Regents Policy 2110: Policy on Augmented Review in Undergraduate Admissions

Approved July 13, 2017

Overview of the Augmented Review Process

The augmented review process is designed to provide additional review for a select pool of applicants who fall in the margins for admission, but whose initial application yields an incomplete picture of their qualifications, or presents extraordinary circumstances that invite further comment. Applicants, for example, might demonstrate special talents, potential, or accomplishments in specific areas that promise to contribute to the educational environment of the campus, but may require further explication. Or, the information provided on an application may fail to adequately explain the impact of what appear to be major disadvantages that the applicant has encountered. A range of potential selection criteria for Augmented Review are described in the “Criteria for Referral” section below. Consistent with the Guiding Principles1 the faculty have articulated for undergraduate admissions, applicants referred for the Augmented Review process must demonstrate levels of academic preparation and personal qualities that indicate a reasonable chance for academic success given the available support services on the admitting campus.

Admissions readers and officers should use their professional judgment to identify potential candidates for Augmented Review during the initial review process. They should also select from among the candidates a pool of applicants from whom supplemental information items can be solicited to better inform an admissions decision. The Augmented Review pool should be limited in size to no more than 15 percent of all applicants. Candidates are invited to submit one or more of the following supplemental information items:

  1. A questionnaire that requires paragraph length narrative responses and that allows Augmented Review candidates to provide additional details concerning their special talents and accomplishments, extraordinary circumstances, and school and home environment.
  2. Seventh-semester high school grades, or equivalent most recent grades.
  3. Up to two letters of recommendation, or other input from third parties, such as a teacher, counselor, coach, program coordinator, or anyone familiar with the candidate’s academic background and extracurricular skills/talents. Letters of recommendation should focus on both cognitive and psycho-social abilities of candidates.

Note: Letters of recommendation can be requested only for applicants selected for augmented review, and applicants considered for admission by exception, and/or applicants given a special review.2

Criteria for Referral to Augmented Review
If Augmented Review is to be used, admissions readers and officers should depend on their professional judgement to evaluate each applicant on a full range of selection criteria, using all of the application information available in the context of opportunity and demonstrated capacity to contribute to the campus. While the referral criteria for Augmented Review outlined below aim to cover likely circumstances that admissions readers and officers might encounter, they may not capture every possible applicant experience that might warrant an additional review. It is therefore imperative that admissions readers and officers use their professional judgement in these circumstances. The criteria for referring an applicant for Augmented Review include the following:

  1. Evidence of focus on an area of special talent which may have limited a student’s time to participate in a broader range of activities.
  2. Evidence of character traits that imply a strong likelihood of making a significant contribution to campus life.
  3. Evidence of significant academic achievement or the potential for academic achievement at the University in spite of extraordinary or compound disadvantage or learning difference, or physical disability or other unusual circumstances.
  4. Evidence of significant improvement in the academic record accompanied by one or both of the following: (1) reasons for the initial poor performance; and (2) sustained and in-depth participation in educational outreach programs, which demonstrate the applicant’s commitment to succeed academically within a challenging environment.
  5. Evidence of relative lack of access to, counseling about, or support to take college preparatory, honors, Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) classes or required college entrance examinations.

This policy will take effect for the 2018-19 admissions cycle.

1 The most recent version of the "Guidelines for Implementation of University Policy on Undergraduate Admissions" can be found on the Senate's website.

2 Students applying to a major, school, or college that already has a long-standing supplemental application requirement, may be required to submit a letter of recommendation, in addition to the general application for undergraduate admission. Such supplemental applications have also included questionnaires, transcripts, narrative statements, interviews, auditions, and/or portfolios, but only very rarely require letters of recommendation. Such programs typically focus on the creative arts, performance arts, and nursing.

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