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Match - defined

jOHN ROSSjOHN ROSS Registered User Posts: 343 Member
edited January 2006 in College Admissions
I see the word match used frequently here and am wonderring whether that is a term or art or it has some other meaning. Is it a subjective correlation or is there an objective mathematical formula people are using. Thanks for the help.
Post edited by jOHN ROSS on

Replies to: Match - defined

  • emmared718emmared718 Registered User Posts: 336 Member
    A match is a school that is within your range.

    For instance, a student with a 2070 SAT score, 94 GPA, and a #3 rank might have NYU as a match (chances are around 50-75% and Columbia as a reach (a school where chances are generally low - 0-25%) . A "safety" is a school one can almost surely get into..

    Hope that helped?
  • jOHN ROSSjOHN ROSS Registered User Posts: 343 Member
    Thanks. That did help but where do you get the chances reference (ie. 50-75%). Is there some formula to use to get that percentage?
  • reeses414reeses414 Registered User Posts: 1,107 Senior Member
    No... You get those percentages by looking at the profiles of the freshman classes at different colleges and seeing who they tend to admit and not admit. Then, you compare your own stats to those profiles. It'll give you some sort of idea of how you fit as the typical student for which they're looking and want.
  • corrangedcorranged Registered User Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    I would define a match somewhat differently. I would say it is a school where you are have a good chance of being accepted (but a lower chance than your safeties).

    I make that distinction because with the other method someone with a high GPA and, say, a 2200 could consider almost any school a match, including Harvard, Yale, Princeton, etc. Since the chance of a student being accepted to one of these schools, even within the 25%-75% range, is very low, they don't seem like they should be considered matches.
  • hazmathazmat User Awaiting Email Confirmation Posts: 8,435 Senior Member
    A match is a school where your change of gaining admission is greater than 50%. You will need to watch for in state versus out of state. Other factors they may also come into play. Your match may be a college that almost always takes students from your high school w/ profiles like yours, stats, ECs all of that. Say for example a Jesuit HS and Georgetown or Fordham......that kind of thing. A strong alumni connection to your HS. Match schools are not just stats..........but rather a composite of factors favoring you more than not.
  • dufus3709dufus3709 Registered User Posts: 3,052 Senior Member
    A college will provide you with their 50% SAT range. If they say it is 1350-1450, then half of the accepted students are between 1350 and 1450. Twenty-five percent are below 1350 and twenty-five percent are above 1450. 1350 is called the 25% point, and 1450 is called the 75% point.

    SAT scores are by no means the only thing that they look at for admissions, but the 50% SAT ranges can be used to roughly judge your safeties, matches and reaches.

    People very easily interpret the range in such a way as to screw themselves over. For example, someone may see that Harvard's 50% range is 1400-1580 and think that they have a reasonable chance with a 1420 because they are in the range, with 50% of the people who were accepted. This couldn't be more wrong. For a non-hooked applicant (not URM, legacy, athlete, and etc), you need to be at the 50% mark for the school to be a reach, and near but lower than the 75% mark for the school to be a match, and reasonable over the 75% mark for the school to be a safety. This is because the bottom of the 50% range has alot of hooked applicants. It is also true that when you see that somebody with a 1480 was accepted to Harvard, they may have had a 800M and 680V. This is better than a 740M and 740V, at least for admissions.

    A final factor is that extremely well qualified applicants pile up at the elite colleges. The accept rate for people with 1600 SAT's is about 40-45%. This sounds really low, but it is four times the accept rate for the average applicant.
  • IcedragonadIcedragonad Registered User Posts: 301 Junior Member
    Funny, I have an 800M and 680CR and I thought it would be better if I was more even, despite the fact that I am looking to go into engineering. This is the first time I am hearing that an 800/680 is better than a 740/740, could you please explain the reasoning for this dufus3709?
  • dufus3709dufus3709 Registered User Posts: 3,052 Senior Member
    Unfortunately this is only my own opinion, but it does make a lot of sense to me. In trying to find out why some unhooked applicants were posting "I got into Princeton with a 1460", I found in talking to a couple of them that they had very high M and lower V. I think it is an offshoot of the fact that colleges are looking for well rounded freshmen classes, but not well rounded students.

    Fortunately, you are going into engineering and there is some definite evidence there at least. There isn't that much, because I think most of the college guides are written by former English majors. Not that many engineers write college admissions guides, or I've never seen one. However, Toors who as an adcom at Duke wrote "Admissions Confidential". In that, she said that the adcoms themselves had very little to do with admissions to the engineering dept, and that it was done by the engineering faculty themselves. Occasionally the adcoms would try to go to bat for somebody, but the eng faculty called the shots. As you might expect, they cared most about SAT I Math and the SAT II Math scores. (At a place like MIT/Caltech, of course, there are so many applicants that they would probably also want other characteristics.) As I recall, Toors even said something about how the eng faculty would occasionaly say something like "It doesn't bother me that he got a C in English, I got a C in English". :)

    This isn't an isolated instance. If you were to apply to Art school or Music school, they would care more about your artistic ability than your English grades.

    I went to an eng school, and look out freshman year. Some of the eng colleges are not that particularly hard to get into, but they are hard to stay in. Most have a common curriculum during freshman year that includes Calc, Physics, Chemistry, Computers and some Bio. It is like pre-med. They are definitely trying to thin the herd during freshman year by moving people into other majors. At my school, years ago, they actually did the bit in the auditorium where they told everyone to look at the person on either side of them, and by the end of the year, one of those people isn't going to be there. MIT's famous joke is "getting an education at MIT is like taking a drink from a firehose."
  • Collegegrl88Collegegrl88 Registered User Posts: 327 Member
    a 740 math and 740 CR is definitely better than an 800 math and 680 CR. I'm not sure who told you otherwise, but unless you are applying to an engineering school, it is better to have balanced scores.
  • david218david218 Registered User Posts: 1,032 Senior Member
    yeah i agree
  • dufus3709dufus3709 Registered User Posts: 3,052 Senior Member
    collegegrl88:
    I won't argue it more than I have already because I have never seen that written down in a college guide. I came to more as a way to try to explain how an unhooked applicants with mid 1400's could reasonably expect to get into an ivy. If you were a published author and had a high V and lower M, I could believe it. If you had done research as an EC and had a high M and low V, I could believe it. It is gospel in the college guides that they are looking for well rounded freshman classes but not well rounded freshmen, but that remark is always made in reference to EC's.
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