Harvard Acceptance Rate: Have you heard about Harvard University? Perhaps, you have plans to forward your application to the university? If yes, then you really need this article. With our article, you will get all the information you need about the school. Harvard University is generally believed to be one of the most elite colleges worldwide. It is a private Ivy League research university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Harvard University was founded in 1636. Also, it is one of the world’s oldest institutions of higher learning.
Hence, as such a prestigious university, admission to Harvard is always on the high side. So, with acceptance rates dipping into the single digits, getting into Harvard demands that applicants should be the best of the best.
As a result, the average unweighted high school GPA of students who are admitted to Harvard is always at 3.9, or 4.15 on an unweighted scale.
So, students who are interested in proceeding with the application process should know that Harvard gives the Restrictive Early Action program.
Hence, this program gives students the privilege to make their choice of college ahead of time. At the same time, it also gives them more time to deliberate between schools, gather application materials, and craft a strong and captivating personal essay.
In the same vein, the restrictive early action option at Harvard is not binding. This implies that those who are accepted are not under obligation to enroll at the school.
Similarly, under this program, applicants who apply to Harvard may still apply early to other non-binding public schools or colleges outside of the United States.
On the other hand, early action students at Harvard may not apply to other private universities in the country.
However, early action is an excellent option if you are applying to Harvard. This is so, especially for students whose academic records have been consistently impressive throughout their high school experience. So, you can read on to learn more about Harvard’s restrictive early action application process.
Harvard Acceptance Rate – Harvard Early Action Acceptance Rate
Hence, the early action acceptance rate for Harvard University years back is 7.9%. This, as a matter of fact, makes admission to the school highly competitive.
As a matter of fact, Harvard has the lowest acceptance rate compared to any college in the United States. Though, this is in exception of specialty schools like the Curtis Institute of Music.
Meanwhile, this rate is very low when compared to many other schools. This is so given that the majority of schools admit most students who apply.
Generally, the average acceptance rate for all colleges and universities in the country is around 70.1%.
However, we can say that early action applicants stand a better chance of getting into Harvard University than regular decision applicants.
On the whole, the overall acceptance rate for first-year students at Harvard is 5%, as of the end of 2020.
Meanwhile, Harvard received 9,406 early action applications to the first-year class of 2026. Out of this applicant pool, 740 students were accepted to the school.
In the same way, last year, Harvard received 10,087 early decision applications for the first-year class of 2025. Later, it admitted only 743 students.
On the other hand, the early decision acceptance rate has been considerably higher than the average first-year acceptance rate. Thus, it seems that early decision acceptance is gradually approaching the same high rates.
Harvard Early Action Decision Date
Hence, early action applicants should expect feedback from the Harvard admissions team regarding whether they have been accepted or rejected around mid-December each year.
Hence, applicants will be notified of their admissions decisions via email. So, to check the status of the submitted application, Harvard applicants can log in to their application account through the school’s website.
There are other notifications that applicants may receive. Some of such notifications are acceptance or rejection.
Apart from those two types of admissions decisions, students may also find out that they have been deferred or placed on Harvard’s waitlist.
Meanwhile, students who receive offers for admission to the school will have to give Harvard a notice indicating whether or not they have decided to get enrolled in classes by the end of January.
Accordingly, these decision dates point to the fact that Harvard does not admit students during the spring semester.
The reason for this policy, according to the school’s website, is that they want all incoming freshmen to benefit from the special programs designed specifically for first-year students that they offer.
Harvard Early Action Deadline
Hence, the deadline to apply to Harvard University under their restrictive early action program is November 1 every year. In comparison, the regular decision application deadline is January 1 each year.
Another thing that is very important is that students must submit the completed Common Application or Coalition Application and all other required materials by this deadline.
Again, it may take some time for the Harvard admissions team to receive test scores, high school transcripts, and other supplemental materials. However, as long as these are done before the deadline, delays in processing will not affect the student’s chances of being admitted.
In the same vein, Harvard stated that students who applied under the early action program are not given any special preference during application review.
They also noted that the general increase in the acceptance rates for restrictive early action applicants is a result of the exceptional overall academic merit that this pool of applicants exhibits.
On the other hand, it can still be said that the earlier deadline for the early action program offers students considerable practical advantages over those who apply under regular decision.
So, the benefit attached is the opportunity to have more time to contact whoever it is they would like to write their letters of recommendation to the school.
Notably, the deadline for applying for financial aid for restrictive early action students differs from the deadline for regular decision candidates.
Also, In order to be considered for need-based financial aid from the school, restrictive early action applicants must submit all necessary materials not later than February 1 each year.
In the same vein, for regular decision candidates, the deadline is a month later, at the beginning of March.
Harvard EA Deferral Rate
Accordingly, the deferral rate for restrictive early decision applicants at Harvard University is about 80%.
What this means is that the majority of the students who applied early to the college will have to wait until the regular decision cycle rolls around for their applications to be reviewed.
In some years past, the competition for early decision admission to Harvard has increased. This, as a matter of fact, led to the school giving out a greater number of deferrals than usual.
Hence, according to the school, Harvard receives an overwhelming 40,000 or more applications every year.
However, since they want to admit only 1660 students for each incoming first-year class, this means that the outstanding applicants may be moved to regular decision.
Similarly, in order to ensure that the Harvard Admissions Committee has enough time in each class to maintain these relatively small class sizes, they must leave open spaces in the class so that any exceptionally strong regular decision candidates will not be left out.
On the other hand, there are many reasons why applicants may be deferred. One of such reasons is that the school may want to give the student a chance to provide additional application materials, such as final semester grades.
Therefore, those whose restrictive early action applications are deferred should take this as an opportunity to strengthen their applications by giving further information about any extracurriculars they are involved in. Also, it will help them to describe anything noteworthy they have done in the final portion of their senior year, and improve their grades however possible.
Again, the applications of all students who are deferred will be reviewed for the second time if that is the first time they are applying to the school.
How to Apply to Harvard for Early Action
For you to apply to Harvard under the restrictive early action program, you must complete either the Common Application or the Coalition Application. Upon filling out the application information, students must ensure that all required supplementary materials are submitted to the school before the deadline. Of course, the deadline is November 1 each year.
In addition to completing one of the two application options, Harvard applicants must respond to the Harvard College Questions for the Common Application or Coalition Application Harvard supplement.
In that case, there will be a $75 processing fee which will be paid by credit card through the student’s application choice. Alternatively, students can mail a check directly to the school.
However, for students who have difficulty getting the application fee, there are chances of fee waivers.
Other required application materials are a school report, which must include a letter written by a school counselor.
Hence, students will need to ask two teachers in different academic subjects to complete Harvard’s Teacher Evaluation forms. These can be accessed through the link that will be provided in the application confirmation email the student will receive after submission.
In the same way, applicants will also need to provide an official high school transcript or equivalent certificate.
After receiving final grades for the first semester of their senior year, students will need to submit a Midyear School Report. For those who have received offers for admission, a Final School Report will also be required.
Meanwhile, due to the complications for standardized test-taking created by the COVID-19 pandemic, SAT or ACT scores, will not be made compulsory in the application process for any students who wish to be a part of Harvard’s graduating classes of 2027 through 2030.
On the other hand, those who feel that their SAT or ACT scores positively reflect their academic capabilities may opt to submit standardized test scores for consideration in the admissions review process.
Therefore, AP or other examination results, much like SAT or ACT scores, are an optional component of the Harvard application. Applicants who have strong AP test scores should opt to submit these scores as a supplement to their application stuff.