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Class of 2017 admit rate marks record low at 5.7 percent

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Stanford offered admission to 2,210 students via electronic notification on Friday, producing – at 5.69 percent – the lowest admit rate in University history.

Courtesy of Stanford Photo
Montag Hall, headquarters of the Office of Undergraduate Admission (Courtesy of Stanford Photo)

The University received a total of 38,828 applications this year, a record total and a 6 percent increase over last year’s figure of 36,631. Stanford accepted 725 students in December through the Office of Undergraduate Admission’s restrictive early action program and extended offers to 1,485 more applicants on Friday. A further 813 students have been placed on the waitlist.

“The most exciting part of our review is the opportunity to consider the world’s most exceptional students,” wrote Dean of Admission and Financial Aid Richard Shaw in a press release. “The most daunting challenge is to select a relatively small number from among a most competitive and exceptional group of candidates. We are honored by the vast abilities and potential of those we admitted and those who, in the end, we could not accommodate.”

The record low admit rate reflects a continued trend of increasing selectivity for Stanford. The University admitted 6.6 percent of applicants in 2012, 7.1 percent in 2011 and 7.2 percent in 2010.

At the same time, the size of the matriculating freshman class has grown over the past three years, from 1,675 for the Class of 2014 to 1,768 for the Class of 2016. The increased yield rate has prompted academic and residential adjustments for incoming classes, as well as – for the Class of 2016 – the release of all waitlisted students.

On Thursday, several peer institutions also reported historically low admit rates. Harvard, Yale, Columbia and Princeton admitted 5.8, 6.72, 6.89 and 7.29 percent of applicants respectively.

Accepted students have until May 1 to accept the University’s offer.

Marshall Watkins is a senior staff writer at The Stanford Daily, having previously worked as the paper's executive editor and as the managing editor of news. Marshall is a junior from London majoring in Economics, and can be reached at mtwatkins "at" stanford "dot" edu.