Yale may have reported a record-low 8.3-percent acceptance rate for the class of 2012 on Monday, but officials in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions are not the only ones announcing a lower figure than last year: So far, every Ivy League school that has released admissions data has recorded its lowest admit rates ever, owing in large part to the unusually high influx of applications this year.
Yale, Harvard, Brown, Columbia and Stanford universities and Dartmouth College have each announced over the past two days that the percentages of students admitted for the class of 2012 have reached record lows. Harvard led the pack with a record-low 7.1-percent acceptance rate.
But Dean of Admissions Jeff Brenzel cautioned that numbers of applications received and acceptance rates reveal very little about the actual competitiveness of the selection process.
“Figures like application numbers and acceptance rates are increasingly less relevant as a metric of anything important,” Brenzel said. “The question is, among those applicants in your pool who are very competitive for admission to your institution, is that number remaining consistent over time? I would doubt that you could conclude very much about the makeup of a the class by the fact that applications go up or the acceptance rate goes down.”
Dartmouth extended offers of admission to 2,190 applicants from a pool of 16,536. The acceptance rate of 13.2 percent was down 2 percent from the rate for the class of 2011, the college said in a statement Monday.
“The large number of students applying combined with their impressive academic credentials were some of the factors that made this the most competitive year in Dartmouth history,” Maria Laskaris, Dartmouth dean of admissions and financial aid, said in the statement.
Columbia also posted its lowest ever acceptance rate — 8.7 percent — accepting 1,660 of 19,116 applicants. Stanford, meanwhile, accepted 2,400 students, or 9.5 percent of its roughly 25,500 applicants.
Brown accepted 13 percent of its applicants, according to an article published Tuesday in the New York Times.
Princeton accepted 9.25 percent of its 21,369 applicants, The Daily Princetonian reported early Wednesday morning.
Yale accepted 1,892 students out of 22,813 applicants for an admit rate of 8.3 percent — its lowest ever — while Harvard accepted 1,948 out of 27,462 applicants.
The other two Ivy League schools — Cornell University and the University of Pennsylvania — had not announced their admissions statistics as of Tuesday evening.
Although many high-school seniors are undoubtedly not pleased by the low Ivy acceptance rates, Wade Boggs, a college counselor at the private Westminster Schools in Atlanta, reacted almost philosophically to the news.
“It’s no surprise at all,” Boggs said. “The [acceptance] rates have been creeping down consistently over the past few years. It’s just a reality we have to deal with.”