The roots of education are bitter, but the fruits is sweet ~ Aristotle

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world ~ Nelson Mandela

Education is not a preparation for life, Education is life itself ~ John Dewey




The University of California (UC) is a public university system in the state of California. Under the California Master Plan for Higher Education, the University of California is a part of the state's three-tier public higher education system, which also includes the California State University system and the California Community Colleges system.

The University of California has a combined student body of more than 191,000 students, over 1,340,000 living alumni, and a combined systemwide and campus endowment of just over $7.3 billion (8th largest in the United States).Its first campus, UC Berkeley, was founded in 1868, while its tenth and newest campus, UC Merced, opened in the fall of 2005. All campuses enroll both undergraduate and graduate students, with two exceptions: the University of California, San Francisco campus enrolls only graduate and professional students in the medical and health sciences, and the independently administered Hastings College of the Law (also located in San Francisco) enrolls only graduate students. Six of its undergraduate campuses are ranked among the top 50 universities by both the U.S. News and World Report and the Academic Ranking of World Universities.

The University of California's campuses boast large numbers of distinguished faculty in almost every field. The University is considered a model for public institutions across the United States, although as of the 2005-06 fiscal year, only 29% of its total budget comes from the State.


UC researchers and faculty are responsible for 5,505 inventions and 2,497 patents. UC researchers create 3 new inventions per day. At 32 million items, the University of California library system contains the third largest collection in the world, after the Library of Congress and the British Library.

Collectively, the system counts among its faculty (as of 2002):
389 members of the Academy of Arts and Sciences
5 Fields Medal recipients
19 Fulbright Scholars
25 MacArthur Fellows
254 members of the National Academy of Sciences
91 members of the National Academy of Engineering
13 National Medal of Science Laureates
32 Nobel laureates. Nobel laureates are present at all campuses except Davis, Merced, Riverside, and Santa Cruz.
106 members of the Institute of Medicine


The University of California and most of its campuses are members of the Association of American Universities (AAU), while the California State University and several of its campuses are members of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU).


The University of California is governed by the Regents of the University of California, as required by the current Constitution of the State of California. Eighteen regents are appointed by the governor for 12-year terms. One member is a student appointed for a one-year term. There are also 7 ex officio members — the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Speaker of the Assembly, Superintendent of Public Instruction, president and vice president of the Alumni Associations of UC, and the UC President.

The Academic Senate, made up of faculty members, is empowered by the Regents to set academic policies. In addition, the systemwide faculty chair and vice-chair sit on the Board of Regents as non-voting members.

Originally the President ran only the first campus, Berkeley. Now, the Regents appoint a president to run the entire system. The UC Office of the President is located in downtown Oakland and effectively serves as the system headquarters. Individual campuses are managed by Chancellors, who are given a great degree of autonomy.


Each UC school handles admissions separately, but a student wishing to apply for undergraduate admission uses one application for all UCs. If it is not already in electronic form, the application is then scanned into a computer and distributed to the individual campus undergraduate admission offices. Graduate and professional school admissions are handled directly by each department or program to which one applies.

Prior to 1986, students who wished to apply to a UC for undergraduate study could only apply to one campus. If the student was rejected at that campus, but otherwise met the UC minimum eligibility requirements, he or she would be redirected to another campus with available space. For students who did not wish to be redirected, the application fee was returned. In 1986, that system was changed to the current "multiple filing" system, in which a student can apply to as many or as few UC campuses as he or she wants on one application, paying a fee for each campus. This system significantly increased the numbers of applications to the Berkeley and Los Angeles campuses, since students could choose which campus they wanted to attend after they received acceptance letters, without the fear of being redirected to a campus they did not want to attend.

The University of California accepts fully eligible students from among the top eighth of California public high school graduates through regular statewide admission, or the top 4% of any given high school class through Eligibility in the Local Context (see below). All eligible California high school students who apply are accepted to the University, though not necessarily to the campus of choice. Eligible students who are not accepted to the campus(es) of their choice are placed in the "referral pool", where campuses with open space may offer admission to those students.

Undergraduate admissions are conducted on a two-phase basis. In the first phase, students are admitted based solely on academic achievement. This accounts for between 50 to 75% of the admissions. In the second phase, the university conducts a "comprehensive review" of the student's achievements, including extracurricular activities, essay, family history, and life challenges, to admit the remainder. Very rarely, students who do not qualify for regular admission are "admitted by exception." In 2002, 2% of these exceptions were granted.

The process for determining admissions varies. At some campuses, such as Davis, Santa Barbara, and San Diego, a point system is used to weight grade point average, SAT Reasoning or ACT scores, and SAT Subject scores, while at Berkeley, Irvine, and Los Angeles, academic achievement is examined in the context of the school and the surrounding community.

Race, sex, national origin, and ethnicity have not been used as UC admission criteria since the passing of Proposition 209. However, this information is collected for statistical purposes.

No comments:

Background Image of this blog courtesy of Laura Furniss at Flickr. The author owes a million thanks to her.

Disclaimer: Most of The information obtained are from and the corresponding universities' websites.Images may be taken from the internet, and/or the corresponding universities' websites.The author does not have the rights to any of the images and thus request for information - if any- regarding the ownership of the pictures and/or images