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26 NOV 2021
The 2020-2021 admissions cycle proved to be one of the most competitive cycles in history due to several factors, including test-optional admissions policies and leniency amid COVID-19 restrictions. It’s not a surprise that Yale University was among the toughest to gain admittance, receiving 33% more applications than the previous year. Still, Yale offered spots to 2,169 of the 46,905 students who applied for the Class of 2025.
How Crimson Student Bluebelle got into Yale
If Yale is the school of your dreams, Crimson can help you achieve your goal. Our strategists include former Yale admissions officers and graduates who can help you put together a solid application that stands out from the crowd! Learn more about our Admissions Support program.
The beautiful coastal town of New Haven, Connecticut, is the home of Yale University. Founded in 1701, Yale is dedicated to “expanding and sharing knowledge, inspiring innovation, and preserving cultural and scientific information for future generations.” The university partners with its hometown of New Haven and with people and institutions worldwide, promoting unity and cultural awareness while training and educating the next generation of leaders. Yale has a strong passion for improving the lives of the less fortunate and underserved.
Yale ranked #5 in the 2022 edition of the US News Best Colleges list. With nearly 4,703 (Fall 2020) undergraduate students taking classes on their 373-acre campus, Yale is a hotspot for student service and activism organizations, cultural clubs, and even secret societies. Their most famous secret societies are the Skull and Bones Society, whose notable members include George W. Bush and John Kerry, and the Scroll and Key Society.
Yale is known for its drama and music programs, as well as its well-known rivalry with Harvard. Yale students live in one of 14 residential colleges complete with their own head and dean who also live in the college. While each college offers its own events, seminars, and speakers, all students study and take classes taught by the Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
US News & World Report ranked Yale #5 in their Best Colleges 2022 edition. Yale also ranked #14 in the 2022 QS World University Rankings.
As one of the most selective colleges in the world, it is tough to get into Yale. Yale’s acceptance rate in 2018 was 5.9%, and it plummeted to 4.62 in 2021, likely due to making the SAT and ACT test-optional. This decision may have contributed to record-high application numbers and record-low acceptance rates.
|Total Application||Overall Acceptance Rate||Regular Decision Applications||Regular Decision Acceptance Rate||International Student Acceptance Rate|
Here’s the obvious answer: You need to be in the top 10% of your graduating class to have a shot at getting into Yale. Yale looks for students who excel in a wide range of challenging courses. They love letters of recommendation from teachers who talk about how your energy, curiosity, and drive helped you excel in and out of the classroom. Their first consideration is always academics, so your high school transcript is the most crucial part of your application.
But, that’s not all Yale looks for in its applicants.
Yale selects students who are leaders in their community and in their particular area of interest. They want students who will make the most of their abundant on-campus resources, stretch the limits of their talents, and use everything they have learned to improve the world around them.
These two questions guide the Yale admissions team:
Grades and test scores might get you through the door, but they probably won’t help you stand out from the rest of the applicants with equally high numbers. Your application will come to life through your extracurricular activities and essays (more on this later).
The admissions committee looks for exceptional engagement, ability, and promise. Rather than participating in every available opportunity, focus on the one or two activities that excite you. Utilize the resources available at your school and in your community to stretch yourself in that area. Then show how you will use Yale’s extensive resources to further your passion.
A Day In The Life: Yale Student
Find out your chances of getting accepted into Yale based on your profile using our free College Admissions Calculator!
Yale’s general application process is similar to the rest of the Ivy League schools. Admissions officers look for applicants with stellar grades, exceptional academic accomplishments, and those who will utilize Yale’s breadth and depth of knowledge and resources to improve the world around them.
To stand out to Yale, your application needs to come to life! Use every part of the application to reveal a piece of yourself. If the admissions committee can picture you on campus, participating in student clubs and organizations, utilizing their extensive resources, and applying what you’ve learned, they’re more likely to admit you.
Below is an overview of the Yale application requirements. Yale offers extensive information about their specific application requirements on their website, even answering the most commonly asked questions from first-year applicants. Visit their application instructions page for specific application requirements.
Yale accepts the following applications:
Application fees for the Common Application and Coalition Application are $80. Students who apply through the QuestBridge application do not pay an application fee, but only students named QuestBridge Finalists may apply with this application.
The Yale application asks you to provide the following:
To learn more about how to make your application stand out, check out our free eBook on How to Crush Your US College Application
Nearly every Yale student was part of the top 10% of their high school graduating class. Since the average GPA for Yale is 4.14, it’s safe to say you will need nearly straight A’s to compete with other Yale hopefuls. In addition to having a high GPA, you should also take advantage of the advanced classes your school offers. Depending on where you live, this means you should take AP or IB courses to show the Yale admissions officers you can handle demanding coursework.
Suppose your GPA is not as high as the average Yale GPA. You may be able to compensate with high test scores, glowing letters of recommendation, and extracurricular activities that complement Yale’s mission.
Check out our free GPA Calculator to find out if you have what it takes to get into Yale today!
You can receive acceleration credit for scores of 4 or 5 on some AP exams. This credit might give you the option to graduate early, but only if you complete specific courses in specific departments. Most students do not use this credit to graduate early. Click here for more information about Yale’s Acceleration policies.
Due to the disruptions caused by COVID-19, Yale chose to make standardized tests optional for the 2021-2022 admissions cycle. You can report your SAT or ACT scores, but you will not be disadvantaged if you choose not to take the test.
Students who submit their SAT scores typically score between 1460-1580.
Students have the option to submit their ACT Essay and SAT Writing sections. They can self-report their subscore on the application.
Yale recommends that students who choose to submit the SAT subject tests submit two SAT Subject Tests, with only one being the math test.
ACT scores typically range from 33-35.
Find out your chances of getting into Yale based of your current SAT or ACT scores with our free college admissions chances calculator!
|Test||Score Range (25th & 75th Percentile)|
|SAT Math||740 - 800|
|SAT ERW||720 - 780|
|ACT Math||31 - 35|
|ACT English||34 - 36|
|ACT Composite||33 - 35|
If you would like help with your SAT or ACT preparation, Crimson offers online tutoring programs with the world’s best teachers and tutors, many of whom scored a perfect 1600 (SAT), 36 (ACT), and 800 (SAT II) on their college admissions standardized tests. Book a free consultation to learn more.
While some students might believe the application essays are the least important part of the Yale application, they’re actually extremely important! These essays are one of the best ways students can distinguish themselves from the rest of the highly-qualified applicants. The admissions team encourages students to take these essays seriously.
The broad range of prompts allows students to write about activities, hobbies, and important experiences. They also encourage students to use their voices rather than say what they think the admissions team wants to hear. These are personal statements and are one of the only ways students can explain why they are perfect for Yale.
You can complete the Yale Questions directly on the Common Application or Coalition Application.
The essays vary slightly based on the application platform you choose, but Yale requires nine responses - seven short answer questions and two short essays.
Read our blog on how to answer the Yale supplemental essay to learn about tips to stand out against other candidates!
Yale isn’t interested in every single activity you participated in during grades 9-12. They want to know about the extracurriculars that meant the most to you, the ones that are most relevant to your college and career goals, and the ones that best align with Yale’s mission. There are a limited number of spaces for extracurriculars, so only include ones that you’re genuinely passionate about and fit within your with your future goals.
Read more about Crimson Student Bluebelle’s non-academic interests that led her to Yale University.
Consider exploring interests and activities that are a bit outside the box to distinguish yourself from the rest of the applicants. Start a club or a company. Take your passion for reaching the underserved community and turn that passion into starting a non-profit organization. The options are endless. Remember whatever you choose, dive in deep and make the most of it. Yale wants to see that you’re passionate about your chosen activities and interested in serving the greater community.
Crimson’s Admission Support program comes with extracurricular and leadership project planning, execution, and reporting to make you a well-rounded candidate when applying to universities. Crimson Students are 4x more likely to be admitted to Ivy League universities such as Yale. Find out more about how we do this through our Admissions Support program.
Yale requires three letters of recommendation (two academic teachers and one counselor). These letters don’t necessarily need to come from the class where you received your highest grades. Ask a teacher or counselor who knows you well for a recommendation letter. They should come from someone who know you best and can give Yale the broadest picture of who you are and why you should be part of the Yale community.
The counselor you choose should talk about your leadership positions at the school and how you contributed to the school community as a whole. Your letters of recommendation are another great way to make your application come to life. They should reveal attributes about you not found in any other part of the application.
International students follow the same application process as all other students, with just a few minor differences. Non-native English-speakers are strongly encouraged to take one of the following proficiency tests:
Like all Ivy League schools, Yale is expensive. These are the raw costs for the 2021-2022 academic school year.
As the first private research university in America to establish need-blind admissions and need-based financial aid for undergraduates, Yale continues to provide aid awards that meet 100% of a family’s demonstrated need without using loans.
Learn more about the differences between need-blind and need-aware policies.
Yale only offers need-based financial aid and will meet 100% of demonstrated need without loans. While Yale doesn’t offer merit-based scholarships, students can apply for these types of scholarships through other organizations.
Yes! International students can apply for financial aid similar to US students. To access financial aid forms or find out more about Yale’s international financial aid options, visit their financial aid website.
Read more about how financial aid works and How you can apply for financial aid.
Yale offers two application deadlines for first-year undergraduate students.
|Single-Choice Early Action||Regular Decision|
|Apply by November 1st 2021||Apply by January 2nd 2022|
Crimson’s elite team of strategists graduated from some of the top universities in the world, including Yale! Many of them also worked as admissions officers at some of these schools.
Our strategists come alongside Crimson students as they work through the application process. Mason is one of Crimson’s top strategists. Here are four of his top tips for making your Yale application stand out.
Crimson offers a wide range of educational support services that will help you tailor your education and application, so it aligns with Yale’s mission and requirements. From online tutoring and extracurricular mentoring to essay review and even postgraduate admissions, Crimson can help you get into Yale. Through our admissions support programs, we walk with you through the application process.
Believe it or not, Yale isn’t for everyone. Some people apply to Yale only for the name or because it’s an Ivy League school. If that’s you, consider applying to a school (maybe even another Ivy League school) that specializes in your area of interest instead. The admissions committee at Yale can tell if you’re truly passionate about their school or if you’re applying for other reasons.
But, if your grades, extracurriculars, and future goals indeed line up with Yale’s mission and you can’t imagine yourself going to school anywhere else, then you should apply! But remember, some of the smartest and most talented students in the world do not get accepted to Yale. You can apply again! Focus on the weaker aspects of your application so the next time you apply, you’ll shine above the rest!
Newsweek ranked Yale as the #7 private college whose graduates earn the most money. Additionally, a degree from Yale can open doors to some of the most high-profile global firms in the world.
|Knowledge Rate||Success Rate||Mean Starting Salary||Top 5 Industries|
|91.6% of those graduating between July 1, 2019-June 30, 2020||91.7% employed or in graduate school within six months of graduation||$71,030 among graduates employed in the United States.||Financial Services, Education, Consulting, Technology, and Healthcare|
*source Yale University Office of Career Strategies
Some of Yale’s most famous and distinguished alumni include:
Many students aspire to attend Yale. With its beautiful tree-lined campus, historic buildings, and excellent research opportunities, it’s an ideal place to earn a liberal arts education.
About three-quarters of students who apply to Yale meet their qualifications. That means you will need to stand out in small areas. Every piece of your application matters, so find ways to give each section a little extra boost. When it comes to who gets into Yale, sometimes the subtle differences make all the difference.
Crimson Education is the world’s leading university admissions support company specializing in helping students gain entry to some of the world’s most competitive universities. We help you find the university that meets your goals. Crimson Students are 4x more likely to be admitted to Ivy League universities like Harvard. Learn more through our Admissions Support program.
Yes, Yale’s acceptance rate in 2021 was 4.6%, down from 8.6% acceptance in 2008.
Yale University’s tuition is $59,950. Compared with the national average cost of tuition ($41,281), Yale is more expensive.
While Yale’s total cost for tuition and fees is around $77,750, the median net price for Yale students receiving financial aid is about $13,000.
Yale has one of the highest freshman retention rates in the US. The freshman retention rate for Yale University is 99%.
The average salary for a Yale graduate is $70,000 USD per year.
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