Yale received a record-high total of 29,790 applications this year for the class of 2017.
In line with annual growth in application numbers spanning the past decade, this year’s application total marks a 3 percent increase over last year’s application count of 28,977. Because Yale expects to admit the same total number of students as it did last year — approximately 2,000 — the acceptance rate this year should drop “a bit below” last year’s 7.1 percent acceptance rate, Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Jeffrey Brenzel said. Yale received 4,520 applications for its early action round this year, out of which it accepted 649 students, or 14.4 percent.
“Certainly, our [application numbers] have continued to go up, but I do not know whether and for how long that trend will continue,” Brenzel said.
The number of applications jumped 5.8 percent for the class of 2016, and 5 percent for the class of 2015. Despite receiving roughly 800 more applications this year than last year, Brenzel said the Admissions Office still feels “very comfortable” with its ability to evaluate each application fully.
Most of the Ivy League universities are also still riding the wave of across-the-board application increases. Columbia announced last week that it received 33,460 applications for this year’s round, representing a roughly 5 percent increase, and Dartmouth received 22,400 applications, a decrease of roughly 3 percent.
As the number of Yale’s applications has doubled since 2001, Brenzel said, the scores and grades of Yale’s applicants, admitted students and students who accept offers of admission consistently “have averaged the highest of any college’s in the nation.”
High school college counselors interviewed said they see a fair amount of anxiety each year from students applying to college.
Andrew McNeill, college counselor at The Taft School in Watertown, Conn., said he usually sees around five times the number of students who apply to Yale in the regular decision round as he does for early action in the fall. McNeill said some students wait to apply in the regular decision because they use that time to build up necessary qualifications.
“It’s definitely hard on students,” said Jawaan Wallace, college counselor at Brentwood School in Los Angeles, Calif. “The anxiety is consistent, [though] it varies from school to school.”
Annalise Mariottini, a high school applicant from California, said the increasing number of applications that Yale receives each year “definitely caused some nervousness” when she applied. Though Yale is her first choice, and she feels like she has a good chance, she said she is naturally still open to other colleges, in anticipation of the University’s low acceptance rate in the spring.
Eric Aldieri, a high school applicant from Connecticut who was deferred in Yale’s early action round and now awaits his admission notification in regular decision, said he “honestly enjoyed the college application process” because of the chance to visit many schools and compose heartfelt essays.
“It sounds cliché … but I came closer to discovering my true self,” Aldieri said. “That being said, the wait [until decisions] is atrocious.”
Applicants to Yale were able to elect to send their applications to Yale-NUS College, the liberal arts college Yale is creating with the National University of Singapore. Brenzel said over 9,200 students applied to Yale-NUS through their Yale College applications.
Yale applicants will be notified of their decisions March 28.