Can you reasonably assume a UC school to be a safety if you have stats that are above the 75th percentile?
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Generally if your stats are above the 75th percentile, you can assume a school is a safety for you. That being said, a bunch of factors can impact whether or not a school is *really* safe, such as acceptance rate (top 20 schools can't really be a safety for anyone), your demographics (race, first-gen, income, in-state vs. out-of-state), whether the school considers demonstrated interest or practices yield protection. On top of that, many schools are going test-optional this year, which will make admissions even more volatile. If you have good test scores though, that will certainly help you - test-optional doesn't mean test-blind.
Long story short, you probably can consider UCSC, UC Merced, and UC Riverside safeties if your stats are above the 75th percentile, but watch out for factors like in-state vs. out-of-state. And make sure to still put together a solid application. Hope this helps!
In the previous admission cycle yes, but not this one. The main reason is that UC schools are all test-optional so there will be more scrutiny on your GPA, essay, and academic rigor. Submitting high stats may help differentiate yourself between other candidates who do not submit but keep in mind if they have a better GPA, course rigor, essays, your stats may not be enough to auto-admit you.
For those schools mentioned yes but safety is not a garuntee but as rule of thumb any school with sub 40% admit rate is never a safety.
If your character is figuratively destroyed in a rec letter and or your essays are bad you it would kill even if you are a top 1% stat wise applicant