Gauging potential waitlist movement - How many admittances are you currently "holding"?

There has been so much talk about the number of schools students applied to this year and how the waitlists are likely to move a lot, and it got me curious. How many admission offers do you have currently (that you have not already let go)? No judgment at all. I know so many are just hearing from schools and it’s a crazy year so cutting schools is especially hard this year. I just wonder if having a huge stack to choose from is as common as some people think? I have a feeling for most students its 2, maybe 3, which would be more like a typical year. Last year so many decided to take gap years or switch to an option closer to home last minute. My prediction is the waitlist movement will not be as dramatic as last year, but who knows!

12, one dropped already, most of the rest will be dropped by next week. Visiting some of these now for the first time on break. S’ process was very backloaded due to travel restrictions. Also he wasn’t able to test until October so added more selective schools after that score came in.

None. Kid withdrew all his other applications when he heard from his early action.

But here’s the thing. So many people took gap years. And I don’t think that the Ivies decided to stiff class of '25 by reducing their class by the number of gap year students. So I don’t see how they would go to the wait lists at all, unless they desperately needed a tuba player, and the only one they accepted chose to go elsewhere. Then they’ll see if they have a tuba player wait listed.

So hope for the best, but don’t even expect that the highly competitive schools are going to be going to the wait lists. Assuming their usual yield, they’re probably over enrolled by 15%, and desperately seeking additional freshman dorm space. So why on earth would they take people off of the wait list, when they don’t have enough room for the students whom they’re expecting?

What I’ve heard is that selective schools will be careful not to over-enroll so will work the list as needed. Schools apparently handle # of initial offers differently, especially highly selective vs. not. The schools do what’s best for them. The selectives have plenty of people who will wait in line for a shot.

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If someone turns down a school (or 10 schools) that doesn’t mean someone comes off the waitlist. If 250 turn down the school, maybe it goes to the waitlist, but it may have expected 250 to decline, or may have expected 500 to decline.

I don’t see how knowing how many acceptances people have helps gauge waitlist movement.

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Sorry, maybe I was not clear. I just feel like there has been so much talk of students applying to many more schools this year versus past years, and as a result, being admitted to many more schools than they can attend. As they start to decline those offers, or come May 1 the dominos start to fall and waitlist start moving. What I have read and heard is that a lot of “experts” anticipate increased waitlist movement this year, as a result of students applying to more schools. Personally, I am not seeing that in our circle. Most students are down to two or three schools at this point, similar to previous years. It just seems the talk of tons of waitlist movement might be overstated. Last year had extenuating circumstances (gap years, students not wanting to leave home, financial uncertainly) that seemed to cause a lot of last minute changes, moving more students off waitlists.

I think it really depends upon the selectivity of the school. Not that many people are sitting on multiple acceptances from highly selective schools. I think that the vast increase in applications for highly selective schools came from students who felt that they had a chance, test optional. and from people who thought that the more highly selective schools they applied to, the more likely they were to get into one. Most of those people weren’t going to get in anyway. Not many people are reporting that they got into many highly selective schools. It’s possible that highly qualified URMs did get accepted to multiple highly selective schools - and since they can only attend one, they will have to turn down the rest. But I don’t think that this is going to mean that these schools are going to the wait list, since most of them (with the exception of Princeton, which accepted fewer this year to accommodate the many who took gap years last year) are going to be over enrolled.

On the other hand, the schools that are not very selective will probably be scrambling for paying students, but that’s nothing new this year.

As for the moderately selective schools - they too had students who took gap years. And they’re used to lower yield rates, send out acceptances accordingly. So I don’t see much difference for them than previous years.

It’s not the number of applications submitted that matters. It’s the number of acceptances given out (same or less than usual), and the number of class of '24 students who took a gap year (much greater than normal) that affect the number of vacancies needing to be filled from the wait list. The large number of gap year kids from '24 joining '25 makes it very unlikely that there will be much, if any wait list action at highly selective schools.

Also, if 250 students for whom the school was a safety turn it down early, that may reduce the expected class size by 5 students, but if 250 students who were reaching to be admitted to the school turn it down early, that may reduce the expected class size by 125 students, increasing the likelihood of going to the wait list early.

I think the UC system might be a place where we will see a lot of waitlist movement. We are in-state and anecdotally it was feast or famine, with some kids getting one or none, and others multiple offers. D21 for example was accepted to four and waitlisted at three. Her top two were among the waitlists so she’s still pondering where to commit.

@parentologist Thank you for articulating my point so perfectly! I try to be brief on here, and and up not really getting my point across. I think there is a lot of waitlist hope on the Vandy, Northwestern, Chicago, and all Ivy boards.

I think Colgate is a good example of how schools may have already accounted for some of this. They had a huge increase in their applications (+100%). If you look at the number accepted they projected a decrease in yield from about 35% to 26%.

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