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<> on October 15, 2013 in Washington, DC.

WASHINGTON, DC – OCTOBER 15: Students protest in support of affirmative action, outside the Supreme Court during the hearing of ‘Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action’ on October 15, 2013 in Washington, DC. The case revolves around affirmative action and whether or not states have the right to ban schools from using race as a consideration in school admissions. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images) | Andrew Burton via Getty Images

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The issue of affirmative action could be headed back to the U.S. Supreme Court after a federal appeals court refused to reconsider a ruling allowing use of race as a factor in University of Texas undergraduate admissions.

Abigail Fisher’s attorneys had asked the full 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a recent ruling that found barring the university from considering race would mean a less student diversity – in defiance of legal precedent promoting diversity is an important part of education.

The appeals court declined the request Wednesday.

Fisher, who is white, sued in 2008 after she was denied admission. The case went to the U.S. Supreme Court, but justices told the appeals court to re-examine Fisher’s arguments.

Fisher’s attorneys say they’ll go back to the high court.

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