cirriculum is stupid. Plus, finishing in the top 10% of a class of 80 is not the same as finishing in the top 10% of a class of 800. Typical Texan dimwits.
Posted @ Wednesday, April 28, 2010 4:14 PM by Mortimer
I can't stand to see these comments go unanswered. The 10% law (which was probably a response to Texas's elimination of affirmative action policies) does not deny students who are not in the top 10% of their class automatically. I was admitted out of state (I'm from Maryland), so I wasn't eligible for the 10% rule, but still gained entrance into the university's honors programs and the business school. Anyone who applies who isn't in the top 10% still has their application reviewed holistically.. they're just not guaranteed admission.  
That said, the reason the law is in place is to increase diversity since the (arguably more fair) affirmative action policies are now illegal. It's not perfect, but it's not denying qualified students spots at the university by any means. If a student is qualified as a student at UT, he will be admitted. If he's not, he won't be offered admission.
Posted @ Wednesday, April 28, 2010 8:31 PM by Gordie
@Mortimer - I don't think the 10% rule assumes that all high schools are equally rigorous. In fact, I believe the intent of the law is exactly the opposite. 
Many students in Texas go to high schools that don't have the opportunities that are available to students at more successful and challenging schools. The 10% rule keeps those students in the application pool and levels the playing field.
Posted @ Thursday, April 29, 2010 10:18 AM by Mark Truman
@Gordie - I don't think anyone here has said that students that are outside the 10% will be denied admission.  
It is, however, much more difficult to get admitted outside of the program. Given your accomplishments, I would say that you're likely a top scorer with a fantastic GPA. It's likely that your application is well above the average for UT Austin...which is why you were admitted. An average application that isn't in the 10% is usually rejected.
Posted @ Thursday, April 29, 2010 10:25 AM by Mark Truman
This new law is absolutely ridiculous. Lets compare two different kids: One goes to a lower ranked high school, and just by adding one and one, he got into the top ten percent. The second kid takes all AP and Honors classes, and has learned a tremendous amount of material in high school, but since he goes to a top ranked high school, he is only in the top quarter. They both apply to UT Austin, and only the kid in the top ten gets accepted. After a semester or so, this kid finds out that college is just a little bit harder than addition. After his first semester, he fails out. Basically, that kids spot could have been filled by the top quarter kid who is clearly smarter, and would succeed in life. He could have graduated and made the world a better place, but rather the top ten kid just makes the world a less developed place. Basically, this situation is showing how this new law is destroying the world.
Posted @ Friday, April 30, 2010 10:07 PM by Jesus Christ
@ jesus christ.. 
The kid you described who was in the top quarter of a competitive high school taking lots of AP classes would almost certainly be admitted, along with the student in the under-achieving school in the top 10. Admissions takes into account the rigor of coursework, competitiveness of the school, extracurriculars, etc when deciding who to admit. Is the system perfect? No, and far from it I'd say, but it does help fill the void in diversity that the outlawing of affirmative action left. It's Texas's attempt to replace affirmative action (which probably would have been less controversial..). Further, are there any statistics that say that it's now much harder to be admitted to UT than before the 10% rule? I just think it's hard to argue that, because of this rule, fully qualified students are being turned away. UT does everything it can to get students in (CAP, spring semester, appeals, etc).
Posted @ Friday, April 30, 2010 11:04 PM by Gordie
i think the top 10% percent rule is obsurd you should let it go.
Posted @ Tuesday, May 18, 2010 12:20 PM by mary
They can be offered CAP, I was. There are rigorous requirements to meet, but if you do then you'll be admitted to UT Austin as a sophomore.
Posted @ Tuesday, May 18, 2010 11:16 PM by
Hello I am currently a senior in high school, and well since the laws have changed I know that the top 8% rule applies now, so I know I have automatic admittance to the University, but say I apply in September how soon will I know If I was accepted into my major of choice or not? Considering I am applying for the MCcombs School of Business I understand the difficulty of getting into that selected major which is why it's crucial I know soon. Do you think I would possibly know before December? Thanks so much for your input it's greatly appreciated.
Posted @ Monday, August 16, 2010 5:56 PM by Jasmine
You'll know the major you've been accepted into once you're given your admission decision. I don't believe UT has a Early Decision/Action program, so you may have to wait as long as mid March to know. 
Sorry, I know that doesn't ease your mind much.  
I got in to UT Austin through the CAP program. I really think it was the best thing for me, as I had a year to drill in the study habits, discover what I really wanted to do and what needed to be done to get there, and how to handle my money as a college student before I was on an immense campus with next to no one to help me figure all of those things out. 
Things to think about.
Posted @ Monday, August 16, 2010 8:18 PM by Blair
@Jasmine - Unfortunately, Blair is right. You're going to have to wait for your admission decision to know your major status. And since UT Austin doesn't have an early admission deadline, you may need to wait until March...or later. 
I would recommend applying early, however. It's likely that if you get your app in early, you might see an earlier decision.
Posted @ Tuesday, August 17, 2010 12:48 PM by Mark Truman
I agree with Truman. The earlier you get your application in, the better your chances are of being admitted to your major. When the rep from UT came to speak with us, she said that early apps will not effect our admission decision, but it will influence our choice of major. It was confusing, but it makes sense.
Posted @ Tuesday, August 17, 2010 2:24 PM by Blair
What if you're taking Dual Credit Courses? 
A teacher told me if we passed dual credit courses we're technically transfer students and not freshmen. Does this mean my rank won't mater??? Also, I need some person left to be top 8 percent. I am worried, because I really want to be a long horn.
Posted @ Sunday, September 05, 2010 10:32 PM by Elizabeth
I went in with 12 credits I got from AP and Dual Credit. The credits transfer but you will not be classified as a transfer student. Your teacher is telling you technicalities that the colleges don't bother with. They'd have almost no original students if every credit earned through AP/Dual deemed you a transfer student.
Posted @ Sunday, September 05, 2010 11:14 PM by Blair
I have a 35 composite ACT and a 4.2 GA from a rigorous private high school in Dallas. I am not top 8%, and beyond that info, my school does not rank. Not sure if I can get get into UT McCombs, but have been accepted and offered scholarships by six out of state schools (early action.) I hate to leave Texas, but may have no choice!
Posted @ Saturday, November 20, 2010 1:30 PM by Susan
@Susan - Wow! That sound like an excellent application. I would recommend waiting to hear back from UT Austin; there is a very strong chance that you will be admitted. If not, best of luck out of state!
Posted @ Monday, November 22, 2010 10:50 AM by Mark Truman
UT Austin is supported by State tax dollars, and I pay these taxes. Therefore, I WANT Texas residents to have preferential treatment. If UT Austin becomes totally private, then I do not care what it does. 
Also, I like the top 10% rule. It reward performance of some type, and everyone has a shot, no matter how big or how small their school may be. 
Even though my son was in the top 12% and will not gain automatic admission, he has only himself to blame for that.  
Him not being selected has nothing to do with his gender, race, or financial need. I really like the idea that some measure of performance is used. 
I could not care less that admissions offices and the education bureaucracy does not have as much control. I am sick of my tax money being used to advance the personal agendas of a few. 
If a student is in the top 10% of a poor school district, he/she is admitted just the same as if he/she was in the top 10% of a more affluent district. I am perfectly OK with this metric, as the state of Texas controls the state curriculum. 
Posted @ Thursday, December 02, 2010 2:26 PM by M Shelton
@Shelton - I think you've made some really great points about why the system works. The UT Austin campus should absolutely prefer Texas students and the 10% plan offers a way for a good number of disadvantaged students to enter the system. 
I'm only trying to explain to students how the system works. Once they understand it, they can choose to pursue academic strategies that will help them reach their goals.
Posted @ Friday, December 03, 2010 1:26 PM by Mark Truman
Hi, I am wanting to get in to UT for fall of 2011. I am at UH right now, and have a 4.0. The only involvement i really do is a religious club because i don't live on campus. I have a professor to write a letter of recommendation too.  
In high school i didn't apply, but i was in the top 15%. I was in a few clubs in high school. 
How much of a chance do you think i have?!?? 
i will probably go for the college of engineering or natural sciences.
Posted @ Saturday, January 01, 2011 10:42 PM by Danielle
@Danielle - It's hard to say how good your application is without more specific information. If you would like to contact me to share that information, send me an email at 
That said, it sounds to me that your extracurricular activities are a little light. Would it be possible for you to get involved in a few more things before you apply?
Posted @ Sunday, January 02, 2011 3:08 PM by Mark Truman
Ok so I'm reading a lot of these comments and I'm beginning to think that i have no chance at this college but i really want to go...... of course I'm only a freshman at Quitman High over here in louisiana and im looking to become a computer specialist or programmer i have had a lot of time with computers and learned alot but not the programming and my dad is not good at it so i am going to become a programmer like my dad wanted to. But here's the thing im not good with grades and im not sure what ill make on the ACT test im not even sure what that happens to be in all honestly..... but i can tell the inside of a computer and name the parts like nothing i can go through the computer and fix any problem you have but i cannot make an anti virus program i cannot even make one simple line. I've studied the Java Language course to better understand some programming of games, but i got lost and havn't had the time to start over scince i was remodling the house. if i cannot get into this college do ya'll happen to know any other college i might be able to enter that has a good computer science and engineering course?
Posted @ Wednesday, January 05, 2011 8:21 PM by nick greer
@Nick - First, calm down. :) The college admissions process isn't nearly as bad as you think it is. Honestly, there are lots and lots of college that have great science and engineering courses. 
Second, you need to get focused on your grades right now. It's much too early for you to be worried about your test scores and essays, but your grades can use your attention and focus right now. 
You might also want to look into various classes and courses that deal with computer work. You probably already have more knowledge than most students who are graduating from high school! If you can expand further on it, you can make it a huge asset during the admissions process. 
Does that help? 
Posted @ Wednesday, January 05, 2011 11:11 PM by Mark Truman
I am a freshman at Penn State University and I am thinking about transfering to UT. I have a 3.87 gpa. I was wondering what my chances of getting are and when I would be notified.
Posted @ Sunday, January 23, 2011 11:31 PM by Jarred
@Jarred - Your GPA is really solid, but it's difficult to tell how strong your application is without knowing more information. If you'd like, send me an email at and we can chat more privately. 
As far as being notified, transfer applicants are usually notified around April and May...
Posted @ Monday, January 24, 2011 9:23 AM by Mark Truman
@Truman - ok well yes it helps and thank you sorry i was grounded helping a friend in need so sorry it took so long and ok that helps thanks :)
Posted @ Tuesday, February 15, 2011 3:43 PM by nick greer
@Nick - Great! I'm glad we were able to help. Let me know if you have any more questions.
Posted @ Tuesday, February 15, 2011 5:01 PM by Mark Truman
I stumbled across this article and couldn't stop reading it. I am valedictorian of my class, have a 3.93 GPA, and scored a 29 on the SAT. Obviously, because of the 10% rule I was accepted into UT Austin a few months ago. I would just like to add to a comment Mark made. While the rule isn't fair to everyone, to those of us who are from tiny schools with no opportunities for AP classes,extracurriculars other than sports, etc it is a godsend. UT isn't my 1st choice, but because of financial difficulties it may be my only choice. I know that this whole process is frustrating but please keep in mind that the 10% law is the only way some of us have a shot at getting into a decent Texas school. :)
Posted @ Tuesday, February 22, 2011 10:56 AM by Taylor
@Taylor - Well put! I think sometimes people believe all schools to offer equal opportunities when they do not.  
Goo luck at UT!
Posted @ Tuesday, February 22, 2011 5:04 PM by Mark Truman
Hello! I just discovered this thread today and read the entire thing. It spans from 2009, over two years ago and keeps going!  
I feel like I'm in on the line between whether or not the 10% rule (now I guess 8%) is good or not.  
I went through the admissions process last year, and have to say I was quite ignorant thinking I'd get in the the UT Business school right off the bat. My second major was Art. That wasn't smart of me to list that. I was 14% of my school out of 700 students. I took AP classes and lots of extracurricular but in the end it wasn't enough.  
I had a lot of high school friends who were border line 10% as in 10.1-11% and did NOT get in. Their applications were outstanding. Of course it's frustrating at first but now we're all CAP students at UTSA. We've had a fun year so far and it's fairly easy (easier than high school for the most part). 
We also have a friend who's a freshman at Penn State U who would also like to transfer to UT Austin. He is an actual transfer student (not like us CAPs) and probably will have more difficulty getting in. But that doesn't stop us from still trying.  
As of now I have a 4.0 but it may become a 3.89 by the end of the spring semester. I'm not sure if that'll be enough to get into the McCombs School of Business (disregarding my actual application of course) but I have to say if you aren't accepted to UT Austin your freshman year, definitely do the CAP program! It's very refreshing here at UTSA and it's a good first step to a college career.  
Although I may not get into the UT Business school, I do have a backup plan.. but I don't want to do that unless I have to.. 
Applications for CAP students are due March 1st and I'm not sure if the Essays I wrote will really impact my application or not.  
Posted @ Friday, February 25, 2011 11:40 AM by Miki
@miki - Thanks for the feedback! I think it's a good reminder that the CAPS program isn't a death sentence... 
Your essays absolutely do matter. Please feel free to contact me at if you would like me to look over them.
Posted @ Friday, February 25, 2011 5:23 PM by Mark Truman
My son is top5% w/31 ACT lots of leadership, community service, AP & Honors etc...He is wait listed b/c he didn't attend a Texas High School. He is a Texas Resident though but b/c his father choose to serve his country he had to go to High School in NC. He is NOT considered a resident of NC. So he is like an orphan b/c of this.
Posted @ Tuesday, March 15, 2011 5:39 AM by theresa
@Theresa - A number of states make accommodations for students who are living in the state with a parent who is in the armed forces. Have you contacted the NC schools to talk about the issue?
Posted @ Tuesday, March 15, 2011 10:33 AM by Mark Truman
Oh Yes! And Cody even volunteered on the political campaign of Rick Glazier who got some movement on this just this past year. The catch is as soon as we move out of state (this summer) he will ONLY remain in resident status IF he does not change his major/college. That is too high a risk for us. The "graduated from a Texas High School" stipulation should be lifted for children of Military who have ALWAYS been Texas Residents.
Posted @ Tuesday, March 15, 2011 10:39 AM by Theresa
Personally I think the top 10% rule hinders a lot of decision making. I went to an extremely competitive arts magnet high school, and our top 10% was 17 people (our entire graduating class was just 172 kids). I had a 3.8 and was only in the top 25%. I also had a 1930 on the SAT and 7 AP scores, all 4's or 5's. I didn't get into UT because of the top ten rule. I became roommates with a girl who went to a normal high school in Houston. Her graduating class was 2,000 kids (notice her top ten percent, 200 kids, was bigger than my entire graduating class). She had a 2.7 gpa, never took an AP class, and admitted to me that she took three classes her senior year, one of which was Office Assistant. Because she was top 10% at her school, she got into UT.
Posted @ Thursday, April 14, 2011 9:34 PM by MG
@MG - Agreed. There's definitely a problem when students who are working much less hard are being admitted at a higher rate.
Posted @ Friday, April 15, 2011 9:53 AM by Mark Truman
I stumbled upon this thread and figured that I might as well add to it. I'm currently a freshman and due to financial circumstances and summer classes, I have credit from 2 Universities and 2 community college from Texas. After this semester, I'll have around a 3.07/3.1 with 27 hours transferrable hours. I plan to take 6-9 hours in the summer as well so I can add to my credit count. Would I have a good chance of getting into UT as a transfer? I had a 26 ACT and a weighted 90.5 gpa in high school.
Posted @ Monday, May 02, 2011 1:01 PM by Greg
My son will be attending UT Austin this fall. He is from a VERY competitive high school in the Dallas metroplex. At 104 GPA, with mostly AP classes, he is in the top 27% of his class. So, how did he get in? He was very successful on his school's Debate Team (at the local, state and national level). His SATs were 800 in English and 760 in math. But aside from that, he took the advice of the Admission's Office. He knew his chances were slim (to none), so he wrote the three most awesome essays I have ever read. He had wanted to be a Longhorm since very early in his childhood. So, he spent almost an ENTIRE year writing about his passions and goals - how he could change the world. So, getting in when not anywhere near the Top 8% can be done! We are proud because he is a wonderful, bright student who had the added pressure of being at a highly competitive school. Still, I am the first to recognize that he and his fellow students have parents with a little (or a lot) more money and access to resources that many students throughout Texas do not have. So, don't spend too much energy fretting about the fairness (or unfairness) of the selection system. Instead, spend energy telling UT Austin officials why they SHOULD PICK YOU. It worked for my son. And, it feels good that they didn't have to take him...they CHOSE him.
Posted @ Monday, May 02, 2011 10:46 PM by Angelica Monreal
@Greg - Thanks for chiming in! It's very difficult to tell you anything about your application in the abstract, but you can contact me at and we can talk about it more. 
Overall, I would be worried a bit about your GPA. It's not as strong as I think UT is looking for in transfers.
Posted @ Tuesday, May 03, 2011 12:42 PM by Mark Truman
@Angelica - Yes! Essays count for so, so, so much. Thanks for giving an example that can help other kids understand how much work actually has to go into those essays. 
Posted @ Tuesday, May 03, 2011 12:46 PM by Mark Truman
Decided I'd share some of my thoughts about the UT Admissions process as I am currently finishing my Junior year at the university. Didn't get accepted out of high school even with a 29 ACT score; 95th percentile in the country. My grades were so so, but I was able to graduate High School a semester early; it didn't help my chances. I finished roughly at the 25th percentile in my very competitive class, due to the death of both of my parents. Got offered CAP and completed the agreement, had a good time at UTSA and was able to get on the dean's list. CAP Program is pretty fair, and not too hard to complete. Drawbacks, none of your grades from UTSA will be calculated in your UT austin GPA you start at UT with a 0.0. Basically I got on the UTSA engineering dean's list with no benefit to my UT austin GPA, you come in with the same credit as someone who paid 1/3 the price at a comm. college, doesn't sound very fair to me. CAP is a way for the UT system to make more money off of you if you want to be assured you'll eventually get in @ UT Austin. 10% rule is stupid, different high schools across Texas prepare students to different levels, high school is mostly a waste of time b/c it is long and the challenge is not even close to the level for any class at UT. Also, taking AP classes and performing just "ok" will hurt your chance of acceptance, others who took regular classes like band, and made A's will likely end up in a better position. I was stoned most of my High School career, school was long, I was lazy, didn't care, my mother died, and I knew I had brains. I see how dumb some of my classmates are at UT and yet I'm sure most had a higher GPA than myself. Good test scores should be mandatory for all acceptees. My friend at the time scored a 19 on the ACT, graduated 13% in her class and got accepted to start early in the summer, I scored 29 on the ACT and did not. UT is a great school however, and I'm glad to be enrolled, if you really want to get in, do what it takes and you'll have a great time @ UT.
Posted @ Wednesday, May 11, 2011 2:27 AM by Trenton Colluro
Hi, I am a sophomore going on junior at UNT, and I am wanting to apply for UT Spring of 2012. But I do have a big concern wondering if I could even get in competing as a transfer student with all the 10% incoming freshmen. I have a 2.9 gpa// What are the REALISTIC odds that I am looking at of being accepted.
Posted @ Friday, June 03, 2011 11:09 AM by Stevie A
@Stevie - Honestly, your GPA is going to be quite an obstacle. Can you contact me at with some more details about yourself? I'd like to hear more about what else you have to offer...
Posted @ Friday, June 03, 2011 1:48 PM by Mark Truman
Hey ya'all. I read through this whole thread and I had a question. As of right now I have a 3.4 gpa at a very competive school in the Dallas area. I am the vice president of my local high school Rotary club and am the head chair of a committee I began to bring the non-profit group, Invisible Children, to my school. Last year, as the secretarymy club raised over ten thousand dollars for the organization. I will also be the editor in chief for my school newspaper and will be in charge of a staff of close to 50 people. Currently I'm working on my Gold Award that should be completed by this time next spring. My coursework has been above-average, with AP and several Pre-AP classes. I have over 500 hours of volunteering through Girl Scouts and other events. I also play in the band and have played my instrument for over seven years. However, I'm not in the top ten percent. My question is, do I stand a chance because I have above average extra activities but my gpa doesn't qualify me as the top ten percent? I haven't taken the SAT or ACT but am taking them this month.
Posted @ Friday, June 03, 2011 4:04 PM by Kayla
@Kayla - Absolutely! Your GPA is low, but your other activities could make up for it. 
However, you will need strong ACT scores and a strong set of essays. Please shoot me an email at markt@omniaceducation if you're interested in hearing more about how you can work on those parts now!
Posted @ Friday, June 03, 2011 5:01 PM by Mark Truman
Okay, now I have a few questions. 
I'm about to be a senior in high school, living in Chicago, Illinois, trying to figure out where to attend. I got a 23 on the ACT, 26 on the English/writing, but I'm thinking about retaking it. I have a 3.6 unweighted G.P.A., and I'm taking AP classes, but my school doesn't offer a lot... I'm currently in the top 12% of my class, ranked 9 of 73. 
UT is one of my top choices, and I understand the whole '10% rule'. I've done a few extra-curricular activities in my neighborhood, maybe about five, and I'm attempting more volunteer work. 
What do you think my chances are if I pull my punches my senior year? 0.0
Posted @ Monday, June 27, 2011 6:44 PM by Shakyra
The top 10% has been moved to top 8% to allow for more students who wouldn't have been accepted because of the 10% rule. You've got a good shot at it with another year of school. You want as much volunteer work, great grades, glowing recommendations, and well written essays.
Posted @ Monday, June 27, 2011 11:58 PM by Briton
@Shakyra - Briton is definitely on the right track. Grades, essays, and recommendations will make the difference for your application. 
However, I would strongly recommend taking some ACT prep to raise your ACT score. While it may seem far away now, a 27-29 would make you a much more competitive candidate.
Posted @ Thursday, June 30, 2011 2:50 PM by Mark Truman
A friend wasn't in the top 10% and was placed on UT's wait list. He was accepted to Harvard. UT certainly puts a lot of weight on a fairly superficial qualification. 
However...being in the top 10% percent only guarantees you admission to the university, not any of the "good" colleges like business, pharmacy, engineering, communications. You're shuffled into Undeclared Liberal Arts (you have to apply for programs like economics or psychology) or Undeclared Natural Science (you need to apply for computer science, etc.). They've recently created another college, the College of Undergraduate Studies, to address the number of unqualified students. 
So, yes, lots of qualified in-state and out-of-state students go to UT and enter a professional college or other competitive program (like economics). But all of these less qualified students who enter the university because of the top 10% rule end up with a worthless degree in Undeclared Something. It's a waste of their time and money, and it's not fair to them or to the far more qualified people who could be attending the university. 
But hey, it's a state school. Anytime the government's involved, trying to "create opportunity", you end up with situations like these.
Posted @ Tuesday, August 30, 2011 5:55 PM by Skyler
@Skyler - Thanks for your feedback. Good tips and notes for any student looking at UT Austin.
Posted @ Tuesday, August 30, 2011 9:39 PM by Mark Truman
Hi. I'm currently in the top 10.9% at my San Antonio High School, William H. Taft, and I was wondering if I had a chance to get into UT Austin... 
I have an internship at CPS Energy, a 95.5 GPA, 1730 SAT, in the band, in all those NHS things blah blah blah, on the varsity bowling team :) , and I've been reading this thread and starting to freak. Plus my high school has a sister school, Communications Arts HS. Just last year, they began ranking us TOGETHER. SO, due to them, I have fallen about 20-30 spots in my class. Anyways, enough of my woes, maybe someone could just rip the bandaid off now and give me the bad news. :( 
I'd appreciate anyone's opinion on this. Mark Truman seems to be good :)
Posted @ Tuesday, October 11, 2011 9:23 PM by Meghann, your new friend
Sorry, forgot to add that I wanted to be accepted into the Engineering School.  
And I've done 3 years of PREP. PreFreshman Engineering Program. SO, I'm not sure if it's enough. :( 
On the brightside, I have a 100 average in Calculus AP DUAL :) 
Thoughts, please.
Posted @ Tuesday, October 11, 2011 9:28 PM by Meghann, your new friend
Hey Meghann! 
Your application seems really strong. You've got a good GPA, clearly defined interests, and you're from Texas. You absolutely have a shot at getting in to UT Austin. 
I would recommend that you work on your SAT Score (It's a bit low for UT Engineering), and seek some professional help for your essay and applications.  
If you'd like to contact me to talk about it more, I'd be happy to discuss your application privately - markt [at] omniaceducation [dot] com
Posted @ Tuesday, October 11, 2011 10:56 PM by Mark Truman
Hi, I have two daughters, my eldest graduated in June of this year as Salutatorian from a small HS. She is currenty attending local community college and has a 4.0, an honors student, member of Phi Theta Kappa, & Rotoact club. She will graduate in May with an Associates Degree due to her dual credit hours. She is interested in transfering to UT in the fall of 2012. Is there anything else that she should be doing to bolster her chances? Also, my youngest daughter is a freshmen in HS and is ranked 5th in her class, however her class size is small around 60 so this puts her on the verge of the automatic admission. She is determined to go to UT and that has helped her to work harder to make good grades and improve her rank. What else do you suggest she do to improve her chances of admission. Thanks.
Posted @ Thursday, October 13, 2011 2:14 PM by Sharon
My daughter attends one of the top public high schools in Texas. She has straight A's but is still not in the top 10%. There are so many intelligent and hardworking kids at this school but out of the 690 in her class, only 69 will even have a chance of going to UT Austin. Meanwhile, there are many, many high schools in Texas where you make the top 10% just by showing up to class. Every state has low performing schools but Texas has chosen to allow them a free pass on the admissions process. Whatever happened to rewarding hard work? This law needs to be repealed!
Posted @ Thursday, October 13, 2011 2:22 PM by Heather
@Heather: UT - Austin isn't exclusively admitting students in the top 10%, those are just the ones being admitted automatically.  
As Mark Truman stated in an earlier comment, the admissions office absolutely takes things like course rigour and the strength of differing high schools into consideration. 
Any student, especially a Texas student, who has a 4.0 GPA, strong SAT/ACT scores, and strong extracurriculars would have a very strong UT application and would very likely be admitted. 
Based on how you've described your daughter, I would say that she would not have any issues being admitted to UT.
Posted @ Friday, October 28, 2011 4:44 PM by Derrick Kapchinsky
Hey, I am a senior with a Class rank of 29%, but I have took most of the Ap classes available in my school (which is a lot) and an ACT score of 29. I have also been in orchestra for 4 years now with leadership positions... Would I make UT Austin?
Posted @ Monday, November 14, 2011 11:15 AM by Foram Patel
@Foram: Since you are in the top 50% of your class, you need a 25 on the ACT for automatic admission to UT. With your 29 score, I'd say it's safe to start buying Longhorn t-shirts. I would go apply ASAP!
Posted @ Monday, November 14, 2011 11:20 AM by Heather
okay this thing is old, the rule now is top 8% if you guys havent heard....theres 1400 kids in my grade and im at 300.....F@#$ least im a sophmore...
Posted @ Tuesday, December 13, 2011 10:30 PM by niiiiiiiiiiiiiick
I just kind of found this site and I was curious. I'm a freshman in college and I made a 3.506(3.51 if your round up I suppose)for my first semester. I'm hoping to do a little bit better in spring. I participate in a program called Lunch buddies, I help with fundraisers from time to time, and back in high school I was HEAVILY involved with our band program(the program reached a national level). I have already called ahead and made sure all of my credits transfer over if I get accepted, what are my chances of getting into UT?
Posted @ Tuesday, January 03, 2012 11:34 AM by Natasha
@Natasha - It's difficult for me to say how likely your chances are without a lot more information. If you'd like me to talk with you about it, please email me at 
Posted @ Tuesday, January 03, 2012 9:02 PM by Mark Truman
I got accepted to UT and im a texas resident in the top 16% of my class...i pretty much took high school as a joke, not trying much. 
but i got an 800 on my math SAT so i got accepted into the engineering school there...though i got accepted in april..pretty late. 
This happened in 2010/2011
Posted @ Thursday, January 05, 2012 3:26 PM by bob
I was not quite in the top ten percent at a competitive Texas high school, and this law drove me crazy during college application time.  
I think the main reason for the in-state pressure at UT (and this law) is that it's the one nationally renowned public school in Texas, and the others are treated as redneck farms (sorry A&M). There aren't many options for good Texas students to stay in state, and not enough students who can afford out of state tuition anywhere else.
Posted @ Thursday, January 12, 2012 8:59 AM by Hannah
Hi there! 
I have a 3.85 GPA, a 28 on my ACT and I am 85/700 in my class at a competitive high school. I have numerous extra curriculars such as DECA, FBLA, lacrosse, cross country, etc. I also have hundreds of community service hours. I was adopted from China and I am a first generation college student. 
Do you have any idea of what my chances are of getting into UT Austin? I realize that I am not in the top 9%, but I am top 12.1% and have a unique background. Thank you for your opinion!
Posted @ Thursday, January 19, 2012 8:49 PM by Tylee Milan
@Tylee - It sounds to me like you would be an excellent applicant! It's hard to say exactly your chances, but I think they are definitely better than 50/50.  
If you'd like, please shoot me an email at, and we can talk about it further.
Posted @ Thursday, January 19, 2012 10:51 PM by Mark Truman
Tylee. Since you are in the top 25%, those test scores should be very close to getting you in. I suggest you do essay c and talk about how you were adopted to submit as a special circumstance. There is no guarantee you'll get in but if you have good community service, activities and essays, you have a good shot at review. Good luck!
Posted @ Thursday, January 19, 2012 10:58 PM by Amy
I am an out of state (new york) applicant of engineering to UT Austin. My SAT scores are 650 Math, 590 Reading, and 600 Writing. I also took SAT II and got 730 in Physics and 690 in Maths II. I have lived abroad in Bangladesh for almost all my life, and got straight A's in Advanced Level Chemistry, Mathematics, and Economics. I did get a C in Physics, but I repeated the exam, and now got an A. My school board is the Cambridge International Examinations (UK). Scored a 100 in Economics, only 10 people in the world got that score last summer. I am also the school soccer captain, play cricket, been a prefect for years, and members of newsletter club, and environmental club. I have also put tons of hours into community service. What are my chances of getting into UT Austin?
Posted @ Thursday, February 09, 2012 8:22 AM by fayruz rahman
@Faryuz - You sound like you've got a great application! Luckily, UT Austin is working to take more out of state students, and I think you're the kind of student they are looking for. 
Unfortunately, your test scores are a little week. I would encourage you to work on those, and to think carefully about your college essays. Let me know if you need help!
Posted @ Thursday, February 09, 2012 8:12 PM by Mark Truman
I am waiting for my son to get in at UT Austin Petroleum engg He has 4.12 GPA and involved in lots of clubs like Robotics,FBLA,NHS,lots of volunteer hours,all AP classes except English,also Technology subjects,he has 1820 SAT score and he is in 15%,Katy ISD recognized school.What you think does he has chance to get in?
Posted @ Tuesday, February 14, 2012 10:38 AM by becky
@Becky - Your son sounds like an excellent applicant with a strong set of academics and extracurricular activities. He has a midrange (for UT) SAT score, which is also a good sign. There are never any guarantees, but he sounds like he should have a good shot. 
Of course, a great deal depends on his essays and overall application. If you'd like to learn more about that part of the process, please email me at markt [at] omniaceducation [dot] com.
Posted @ Tuesday, February 14, 2012 6:39 PM by Mark Truman
I was wondering if you could give me an honest opinion on whether or not I could get into UT as a transfer student. I currently have a cumulative 3.53 GPA at UTSA. I'm a Psychology major. I have completed 68 hours (80 when spring is over). The 68 hours aren't all related to my major because I was thinking about minoring in Spanish so I have 17 hours of Spanish. I was involved in a lot of extracurricular activities in high school and I volunteered. I've only been in college for 1.5 years and since I found a job, haven't had much time to get involved. I spoke to an admissions counselor and she said I had a good chance but I want a second opinion. Please be honest and tell me my chances, thank you!
Posted @ Wednesday, February 15, 2012 12:22 PM by Andrea A.
@Andrea - I think the admissions counselor is right; your application has a good chance of being accepted. I would recommend trying to get more involved in an activity on campus, but your work is definitely an extracurricular as well! 
I also think you should start to think now about your essays and applications. Please let me know if you'd like to talk about those elements of your application. 
Good luck!
Posted @ Wednesday, February 15, 2012 1:51 PM by Mark Truman
@Mark - Thank you for your offer! I have submitted my application already and did the required essays. I wanted another opinion because I'm thinking about giving up my lease here in San Antonio. I still don't want to get too ahead of myself though. Unfortunately, I have to wait until mid/late April before I hear back from them. The admissions counselor told me they don't start looking at transfer applications until after the March 1st deadline.
Posted @ Wednesday, February 15, 2012 2:33 PM by Andrea A.
Hi! I am currently a junior at a well-known private school in Baltimore, MD. My GPA is currently a 3.8 and I have taken many AP classes throughout high school. My SAT scores are my problem, since they are currently around 1820. Apart from that, I also have over 300 community service hours including a 4 week trip to Costa Rica, and I participate in Model UN, and a many other clubs as well. I also attended a college program at U Cal, San Diego last summer and this year I hope to participate in one at either Barnard College or Boston University. I toured UT last year and fell in love! If UT had a summer program I would apply in a heartbeat. I love to write, and can't wait to produce what will hopefully be great college essays in the coming months. What are my chances of getting into UT as an out of stater? Thanks!
Posted @ Wednesday, February 15, 2012 7:32 PM by stacey
@Stacey - It sounds to me like you've got a great shot at getting in to UT. Great grades, good extracurricular activities, and pretty decent scores. Obviously, I'd like to see your SAT scores be higher, but you're in a good place overall. 
It's tough to say what exactly your chances are, but I would be happy to review your essay if you would like me to do so.
Posted @ Wednesday, February 15, 2012 8:54 PM by Mark Truman
I applied to UT Austin in November. I'm a senior at a private school in Texas with 200 students in my graduating class. I do not know my rank, but it is not in the top 15% for sure. I have a 3.6 gpa (my mother died when I was a freshman and I slacked off/distracted myself quite a bit for two years). Junior and Senior year, I have been making all A's and raised my gpa. I scored a 28 on my ACT and have a lengthy and impressive resume. I participate in numerous and diverse extracurriculars. I submitted 3 personal and well-written essays with my application.  
UT is one of 3 schools that even OFFERS petroleum engineering. I am positive that I want to pursue a career in that specific engineering field. Even if I do not qualify (based on my high school grades) for the competitive engineering school at UT, I know that I can work hard at UT in general studies to prove that I qualify for engineering. I am confident that I can make better grades and keep up with the work load. 
The problem with my plan: 
I WAS DENIED ADMISSION! UT did not accept me this weekend, but offered me CAP. Staying at a school for 4 years and not transferring is really important to me. I want to jump into a campus and start establishing myself socially and get familiar/comfortable with a campus. I do not want to go to UTSA or UTA and transfer after a year... Besides, completing the CAP program does NOT guarantee admission to the Engineering college... (I have even heard that getting accepted to engineering after being a CAP student exetremely difficult/rare). There are no other schools (that I applied to) that offer petroleum engineering. I can't bear to give up my entire career goals/dreams because I was denied admission. I love everything about UT and have known that I wanted to be there since I was a tiny tot. 
I decided to appeal the decision. UT is my one and only option that will fulfill all my college dreams. Even if I can't get into the engineering school, I am willing to enter into freshman "general studies" or even take summer classes to get credits. I just need to be at UT Austin to be on the right path to an engineering future.  
I read the UT website about the Appeals process, but it is not very encouraging. I need to establish myself as a special student! To show the appeals committee that I NEED to be at UT and I SHOULD be there! 
Does anyone have advice about how I can successfully appeal? 
Helpful suggestions?  
Similar experiences? 
More information about appeals? 
Anything that the appeals committee will be looking for? 
I'll take all the help I can get! This is my last chance.
Posted @ Tuesday, February 21, 2012 11:03 PM by Hollis
@Hollis - I don't have any specific advice for you, but I can tell you that students have been successful appealing. You should definitely note your personal story (and GPA explanation) and convey how seriously you are interested in this specific field.  
Does anyone who has gone through the process have any more advice?
Posted @ Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:09 AM by Mark Truman
I am a high school sophomore at a good school in Texas. I'm in the top 17% and have 4.6 gpa on a 6.0 scale. I'm in HOSA, marching band, national honors society, all pre-ap classes (ap is not offered at my grade), and volunteer regularly in my community. UT at Austin is my absolute dream school and I am trying my best at my schoolwork, and I feel so disappointed at how I am doing, even depressed because 
I feel I won't get in. Do you have any advice or help for me? It's stressing me out and I have trouble sleeping. I know I need to do better. It is my dream to be a Longhorn.
Posted @ Sunday, February 26, 2012 11:48 PM by Kate
@Kate - You sound like you're well on your way to a solid UT Austin application. While you probably won't make it in the top 8%, UT Austin is looking for students just like you. Keep at it, and let me know if you need help with test scores, essays, etc. 
Also, you should try to cut down on your anxiety. One tactic that has worked for my students in the past is to "turn anxiety into action." Every time you start feeling stressed about the future (which you can't control) turn it into action about the present. Work on a piece of schoolwork that will get you better grades, or jot down 4-5 ideas for an admission essay, and I'll bet you feel better. 
Good luck!
Posted @ Monday, February 27, 2012 8:04 AM by Mark Truman
I agree the auto-admits need to be limited. At least things are moving in the right direction. I say this with a daughter who was accepted (she's No. 2 out of 447 students thus far) and living in a rural area, one of the areas that is supposed to benefit from the now "Top 8 percent" rule. Knowing some of the vals and sals over the past 5 years from the smaller schools around us, I can honestly say they are less equipped for UT than many of those in the top 25 percent of more competitive, larger schools. The rule needs to be restricted to 5 percent with a cap of about half, at the most.
Posted @ Monday, February 27, 2012 10:34 AM by Denise
I am applying to Texas as a Transfer Student from Austin Community College. I do not have a 3.0 GPA, the preferred minimum academic requirement for tranfers. Instead, I have a 2.79 GPA that shows prgressive grade improvements, and a considerably long resume of activities and achievements. I have over 400 hours of community service and have held several positions of leadership in high school and beyond. What do you know about the rate of acceptance for transfer students, and do you know how important the GPA is in the final decision.
Posted @ Monday, February 27, 2012 10:39 AM by Jack
@Jack - First, the acceptance rate for transfers is around 45%. That means that you need to be in the top half (roughly) of the transfer applicants to get admitted. 
I think your application has weaknesses (your grades), but the strengths you've described are valuable. I would urge you to keep your grades up, and to prepare your essays thoroughly. Please let me know if you need essay help!
Posted @ Monday, February 27, 2012 12:18 PM by Mark Truman
I was able to get in as a California student with a 3.7 grade point average. If I can do it with that extremely selective process, others can too. And I'm not a minority, by the way, I'm white.
Posted @ Friday, March 16, 2012 12:21 AM by Morgan
I'm currently a freshman at SMU and I'm looking to transfer to the Communications school at UT Austin with a GPA of 3.681 as of the end of December. I have a job that is in the Public Relations field here at SMU and I have a few extracurriculars (though mostly from high school). Does UT look at GPAs from the end of the spring semester before making a final decision? 
Also, when are decisions generally announced? Obviously the sooner the better since I am anxious (I desperately want to leave SMU and UT is the only school I've applied to), but I also need to get things squared away here in the event that I stay here (hopefully not). Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!
Posted @ Monday, March 19, 2012 5:28 PM by Aparna
@Aparna - It sounds like you're on the right track! It's unlikely that UT Austin will look at the end of spring semester, but you might be able to get a letter from your professors documenting your current grades. 
As far as the notification goes, it's highly variable. You'll just have to wait and see. Good luck!
Posted @ Monday, March 19, 2012 8:40 PM by Mark Truman
Awesome, thanks Mark! So as far as my GPA is concerned, I stand a good chance of being accepted? I realize that there are other factors at play here but from what I have heard, GPA seems to be the most important. I think the College of Liberal Arts basically takes anyone with a 3.5 or above, but I have not heard much about GPA requirements for the College of Communication :/ 
I suppose the main reason I wanted to know about spring grades was because I'm in harder classes this semester and it seems that my final grades will likely lower my GPA a bit. Sorry for this mini GPA rant but the more I know about the admissions process and my chances of getting in, the less stressed out I will be about having to stay at SMU! Thanks!
Posted @ Tuesday, March 20, 2012 9:12 PM by Aparna
@Aparna - Your GPA sounds solid, but it's tough to tell. A lot of your success will depend on the other applicants. It is likely that they will make a decision based on your current GPA. Good luck!
Posted @ Wednesday, March 21, 2012 4:56 PM by Mark Truman
hello, im a senior in highschool who was also offered the CAP program and rejected freshmen admission to UT Austin. I finished in the top 7.2% of my class which would have been automatic acceptance but it was after the deadline so they couldn't look at it. I personally think its horrible that they dont look at the senior year progress at all anymore they wont even allow you to resend your transcript. When i applied i missed automatic acceptance by a total of 2 spots out of a class of 620. its ridiculus i go to reagan HS which is currently state ranked as the 5th toughest public school in the state of texas. im going through the appeals proccess now and hope to get in. i hope they make reforms in the law to stop the heavy tide of of enrollment inflation caused by the law to allow students who actually deserve to go admission.. anyways i will message back to notify if my appeal is successful
Posted @ Tuesday, April 03, 2012 10:39 PM by Jim Hiffler
I thought I would throw my situation out there if it helps anyone out. I had a 3.7 GPA and was in the roughly 30 percentile of my high school class (at a 5A school in Austin). I actually didn't apply to any 4 year colleges out of high school, which is not something I'm here to suggest. I simply ruled myself out and thought I would have a better chance as a transfer student, but I had my eyes set on UT Austin. Personally, I was always adept in math/science, so, when looking at career paths, engineering was my first choice. With that in mind, I chose courses that were reflective of what I wanted to do (in my case: Physics/Calculus...). Between AP and dual credit courses, I had 18 college hours by graduation. Something I can't stress enough is taking advantage of AP/Dual credit courses(if its not too late), especially if it gets you ahead in your major of choice. i.e. If you're applying for engineering(transfer) and you aren't taking Physics or Calculus, you are making a mistake. So i suggest taking classes that show you have initiative, and that you didn't just arbitrarily pick your major. This may stray a bit, but I want to mention that I was enrolled in ACC's early start program and if my freshman GPA was disregarded my cumulative would have been much better. rather than applying for a 4 year program I took early start program as a clean slate( from my understanding, when applying as a transfer student your college coursework weighs much heavier than high school, they more or less look at the fact that you graduated high school). So, I kept straight A's in my Dual credit classes and got credits for 2 semesters of college calculus( ACC does calculus in three semesters, UT does it in two). As a result, I spent a whole semester on Multivariable Calculus, and it's made me much more comfortable at working and visualizing in 3D. Anyway, I need to cut this short. I graduated high school in Spring '11, took a semesters of coursework at ACC in the fall and I transferred to UT Austin as an ME major this spring, rather than in the fall. A high GPA isn't directly related to intelligence or success, there are other factors, but surely it helps. Again, I'd like to emphasize that I was at the 30 percentile of my graduating class; it's not impossible, and there's no shame in community college.
Posted @ Tuesday, April 17, 2012 8:21 PM by anon
My friend was accepted to UT Austin but was denied admission to McCombs Business School.She is sending an appeal for a major change and is wondering if she has any chances of being accepted. Does anyone know of any successful appeals? Anything specific that she should address in her appeal?
Posted @ Monday, April 23, 2012 10:30 PM by Dana
What is so wrong with the classes filling up with the TOP 10%. Aren't they the best? I don't know by some of the comments about how they are not the best candidates for admission. Sounds kind of wierd.
Posted @ Tuesday, May 08, 2012 1:46 AM by Raymond
@raymond - There's nothing "wrong" with UT Austin taking the Top 10% of each class, but it does mean that some students who did very well in high school won't be able to attend because they went to a very competitive high school.
Posted @ Tuesday, May 08, 2012 9:04 AM by Mark Truman
I have read a large "chunk" of the comments here. I am from Ohio but I moved to Texas when my daughter started high school. She was able to enroll in a dual credit program. When she graduates she will graduate from both college and high school. She has approximately 60+ students in her class. The program only accepts if you do the math...40 didn't make it through the program. Long story short she is ranked number "2". Her high school unweighted GPA is 3.92. Her college GPA is 4.0 (She currently has 34 credit hours/by the end of the semester she will have 40). She wants to major in Arabic/Middle Eastern Studies. She went to Amman, Jordan last year on scholarship through NSLI-Y. She will probably take an online Arabic course offered through Brigham Young to ensure the she stays proficient in what she has learned. She also as been to Mexico on a mission trip. She volunteers heavily in the community. She has been the president of the poetry club for 4yrs. She is the National Honor Society and Phi Theta Kappa. I could go on to name all the other things she has done or the awards she has been awarded but I won't. Oh and by the way...she is a considered a minority by UT Austin standards. I say by their standards because in my home we don't think in those terms. We are Americans first. We have never been to is not something I have taught my daughter to identify with. Here is what I was told when I went to visit the lovely UT Austin..."just because she gets automatically does not mean she will get any scholarships!" To me it felt like she was being discouraged from even applying. She chose UT Austin because it is a Arabic Language Flagship School. It has a great program. I am a single parent and I have busted my butt to help her get to where she is. It would be nice if she could attend UT Austin, however she will go where the money is! If a school outside of Texas offers her a great financial aid packet then that's where she will go. I guess I don't understand everyone's desire to attend UT there are way too many options out there. I say instead of complaining about what is, explore your options.
Posted @ Friday, May 11, 2012 12:36 AM by cwhodatiz
I thought I might add the following: UT Austin DOES NOT consider your GPA. I was told this on our visit. The only thing that is considered is your class rank, test scores, and ESSAY! I was told that the ESSAY is really the deciding factor. They get plenty of students with great stats....this information came from the ADMISSIONS OFFICE.
Posted @ Friday, May 11, 2012 12:41 AM by cwhodatiz
@cdwhitak - I agree that students should explore lots of options, but I think there are good reasons to prioritize UT Austin. It's got some amazing programs and is the flagship school for Texas. 
As for the GPA, I'm surprised they said that it was not considered. All of my contact with UT Austin has emphasized that GPA is an important part of the process. That said, it is telling that they put the focus on class rank, which is a form of GPA that it more relative to your school. 
In essence, UT Austin may or may not look directly at grades, but they consider academic achievement very important.
Posted @ Friday, May 11, 2012 7:58 AM by Mark Truman
I work at UT as an advisor, and have found this discussion interesting, and the advice given by Mark has been spot on. 
Here are a couple of my comments/observations: 
1. Several years ago, a young woman who had been denied admission as a transfer student visited my office to see if I had any suggestions for her. We started talking about her situation -- she was an international student, and received a "C" in her English classes, which lowered her GPA. However, she had recently won a multi-state mathematics competition for women. I suggested she appeal immediately and include a copy of the competition certificate. Her application was reviewed and she was accepted. She did very well here, and is now in a graduate program for statistics. 
2. Another student who was denied admission visited me. He had already appealed, but that was denied. (Maybe he shouldn't have said in his appeal, "If the admissions committee had been doing their job, I would have been admitted.") 
He had a bit of a GPA problem, so at that point, all he could do was continue to take classes at his community college. We did look at courses he could take that would fulfill requirements at UT. A year later he reapplied and was accepted with his improved GPA. 
3. If you have to spend another semester or year at a community college, try to talk to a UT advisor. Call first, because there are certain very busy times (registration, first 12 class days, etc.) when we can't see non-UT students, but at other times we'd be happy to see you. Some Colleges and Schools may have information sessions and, if you go to ACC, try to attend the ACC to UT marketplace which happens twice a year. (Representatives from UT academic departments attend and are happy to help you.) 
So, if you are considering doing an appeal 1) have something new for the committee to review (winning a math competition) and 2) watch the tone of what you write (don't insult the committee.) 
4. If you must be in an engineering or business program and aren't accepted to UT, don't despair. Go to another college, do the best you can, and come to UT for graduate school!  
5. I think the top 10% (now 8%) rule has resulted in a very strong student body. Our retention and graduation rates have improved in the years since the top 10 rule was implemented. In the mid/late 1990s, my college (Natural Sciences) graduated around 700 students a year, and now we are graduating around 1400!  
Our majors have gotten harder over the years too -- for example, all of the NS degrees now require calculus. (Up until about 8 years ago, there were a handful of NS degrees that didn't require calculus -- human ecology and perhaps textiles and BA Biology.) 
There are other factors that have helped such as expanded academic advising and special programs to help students with certain risk factors such as coming from a school that doesn't traditionally send students to UT, coming from a school that doesn't offer AP Calculus, being the first in their family to go to college, etc. Our 4-year graduation rates still need to improve, but our student body is quite capable. 
6. The big problem is that there are too many people who want to come to UT and too few slots. We need to strengthen & expand our other state schools to keep up with the demand, but in the current climate, where we are cutting not just the fat from our educational budgets, but the meat and the muscle, I'm not too optimistic. 
Posted @ Saturday, May 26, 2012 1:43 AM by UT Advisor
@UT Advisor - THANK YOU! We appreciate the advice and the vote of encouragement.
Posted @ Saturday, May 26, 2012 4:36 PM by Mark Truman
Hello Everyone, 
I am living outside the US for the past 8 years. My son is now in the 12th grade. I am going to move back to the US within a year and my son will need to get admission into an undergraduate program in the US. I am particularly interested in UT, Austin as my son wants to study Computer Science.  
Since he is going to complete high school outside the US, I am not sure how will his high school results be evaluated for admissions at UT. 
His SAT combined score is 2120 (CR 690, Math 720, CR 710) - He is repeating and may be able to improve a bit. 
I am trying to see what are his chances of getting admission in to UT, Austin. I would deeply appreciate your advice. Also, since he would be applying for Fall 2013, is there anything he needs to do to improve his chances. 
Thanks again.
Posted @ Thursday, May 31, 2012 2:10 AM by Pat
@Pat - For the most part, his application will be viewed the same as all other students. UT will evaluate his GPA, extracurricular activities, SAT Scores, and his essays. The score you've given us is quite good, so I would recommend that you have your son focus on writing great essays.
Posted @ Thursday, May 31, 2012 10:20 AM by Mark Truman
Thank you.
Posted @ Friday, June 01, 2012 1:49 AM by Pat
I realize this thread is a bit old, but I wanted to try asking. I'm attempting to transfer to UT this spring, my GPA will only be a 3.1, which is low for me, but I'm not sure what all they take into consideration. I have been out of school off and on as I traveled to learn languages, I've taught myself fluent French and German and I'm working on Korean. I'm hoping to major in international relations and a language. Would they take something like that into consideration, or does my GPA throw me in the "pass" pool?
Posted @ Thursday, June 14, 2012 8:59 PM by Pam
@Pam - I don't think that your GPA should count you out; your other experiences will matter. However, the GPA is an obstacle to overcome and you'll need to write excellent essays to make sure to convey your other assets.
Posted @ Friday, June 15, 2012 12:42 AM by Mark Truman
I really want to go to UT Austin... 
I'm an upcoming senior of 2012-2013.  
I checked my GPA during my Junior year which was 6.3636 and i am merely in top 10.. about 9.4 something... 
the highest score of my SAT is 1820... and i may not take the one on Oct. cause i think it might be too late to wait for the score to come out and then apply... they recommend you to submit everything before November... 
I am working on my essays now... I try to make them Awesome... 
I am in band, environmental club, National honor society... 
During my Junior year, I took AP U.S. history, AP english... Im not going to take Calculus or Physics becuz there is no room for those classes... Or should i take those after school in some community colleges? 
Could u plz tell me my chance of get accepted to UT Austin? I want to get in Accounting major, but it is highly competitive that i dont think i can get in.... I have high math score of SAT--710 and 720, but the other two are around 550...i just can't improve my critical reading.... 
I tutor for math and get paid... 
In order to get into UT Austin, what else should i do? Or what kind of major should i choose to at least get accepted by UT Austin? Is it hard to change major after i got accepted?  
Thank you very much.
Posted @ Friday, June 22, 2012 7:28 AM by Melody Lee
@Melody - You've got a lot of questions here, so feel free to email me at if this doesn't cover everything. 
Basically, you sound like you're in a strong position. You've got good grades and scores, and you are actively involved in bands and clubs. If your essays are great, I think you've got a good shot at getting in. 
But how good a shot you've got depends on a lot of factors that are hard to control. In short, you're going to want to continue to work on all elements of your application and submit the best application you can. 
Good luck!
Posted @ Friday, June 22, 2012 6:56 PM by Mark Truman
Hello Mr. Mark Truman, My name is Nikhil Chari. I am going to be a junior in high school. I was reading your website on how to get into UT Austin because that is a school i am very interested in going too. Right now i have a 3.88 unweighted GPA and a 5.2 weighted GPA but i go to a hillsborough county public school in Florida which distorts the weighted GPA. I have an intership at the University of South Florida College of Engineering, am part of the youth executive board of my local Red Cross, am in NHS, average around a 2100 SAT score, (but that is without any serious preparation, and have received a 3 on AP World, exam a 4 in Ap Environmental Science, and a 3 in APhuman geography. I am in the top 10 % and am number 7 in my class. (I wasn't as serious about school my freshman year and it will get higher.) 
I have been on my High school tennis team for 2 years, was accepted and participated in the CLOSE UP DC social action plan, placed 1st in my district and competed in the state tournament for Future buissness leaders of America in Webdesign. I volunteer at my local museum, and have over 200 hrs of community service,played piano for 9 years, and am a part of the school newspaper. What should i do to ensure i get into University of Texas at Austin since i am out of state? I was thinking about the engineering or buissness programs although i know they are very rigorous to get in to. 
Thanks, Nikhil Chari
Posted @ Tuesday, August 07, 2012 3:28 PM by Nikhil Chari
I am shocked!, submitted an application and 24 hours later I checked the status and I was denied!, anyone else with a similar case? could it be a mistake?
Posted @ Wednesday, September 26, 2012 1:00 AM by Hugo
@Hugo - That's very surprising. Are you sure you meet all the requirements for admission?
Posted @ Wednesday, September 26, 2012 9:34 PM by Mark Truman
Gpa 3.4 
Advanced clases with 4 college credits 
Lots of comm. Service 
Sat math530 critical reading 640 act 24 
And it is not an error they just denied me.
Posted @ Thursday, September 27, 2012 9:37 AM by Hugo
@hugo - I'm sorry to hear that. I'd love to talk with you about this further. Can you contact me via email? (markt [at] omniaceducation [dot] com)
Posted @ Thursday, September 27, 2012 10:19 AM by Mark Truman
What are the chances of getting accepted with Withdraws on my record? I have 4 withdraws. 
63 credit hours  
3.6 GPA
Posted @ Tuesday, October 30, 2012 7:00 PM by aubrey
@Aubrey - The withdrawals may hurt you, but your overall GPA is fairly strong. Give it your best shot!
Posted @ Wednesday, October 31, 2012 8:00 AM by Mark Truman
Thank you for your words of encouragement Mark. The withdrawals are from a liberal arts college that I attended in 2008. I applied to transfer for last semester and was denied admission. I had a 3.7 GPA then. I re-applied with what I think are stronger essays that directly address the withdrawals and what I have learned from them. I am waiting to hear back about admission for this Spring semester. If my application is denied again, I have to move from Austin to attend another university. Is there anything I can do, as far as appeals go or something along those lines, to try and get in if my application is denied again? Thank you for such a quick response!
Posted @ Wednesday, October 31, 2012 9:30 AM by aubrey
@Aubrey - There is an appeals process, but it's very difficult to know how things will go for you. I would advise you to contact the admissions office and see what they have to say.
Posted @ Wednesday, October 31, 2012 5:00 PM by Mark Truman
I'm currently a sophomore at small, private college in PA. I'm still a Texas resident and graduated from a Texas high school with approximately 30 transferable AP credit hours.  
The main reason I want to transfer is the Asian Languages and Cultures major with the ability to minor in Spanish. My current college doesn't offer a program remotely close to UT Austin's, and much research on top notch programs led me to my home state. My current GPA is a 3.3, but I expect it to go up next semester. My ACT score was a 31, and I'm involved in my fair share of extracurriculars. I can email more information if you'd like, but I'd really like to know if my GPA will be the death of me. UT Austin is my first choice school to transfer to, but I'm not sure it will take into consideration the high standards my current university has for academics, and my sheer passion for languages that cannot be expressed at my current university.
Posted @ Tuesday, December 25, 2012 11:50 PM by MTuesday
@MTuesday - I don't think your GPA should automatically disqualify you. Obviously, it's one of the weaker parts of your application, but I think the other aspects are quite strong. Make sure to emphasize the specific parts of the UT Austin program that attract you. 
Let me know if you'd like any feedback on essays, etc. Good luck!
Posted @ Friday, December 28, 2012 9:45 AM by Mark Truman
My son, a US citizen, is going to complete High School abroad(India). He goes to a school which gives really tough papers for mid terms. His mid-term grades are not that great (Mostly B). He had all As on his 10th finals. His school does not give rank, nor do they provide a GPA. 
He has 2160 on SAT 
He has 770 on SAT II for both Math and Physics 
He has one AP(4 out of 5 in CS) 
He is the Head Boy of his school 
He has applied to UT Austin for Computer Science. I am trying to see if he has a chance, since there are so few seats for out of state and that Computer Science is sought after at UT. 
Posted @ Sunday, January 27, 2013 2:49 AM by Pat
@Pat - It seems to me that your son has a very strong application with a unique personal story. While UT is very competitive, I think your son is in a good place. Good luck!
Posted @ Sunday, January 27, 2013 12:10 PM by Mark Truman
@Mark Thank you for your response and encouragement.
Posted @ Sunday, January 27, 2013 7:44 PM by Pat
@Mark - Just wanted to let you know that your judgment was right. My son has been accepted in to Computer Science at UT Austin. Thanks.
Posted @ Saturday, February 23, 2013 11:19 AM by Pat
Does anyone have any advice on getting accepting as a freshman into UT's school of art? I have heard that they will consider you as long as your high school rank is top 25%, and if you apply with a strong portfolio - but that's just something I heard and I don't know if it's true. Does anyone know what type of test scores, essays and GPA the school of art is looking for? How much weight do they give those things compared to the portfolio? I'm being told that the school of art is a different animal from the rest of UT and am wondering how true that is. My daughter is interested in a degree in studio art. Thanks in advance.
Posted @ Tuesday, March 26, 2013 1:45 PM by Camille
@Camille - Unfortunately, that information is relatively hard to come by. I can tell you, however, that schools across the board are looking for high test scores and GPAs, reflective and interesting essays, and dedication and passion in extracurricular activities. Please contact me if you feel like I could answer a more specific question!
Posted @ Wednesday, March 27, 2013 4:31 PM by Mark Truman
My son applied twice, as a transfer student. 3.12 GPA. 640 documented community service hours. All American high school football player. Denied as a entry freshman and twice as a transfer. Denied all three times. The average transfer student hold a 3.68 GPA. The never even looked at his body of work, passion, extraordinary achievements, etc. Nothing! It's all about the GPA right now. He's thriving at LSU and could not be happier in his dual degree progam. 
Posted @ Wednesday, March 27, 2013 5:54 PM by Drowning in Texas
As a student thinking about college while living in Texas I am actually scared that I will not be accepted. I have a 92-95 average with plenty of talent; just not so good ranking. Now I must compete for a spot within the mockable 20 percent of space of which is free. I understand that smaller schools need aid in acceptance, but not from just one school all at once in such a fashion; being apart of 7 clubs and at least 125 hours of community service with good testing and writing abilities gets me no where. UT is a good Texan school, but I might end up else where due to this law.
Posted @ Tuesday, May 21, 2013 2:30 PM by
My daughter applied at UT and got accepted, thank god!
Posted @ Monday, May 27, 2013 2:54 PM by Barb
I attend UT-San Antonio but not as a CAP student. I have a GPA of 3.74 and I'm considering transferring to UT. I plan on majoring in electrical engineering. Do you think I will have a good chance of getting in the engineering school? or would i have to internally transfer?
Posted @ Tuesday, July 30, 2013 6:49 PM by Ricco Aceves
@Ricco - Unfortunately, it's almost impossible for me to tell you how likely you are to get in. 3.74 is a strong GPA, but it's hard to tell what other people will bring to the table. Have you already finished your essays? Those will be key...
Posted @ Tuesday, July 30, 2013 11:11 PM by Mark Truman
My daughter is a senior in the 15th percentile in a class of 325, gpa of 3.7, will have 18 college hours upon graduation, lots of community service, and has written 3 excellent essays. She is applying to UT (specifically the College of Comm.). Her SAT scores, however, were very low: Reading, 490, Math 500, Writing 570(don't know what happened, guess she choked). She is retaking in October, but will submit app. very soon (September). She also has some very excellent letters of recommendation from 2 high school teachers, and an individual through a leadership organization she has been a member of for several years. Because of the low SAT scores, is acceptance going to be impossible? Like I said, she will retake the test and is preparing hard for it. We visited UT in the spring and her heart is set on attending. Thank you, Pam
Posted @ Friday, August 30, 2013 2:22 PM by pviator
@Pam - Unfortunately, those SAT scores will prove to be a serious obstacle to her admission. While the other parts of her application sound fantastic, UT Austin is extremely competitive and test scores are something that the school seriously considers. I would recommend: 
- Doing some sort of test prep program to raise the scores 
- Revisiting her essays with a college consultant to get outside eyes on an important link 
- Visiting the school again this Fall to signal her seriousness and meet with admissions folks 
Please let me know if we can help further!
Posted @ Saturday, August 31, 2013 3:05 AM by Mark Truman
My daughter is a junior at a very competitive high school that is out of state. Her course load has included all honors and AP courses. She has not taken the ACT or SAT yet. Her GPA is 3.3 and she is only in the 50th percentile of her class. She averages 80-100 hours of community service each year, has been a varsity athlete also involved in year round club sports every year and is involved with yearbook. Questions: does she have any hope of admittance and what can she do to improve her chances? Will taking classes dual credit instead of AP help with admission?
Posted @ Monday, September 02, 2013 11:46 AM by Jennifer
@Jennifer - If by "out of state," you mean outside of Texas, your daughter is going to face an uphill battle for gain admission. Her GPA will be considered quite low for and out of state student. Her extracurriculars sound excellent, but will only really tip the scales if her test scores are fantastic. Taking dual credit classes would help if she were able to get excellent grades, but the overall GPA is meaningful. 
May I ask what it is about UT that she likes? Perhaps there is another school where the admissions process might be a better fit?
Posted @ Monday, September 02, 2013 1:45 PM by Mark Truman
Yes, we are outside the state of Texas. UT has been a school she has had her eye on for many years. We used to live in TX but moved years ago and she never lost her desire to go to school there. Additionally, UT ranks quite high for her desired major. We visited several colleges and UT feels like home for her. It's a good fit for her in so many ways. So, if presented with the option to take a class as dual credit or take the AP test, you recommend dual credit? She is in AP U.S. history, but they have to decide this week if they are taking the AP exam or dual credit. It is quite expensive to take dual credit but if it helps with her admission, I'm willing to do it. Thanks so much for your help and insight.
Posted @ Monday, September 02, 2013 2:33 PM by Jennifer
@Jenn - I would almost always recommend dual credit, as long as the student is taking other AP classes. Ideally, junior and senior year are almost entirely AP and dual credit classes. 
I would love to talk with you more about your family's case if you need more help. Please drop me an email at if you'd like to schedule a time to talk. 
Good luck!
Posted @ Monday, September 02, 2013 2:57 PM by Mark Truman
Hello! I'm a sophomore (outside of America), and I'm currently planning to go to this school (as an undergraduate) to learn within the medical field. I was wondering whether I have the "specs" to be part of this school.. 
-I was born in Texas, my SAT score is a bit higher than 1880, my GPA is 3.8, I'm in NHS, Red Cross Youth, in Basketball varsity, and many more. Do you think I will be able to get in?
Posted @ Monday, September 30, 2013 3:52 AM by Heather Yang
@Heather - It won't matter much that you were born in Texas, but your SAT and GPA are strong. It's hard for me to say more without seeing your full application, but you sound strong. Feel free to email me at markt at omniaceducation dot com if you want to talk more.
Posted @ Tuesday, October 01, 2013 8:05 AM by Mark Truman
Hi, I am a HS senior and Texas resident applying to UT for the fall!  
I am 64/458 in my class. This puts me around 13%. My SAT was 1940 with 720 CR 570 M 650 W. My ACT was 29, with a 35 on Reading and 33 on English.  
I applied for the major of EC-6 Education.  
I have EC's including Band, Dance, HOSA, PALS, NHS. 
I am Girl Scout and earned the Gold Award (equal to Eagle for boy scouts)  
I have several volunteer hours, and a letter of reccomendation from the director of early childhood education at my church, who I work with every sunday teaching sunday school.  
I am desperate to get in to UT, as it is my dream schoo. Do you think I will be able??
Posted @ Sunday, November 03, 2013 9:39 PM by Kate
@Kate - It sounds like you have the makings of a really strong college application!  
I can't say whether or not you will be accepted, because while you've been working really hard, now it's time to showcase everything you've accomplished via your application. How you present yourself is going to be crucial to how UT Austin perceives you.  
Your best place to shine is your essays. This year, UT Austin has two essay questions. They ask about lifetime goals, past experiences and activities, and one's ability to work well with others from different backgrounds. 
Finally, I would recommend researching schools comparable to UT Austin. While it may be your dream school, it's entirely possible that there are other colleges out there that will also match your expectations. 
Good luck, and let us know via our contact form if we can help!
Posted @ Wednesday, November 06, 2013 1:39 AM by Ruth Cisneros
My daughter is applying to the College of Natural Sciences, SAT 2080 with 670 math, ACT 33, top 11% of her class. Our concern is that she doesn't have the recommended calculus pre-req. Do you know if this will result in an automatic rejection for her?
Posted @ Thursday, November 21, 2013 12:20 PM by Cindy
@Cindy- your daughter has a great app! Since the course is recommended, the application wouldn't be automatically rejected but it would be weakened relative to other applicants. Best of luck, feel free to post the result on this thread when you find out. Contact us with any additional questions you may have.
Posted @ Tuesday, November 26, 2013 5:01 PM by Ruth Cisneros
@Cindy -- what Ruth said. It will also help if she can work in her love for science (or math, if that is her interest) in her essays. Has she participated in a science fair or done any projects in her field of interest? Been inspired by a trip to a science museum or read lots of physics books? She doesn't have to have done all or even any of those things, but any spark of interest in science could make her stand out.  
Disclaimer -- I work for CNS, although I'm not directly involved in the application selection process. 
Best wishes!
Posted @ Wednesday, December 04, 2013 1:54 AM by Susan
I was wondering what my chances were for getting into UT Austin... 
I have a GPA of 3.8, go to an International Bacceleurate school which is ranked top 30 in the nation for high schools. It is an extremely rigorous and internatinally based program and my class only has about 53 students in it. I am in the top 25 percent of my class, I take extremely hard biology classes and excell in them, have 6 credits of sciences over all four years of high school, am president of NHS, participate in many clubs with leadership postions, participate in school sports, have interned with veterianrians, have shadowed doctors, belong to a 4h group, and ride horses competively particpating in hunters/jumpers, dressage...Ive spent many hours with this.....I have a job and have clearly pursued my interests in becoming a doctor. I am applying to the Natural Sciences major. My only problem is my ACT/SAT scores:/ I have a 25 composite ACT, and have a 1710 in SAT....I have one more chance to take the ACT and have been doing a lot of prep, i really love Austin and know I can do wel l there! I am a really good student, but because I previously put so much time into extracurriculars and horseback riding I havent had time to do a lot of prep. Which i really regret now...I need an honest opinion. A lot of people I have talked to said that I would get in forsure...but I have a hard time believing that based on my test scores.  
p.s. any advice?
Posted @ Tuesday, December 10, 2013 7:05 PM by Julia
I have read through this very old thread... But still can't help but comment because I am furious. My daughter was in the top 7% of her class in a very competitive Texas High school. She has well defined life goals. SAT's were 580 reading, 620 writing, and 720 Math. She will graduate with10 AP credits including calculus, biology, and many others. She has been on the Varsity tennis team all 4 years. She is good enough in tennis to have been offered places on more than 10 div. II & III teams. She has volunteered in the community and even served on a local community service board. The admission decision: Accepted under 10% but not accepted to the business school... I guess she is what you guys would call one of those unqualified automatic admission student... Really??? I just can't believe this is happening!!! Oh... And did I mention both her parents went to UT and her grandparents went to UT... I am so angry I have smoke coming out of my ears right now... And my daughter... She's feeling like a failure... Like all of her very hard work in high school was useless... Who wants to go to school there if they are just going to get a degree in NOTHING!!!
Posted @ Sunday, February 23, 2014 12:23 AM by Sjps
I also read thru the thread and am so disappointed. My son was top 19% of his class, 3.6 GPA (not super great), 31 ACT, 2025 SAT, AP classes, clubs, honor societies and many volunteer hours. Only 1 of the 8%ers of his class scored higher than him on the SAT. He ended up being offered the CAP program. Just frustrating.
Posted @ Tuesday, February 25, 2014 4:04 PM by SLLW
O.K. Now my daughter has been back to school for a couple of days. She found out that 2 different boys that have a worse class rank and lower SAT scores, as well as fewer activities both got into the business school. I also noticed that last years entrance ratio was a little off... They can't tell me they have more male applicants than female to the business school. That would be statistically improbable to say the least! Plain and simple.... My daughter has been a victim of the reverse discrimination that this school is so famous for.
Posted @ Tuesday, February 25, 2014 4:31 PM by Sjps
I'm in quite the predicament currently. I'm currently a senior in a Texas high school. I'm in a 25th percentile because I spent my freshman year in another country and joined the school in sophomore year. I got a 2100 on my SATs, member of the key club and science club, around 5 AP classes and maintain a decent grade. Only problem is since I joined in sophomore year, my GPA started from the bottom. So the people in my grade had a year head start on me. So low GPA meant low rank. So UT Austin sent me CAP agreement. I applied to multiple A grade schools such as Purdue and BU and got accepted. I got accepted into top 12 schools but not Austin. I'm choosing to go to UT Arlington for the freshman year and then capping to Austin for my sophomore year. Sincerely hope it's the right thing to do.
Posted @ Tuesday, February 25, 2014 10:42 PM by samster
To continue with above note, I am not sure whether an appeal would be an good option or not ? Also my current GPA In high school is 3.4. What would be the process to get into the engineering program in UT Austin under CAP?
Posted @ Tuesday, February 25, 2014 10:57 PM by Samster
Accepting CAP is a great idea. I CAPped into UT, my freshman year was at UTSA, and I had a great time. You'll be with a ton of other students in a similar position. You guys don't even have a difficult requirements to meet in order to complete the program. And upon completion of the program, you select a primary major and a second choice major. If you don't get you first, then take the second and transfer in after your first semester at UT. I had several friends in a a position like your quandary, and the ones that didn't get in to Business, they took another major, did great in one semester of classes, and then transferred over to the one they wanted.  
It is doable. This isn't the end of the world. You will forever be associated with the University of Texas at Austin when you graduate. Your credentials will all be from UT Austin. The CAP program is an amazing gift to the students who still qualify for UT and their admissions wanted them. We have a chance the dumb 10% law didn't afford us.  
Also, you'll pay less for a year than the other kids who went to UT as freshman 
Don't fret about this. Follow the program and you'll be just fine.
Posted @ Tuesday, February 25, 2014 11:32 PM by Bri
My daughter has wanted to go to UT since she was very young - inspired by her grandparents who are alum. She is top 15% at a very large HS that is a IB magnet. Engaged in Band and NHS. We were very disappointed that she was CAPed although accepted into 5 other prestigious colleges in the region. We will be appealing base on what we read in this thread (thank you!). It would be nice if Texas found some way to expand admissions (grow the school) based on all the posts I have read. I would be more than glad to move to Austin and teach if it would help with this situation. I am very disappointed for all of our youth who more than deserve to be part of the UT program. What can we do as parents to make a difference?
Posted @ Thursday, March 13, 2014 3:01 AM by Tom
What can we do as parents? Help our children realize they will be happy, receive an excellent education, and flourish at OTHER schools. UT is not the only great university.  
Your child was offered a place within the UT system by being CAPed. I don't mean to sound harsh. My child's dream school has also been UT, but it's a reach school while many other schools of equal prestige will accept her AND offer merit scholarship money. Thankfully, many college visits have made her see that UT isn't the only school where she can be happy. If she gets into UT, they likely won't have scholarship funds since the school doesn't place as much aid in the merit bucket and we won't qualify for financial aid. 
Unfortunately, Texas needs to designate more schools as state flagship schools due to the state population. Until that happens, many great Texas students will go OOS just as OOS students won't come into Texas. The result of admitting more Texas students is that eventually it becomes a TX region university which will eventually limit nationwide alum support that is important for the school when it comes to fundraising and students for networking. This is why the "top 10% law" resulted in the top 7% this year and rumors are that it could be lower next year.  
There are a lot of CAP kids at UTSA and many choose to stay there because of positive experiences. Who knows, it may end up being a state flagship one day. Good luck.
Posted @ Thursday, March 13, 2014 6:20 AM by Another mom
Who needs this school that seems to pride itself on inequality in disguise as diversity. Who bases acceptance to programs on a persons sex or color of their skin instead of pure merit. As an alum I am disgusted by their practices. They will never receive another penny of my money. I am happy to report that my daughter just received acceptance to a far more prestigious out of state business school. Additionally, she will receive enough merit scholarship money to make it cost about the same as UT... People this school is just not worth it... They want you to grovel at their feet... Who needs that?
Posted @ Friday, March 14, 2014 11:21 AM by Sips
I posted a while back when my daughter was considering schools. With a 3.8 GPA at one of the top 3 high schools in Texas, she was still only in the top 30%. She decided not to even apply to UT as she was not interested in CAP and knew that would be the best she got. She applied to A&M and clicked "No" to the Blinn option, hoping for the Gateway program. She was offered the first year option at one of their satellite campuses where automatic transfer to College Station was guaranteed with a 3.0. 
These "waiting" programs for solid freshman act as holding pens for the kids who drop out. Many of the top 10% kids come from lower ranked high schools which don't prepare the students for the rigors of a Tier 1 university. Texas has really hurt everyone involved with this rule. 
My daughter was accepted fully to Texas Tech. She decided to go there and would transfer to UT or A&M if she was unhappy. She figured it was better to take courses at the large school than at someone's satellite facility. However, she is extremely happy at Tech and decided to remain there for her entire four years. It's a great school with a strong alumni base...getting larger and stronger every year.  
I can assure you parents out there that your children CAN be successful at schools other than UT and A&M. Don't drink the kool-aid.
Posted @ Friday, March 14, 2014 11:43 AM by Happy Mama
Definitely true that there are some excellent schools in Texas other than UT & A&M, and some schools are even better matches for some students.  
The Top 10% rule is now the Top 7% rule, and as someone who works at UT Austin, I must disagree that we are getting too many students who aren't prepared for college because of this rule. In my college, our incoming class for Fall 2014 have average SAT scores almost 50 points higher than last year. Our retention rates are higher, our graduation rates are increasing, and more students are successfully completing calculus (vital for my college.)  
In 1990, a few years before the 10% rule, UT's 4-year graduation rate was hovering around 30%! In the years after the rule, our 4-year graduation rate has risen to about 52%. (Still too low, but we're aiming for 70%!) 
Also, around 2010 or so, only 75% were admitted under the (then) Top 10% rule -- the rest are out-of-state, international, and TX residents who didn't make it into the top 10 (now 7%) but are still outstanding.  
Even with that, Texas has many more academically talented students than UT and A & M can admit. I hope that Texas will continue to strengthen all of our schools so that there is room for our growing population.
Posted @ Tuesday, April 01, 2014 8:38 PM by Susan
I'm sorry but as an alum I am blessed that my daughter is not going to school here... It's too big... Impersonal.... And just an unhealthy university environment!! I suggest to everyone to find somewhere else to go instead of this racist and sexist university!!!
Posted @ Tuesday, April 01, 2014 8:45 PM by Sjps
I'm an older student and was top in all classes throughout high school and biochem/med-lab-tech studies at community college but quit college early over 20 years ago. I want to go back to finish or start over but have been discouraged by family and friends about being accepted because of my age, 55. I'm healthy and my parents, grandparents lived to be 100-110 and worked until 84-85 so I'm not crazy to want to finish at my age now I finally have the time. Any advise to any chance of getting accepted to UT Austin? I just can't afford other options with the same courses. Is it true that I'm wasting my time to apply here?
Posted @ Saturday, June 21, 2014 12:44 PM by Naylor w
@Naylor - You shouldn't be discouraged at all! I would encourage you to contact the admissions office and let them know about your situation, but there should be support for non-traditional students like yourself. You aren't wasting your time at all.
Posted @ Monday, June 23, 2014 7:50 AM by Mark Truman
I don't know if anyone has mentioned this but I consider the varying quality of high schools biggest problem of the percent rule. I went to one of the best schools in the area and ended up just past 8% cutoff. Those that went to other schools could manage to get into UT Austin even though my SATs were often 1000 pts higher. Sure, they might be able to graduate from UT despite their high school performance but it's not exactly fair to some of us. I did manage to transfer though!
Posted @ Friday, July 18, 2014 9:48 AM by Esther
Is it as difficult for out of state transfer students to get accepted as it is for out-of-state freshmen?
Posted @ Thursday, July 24, 2014 2:09 PM by Mike Houston
Most of the transfer students come from Austin Community College or the CAP program. I don't know if it is as difficult but it's quite a feat for any out of state students to enter the school.
Posted @ Thursday, July 24, 2014 2:23 PM by Esther
Hi all, this is the same Kate that commented in 2013. I just wanted to update y'all that I was accepted into UT in February. It is a dream come true. Hard work pays off
Posted @ Tuesday, July 29, 2014 11:40 PM by Kate
4.0 out of state community college student. Is there a bias agaisnt CC tansfers or am I in good shape? 
Posted @ Wednesday, July 30, 2014 4:21 AM by Michael White
Kate -- Congratulations!
Posted @ Wednesday, July 30, 2014 6:13 AM by Susan
Michael White -- Out of state students are accepted to UT Austin from community colleges, but it may depend on what major/school/college you are applying to. 
For example, if you are interested in science, your application will have a better chance if you've completed at least one calculus course and some major-level science courses.  
Best wishes! 
Posted @ Wednesday, July 30, 2014 7:46 AM by Susan
Thanks Susan. I have 35 hours completed with calc1 done and plan on applying after this fall which will add physics with a lab, chem with a laband calc2 to my transcripts. From what I know so far having atleqst the two calcs done show maje the application look pretty firm. Any thoughts? Engineering is my major by the way. Thanks.
Posted @ Wednesday, July 30, 2014 3:49 PM by Michael White
Michael - looks like you will have a very solid application with your high GPA and having calc, physics and chemistry on your record!  
I can't think of anything you could do differently. Be sure your transfer essay(s) demonstrate your interest in engineering and UT. Keep up the good work!
Posted @ Wednesday, July 30, 2014 8:53 PM by Susan
Honestly, I really dislike the ideas automatic acceptance. I go to a very competitive high school (as in a nationally ranked one, that's known for its competition). I'm in the top 12% of my graduating class and I've taken all APs and Pre-APs in core subjects, even in electives. It just hurts to know that I may not be accepted even if I have a higher GPA than someone in the neighboring high school who's eligible for auto admission. I know GPA isn't the only thing that matters, but it's a pretty big factor in determining what you did for those 4 years in high school. Just because I haven't done anything to make me stand out especially doesn't mean I haven't worked hard for my grades and GPA...
Posted @ Monday, December 01, 2014 7:39 PM by Rebecca
What is a safe SAT score to get to get admitted? I have a pretty good GPA: 3.75, but I really want to get scores that would get me admitted into Chem E in 2 years. I'm taking AP Chemistry right now, but I'm not doing well. I have a B in that class. Will getting a B in that class for one semester still help me?
Posted @ Monday, December 01, 2014 8:14 PM by Rebecca
Rebecca - this might help with your SAT question -- UT's 2014 ACT/SAT scores for incoming freshman. It will vary from year to year, but it might give you a general picture. 
Good luck! 
Posted @ Monday, December 01, 2014 9:09 PM by Susan
Thanks Susan. I've just been stressing out about SATs and ACTs this year because I haven't started preping because of the 7 AP classes I'm taking. Would 2-3 months of moderate-rigorous prep be good enough to get at least a 2000? Sorry if I'm making SAT prep sound like exercise. :)
Posted @ Monday, December 01, 2014 10:38 PM by Rebecca
Hello, I am currently a Freshmen at UTSA i trasferred 29 college hours from a community college with a 2.9 GPA. with AP credit from Spanish exam my advisor told me to only accept 4 hours so does that mean that my fall 2014 grades won't be used? My first semester at UTSA I am enrolled in 12 hours with currently 2 Bs and 2Cs. With still the spring semester to finish. I have somewhat decent essays a letter of recommendation from one of my professors. I am applying to transfer into the college of education: kinesiology and health, health promotion with my second choice COLA. I would appreciate any advice and if anyone could review my essays. thank you.
Posted @ Monday, December 08, 2014 3:35 AM by jake
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