UC/CSU/CCC Spring 2019 Update

I attended WACAC SLC toward the end of February and obtained the updates below for UCs, CSUs, and California community colleges.

UC Update (freshman updates only)
CSU Update (freshman and transfer updates)
CCC Update (transfer updates only)

UC Update

The UCs don’t even bother with numbers and stats any more, just a lot of “we are doing such a great job serving California students” self-congratulatory remarks in the presentation (this is the official link to the presentation, but I had some trouble opening the file; if you cannot open the file, copy it to Google Drive and it should open) and convoluted non-answers when addressing audience questions.

The only useful information I got:

  • Merced now requires incoming freshman to live on campus for two years (starting with the Fall 2019 freshmen).
  • Change (?) in how UCLA engineering evaluates freshman applicants (the information I obtained at this presentation conflicted with what was previous given out, but it was not presented as a change in policy); for a complete explanation (including the previous information, the new information, and my analysis), purchase my Covert Content ebook ($25; click “Pay with Debit or Credit Card” if you don’t have a PayPal account) or subscribe to my newsletter to get the ebook plus additional benefits!
  • UCLA has expressed some skepticism regarding the rigor of online high school courses (this is NOT the first time); this attitude is NOT consistent across all UCs, so I would say only take it to heart if you care more about UCLA than all other UCs. My recommendation, in general, is to always try California community college courses first (free for concurrently enrolled high school students). Use online high school courses sparingly (just because they are so expensive) and, if UCLA is your first (or only) choice, as a last resort (such as increasing the number of AP courses you are taking because your school didn’t give you enough or if your counselor is being a jerk and refuses to sign off on your request for concurrent enrollment at a California community college).
  • From a presentation regarding art programs – UCLA hates anime, do NOT include that in your portfolio!!! (Also, UCLA is more of a conceptual art school, focusing on theory, in contrast to a technical art school that focuses on a “common defined look.”)

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CSU Update

The CSU presentation is full of numbers and stats, and technicalities of the admissions process, per usual. The only oddity I saw was a slight dip in transfer applications, which I didn’t expect (and don’t have a regular theory, or even a conspiracy theory, to explain).

For Fall 2019, a new policy to redirect students who are CSU-eligible but not admitted to any of the CSUs they applied to has been put into place; the details are here. There is also an adjustment to how local preference is applied (for campuses that didn’t used to have local preference, such as SLO, there will be some local preference now due to legislative change); however, how that local preference works in practice is unclear at the moment and I have not found a systemwide explanation for it yet (my last CSU update from October 2018 has the most detailed explanation I currently have).

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CCC Update

Recent legislative change (AB 705) has eliminated the use of placement exams to determine which English and math courses students should take at California community colleges (whether to begin with remedial coursework). As of Fall 2019, all California community colleges are required to use a combination of high school coursework and grades for English and math course placement.

Some finer points:

  • Passing AP scores may allow the student to bypass the placement process altogether and be placed into higher level English and math courses.
  • Completed AP classes and grades (but no AP exam score or no passing AP exam score) will be used for placement into English and math courses.

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