How To Get Into Dartmouth: A Winning Strategy for Applicants

28/12/202323 minute read
How To Get Into Dartmouth: A Winning Strategy for Applicants

Dartmouth College attracts thousands of applicants each year and only admits a select few who have demonstrated exceptional academic performance, leadership potential, and community involvement.

While there is no formula or guaranteed strategy for admission into this Ivy League, there are certain steps and approaches that can increase your chances of success. In this blog, we’ll explore how hard it is to get into Dartmouth, shed light on what Dartmouth looks for, and explain what you need to maximize your chances to get admitted to Dartmouth.

Dartmouth values students with diverse experiences, backgrounds, and talents. Your extracurricular activities, community service involvement, and work experiences can provide insight into your unique qualities and perspective, so make sure to highlight them in your application.

How hard is it to get into Dartmouth?

For the Class of 2027, Dartmouth accepted 1,173 students from a total of 28,841 applications, the largest number of applications Dartmouth has ever received.

This puts Dartmouth’s acceptance rate for the Class of 2027 at 6%, which is the same acceptance rate that Dartmouth has had for three straight years.

Dartmouth Class of 2027 Acceptance Rates
Number of ApplicationsAccepted StudentsAcceptance Rate
Regular Applications25,8321,1734.5%
Early Applications3,00957819%

If you're eager to join the Big Green family, applying Early Decision to Dartmouth may be smart. The early action acceptance rate at Dartmouth for the Class of 2027 was 19%, compared to the overall 6% acceptance rate.

With fewer applicants to consider, the admissions committee will likely have more time to review each application thoroughly, giving your application a more nuanced and detailed review.

By applying early, you'll also be showing the admissions committee that Dartmouth is your top choice. This can demonstrate a level of interest and enthusiasm for Dartmouth, which is a positive factor in the admissions decision. Moreover, applying early can help you receive your admissions decision sooner, significantly reducing the admissions process's stress and uncertainty and allowing you to plan for the future more effectively.

What is Dartmouth looking for?

Dartmouth is a comprehensive institution that values academic excellence and diversity across its student body. Admissions officers look not only at academic records but also at the activities of candidates beyond the classroom.

The admissions committee seeks to foster a vibrant, diverse, and inclusive student community that fosters intellectual curiosity, leadership, and passion for learning. Here are some factors for consideration:

Academic Performance

Dartmouth College seeks students who have taken challenging courses in high school and have achieved strong grades in those courses. Dartmouth also considers the rigor of the student's high school curriculum and their academic achievements relative to their peers.

However, Dartmouth looks beyond grades and test scores. The admissions committee considers the student's intellectual curiosity and their potential for continued academic growth in college and beyond.

The committee also considers factors such as the student's ability to think critically, solve problems, and communicate effectively.

Character and Personal Qualities

Dartmouth’s admissions committee seeks students who are intellectually curious, open-minded, and willing to take risks. This school values individuals with a growth mindset who are willing to learn from challenges and failures.

The college is committed to creating an inclusive and welcoming environment and values students who are respectful, empathetic, and able to work collaboratively with others.

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Dartmouth seeks students who demonstrate the potential for ethical leadership, creative problem-solving, and innovative thinking. The college recognizes that leadership is about holding formal titles and leading by example and taking action to create positive change.

This means that applicants not only participate in clubs and activities but also take on leadership positions, initiate projects, and spearhead events that positively impact those around them.


Dartmouth College places a high value on integrity because it believes that academic and personal integrity are essential qualities that are necessary for success in college and beyond.

Integrity is the foundation of ethical behavior and honesty, and is an essential element of living in a community of trust. Students who demonstrate integrity at Dartmouth are those who hold themselves to the highest standards of ethical, moral, and academic conduct.

They are honest in their academic work, respect the intellectual integrity of others, and behave in a manner that is consistent with the college's values.

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What do you need to get into Dartmouth?

The following information comes from Dartmouth’s 2022-2023 Common Data Set:

1. High GPA and Challenging Coursework

For the class of 2027, 94.5% of accepted students at Dartmouth graduated in the top tenth of their high school class.

While a high GPA is certainly an advantage when applying to Dartmouth, it is not the only factor that the admissions committee evaluates. Applicants with slightly lower GPAs but with other strengths may still be admitted, as the committee is considering the complete picture of an applicant's academic potential and overall fit for the college.

At Dartmouth, admitted students tend to have pursued a challenging and rigorous high school curriculum, which could include Advanced Placement or honors courses.

Recommended Courses for Dartmouth
CourseRecommended Units
Foreign Language4
Social Studies4

2. SAT/ACT Test Scores

Although standardized test scores are just one factor in the application process, for the Class of 2027, admitted students showcased strong SAT and ACT scores along with their academic achievements and extracurricular activities. While Dartmouth is test-optional, strong SAT or ACT scores can help an applicant's candidacy stand out in a competitive pool of applicants. Here’s a closer look at the SAT and ACT test scores for the Class of 2027:

SAT Scores of Dartmouth Students
Head125th Percentile75th Percentile
ACT Scores of Dartmouth Students
25th Percentile75th Percentile

3. Letters of recommendation

Dartmouth places value on the depth and quality of the letters of recommendation it receives. Letters of recommendation provide a valuable opportunity for Dartmouth's admissions committee to gain insight into an applicant's academic abilities, potential, personality, and character. These letters are an important part of the holistic evaluation process that Dartmouth utilizes, and they carry significant weight in admissions decisions.

4. Unique Extracurriculars

Having unique experiences and pursuing uncommon interests can set an applicant apart from others and make them more attractive to the admissions committee. Dartmouth seeks students who have engaged deeply with their passions and interests, and who have demonstrated their ability to think creatively and innovatively. These experiences can show the applicant's potential to contribute to academic and social dialogues across the Dartmouth campus and beyond and promote inclusive and creative solutions to complex problems.

5. Strong Essays

Your essay allows you to tell a story or share an experience that distinguishes you from other applicants. Your essay is a chance to show that you have researched and understand Dartmouth's unique qualities and values. You can demonstrate how your goals, interests, and experiences align with Dartmouth's academic and cultural community.

In addition, if there are any weaknesses or gaps in your application, your essay can provide context and explanations that may help the admissions committee better understand your circumstances.

Is Dartmouth right for you?

Dartmouth is known for its small, close-knit community and strong undergraduate education commitment. Dartmouth is also known for its liberal arts curriculum, which emphasizes critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication skills.

However, Dartmouth may not be the right fit for everyone. Its rigorous academic standards and competitive admissions process may not be suitable for students who are looking for a less challenging or more flexible educational experience. Whether Dartmouth is right for you depends on your needs, interests, and goals.

You should consider applying if you evaluate your priorities, goals, and other relevant criteria and determine that Dartmouth aligns with your academic and personal needs. However, if after careful consideration, you decide that Dartmouth may not be the best fit for you, exploring other Ivy League schools may be a wise decision. Each Ivy League institution has its unique academic programs, campus culture, financial aid options, and other features that may align better with your objectives.

Life after Dartmouth

Dartmouth is ranked #12 is Best Colleges in the United States, with a promising future for it’s alumni. Not only does Dartmouth provide a wonderful center for professional development for its alumni, but Dartmouth also provides access to a Dartmouth network.Some of Dartmouth’s famous alumni include:

  • Dr. Suess: Children’s book author and illustrator
  • Mindy Kaling: Actress and writer
  • Sherrilyn Ifill: Civil rights lawyer and President of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund
  • John Kemeny: Co-invetor of the Basic programming language

Final Thoughts

Getting into Dartmouth is a challenging yet achievable feat if you devote enough time, effort, and preparation.

Working with expert strategists is a surefire way to maximize your chances of admission. Students working with Crimson are 7x more likely to gain admission into their dream university.

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