Thursday, May 12, 2016

UGA and the New SAT

As everyone probably knows, the College Board started offering the newly redesigned SAT test in March of 2016, and the Essay portion is now optional. This new SAT (which I am calling the SAT R for now), will impact freshman applicants starting in the Summer/Fall of 2017 and beyond. UGA will continue to accept both the old and the new SAT and the ACT, but with the change in the SAT R test, we will not require or use the Essay/Writing component for either the SAT or ACT for students beginning in the Summer/Fall 2017 term and beyond.

UGA will continue to superscore the SAT and the ACT (we do not superscore across SAT and ACT exams though), and we will continue to use the SAT subscores for both SAT tests in the superscore calculation for each SAT type, those being the SAT I and the SAT R. In reviewing the details of the equivalency charts from the new to the old SAT, we have now determined that we will not be able to superscore between the two SAT tests. While we initially thought we might be able to superscore across the two SAT's, we now see that this is not possible for many reasons, especially due to the difficulties in trying to compare the Critical Reading (CR) and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing (EBRW) sections. Based on our review of the new scores and the concordances, we do not predict this change to have any negative impact on any chances for admission.

In helping students to understand the SAT R, the College Board has provided students with an SAT Score Converter to allow you to translate the SAT R to SAT 1 or the reverse. Additionally, we suggest you look at the data a college provides in their student profile (for example, the UGA First-Year Class Profile), where they provide mid-range data. You can then use data from the College Board Conversion charts to see that our mid -50% SAT 1 of 1810-2060 (2400 range) would be roughly equivalent to a mid-50% SAT R of a 1290-1440 (1600 range). While this is not exact, this is at least an estimate how the new SAT R translates into our past data. Our office will be doing a a great deal of data analysis in the coming months to make sure we use all three score types (SAT 1, SAT R and ACT) appropriately and correctly.

Please remember that in our review of SAT and ACT scores, we will continue to look at all subscores, but we will focus on the CR & Math Sections on the SAT I, the EBRW & Math sections of the SAT R, and the English & Math sections on the ACT.

We also suggest that you review what steps other colleges will be taking concerning the new SAT to better understand your options.

Go Dawgs!

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

2016 Wait List Update

We have started offering admission to a small group of students from the Wait List, with a large majority of these being for the Spring 2017 term. Due to the fact that our deposit numbers are at the level that we predicted for Summer/Fall, we are limited in the number of offers we are able to make. We will initially email admitted students and give information about their two-week Commitment Deposit deadline, campus housing, Orientation and other pre-enrollment steps. In addition, the myStatus page will show these decisions, and a decision letter will be mailed shortly after. Over the next few days, we will also email the rest of the wait-listed students to inform them that we cannot offer them admission off the Wait List, and we will then update their Status Check one final time. We will not be calling students about the Wait List, but instead will be using email and the Status Check for details.

In reviewing the students who we admitted off the Wait List, there were a variety of individual reasons for the offers that were made. As such, I cannot give an overarching reason for the decisions. We did take into account our earlier reviews of the files, along with a wide range of information that we had on hand.

For those many strong students we were not able to admit from the Wait List, we thank you for choosing us as one of the options for your higher education.  We wish you the very best of college success.  We understand that this is not the news you were hoping for, and we very much appreciate your patience “waiting on the Wait List.”  Please remember that there are a number of complex reasons why the University made the final decisions it did, and we respectfully remind all that this blog cannot be used for comments about why you or other individuals did or did not get admitted in the Wait list process.

We hope that our quick turn around of the Wait List situation has allowed you and your family to make plans on a much earlier time frame that initially projected.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

2016 Fall Transfer Update

The review of the 2016 Fall transfer applications is our key focus at this time, and we continue to diligently work on these files.  At this time, we have made roughly 1,100 decisions of the 2500 applications we received this year. In addition, roughly 300 of the 2,500 files are incomplete and thus will not be reviewed. Based on statistical data, we are averaging about 45 decisions being made per day. As such, I expect that we be be complete for the most part by about mid-May, although,we will have a few slowdowns as we get into some of the more challenging files to review.

Please remember we cannot tell you when you will have a decision as this depends on many factors. Applications are generally processed in the order in which the file was completed, but this is not always the case, as some files are more challenging, are from colleges where we are having to build a catalog in the new system, or are just complex. We also have two new staff members who can handle the more basic transfer files, so they might review some later files that can be done easily but might be out of "completion order". As well, I am not able to look at each individual file to see why someone did nor did not receive a decision based on X date.

Most applications completed by roughly the end of February or earlier have been reviewed with some exceptions.  If you are transferring from an out-of-state college or a college we have not had many students apply from, your application may take a bit longer to review and thus the timeline would not be correct for your situation. Transfer decisions are updated daily on the status check, and the myStatus page is updated at about 5 am every morning.

If you have been admitted and want to see how your courses transferred, you can use the transfer equivalency site off the admissions website. If you have submitted a deposit, you can log on to DegreeWorks to see how your courses apply towards the degree/major you have selected.  As well, go to the Next Steps brochure to learn about what you will need to do next to enroll at UGA (this is also sent in the acceptance packet).

I hope this helps, and Go Dawgs.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

First Year Academic Merit Scholarships have been Awarded



Over the last several months the Admissions staff has carefully reviewed all our newly admitted First Year students to consider them for University of Georgia academic merit scholarships.  (See the list and our discussion of merit and need-based aid at our website, https://admissions.uga.edu/article/scholarships-at-uga.html.)  All scholarships available through Admissions have now been awarded, and we have contacted each of the recipients via email and mail.

At UGA, academic merit scholarships have become increasingly competitive.  This is mainly due to the limited funding we have for these awards and the high number of extremely capable students who now gain University of Georgia admission. 

Always continue to search for scholarship opportunities, whether or not you have been awarded a scholarship from Undergraduate Admissions Office.  Search your academic major for scholarships online.  Use our web site and the Office of Student Financial Aid web site to search for external scholarship opportunities. Also, remember to look for local scholarship opportunities for students in your home community.



If you have been selected for any of our Academic Merit awards, congratulations!  Please be sure to read your offer letter carefully.  Keep it for your records.  In this letter you will see what requirements you must maintain to renew your scholarship each succeeding year and, in general, how much the scholarship is worth in relation to your overall costs. 

Friday, April 1, 2016

April 1 Random Admission Thoughts

It is April 1, so we are juggling a wide range of things at this time. We are working with freshmen, transfers, deposits, recruiting future classes, orientation planning, etc. I am also in the middle of a large installation of a new recruitment system (which is going great), but it is eating up most of my time right now. As such, here are a few notes about what is happening:
  • Transfer applicants: We are well into reviewing transfer files, but each ones takes time, as we have to determine how your courses transfer into UGA, calculate an overall transfer GPA, determine hours, etc. Transfer decisions go out daily once we start the review process, and we are averaging roughly 50 files reviewed per day, M-F. I cannot guess when an applicant will hear a decision, as it depends on the number of applicants, when a file is complete, how complex the files is, etc. I am an admissions officer, not a fortune teller who can predict the future.
  • Documents: Transfers, please remember to give us 10 business days from the day a transcript is sent OR you submit your application, whichever is last. It is a mostly manual process to match college transcripts, so it takes a while. If you left a college off the application this will cause problems, as we need official transcripts from every college you attended as an Undergraduate.
  • Timelines: The Timelines page at under the blog header is the best place to understand more about when you will hear a decision. Remember, though, that the Timelines page has projected dates, and so these are not exact due to many factors that impact our reviews. I expect over 2,500 Fall transfer applicants, and while we are going through them as quickly as possible, over 1,000 students had applied by mid-February, over 1,500 had applied by the beginning of March, etc. In other words, patience is key.
  • Admitted Freshman: Do not forget to decide on a college by May 1 and submit a deposit! We wish you well in this choice and want you to find the best possible match, but we do not want to hear from you on May 3rd saying "I forgot to submit my deposit".
  • HS Junior Parents: This is the time of year when HS juniors visit campuses for the first time and are looking at planning out their senior schedules. We are thrilled to have visitors to our campus, just make sure to schedule your visit early, as April tours and information sessions fill up quickly due to Spring Breaks and lots of interest in UGA. As well, our office is not the best group to suggest what a student should take during their senior year. We suggest your family sits down with your HS counselor to see what the options are, and how your student can challenge themselves yet still be successful in HS. We also get a large number of questions about AP vs DE (dual enrollment) courses, and which is the best option. Since we do not know all the details of the situation or all the options, I suggest you review a past AP vs. DE blog post on this issue and then work with your HS counselor. In addition, we do not make suggestions on what elementary schools applicants for Fall 2029 should attend.
  • Scholarships: We will be awarding scholarships through about mid-April, but again, this takes a great deal of time to review files and make decisions, so we ask for your patience. We have made a large number of scholarship offers already, but we have a few offers still to make. Please remember that our office is limited in scholarship funding and we have a large number of strong/wonderful admitted students. In addition, we are not able to "match" scholarship offers from other colleges, as each institution has their own method and funding for scholarships.
I hope this helps, and Go Dawgs!

Friday, March 18, 2016

2016 Final Freshman Decisions are Available

Final freshman decisions are now available online.  We had a very strong applicant pool this year! We had 23,000 applications, which was our largest applicant pool ever.  Here are a few notes about decisions:

  • Please do not have multiple family members try to log onto the myStatus.  This will slow down our serves.  We suggest that only the student log in as multiple people logging in could lock down your myStatus. You can always share this information with family members after you see it. Remember, the myStatus page might be a little slow when it first opens due to high traffic volume-Just be patient.
  • No matter what your decision is, remember that there are a number of college options and UGA is just one of them. An admissions decision is not a judgement about your worth. A majority of our applicants are strong, qualified applicants, but our freshman class is not big enough to accommodate everyone.
  • When trying to comprehend your decision, please understand that our office is looking at your file individually, then in comparison with the rest of the 23,000 applicants. That is a very large, very strong applicant pool, and we are limited in how many students we can admit and enroll.
  • We posted three blog posts this morning, one for each of the three decision possibilities, with details about each decision and links to FAQs.  Please review everything about a decision before commenting.
  • Please remember that other students and the admissions representatives in our office are people too and treat everyone with respect.  Before hitting submit on a comment, make sure you actually want to post it.
  • As in past years, we have admitted a small group of freshman to start in the Spring 2017 term. Please make sure to look at the term of acceptance if you are admitted. An offer of Spring will not be shifted to Fall or Summer, as we made a decision to admit this small group for Spring 2017.
  • We will delete any comments that are offensive, ask for personal information/stats from others, or that fall into the unacceptable comment category (Comments that bully, intimidate, or harass any user; Content that is hateful or threatening.  Please see the New Visitors information posted on the right side of the blog).
  • After decisions are out, the next steps are up to you.  Whether you are depositing at UGA or another school, signing up for Housing, or registering for Orientation.  Make sure you take care of everything you need to post-decision.
Go Dawgs!

2016 Freshman Admits

We plan to make the final wave of freshman decisions available late afternoon today, March 18th.

For those of you who have been admitted to UGA, here is a post for you and a chance to comment.  Please remember that this is not a blog where you should post statistics or throw fellow students under the bus. These types of comments will be deleted.

Congratulations to all of the freshman who were admitted and we look forward to you becoming part of the Bulldog Nation.  The next steps for a new student can be seen in the flyer in your admission packet, so please go ahead and review what you need to do next.  In addition, there will be a great deal of information you can access off of your myStatus page.  When you have the time, please review this, as there is key information in the Next Step materials.  Please remember a small number of students will be admitted to start in January 2017.  You will find specific information on your myStatus and in your admissions packet.

Here are some Statistics on the Entire Freshman Admitted Class for 2016-EA, February and March waves, where we admitted approximately 12,200 students total:

UGA Calculated Grade Point Average mid-range/average:  3.91 - 4.17, with a 4.03 average
Please remember this is not the GPA students see on their high school transcript, but rather the GPA that UGA recalculates for everyone based on the core academic courses taken in high school and looking at the actual grades posted on the transcripts

SAT Critical Reading + SAT Mathematics average: 1343

SAT Writing average:  637

ACT Composite average:  30

 AP/IB/Dual Enrollment course mid-range/average: 5-10 courses, average of 8


Remember that the Housing and myID pages may need a few business days before your information will be available.  Please be patient with these sites.

You have until May 1 to submit a commitment deposit in order to hold a spot in our freshman class.  We hope the next stage of the admission process is a little less nerve wracking than the decision process.  As you celebrate, make sure to be considerate of others in your school who may not have been admitted.

Good luck in the next stage of the college admissions process.  Go Dawgs!