Briefly: Applications to Harvard pass the 29,000 mark

More than 29,000 high school students applied for a spot in the Harvard College class of 2013, the Crimson reported Tuesday. The news means that Harvard will outpace Yale by over 3,000 total applications this year; Yale has received about 26,000 total applications for the class of 2013, Dean of Admissions Jeff Brenzel told the News last week. While Harvard’s freshman class is larger than that of Yale, both universities aim to admit roughly the same number of total applicants. Last year, Harvard accepted 1,948 applicants, according to the Crimson, and Brenzel has said Yale will aim to admit between 1,900 and 2,000 applicants this year.


  • '10

    When was the last time Yale had more applications than Harvard? Has it ever happened?

  • Recent Alum

    The sort of people who apply to Harvard but not Yale are almost always people who get into neither Harvard nor Yale.

  • '10

    What about the (presumably smaller) number who applied to Yale but not Harvard?

  • Y'09

    Figure at least a couple hundred of the Early Action admits have already matriculated at Yale, so they definitely wouldn't be applying to Harvard. Other EA admits probably dropped other apps as well, as I happily did 4 years ago!

  • '10

    You are so right, Y '09.

    Thank God for the early admissions program, which effectively limits the number of cross-admits with Harvard. Historically 3 out of 4 of those cross-admits head to Cambridge.

    Without the early admissions program, Yale's yield rate would probably drop 5%, just like Princeton's did when it dropped its early program.

  • Anonymous

    Except Princeton is Early Decision while Yale is Early Action. It wouldn't drop that low because applicants still have a choice whether or not to matriculate to Yale. You don't have that option if you appy early at Princeton.

  • '10

    You are partly right, Anonymous; the yield rate drop depends on how far you go in surrendering the Early Decision advantage.

    When Yale switched from Early Decision to "Single Choice" Early Action the yield dropped from 70.2% for my class )the class of '10) to 67.6% last year. Going to "true" early action would undoubtedly drop the yield another 2-3 points, and surrendering the early program entirely would mean another 2-3 points beyond that..

    Princeton's yield dropped from 69% to 58.6% over the same period as it dropped the early admissions crutch altogether.

    Harvard, when it gave up "open" early action, went from 79.2% for the class of '10 to 76.3% last year.