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What Are The Easiest & Hardest Ivy League Schools To Get Into In 2022?

23 JUN 2022

It’s common knowledge that Ivy League schools are not only some of the most prestigious schools in the US but also eight of the hardest ones to get into. The Ivies attract the brightest minds and produce graduates who solve some of the world’s toughest challenges. In this blog we’ve compiled a list of the easiest and hardest Ivy League schools to get into in 2022.


Determining the easiest and hardest Ivy League school is subjective because each school specializes in certain areas, making getting into specific programs or majors harder or easier than others. While no Ivy League school is easy to get into, some have slightly higher acceptance rates than others. This blog will use acceptance rates to determine which Ivy League schools are the easiest and hardest to get into.

Ivy League Class of 2026 Acceptance Rates
IviesAcceptance Rate
Cornell~8%
Dartmouth6.2%
Brown5%
Penn4.4%
Yale4.46%
Princeton~4%
Columbia3.73%
Harvard3.19%

Top 3 Easiest Ivy League Schools To Get Into

1. Cornell University

Ithaca, New York

​​Cornell University

Cornell Admission Statistics
Overall Acceptance RateEarly Acceptance RateCrimson Student Acceptance Rate
~8%~20%21%

Cornell is considered the "easiest" Ivy League to get into because it has the highest Ivy League acceptance rate. While it's easier, statistically speaking, to get into Cornell, it's still challenging. It's also important to remember that students apply directly to one of Cornell's eight undergraduate colleges.

Each college has its own acceptance rates, and they vary by college. If you want to see which of Cornell's colleges is the easiest and hardest to get into, check out their Institutional Research and Planning page.

How Max Got Into Cornell

2. Dartmouth College

Hanover, New Hampshire

Dartmouth College

Dartmouth Admission Statistics
Overall Acceptance RateEarly Acceptance RateCrimson Student Acceptance Rate
6.2%20.13%26%

Dartmouth College ranks as the second easiest Ivy League school to get into. Founded in 1769, Dartmouth honors both tradition and innovation. While it has a smaller undergraduate class size, this prestigious school offers top research opportunities, world-class faculty, and small class sizes.

One of the reasons Dartmouth is a more accessible Ivy is because many students opt to submit their applications during the early decision round. Unlike some of the other top universities, Dartmouth allows students to apply early decision to multiple schools. Students feel less pressure to choose, making Dartmouth an even more enticing choice.

How I Got Into Dartmouth

3. Brown University

Providence, Rhode Island

Brown University

Brown Admission Statistics
Overall Acceptance RateEarly Acceptance RateCrimson Student Acceptance Rate
5%14.6%29%

Brown University rounds out our list of the top three easiest Ivy League schools to get into. Founded in 1764, Brown offers an "Open Curriculum" that allows students to build their own core curriculum and explore any of the more than 80 academic programs Brown offers. 

Like all Ivy League schools, Brown is still highly selective. Students who apply to Brown find the idea of creating their own educational path exciting. They can pursue their passions and interests without jeopardizing their career goals. If this sounds like you, talk about self-direction and your personal academic journey in your application to Brown.

How I Got Into Brown University

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The Top 3 Hardest Ivy League Schools To Get Into

1. Harvard University

Cambridge, Massachusetts

Harvard University

Harvard Admission Statistics
Overall Acceptance RateEarly Acceptance RateCrimson Student Acceptance Rate
3.19%7%17%

Harvard is the oldest institution of higher education in the US and consistently ranks #1 hardest Ivy League to get into. Founded in 1636, Harvard offers students a world-class education from some of the most brilliant professors in the world. Harvard is also centrally located near other prestigious universities like Boston University, MIT, Northeastern University, and Tufts University.

Harvard looks for self-motivated students who are ready to change the world. If you hope to attend Harvard, consider how you can add value to the campus community and how you'll carry the Harvard name out into the world

How I Got Into Harvard

2. Columbia University

New York City, New York

Columbia University

Columbia Admission Statistics
Overall Acceptance RateEarly Acceptance RateCrimson Student Acceptance Rate
3.73%~10%29%

Students from around the world dream of studying at Columbia University. This prestigious university, located in the heart of New York City, is home to Columbia College, The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the School of General Studies. Originally called King's College by the royal charter of George II of Great Britain, it was renamed Columbia College in 1784.

If you want to get into Columbia, you should be a passionate learner in and out of the classroom. You should also consider its location in New York City and how you can utilize the city's vast resources.

How Cenon Got Into Columbia University

3. Princeton University

Princeton, New Jersey

Princeton University

Princeton Admission Statistics
Overall Acceptance RateEarly Acceptance RateCrimson Student Acceptance Rate
4%~15%*29%

Princeton University is one of the hardest schools to get into and has one of the lowest acceptance rates of any college in the world. Some might argue it's the hardest Ivy to get into, even though its current acceptance rate is not quite as low as Columbia or Harvard.

Princeton University is located in Princeton, New Jersey and is an easy commute to Philadelphia and New York City. Princeton currently ranks #1 in the 2022 edition of the US Best College list. Founded in 1746, Princeton is the fourth-oldest college in the US.

Students apply to Princeton for various reasons, including its state-of-the-art research facilities, generous financial aid, and low student-to-faculty ratio. Even though Princeton has an extremely low acceptance rate, you should still consider applying if you're passionate about a specific interest, have stellar grades, and rank at the top of your graduating class.

How Peyton got into Princeton University

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3 Tips To Boost Your Chances Of Getting Into An Ivy League School

Students around the world compete for coveted spots at Ivy League schools. If you want to get one of those spots, you have to stand out from the rest of the world's top students. But that's not easy! Here are three tips to boost your chances of getting into an Ivy League school.

1. Demonstrate Your Love For The School

Not all Ivies are the same. While they all share commonalities, each Ivy has its own "personality." As you research each school, you will find you're drawn to particular ones. You’ll discover certain schools offer programs that fit your career goals, clubs or organizations you're passionate about, or maybe they just feel more like home.

Don't pick a school just because it carries a prestigious name. Apply to the colleges that you can see yourself attending. Explain why that school needs you and how you will thrive on campus and in the community.

2. Apply Early

Applying early has many advantages! Statistically speaking, you'll have a higher chance of getting into an Ivy League if you apply early because the pool of applicants is much smaller. It might be challenging to get all the application pieces ready earlier, but it will be worth it. If you decide to apply early, carefully read each school's early-round requirements before applying. Some schools only allow you to apply to one school in the early round, and others require you commit to that school if you're admitted.

3. Become an Expert

Most Ivy League applicants have stellar grades and high test scores. To stand out from the rest of the elite students, consider becoming an "expert" in a particular subject or activity. Admissions teams love seeing you grow, thrive, and lead in your area of interest. The Ivy League schools want to know that you can take your passions into your own hands, find success in the work, and serve the world around you.

Final Thoughts

While statistically speaking, some Ivies are easier or harder to get into, you should apply to the Ivy League schools that fit your career goals and personality. If you apply to an Ivy only because it has the highest acceptance rate, you may miss opportunities at other Ivies and even non-Ivy League schools.

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