Eligibility in the Local Context (ELC) Program

Eligibility in the Local Context (ELC) is a program by which the University of California identifies top-performing California high school students. Unlike the broader statewide eligibility pathway, which seeks to recognize top students from throughout the state, ELC draws qualified students from among the top 9 percent of each participating high school.

The ELC program was implemented to:

  • increase the pool of eligible students
  • meet the guideline of the California Master Plan for Higher Education, which states that the top 12.5 percent of public high school graduates will be considered UC-eligible
  • give UC a presence in each California high school and stimulate a college-going culture at those schools that typically do not send many graduates to the university

The ELC program also fulfills an important UC admissions goal: to recognize and reward the academic accomplishment of students who have made the most of the opportunities available to them.

To be designated as ELC, a student must have attended an eligible, participating California high school, satisfactorily completed a specific pattern of 11 UC-approved courses prior to the start of senior year, and have a UC-calculated GPA that meets or exceeds the top 9 percent GPA benchmark established by UC for their school. To maintain the ELC status, the student must satisfy the general admissions requirements including the successful completion of the 15 required “a-g” courses, maintain a 3.0 GPA and submit an official copy of ACT with Writing or SAT Reasoning Test scores.

California high school students who are eligible in the statewide context or eligible in the local context and are not admitted to any campus to which they apply will be offered a spot at another campus if space is available.