Freshman applications increase dramatically

Applications for admission to the University of California, Berkeley’s 2012-13 freshman class increased 16.5 percent over the previous year, with academic performance such as test scores and grade point averages remaining as high as before, campus officials announced today (Thursday, Jan. 12).

Officials for the University of California system released application data today for all the campuses in the UC system. The data show that each campus experienced increases in freshman applications over the previous year, most of them posting double-digit increases. The UC systemwide average increase was 19 percent.

At UC Berkeley, 61,661 students applied for freshman admission, a record number of applications and an increase from the 52,920 students who applied for 2011-12. UC Berkeley officials pointed out that while record numbers of students have applied to UC Berkeley each year for many years, the 16 percent increase is a significant jump for a one-year period.

The new pool of UC Berkeley applicants has a mean unweighted GPA of 3.6, the same as the 2011-12 applicant pool, and a mean SAT I total score of 1909, up from 1906 the previous year.

Anne De Luca, UC Berkeley’s acting associate vice chancellor and director of undergraduate admissions, said that a number of factors may have contributed to the increase. They include the campus’s increased outreach efforts in some underserved California communities; increased outreach to out-of-state and international students; and some changes in the UC’s basic eligibility requirements that may have prompted additional students to apply.

Applications from students seeking to transfer to UC Berkeley declined about 2 percent, from 16,012 applications in 2011-12 to 15,717 applications for 2012-13. Across the UC system, transfer applications declined by a few percentages at almost all UC campuses. The cause of the decline is unclear, but UC system officials said the decline follows large increases in transfer applications over the last two years.

The full campus-by campus report, with detailed data, is available on the University of California Office of the President website.