Duke University Class of 2025 — Regular Decision

Yes, it is here. The aid package from Duke was comparable to UVA in-state, and the Princeton package was better than both of those.

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I’m sorry to hear that after all his hard work to earn that acceptance, but you are right, of course. Worth isn’t defined by university decisions.

My S21 was also accepted to Brown last night. So far, Duke and Brown have come through with better financial packages than GT and Mich.

For the next two years we will have two kids in college which skews our Duke and Brown packages for the better. Once older kid graduates, we expect to lose most of our grant money at both of the privates. So, for years 3 and 4, the privates may become just as expensive (if not more expensive) than the publics. But, taking our best estimate of the four-year totals, it looks like the privates are still less costly.


Were your publications published in a reputed journal?

That’s the opposite of us- Duke gave about $15k more than Brown (Duke in line with offers from Stanford and other schools).

We have filed an appeal with Brown and submitted Duke’s award in hopes they will match :crossed_fingers:t2::crossed_fingers:t2::crossed_fingers:t2:

What are your stats? My daughter is also on the Vandy waitlist, rejected at Duke despite legacy, 4.0UW, AP scholar, probably outstanding recos, leadership. I think her Duke common app essay wasn’t good. She revised it for Vandy, which is why she was able to be waitlisted there.

34 ACT, class rank fluctuates from 1-2 out of 105ish, 5.3 weighted GPA, we don’t calculate unweighted but I ran my grades through some calculators and unweighted seems around 3.97. All-State/Nationally Ranked Tennis Player (unfortunately not ranked high enough for the recruited level), President of NHS, President of Youth In Government with state-level leadership (Served as Pro Tempore of the Mock Senate), Captain of Football Team, Captain of State Runner-Up Quiz Bowl Team, and helped start a Peer Tutoring Program at our school.

Accepted at Notre Dame, U Michigan, W&L, Clemson Honors

WL: UPenn Wharton, Duke, Vandy, Georgetown, UVA, Wash U, Wake

Rejected from HYPM and sadly Dartmouth… oh yeah and Texas

Yes, there are several. The best one is co-authored in an NIH journal.

My D21 was also rejected at Duke, after being deferred ED, despite legacy. Disappointing. WL at Vandy as well. Applied in engineering. Will be committing to Michigan CoE for BME.

My D21 same - rejected at Duke after being deferred ED, despite legacy, and waitlist at Vandy. This is the exact same story for everyone I know who has a legacy kid who was extremely high-achieving and desperately wanted to go to Duke. It feels like they are going out of their way to upset their alumni base. Most of these kids got into Ivies but would have chosen Duke. It’s a wackadoo year. My daughter was wanted nothing but to do to Duke since she was 2 and I took her to my reunion and taught her how to watch basketball. We are heartbroken but fortunate to have really amazing options - they just aren’t Duke.

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S21 was accepted as a Legacy.

I went to an alumni admissions event a few years ago and one of the main points of the presentation was that even with the legacy bump the odds were long. We had braced ourselves for a WL or rejection, but as some decisions came in from peer schools we felt a little more optimistic. Still, I’m stunned by the amount of legacy kids that have awesome profiles that didn’t get in.


Same thoughts–D21 got in as a legacy and yet so many did not, as with most years–the vast majority of legacies are rejected. We were preparing as well, in case it was less than good news. For the die-hard Duke-lovers, they could always consider a transfer if the chosen college isn’t a fit once they get there.

This happened to my son; not Duke, but Wharton. Rejected after deferral, despite legacy, solid stats. If his essay was good enough to get him a LL from Duke, one would assume it would have been good enough for Penn. Two kids from his HS were accepted, albeit only one applied to Wharton; neither is legacy. Go figure.

I am very data driven and would really love to see some in-depth statistics after this season is over and the waitlists exhausted. We have good choices for our two this year but the outcomes are inconsistent with all of the objective data that we used to focus our search and applications. At three very comparable schools (by the stats, rankings and our school’s success at admission) we received merit aid at one, waitlist at another, and rejection at a third. This means one school considered her application to be top 10%, the next in the second 1,000 and the last not enough for future consideration. I understand that subjective criteria help competitive colleges create their class and culture (and most say they can fill their class with qualified student 6X over) but I feel like I’ve been playing the lottery this year at $75 a ticket and even more time and emotional energy.


I actually think colleges love test optional due to increased apps (and the resulting lower published acceptance rates) and the ability to ratchet up the subjectivity. The traditional ‘objective’ measures seem to have gone out the window.


Agreed. We’ll never see published statistics with demographic crosstabs that will show us the real opportunity at admission for the given characteristics that each Admissions Office seeks. I do think colleges should publish the number of applicants rejected/admitted above and below the ACT/SAT median range.

Fortuntately, college admissions is much, much more than a 3 hour test score. It’s no secret that both the SAT/ACT can be “gamed” with extensive test prep (and $$$) which favors wealthy families.

For example, my D20 (who is now a D21 after a gap year) would not be going to Duke in the fall had it not been for a year of working with a private one-on-one tutor, taking the ACT 3x and going from a 28 (baseline, no prep), 31, 32, and finally 34. She was Val, straight A student in HS, 9 AP’s, 3 honors, lots of leadership, V athlete, etc. When she applied to Duke they required a test score and if she submitted her first score 31 (well below the median) it’s likely she would not be attending Duke in the fall. But no doubt in my mind she will thrive at Duke with a 31 or 34 (after lots of $$$ and test prep) has very little to do whether she will be successful in college.

Essays can also be gamed via expensive ‘essay coaches’ and anyone else a student can get to write the essay for them. At least the tests are verifiable. My daughter took the test once with no prep. Got a 35. But evidently that doesn’t mean much this year.


If you are good, you don’t need tutoring or test prep coaching. My son just studied it by himself during winter break and he scored 36(36/36/36/36) first time.

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Yep, that’s amazing. But oddly some people think that means very little and an unverifiable essay should have significant weight in the process (I’m talking about admissions people). It’s gotten very weird.

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