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The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal's Second Ruling in Fisher v. University of Texas: The Decision and Its Implications

July 31, 2014

Prepared on Behalf of the College Board's Access & Diversity Collaborative

On July 15, 2014, in its second ruling on the case, a three-judge panel from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals rendered a 2-1 decision in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, holding that the consideration of race or ethnicity by the University of Texas at Austin's (UT) in its admission program was narrowly tailored to achieve UT’s compelling educational interests and, therefore, justified under applicable constitutional standards. The Fifth Circuit reheard the case after the U.S. Supreme Court determined in June 2013 that the Fifth Circuit, in its first ruling, had not subjected the university’s consideration of race to the required "strict judicial scrutiny" that applies whenever race-conscious policies are challenged.

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