Admission Process Harvard University Use to Eradicate over 95% of the Applicants Every Year
Accorsing to the available information on Wikipedia
- Harvard University is a private Ivy League research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts, with about 6,800 undergraduate students and about 14,000 postgraduate students.
Harvard University students are mostly on scholarship with $14,000.00 l Average Cost after aid. Graduation Rate statistics of the University shows that 98% of the students due for graduation, graduates from the institution, annually.
However, only a small fraction of applicant to the school gains admission as Acceptance rate stood at a statistical average of 5% in maximal.
Reports from experienced applicants, some successful, others still in the recalcitrant annual application mode are keenly compiled below.
According to Farooq Ansari:
The initial cutoff is the numbers:
1 SAT/ACT score,
2. GPA (unweighted and weighted),
3 Subject Test scores, and (to a lesser extent)
4 AP/IB scores.
Especially with regards to the SAT/ACT and GPA, if your raw numbers are not up to their minimum standard, your app will likely go in the trash. That is, of course, unless you are a recruited athlete, which is a bit of an exception. A good majority of students who apply to Harvard are eliminated in this stage, simply because their numbers are not up to par.
Then comes round 2 of the decision process.
This ultimately hinges on the level of achievement of a particular student, whether that means winning awards in Olympiads/Science Fairs, winning the debate Tournament of Champions, taking part in extremely selective research programs, etc. Harvard, like many other highly selective schools (i.e. Stanford, MIT, Princeton, Yale, Columbia), prefers students who are able to pursue a particular extracurricular on a national/international level. Doing so demonstrates a true passion and aptitude for a particular field. Basically, the ECs of a student are the second most important factor Harvard analyzes.
Then come in various miscellaneous factors, such as the Common App essays, letters of recommendation (very important), and the interview. They read your essays closely to determine whether you would be an excellent fit for their community and what you could contribute to your class.
A combination of the above separates the Harvard admits from the long-shots and the near-misses.
It also seems that the general consensus is that there is an academic cutoff for Harvard applicants.
Given the revelations concerning Harvard’s admissions in the Students for Fair Admissions lawsuit and my own personal experience, I would argue this is untrue.
Strong academics, like a 3.8 and up GPA and an SAT score of 1400+, are definitely hallmarks of a standard accepted Harvard application. However, just because you do not meet this marks (like me— (Hannan Martinez) had a paltry 1350 SAT score my first try) is no indication that your application will be “cut” the first round.
Harvard is, above all else, an institution with a holistic admissions process. They look at everything. Race, class, gender, personal essays, extracurriculars, background, work experience, athletics, AND academics.
There are no cuts based solely on academics. Your application is read by two admissions officers, who assign ranks. Then, while they read, some students go through alumni interviews. I did one, and I strongly recommend taking the interview if you have the chance. They are there to help enhance your application, not to hurt it. While the interview process is going on, the admissions readers will rank your application on five separate attributes: academics, extracurriculars, athletics, personality, and letters of recommendation. These will be ranked on a scale from 1–5 (1 is the highest, 5 the lowest). Your interviewer will also rank similar qualities on a slightly different scale. Admissions readers also record a Harvard-standard set of data points, note any missing materials, verify facts, and check financial need.
After your application is read and ranked, the admissions directors determine who will go forward. Only the best ranked applications go before two committees, which vote successively on the fate of the applicant. A majority vote of “yes” is required to secure a spot at Harvard.
Simply put, if your application is not strong enough to earn a 2 rank—the cutoff point for most applications—you will not receive a vote from the committees. Not many earn such a rank; thus the majority of applications are weeded out.
For prospective students, I was in your shoes this time last year. Best of luck.
Written by Ibraheem Sikiru
Published on 2/16/2020 10:35:43 AM