Dean of Admissions Richard Shaw said Thursday that total undergraduate applications to the University will likely total between 19,500 and 19,550 — a 10 percent increase over last year’s record high of 17,735.

With 4,046 early applications, that means there are roughly 15,500 regular applications, about a 2.5 percent increase in regular applications from last year. Early applications, on the other hand, rose 55 percent this year, accounting for much of the rise in total applications. Admissions officials and high school college counselors have attributed drastic increases in early applications to decisions by some universities — including Yale — to change from binding Early Decision programs to nonbinding single-choice Early Action programs.

Shaw said in an e-mail that final numbers will be available after the Admissions Office processes applications with missing information.

University President Richard Levin called the increased number of applications “impressive.”

“We can only be pleased that there’s so much interest in Yale,” he said.

Lakeside School Director of College Counseling Bruce Bailey said no Lakeside student was accepted early to Yale, possibly because of the large increase in the University’s early applicant pool. He said Yale’s switch this year from binding Early Decision to single-choice Early Action made applying early to Yale more attractive.

“[Early Action] made it more competitive,” he said.

About 15 to 20 students from the private high school applied to the University’s Class of 2008. Bailey said this is consistent with past statistics.

“I think we’re probably about the same,” Bailey said.

Bailey said four to five students typically go to Yale each year from his Seattle-based school.

Michael Levin-Gesundheit of Los Altos High School in California said he applied regular decision to Yale.

“I think plenty of students did,” he said.

But Levin-Gesundheit said he did not hear any more talk about Yale this year than usual.

Levin-Gesundheit, who applied early at Harvard, said he also applied to University of California at Los Angeles, University of California at Berkeley, Brown, Stanford, the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia, Princeton and other schools in the University of California system.

“I really want to come see what schools are like,” Levin-Gesundheit said.

Though he applied early to Harvard, he said Yale is still on his mind.

“Everyone I know who’s gone to Yale seems happy,” Levin-Gesundheit said. “It seems like there’s more focus on undergraduates at Yale than at Harvard.”

For Levin-Gesundheit and other applicants to Yale’s Class of 2008, now comes the long wait until April.