Can you remember those days when you poured over college applications for days at a time, toiling away at every word to endear Freshman Admissionsyourselves to those almighty essay readers? Back then, you had to wake up earlier than 8 a.m., and you got to return to the bliss of your relatively spacious home at around 3 p.m. Try to recreate those emotions of frustration and anger at the incessant amount of work that you had to complete, and contrast them with the elation of getting into your dream school. It felt pretty good, right? You were on top of the world, one of those elite few thousand. Savor those feelings, because we’re going to crush them right about now.

From 2007-2011, about 11,000 students were invited to enroll in the world’s best public institution annually. So it may seem that you’re just as special as the rest of the field, even though the raw number of admits has gone up minimally by year. But the number of applicants keeps skyrocketing, as more and more hopeful high-schoolers vie for one of those coveted spots. For the 2012-2013 applicant pool, almost 20,000 more people applied. In case that hasn’t hurt your ego enough, we’ll also tell you that there was an 18% rate of admission, a pretty sharp drop from the 23.3% back in 2007.

Even though there’s a tradition of respecting one’s elders — a matter of class pride and seniority at most universities — there’s definitely respect for all the people these newbies have beaten out. Most of the Cali kids are homegrown in the Bay Area or from SoCal — concentrated in the greater Los Angeles area especially.

There are some bright spots for us old hats, however. The admits had a collective 3.89 GPA, a figure we all surely expect to decrease once they finish their first semester in a rigorous UC Berkeley curriculum. And all that unimpressive stuff they did as teenagers — you know, like being internationally ranked athletes, television actresses and professional dancers — probably has nothing on your glowing college resumes. So even though every successive class has to fight off more read more »

studentIf you’ve met someone who claims he or she received a relatively low score on their SATs, but was still admitted to our very own University of California, Berkeley, you may have met the exception student. An exception student is someone who does not meet the minimum requirements of the university but is still offered admission, regardless.

Every year, UC campuses admit thousands of students who do not meet the requirements and recent findings show that the rate of these exception students is only increasing. UC admission offices are restricted to admitting 6 percent of exception students each year as some believe that students should not be defined solely by their test scores, grades and classes. read more »

If we had a dollar for every application... we could afford the fee increases

If we had a dollar for every application... we could afford the fee increases

It’s January. For some, this might mean a struggle with New Year’s resolutions. For hordes of high school seniors, this means that after endlessly reworking personal statements and trudging through baffling admissions websites, college applications are finally submitted. Reflecting on own days back in high school — a decidedly surreal and mildly uncomfortable experience — we can take heart in knowing that no matter how competitive admissions seemed then, it was not as bad as now: Seniors applied in record numbers this year, with UC Berkeley garnering more than 52,000 new applications — topped only by UCLA (with 61,000) and UC San Diego (with 53,000).

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Admissions stats for the incoming freshman class are in, and boy are they a doozie. NewsCenter, of course, points out that acceptances were sent out to various people better than us like world-class figure skaters, fencers, debaters, Irish dancers and … triplets.

But it might be interesting to note that there’s no obvious effect of the … economic downturn … on the types of admitted applicants. To read more about numbers, you can go here or here.

Image Source: Lara Brucker, Daily Cal
Almost 13,000 high school students offered admission to UC Berkeley [NewsCenter]
UC Admissions Data Released [Daily Cal]
Earlier: Tomorrow Is Your Yesterday for Many People … Today

Is it joyful despair or the other kind?

Note: Post is data-heavy after the jump.

So a bunch of seniors nobody cares about get to find out if they’re coming here or not, whoopdee doo. Well, that may be your attitude, but we at the Clog care about our future readership fellow students.

You’ve probably guessed by now—tomorrow is when read more »

You know it’s getting time to sling out some line and reel in a new school of freshmen when the Berkeley news website starts putting up videos trumpeting Berkeley’s diversity and academic superiority and bureaucratic compassion, not to mention its, nudge nudge, gorgeous green lawns and peerless Californian sunshine. Observe! Sproul fountain spouts water. Also, people walk down streets.

Really, we applaud its ideals–among them the university’s emphasis on its holistic evaluation process, and the refutation of falsified impressions about the application procedure–but the video’s kinda the sanitized yawnfest you’d expect it to be.  But hey-at least there’s a nifty online aid Cal-culator to make it all better. Geddit?

Applying to Berkeley? [Berkeley News]

A few weeks ago, the Daily Cal reported that this year’s incoming students will be the largest group yet, but the post-apocalyptic classes will be damned if they don’t continue Cal’s 10-year tradition of breaking enrollment records. read more »


Yesterday, Apr. 30, after an absurdly long wait, UC Berkeley transfer applicants everywhere finally received the big news. Over a month after those obsessive-compulsive, overachieving upstarts known as future freshmen got their decisions, transfer applicants finally got their just desserts in the form of tasty hunks of Berkeley acceptance. Well–either that or they had an extra month to get their hopes up, only to end up tasting the bitter fruits of rejection, some for the second time around.

So, what we’re trying to say is now might be a good time to call your BFF back home to see what’s what. And you might want to have your sympathy voice ready, because according to a transfer admissions FAQ, usually about 2 in 3 transfer applicants get the shaft. Ouch. Though, to be fair, those odds are better than the very general estimate for freshman applicants–3 in 4 applicants receive a “nix.”

Earlier: You’re Either In, or You’re Out: UC Berkeley Admissions Breaks Hearts, Futures at 5 p.m. PST
Prospective Transfer Students FAQ’s [Cal UGA]

crying.jpg Many of us know what it feels like to be tortured via the throes of anticipation. We waited anxiously for Cal Football to reign as No. 1 last semester, but the moment never came. We cried tears of sweet closure when the last installment of Harry Potter reached our eager hands.

Still, none of that compares to the emotional turmoil that arrives in many student mailboxes across the country today. Yes, it’s that time of year again–the day many high school seniors open a long-awaited letter from the UC Berkeley admissions department (or, rather, log into the myBerkeleyApplication portal at 5 p.m PST for quicker results).

One glance at College Confidential, a message board consisting largely of soccer moms and stressed out overachievers, and you can get a sense of the agony. Some are even accusing admissions of an e-mail conspiracy after their “suspicious” and “cruelly worded” letter announced the release of acceptances on Mar. 27. The letter proclaims, “Thank you for your patience: We’re worth the wait!” Cruel, indeed.

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Ok, so perhaps no one was calling it the messiah of the admissions process. Well, at least no one we know. (Though Ricardo Vazquez in the UC Newsroom seemed pretty stoked about it).

Really, StatFinder didn’t come to redeem the admissions process. But like the iPhone, it has some nice things about it that just make life a bit easier.

The University of California is smitten with this new Web site of theirs, calling it a

bq. first-of-its-kind Web site for a public university that will allow anyone to access and search a wealth of admissions data with a few simple clicks of a mouse.

And, that’s, well, true. There are more than 50 tables, breaking down data on admissions by high school GPA, ethnicity, college GPA, SAT scores, parent income and parent education, among others things.

The university sees “reporters, parents, counselors, policy makers and others interested in this information” accessing this information. Notice that they include “parents” but not “applying students.”

Perhaps it’s come to this point where Mom and Dad are more interested in the competition of college than the kiddies and thus commandeer the application process for their offspring.

Like the iPhone, the application has minor inconveniences … Doesn’t increased accessibility to admissions data only encourage increased competition in applying for colleges?

Oh well, at least we all already got into Berkeley. And at least we aren’t comparing StatFinder to the Nokia N800.

Online Service Will Open UC Admission Statistics to the Public [Daily Cal]
StatFinder puts admissions data at your fingertips [UC Newsroom]
UC StatFinder [Web site]

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