The Numbers Don’t Lie. Numerical Truth Abut College Admissions

When it comes to college admissions, there are more myths than the Greeks ever conceived. So how do we know the truths?  The annual “State of College Admission” report collects facts.  Top line good news, your student is not more likely to be struck by lightning than to be admitted to Stanford.

According to the National Association for College Admission Counseling, it’s actually not hard to get into a 4-year college. A number of schools accept more than 85 percent of applicants. While we welcome you to look at the entire report at the link above, below is a summary.

Some facts:

  • The average four-year college admits nearly two-thirds of those who apply.
  • Factors in Admissions Decisions which matter most in order of importance:
    • Grades (all courses)
    • Grades (college prep)
    • Admission test scores (SAT, ACT)
    • Strength of curriculum
    • Essay or writing sample
    • Counselor recommendation
    • Demonstrated interest
    • Teacher recommendation
NOTE FOR INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS: The top factors in admission decisions for first-time international students were similar to those of first-time domestic students, with the important exception of English proficiency exam scores. 
  • The order of influence of personal characteristics of first-time freshmen on admissions decisions.
    • High school attended
    • Race/ethnicity
    • State or county of residence
    • First-generation status
    • Ability to pay
    • Gender
    • Alumni ties
  • Odds of admission are greater when applying Early than Regular Decision. Over the course of one year for most applicants. Among all colleges with Early Decision, their regular admit rate was 50.7 percent, but the rate for Early Decision was 62.3 percent. For colleges with Early Action, the overall admit rate was 64.1 percent and the rate for Early Action applicants was 73.6 percent.
  • The average student-to-college counselor rate for schools is 313 students per counselor at public schools and 263 per counselor at private schools.
For the personal one-on-one help your student deserves, connect with an International College Counselors advisor by calling 954-414-9986.