Harvard’s acceptance rate has fallen to a record low

Cambridge - Harvard Square: Harvard University - John Harvard
A statue in Harvard Square. Flickr / Wally Gobetz

Last Thursday, thousands of high school seniors learned whether they were accepted into an Ivy League college.

And if their top choice was Harvard, thousands of them were probably disappointed.

Harvard’s overall acceptance rate for the class of 2020 was a record low, at only 5.2%. That means that out of 39,041 applications, only 2,037 students were accepted, reports Business Insider’s Abby Jackson.

Last year, Harvard had a slightly higher acceptance rate, admitting 5.33% of applicants for the class of 2019.

Harvard’s record low acceptance rate is part of a continuing trend.

For the class of 2015, Harvard’s acceptance rate was 6.2%. It first broke the 6% threshold for the class of 2016, when it admitted 5.92% of applicants, and has been on a downward trend ever since, reports The Harvard Crimson.

But never fear: It’s slightly easier to get into Harvard if you apply through the early action program. The acceptance rate for the 6,173 applicants who applied early for admission to the class of 2020 was 14.8%, falling 1.7% from last year, according to The Harvard Crimson.

And while Harvard had the lowest acceptance rate among its Ivy League peers, it actually had a higher acceptance rate than Stanford, which admitted just 4.69% of applicants for the class of 2020.

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