PS-03.A.24 - Undergraduate Admission of Students
EFFECTIVE DATE: 07/20/21
ISSUE #: 10
PRESIDENT: Loren J. Blanchard
This policy statement (PS) states the University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) policy on the admission of undergraduate students.
2.1 Former Student Applicant: A degree-seeking applicant returning to UHD after an interruption of at least two consecutive semesters (14 months), or after suspension.
2.2 Freshman Applicant: A degree-seeking applicant without college credit, or whose only college credit was received either prior to graduation from high school, or prior to the completion of an equivalent educational experience, such as (but not limited to) the completion of a General Educational Development (GED) or home schooling program.
2.3 Freshman-Transfer Applicant: A degree-seeking applicant who has graduated from high school or equivalent, who has enrolled in a post-secondary institution, who does not have a bachelor's degree, and who has earned fewer than 15 college-level credit hours.
2.4 International Student Applicant: A degree-seeking applicant who is not a citizen or permanent resident of the United States, has not applied for permanent residency, or does not qualify for Texas residency based on SB 1528.
2.5 Post-baccalaureate Student Applicant: An applicant who has completed the equivalent of a bachelor's degree. Post-baccalaureate students can take undergraduate courses, pursue a second degree, or be approved by a graduate program to take graduate courses. Number of graduate hours that may be taken as a post-baccalaureate student are subject to graduate program discretion.
2.6 Transient Student Applicant: Undergraduate students who are regularly enrolled as degree-seeking students at another college or university may enroll at UHD as transient students. These students generally intend to earn credit at UHD for transfer back to their home institution. Transient students are not eligible for financial aid and can take a maximum of 24 semester credit hours. To be considered for admission, transient students must be in good academic standing at their home institution.
2.7 Transfer Student Applicant: A degree-seeking applicant, who has graduated from high school or equivalent, who has enrolled in a post-secondary institution and earned 15 or more hours of credit-bearing college courses at an accredited institution of higher education, who does not have a bachelor's degree, and who is not a former UHD student.
Transfer GPA: A measure of the overall level of a student's academic achievement in post-secondary institutions, other than UHD. The transfer grade point average is calculated based on all transfer course work (See Acceptance of Transfer Credit Policy PS 03.A.10). For courses taken more than once, the highest grade will be transferred and used in computing the transfer grade point average (See Acceptance of Transfer Credit Policy PS 03.A.10). Remedial and developmental courses are not used in calculating the grade point average. When applicable, plus and minus grades are transferred as the letter grade (e.g. "C-" will transfer as "C"; "B+" will transfer as "B").
2.9 Special Admission Applicant: An applicant not meeting the requirements of any of the above categories may be considered for special admission on an individual basis by the Individual Review Committee.
2.10 Non-Degree Student Applicant: The Non-Degree Student option is intended for those not working toward a degree from the University of Houston-Downtown.
2.11 Conditional Admission: Admission offered to students who do not meet the established criteria for UHD admission with specifically identified expectations for moving from conditional to full admission status.
2.12 Individual Review Committee: committee of faculty who review and determine admission options for applicants who do not meet established UHD admissions requirements.
2.13 Admission Criteria Committee: committee of faculty and staff who review admissions criteria and recommend changes as needed.
2.14 SAT Superscore: SAT superscore is the practice by which UHD considers your highest section scores from any test date on which a student took the SAT. If students take the SAT more than once, then the UHD SAT superscore will take the student's highest Critical Reading score, highest Math score, and highest Writing score.
3.1 Undergraduate Admission: Undergraduate admission to UHD means that the student is authorized to enroll in credit-bearing courses. Upon admitting a student, UHD retains the right to assess the student's academic ability and experience, and to specify which courses the student is eligible to take. In addition to meeting the requirements for admission specified in this policy, the applicant must comply with all procedures established by Enrollment Management. In signing the application for admission, the applicant certifies that all of the information submitted in support of the application is complete and accurate. Any misrepresentation, falsification, or omission of information on the application for admission or any other documents is grounds for immediate dismissal. If admission is granted based on pre-final transcripts and the final GPA is lower than admission standards, admissions to the university will be retracted.
3.1.1 Freshman Admission:
188.8.131.52 Materials: To be considered for freshman admission an applicant must submit an application for admission; the non-refundable application fee; an official high school transcript, GED, or equivalent credential; and certified SAT/ACT scores (if applicable).
184.108.40.206 Criteria: To qualify for freshman admission, an applicant must submit all required materials and meet the UHD admission criteria below:
220.127.116.11 For applicants who graduated from an accredited high school, the State of Texas Uniform Admission Policy [Texas Education Code (TEC) 51.803- 51.809] requires that they meet one of the following college readiness standards in order to be eligible for consideration for admission to a Texas four-year public institution:
a. Be a graduate of an accredited high school or provide evidence of completion of nontraditional Secondary Education (GED and Homeschool applicants).
a. Successfully completed the recommended or advanced (distinguished high school program or completed the portion of the program that was available to them; or
b. Successfully completed a curriculum that is equivalent in content and rigor to the recommended or advanced (distinguished) high school program at a high school that is exempt from offering such programs; or
c. Satisfied the College Readiness Benchmarks on the SAT or ACT assessment.
18.104.22.168 A student 25 years old or older may qualify for an SAT/ACT waiver.
d. For Nontraditional Secondary Education: (e.g. GED and Homeschool Applicants) in accordance with Senate Bill 1543 (SB1543), applicants for admission who present evidence of completion of a nontraditional secondary education without an official class rank will have a class rank assigned by UHD. The class rank will be comparable to the average class rank of other applicants who have equivalent ACT or SAT scores. A nontraditional secondary education includes Homeschool and GED graduates. UHD requires an official homeschool or GED transcript to demonstrate evidence of completion.
e. Meet UHD admissions criteria posted on the UHD admissions website. Decisions about potential for success may be based on high school grade point average, class rank, and/or ACT/SAT superscores. UHD may also consider other variables as specified on the website.
22.214.171.124 Applicants who do not meet the admissions requirements may appeal. All appeals will be reviewed via the Individual Review Committee (IRC); the IRC may elect to offer conditional admission to freshman students whose are appealing their admission decision. Freshman students admitted conditionally may be required to complete specified requirements as defined by the Individual Review Committee.
126.96.36.199 Students admitted under a conditional admissions status will be informed by Enrollment Management of the conditions that must be met in order to move them out of conditional admissions as well as the timeline for doing so. Students who do not meet the conditional admissions requirements by the deadline for doing so will not be allowed to enroll in the subsequent semester at UHD.
3.1.2 Freshman-Transfer Admission:
188.8.131.52 To be considered for freshman-transfer admission an applicant with fewer than 15 earned college-level semester credit hours must submit an application for admission, the non-refundable application fee; an official high school transcript, GED transcript, or equivalent credential; certified SAT/ACT superscore if applicable; and an official transcript from all post-secondary institutions attended.184.108.40.206 To qualify for freshman-transfer admission an applicant must have earned fewer than 15 college-level semester credit hours, must have a minimum Transfer GPA of 2.0 at the last institution attended, and must meet all conditions outlined for Freshman Admissions.
3.1.3 Transfer Admission:
220.127.116.11 To be considered for transfer admission, an applicant with 15 or more earned college-level semester credit hours from an accredited higher education institution must submit an application for admission; the non-refundable application fee; and an official transcript from all post-secondary institutions attended.
18.104.22.168 To qualify for transfer admission, an applicant must have earned 15 or more college-level semester credit hours from an accredited higher education institution, and must have a minimum Transfer GPA of 2.0 at the last institution they attended, and must be in good academic standing at the last institution they attended.
3.1.4 International Undergraduate Admission:
To qualify for international undergraduate admission, in addition to meeting the relevant requirements for freshman or transfer admission, an international applicant must provide: a transcript evaluation, conducted by a UHD-approved certified evaluation service, for all transcripts from colleges and universities outside of the United States; an Affidavit of Support; A Permission Release Form (if applicable); a certified bank letter; a current Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of at least 550 paper-based/213 computer- based, or other acceptable evidence of English proficiency at a level acceptable for university admission; evidence of mandatory health insurance; and any other documentation required to comply with policies and procedures of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.
3.1.5 Transient Admission
22.214.171.124 If a student's home institution is unaffiliated with UHD and has no program agreements with UHD the applicant must submit an application for admission, a course request form, transcript, a letter of academic standing from their current institution that also indicates which courses are approved for transfer, and the non-refundable application fee. Students admitted with a transient status are not eligible for financial aid, and the transient admission status expires after a student has earned 24 semester credit hours. Admitted transient students must maintain a 2.0 grade point average and earn no grade lower than a C on courses taken while at UHD. Transient students who do not meet this requirement will be notified by the International Admissions Office and may be asked to take additional actions to remain eligible for enrollment. Transient students are not required to meet UHD course prerequisites.
126.96.36.199 If a student's home institution has a formal partnership with UHD or is part of a degree program in partnership with UHD, the applicant must submit an application for admission, the non-refundable application fee, and documentation that they are in compliance with any relevant State requirements. Transient students admitted through partnerships between UHD and external programs can attend UHD as long as they remain in good standing at UHD and are eligible to take a maximum of 24 credit hours.
3.2 Admission Decision Appeals:
3.2.1 A freshman or freshman-transfer applicant who has been denied admission may request further consideration by submitting a Freshman Admissions Appeal Form. An appeal to reconsider the original admission decision may or may not change the decision. The applicant is encouraged to appeal only if:
a. Their academic credentials (e.g., test scores and/or grades) have changed significantly or
b. They wish to provide additional information that further explains personal circumstances that may have affected their ability to meet admission requirements or information about their potential to succeed at UHD that may not have been captured in the admissions process.
3.2.2 A transfer applicant who has been denied admission may request a new decision based on new grades, earning an associate's degree, and/or personal circumstances that may have affected their ability to meet admission requirements; the transfer applicant must submit a Transfer Admissions Appeal Form and provide proof of the significant aspect(s). An appeal to reconsider the original admission decision may or may not change the decision.
3.2.3 The Individual Review Committee is responsible for reviewing and making decisions on all admission decision appeals. All decisions on admission appeals are final with no additional options to appeal.
3.3 Post-baccalaureate Admission:
3.3.1 To be considered for post-baccalaureate admission an applicant must submit an application for admission, the non-refundable application fee, and an official transcript from the college or university granting the baccalaureate degree.
3.3.2 To qualify for post-baccalaureate admission, an applicant must have a minimum 2.0 Transfer GPA. Students taking graduate courses as a post-baccalaureate are subject to approval by the graduate program offering the courses and the number of graduate hours is subject to limits established by UHD graduate programs and policy.
3.4 The Non-Degree Seeking Student option is intended for those not working toward a degree from the University of Houston-Downtown. Students who have not earned a Bachelor's degree and wish to enroll in courses at the University of Houston-Downtown may be considered for admission as non-degree seeking students. Non-degree seekers are limited to a total of 24 semester hours and must reapply for admission each semester. Credit earned as a non-degree seeking student will not be considered for future admission to the University of Houston - Downtown but may be considered for degree purposes only after the student has reapplied and met general admission requirements. Those admitted under this option are not eligible for Financial Aid. For more information on admission requirements and application procedures, visit the Admissions Office.
3.5 Admissions Procedures and Criteria Review
3.5.1 Admissions criteria at UHD are overseen by Enrollment Management, in consultation with the Admissions Criteria Committee, and changes in admissions criteria and conditional admissions criteria are approved by the Provost and then the President after consultation with leadership in all divisions and inclusion of Student Government, Staff Council, and Faculty Senate input processes. All proposed changes must be approved by July 1 and submitted to the UHS Board of Regents for final approval and implementation.
3.5.2 Criteria for admissions should consider best practices in higher education admissions processes, potential for academic success of a diverse student population, rigor consistent with UHD's mission, and state-mandated enrollment goals.
3.5.3 Criteria must be posted by September 1 for the next academic year on the admissions website; the VP of Enrollment Management is responsible for ensuring accuracy and updating of the site as well as inclusion in the academic catalog and updated with any external partners or processes.
3.5.4 The Admission Criteria Committee is a standing university committee that is appointed annually by the Office of the Provost. Membership includes one FT faculty member from each of the five academic colleges as well as the Faculty Senate President or designee, UC Dean or designee, one representative from the Office of the Provost, and three representatives recommended by the VP of Enrollment Management. The Office of the Provost will inform the committee of the expectations to maintain official documentation of all discussions and decisions and to meet deadlines for proposing any changes in criteria.
3.5.5 The Admissions Criteria Committee has the following scope:
3.5.6 The Individual Review Committee (IRC) is a standing university committee that is appointed annually by the Office of the Provost with a chair elected from the voting membership at the first meeting. Voting membership includes the 5 FT faculty who serve on the Admissions Criteria Committee. The committee also includes one of the Enrollment Management representatives as a non-voting member to convene the committee, support the committee work and keep a record of all official procedures and decisions.
188.8.131.52 Reviews admissions criteria annually and recommends changes for consideration to the VP of Enrollment Management to start the approval process as in 3.4 of this policy.
184.108.40.206 Makes recommendations related to conditions on admissions for students who do not meet posted admissions criteria (including incoming GPA, limits on hours enrolled, types of courses, supplemental supports needed, and/or success targets as condition of admission).
220.127.116.11 Identifies and documents criteria and data used to make decisions pertaining to admissions decisions.
3.5.7 The IRC has the following scope:
18.104.22.168 Establish and document criteria and procedures for reviewing appeals cases.
22.214.171.124 Review and make decisions in an appropriate timeframe on all applicants who appeal the denial of their admission to UHD. In doing so, the committee may request additional materials from the applicants for consideration in their review of the appeal.
126.96.36.199 Determine level of admission (full admission or conditional admission) for students whose appeal is successful.
3.6 Maintenance and Oversight of UHD Admissions Processing.
3.6.1 The VP of Enrollment Management is responsible for establishing and maintaining a written procedure to ensure consistency and accuracy in processing of all admissions materials, as well as for ensuring that these procedures are executed as required and in compliance with UH System. The written procedures must include the following components:
a. Training requirements for all employees who operate the auto evaluation process in the student information system
b. Testing requirements for any modifications to student information system, including minimum number of records to test
c. Limits on the number of employees who have access to critical data and processes within the student information system
d. A testing result retention timeline for retaining results for student information system modifications and specification of which materials uploaded (test scripts, records tested, test criteria, and testing results) to the digital system modification repository
e. Protocols for testing the modifications for each student category to ensure accurate admission status, including protocols for testing those who do not meet standards.
f. Controls to prevent deletion of admission statuses within the student information system.
g. Methods to ensure documentation of any manual changes to admissions records and review of these manual changes by the VP Enrollment Management or University Registrar.
h. Method to retain records of all IRC decisions.
i. Timeline and responsible parties for conducting annual access reviews.
Procedures for this policy are embedded in the Policy section.
Responsible Party (Reviewer): Senior VP for Academic & Student Affairs & Provost
Review: As needed.
Signed original on file in Human Resources.
Issue #1: 01/15/85
Issue #2: 05/15/85
Issue #3: 04/02/86
Issue #4: 11/14/86
Issue #5: 11/05/93
Issue #6: 03/15/95
Issue #7: 04/11/00
Issue #8: 06/27/14
Issue #9: 06/22/15