The Ivy League schools have a reputation for being some of the most prestigious, and most selective, schools in the nation.
If you have set your sights on Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, or Yale University, you’ll have your work cut out for you.
Here are the acceptance rates for these Ivy League schools in 2022 (some colleges have not updated their applicant numbers from 2022):
|Ivy League School||Acceptance Rate|
|Cornell University||8.7% (2021 data)|
|The University of Pennsylvania||(2021 data)|
|Princeton University||4.4% (2021 data)|
Accepting only 3.19% of its applicants, Harvard was the most selective Ivy League school in 2022. Even Cornell University, which accepted the greatest percentage of students, is still incredibly selective.
A US News & World report found that the average acceptance rate among all ranked colleges in the United States in 2021 was 70.1%
As you can see, Ivy League schools are far more selective and getting into an Ivy League school is far easier said than done.
Boosting your chances for admission
Just because getting into an Ivy League school is not easy, does not mean that you should feel discouraged about your admission chances.
If it’s your dream to attend an Ivy League school, it’s important that you do everything you can to fall into the top 99 percentile of applicants.
While it will be extremely difficult for you to gain admission to one of these prestigious institutions, it’s not impossible. Thousands of students get into each of these schools each and every year.
Here are some tips to help you join their ranks:
While Harvard was the most selective Ivy League school in 2022, its early admission acceptance rate was more than double that of its regular admission rate at 7.6%.
When you apply early, your application is not compared with nearly as many other applications, which will give you a slightly better chance of standing out and earning a coveted spot with your dream school.
Send your completed applications and required documents and test scores to the colleges on your list by November 1 of your senior year to increase your chances for admission.
Focus on the quality of your extracurricular activities
Ivy League schools want to admit applicants who are going to contribute to their campus and community. As such, they are looking for applicants who have an impressive depth of engagement with extracurricular activities.
While you might think that your resume with 25 activities will wow college admissions officers, these activities may not be as impressive as you might think. If you have surface level involvement with a wide variety of activities, you may come across as flaky or noncommittal to admissions officers.
Instead of trying to rack up a long list of extracurricular activities for your college applications, you should focus on getting deeply involved in a small handful of quality extracurricular activities.
Earning a leadership position like president, treasurer, or captain in an extracurricular activity that you participate in for all four years of high school speaks volumes.
On the same note, you’ll also want to make sure you show commitment through your volunteer experiences. Volunteering at a soup kitchen on Thanksgiving each year isn’t going to be as impressive as being a contributing member of a volunteer organization and investing time and energy into helping a nonprofit organization succeed.
It will be better to show that you spend hours every week tutoring students than to have a list of ten volunteer activities that you only showed up to once.
Earn a high gpa
While this might seem like a no brainer, there are many students who believe that getting straight A’s in easy classes will increase their chances of getting into an Ivy League school.
Ivy Leagues want to see straight A’s, but they also want to see that applicants are taking challenging courses.
When you take advanced courses like AP, IB, or dual credit courses, you will typically earn a higher or weighted gpa. This is why some applicants have grade point averages that are higher than 4.0.
Earning a gpa above a 4.0 will help show admissions officers that you are challenging yourself and capable of tackling tough classes with ease.
If you want to take advanced courses, but you are afraid that you aren’t going to earn a high grade in these classes, consider working with a private tutor.
A private tutor will provide the individualized attention you need to handle your most challenging courses, improve your gpa, and get the grades that Ivy League schools want to see. Consider hiring a Prep Expert private tutor today.
Score in the 99th percentile on the SAT or ACT
If you want to get into an Ivy League school, it will help to have a high SAT or ACT score. If you score in the 99th percentile on one of these standardized tests, it means that you have outscored 99% of students who have taken the test that year.
When you’re trying to get into a highly selective school, having a test score that is better than 99% of other students is an asset.
You can improve the likelihood that you will score in the 99th percentile on the SAT or ACT by doing the following:
- Take the test multiple times. Aim to take the test a couple of times during your junior year and at least once during your senior year. This will give you many chances to familiarize yourself with the test and boost your score.
- Take practice tests and review your mistakes carefully. Practice makes perfect. Take several practice tests and review each of your mistakes so that you don’t repeat them in the future. If you answer hundreds of practice questions and learn from your mistakes with each of them, you will have encountered all of the concepts you’ll need to know on test day.
- Take a prep course. There are countless SAT and ACT prep courses available for students to try and improve their standardized test scores. When you enroll in one of these courses, you will have experienced instructors available to walk you through every aspect of the test. After taking a prep course, you’ll have countless strategies and tips in your arsenal that will help you do well on the test. Consider signing up for one of our effective, tried and true SAT or ACT prep courses at Prep Expert today.
Getting accepted into an Ivy League school will be a challenge. However, if you put your mind to it and follow the tips above, you will have a better chance of achieving your goal.
Learn more about how Prep Expert can help you on your journey to get into one of these top schools when you visit our website.