Updated Jan. 22 at 2:28 a.m.
The University admitted 18.9 percent of early decision applicants to the class of 2018, extending offers of admission to 583 out of a record-high pool of 3,088 applicants, said Dean of Admission Jim Miller ’73.
Early decision applicants were notified online of their admission results 5 p.m. Dec. 12.
This year’s early decision acceptance rate was the second lowest in University history. Last year, the University admitted 18.5 percent of the 3,010 early decision applicants to the class of 2017, The Herald reported at the time.
The University rejected 325 applicants and deferred about 71 percent to the regular decision pool this year, Miller said.
“The class of 2018 is certainly the strongest group I’ve seen in my 18 years here,” Miller said, adding that he expects the percentage of deferred applicants accepted in the regular decision round will be the same as the overall acceptance rate to the class of 2018.
Engineering was the most popular intended concentration of admitted students for the third consecutive year, Miller said, followed by biology, Business, Entrepreneurship and Organizations, economics and English.
BEO ranked as one of the top five intended concentrations for early decision admits for the first time this year, while history fell off the list. Miller attributed the rise in BEO interest to last year’s renaming of the concentration, previously known as Commerce, Organizations and Entrepreneurship.
Twenty-seven percent of admitted students indicated that they intend to pursue a degree in the physical sciences, the most popular intended field of study, Miller said. He added that 26 percent expressed interest in the social sciences, a 4 percentage point decrease from last year’s early admitted pool.
Twenty-one percent of admitted students intend to concentrate in a life sciences discipline, while 17 percent reported interest in a humanities concentration, Miller said. About 7 percent of admitted students indicated that they are undecided, he added.
The University admitted about 30 more athletes in this year’s early decision cycle than last year, Miller said. Athletes make up about 28 percent of this year’s admitted pool, despite the fact that this admission cycle marks the second year in a three-year plan to reduce the number of admission spots given to athletes by about 9 percent. The plan was recommended by former President Ruth Simmons and approved by the Corporation in October 2011.
“We won’t be reducing (athlete spots) until the close of the regular decision process,” Miller said, adding that fewer athletes will be admitted during the regular applicant pool than in past years.
Students from 41 states are represented in the admitted pool. New York had the most admitted applicants — 81 — of any state, Miller said. California, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Connecticut followed, with 78, 63, 41 and 29 early admits respectively, he added.
The mid-Atlantic region and New England account for the most admitted applicants of all regions, with about 28 percent of admitted students hailing from the mid-Atlantic region and 22 percent coming from New England, Miller said.
Forty-nine international applicants — or 12 percent of international students who applied early decision — were admitted, Miller said. China accounted for the most admitted students, consistent with recent years, followed by the United Kingdom, Singapore and Canada, he said. Students admitted early decision come from 30 different nations, he added.
Eighteen students were admitted to the Program in Liberal Medical Education, or 4.4 percent of the 409 applicants to the program, Miller said.
Racial minorities account for about 30 percent of the admitted pool, a figure the Admission Office expects to increase during the regular decision application process, Miller said. About 28 percent of last year’s early admits identified as racial minority students, The Herald reported at the time.
Females account for 54.5 percent of admitted students, while males make up about 45.5 percent, Miller said.
Roughly 54 percent of students admitted early decision attend public high schools, while 39 percent are in private schools and 7 percent attend parochial institutions, Miller said.
Though many students faced application formatting glitches tied to the new Common Application website, the Admission Office was able to receive all students’ admission materials in a timely manner, Miller said.