The University of North Carolina
at Chapel Hill: Admissions Policy
See also Undergraduate Admissions
I. All qualified persons are welcome to seek admission to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and all persons may apply for and accept admission confident that the policy and regular practice of the institution are not to discriminate in offering access to its educational programs and activities on the basis of age, gender, race, color, national origin, religion, creed, disability, veteran’s status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. (See www.unc.edu/campus/policies/nondiscrim.pdf.)
II. Projections of the number of students to be admitted and enrolled in any year shall be determined a) by the capacity of the institution to meet the instructional and other needs of students in the colleges, schools, departments, curricula, or other programs to which applicants seek admission and b) by enrollment levels approved for budgetary or other appropriate purposes.
III. When at any time the number of qualified applicants for admission exceeds the number of persons who can be admitted and enrolled (as determined by the criteria specified in II above), those to be offered admission shall be selected on the basis of a) recognition of the institution’s special responsibility to residents of North Carolina and b) the institution’s judgment of the applicant’s relative qualifications for satisfactory performance in the specific college, school, department, curriculum, or other program to which the applicant seeks admission.
Provided that the criteria set forth hereinafter are met, this policy of competitive admissions shall not prevent the admission of selected applicants a) who give evidence of possessing special talents for University programs requiring such special talents, b) whose admission is designed to help achieve variety within the total number of students admitted and enrolled, or c) who seek educational programs not readily available at other institutions.
In seeking variety within the total number of students admitted and enrolled, the University shall affirm its commitment to achieve excellence, to provide for the leadership of the educational, governmental, scientific, business, humanistic, artistic, and professional institutions of the state and nation, and to enrich the lives of all the people of North Carolina.
In the application of this policy of competitive admissions to nonresident students, preference for admission may be given to nonresident applicants who are children of alumni of the institution.
IV. Admission of persons to the specific colleges, schools, curricula, or other programs of the institution shall be governed by the provisions set forth below.
Admission of undergraduate students to colleges or schools to pursue programs leading to a baccalaureate degree shall be the responsibility of the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. The Admissions Office shall apply policies and procedures that, not inconsistent with policies adopted by the Board of Trustees, are approved by the Advisory Committee on Undergraduate Admissions.
In the application of the provisions set forth in III above, preference for admission shall be given to qualified residents of North Carolina; however, in recognition of the educational and other values accruing to North Carolina students, to the institution, and to the state from participation of nonresident students in the programs of the institution, nonresidents may be admitted in the entering first-year class in numbers likely to result in no more than 18 percent nonresident enrollment in the entering first-year class.
Admission of undergraduates shall be to the first-year class, to other classes by transfer after satisfactory completion of one or more years of acceptable college-level work in some other institution(s) of higher education, or to Part-Time Classroom Studies. Among applicants seeking admission by transfer, normal administrative practice shall favor applicants for transfer to the junior class.
Admission and enrollment of persons who are candidates for financial aid for which athletic ability is a consideration shall be conditional upon compliance with applicable regulations of the Atlantic Coast Conference and the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
Admission to the First-Year Class
Admission to and enrollment in the first-year class shall be conditional upon graduation from secondary school with such units of secondary school academic course credit as may be specified by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions; however, if all other criteria are met, the Admissions Office may make exceptions to the secondary school graduation and course credit requirements in accordance with procedures approved by the Advisory Committee on Undergraduate Admissions.
Criteria employed for determination of each applicant’s qualifications for admission shall include a) satisfactory evidence of scholastic promise based upon the applicant’s previous academic record, recommendations from schools previously attended, scores on selected tests of scholastic aptitude or achievement, the applicant’s written application for admission, and the applicant’s predicted grade average for the first year as determined by procedures approved by the Advisory Committee on Undergraduate Admissions and b) satisfactory evidence of the applicant’s capacity to cope with the demands of University life.
Admission by Transfer
Admission and enrollment by transfer from another institution shall be conditional upon a satisfactory academic record on work undertaken in all other institutions attended, satisfactory recommendations from institutions previously attended, and eligibility to return to all previously attended institutions of higher education.
Part-Time Classroom Studies Admissions
Eligibility for admission to Part-Time Classroom Studies shall normally be limited to adult individuals living within commuting distance of Chapel Hill.
Admission to Part-Time Classroom Studies of an applicant who does not hold a baccalaureate degree shall be the responsibility of the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Such admissions shall be either
• For full credit, applicable toward fulfillment of degree requirements, in which case the minimum requirements shall be the same as those for admission to degree programs and in which case the Office of Undergraduate Admissions shall review each applicant using the same admissions criteria as for comparable full-time, degree-seeking students applying to the University; or
• For personal benefit and enjoyment, in which case the applicant may be exempted from the qualitative requirements for admission to degree programs. Notwithstanding this exemption from qualitative requirements, the applicant must have graduated from an approved or accredited secondary school and must demonstrate the capacity to cope with the demands of University life.
Admission to Part-Time Classroom Studies of an applicant who is currently enrolled in high school shall be the responsibility of the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Such admissions shall be considered only when an applicant a) seeks to enroll in a University course for which there is no comparable course at the student’s secondary school and b) demonstrates adequate preparation for the course in which the student seeks to enroll.
Admission to Part-Time Classroom Studies of an applicant who holds a baccalaureate degree shall be the responsibility of the William and Ida Friday Center for Continuing Education. Such admissions shall be for personal benefit and enjoyment, for the satisfaction of prerequisite requirements for professional or graduate programs, or for transfer of credit to a postbaccalaureate degree program, in which case the applicant may be exempted from the qualitative requirements for admission to degree programs.
Graduate School Admissions
With recognition of the institution’s special responsibility to residents of North Carolina but without restrictions based on residence status, admission to The Graduate School shall be a selective process with the objective of enrolling from the pool of applicants for each discipline those students who, in the judgment of the institution, are best qualified to pursue graduate degrees in their chosen academic fields. Admission of graduate students shall be the responsibility of the dean of The Graduate School with the advice and assistance of the Administrative Board of The Graduate School and of the graduate faculties of the departments, schools, and curricula authorized to offer graduate degree programs.
For admission to The Graduate School, the applicant must
• Hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university in the United States or its equivalent from an institution abroad
• Present a strong overall record of academic achievement
• Be in good standing in the last-attended institution where graduate work has been or is being taken, and
• Be admitted as a degree student unless there are exceptional circumstances justifying admission for nondegree study with the approval of the dean of The Graduate School.
The graduate student enrollment level for each school, department, or curriculum shall be determined for each academic year by the dean of The Graduate School following consultation with each of the schools, departments, and curricula concerned.
Professional School Admissions
Admission of students to the professional degree programs in schools other than The Graduate School and to nondegree programs in the schools of the Division of Health Affairs shall be, in each of these schools, the responsibility of its established committee on admissions, which shall apply policies, procedures, and requirements, not inconsistent with the provisions of this policy, adopted by the faculty of the school and approved by the chancellor or his delegate.
Admission of applicants to any summer session shall be the responsibility
• Of the Office of Undergraduate Admissions with respect to those who wish to begin in the summer an undergraduate program of study that will continue into the following academic year or that is intended to lead to a baccalaureate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, as well as those undergraduates already enrolled in this institution who wish to return for undergraduate work in the summer
• Of The Graduate School with respect to those who wish to begin a degree program of graduate study in the summer, as well as those graduate students already enrolled in this institution who wish to return for graduate study in the summer
• Of Part-Time Classroom Studies in the Friday Center for Continuing Education with respect to those who wish to begin in the summer on a part-time basis as a postbaccalaureate nondegree student, as well as those already enrolled in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who wish to return for part-time study in the summer.
Admission to Summer School by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, The Graduate School, and Part-Time Classroom Studies shall be in conformity with the provisions set forth in this policy for other undergraduate and graduate admissions.
Admission to Summer School by the dean of Summer School shall be in conformity with policies, procedures, and requirements adopted by the Administrative Board of Summer School. Each such admission shall terminate as of the last day of that summer term and shall include no commitment, stated or implied, for admission of the student to any subsequent semester or session of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
V. Appeals concerning individual admission, or admission rescission, decisions shall be governed by the admissions appeal procedure contained in Appendix A.
* This policy adopted by resolution of the Board of Trustees on September 3, 1976.
* Amended by Board of Trustees, August 24, 1984.
* Amended by Board of Governors, March 14, 1986.
* Amended by Board of Trustees, May 27, 1994.
* Amended by Board of Trustees, effective January 1, 2006.
Appendix A: Admissions Appeal Procedure
This document sets forth the procedures to be followed with respect to the appeal of a negative admissions decision, including a decision to rescind an admission that has already been granted.
I. Appeal to Admissions Officer
Appeals concerning individual admission, or admission rescission, decisions may be had only if it is contended that a) a provision set forth in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill admissions policy (“admissions policy”) has been violated or b) the decision not to admit the individual or to rescind admission resulted from a material procedural error in the admissions process. Such an appeal shall be lodged by the applicant-appellant with the administrative officer (the director of undergraduate admissions, the dean of The Graduate School, the dean of the professional school concerned, or the dean of Summer School) whose office had responsibility for the admission in question (hereafter the “admissions officer”) within 30 days after the appellant has received the letter communicating the University’s decision. The appeal shall be in writing and shall set forth the grounds for the appeal.
Upon receipt of the appeal, the admissions officer shall review the applicant-appellant’s file and appeal letter and shall communicate his or her decision to the appellant in writing.
II. Appeal to Provost
The decision of the admissions officer may be appealed to the provost only if it is contended that a) a provision set forth in the admissions policy has been violated or b) the decision not to admit the individual or to rescind admission resulted from a material procedural error in the admissions, or appeal, process. Such an appeal shall be lodged with the provost by filing a letter of appeal specifying the grounds for the appeal within 15 days after the appellant has received the letter communicating the decision of the admissions officer.
The appeal shall be heard by the provost or the provost’s designee, and the appellant, at his or her option, may appear in person or conduct the appeal by telephone. Following the hearing, the provost or designee will communicate the decision to the appellant in writing.
III. Appeal to the Board of Trustees
The decision of the provost or his or her designee may be appealed to the Board of Trustees only if it is contended that a) a provision set forth in the admissions policy has been violated or b) the decision not to admit the individual or to rescind admission resulted from a material procedural error in the admissions, or appeal, process. The appellant shall file a letter of appeal specifying the grounds for the appeal and all supporting facts upon which the appellant bases his or her appeal within 15 days after receiving the letter communicating the decision of the provost. The appeal letter shall be sent to the Office of University Counsel for transmission to the Board of Trustees.
The Office of University Counsel shall review the appeal letter to determine if it states a valid ground for appeal. If the letter does not state a proper ground for appeal, the appeal will not go forward to the Board of Trustees, and the appellant will be notified to that effect. If the Office of University Counsel determines that the letter of appeal states a valid ground for appeal, it shall transmit the appeal to the Board of Trustees.
An appeal to the Board of Trustees shall be considered by a three-person panel of the Board of Trustees and shall be solely on the written record, unless the panel expressly requests the presence, in person or by phone, of both the appellant and the admissions officer or his or her designee. This three-person panel shall have full authority to act on behalf of the Board of Trustees, and the decision of the panel shall be deemed the decision of the Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees panel shall consider the record presented to the provost and all documents and other writings submitted by the appellant and the admissions officer. The trustee panel may reverse the decision of the provost only upon a showing by the appellant of clear and material error on the part of the provost in his or her decision. Otherwise, the panel shall sustain the provost’s decision. If the trustee panel reverses the provost’s decision, the panel shall remand the case to the appropriate admissions office for reconsideration in light of any guidance the trustee panel chooses to provide. The panel’s decision will be communicated to the appellant in writing. There is no appeal from the decision of the trustee panel.