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University of Chicago’s Acceptance Rate Plummets to 7.2% for Class of 2022

Dave_BerryDave_Berry CC Admissions Expert Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
"The acceptance rate for the Class of 2022 was a record-low 7.2 percent, Dean of Admissions James Nondorf said at an admitted students reception in late March.

The regular decision admit rate was 4 percent, and the admit rate for students who were deferred in the early round was just 0.5 percent, he said." ...


Replies to: University of Chicago’s Acceptance Rate Plummets to 7.2% for Class of 2022

  • Cue7Cue7 Registered User Posts: 2,406 Senior Member
    Interesting, if you listen to the recorded audio in the link, Nondorf talks so excitedly about Chicago graduates going on to be "bankers or lawyers or doctors or entrepreneurs." He's probably right - the college prepares students well for these professions, but it's fascinating he mentioned "academic" or "professor" not at all.

    I wonder if Chicago's PhD placement rate (per capita) is going down? This isn't a bad thing, as there are probably too many people going to PhD programs, but it'd be interesting to see...
  • CU123CU123 Registered User Posts: 2,734 Senior Member
    Personally I think, after meeting him, he gets excited about how much money those professions can contribute in the future to the college....
  • Cue7Cue7 Registered User Posts: 2,406 Senior Member
    Yeah I'd agree with that. I've heard him speak once, he seems super-enthusiastic, but also keenly aware of some of the material benefits offered to those who take these practical directions...
  • uocparentuocparent Registered User Posts: 218 Junior Member
    It'd be nice to have intellectual people in these professions as well though, imagine how intimidating that would be! It'd be a force to be reckoned with. Although every UChicago student should be going into academics, I'm sure many will still assume the mantel. UChicago provides the intellectual foundation, then sends them forward. I say, 'go forward, young ones, and make us proud!'

    It seems that the commonality among UChicago students would be ‘intellectual’ and from there, I hope that they would be diverse as far as goals, pursuits, socio-economic status, and interests.

    I think it’s pretty great that UChicago will send forward these students into their respective fields, whether it be professional, academic, or political and still have the ‘intellect’ as the common denominator.

    (Not that other schools don’t have ‘intellectual’ as a commonality, but might as extol it for UChicago, since the claim has been staked a long time ago.)
  • FStratfordFStratford Registered User Posts: 409 Member
    edited May 3
    So they are expecting a yield north of 68% and up to 74% possibly.
  • Trixy34Trixy34 Registered User Posts: 425 Member
    Hmm. Still no ED numbers.
  • parent365parent365 Registered User Posts: 48 Junior Member
    Even taking into account the fact that he’s talking to a roomful of accepted students, there is something distasteful in Jim Nondorf’s gleefulness when talking about the U of Chicago’s historic low acceptance rates.
  • Cue7Cue7 Registered User Posts: 2,406 Senior Member
    edited May 4
    @parent365 - oh definitely agreed. There was this strange giddy/gleeful tone Nondorf had, and I think he could've tempered it a lot more. Also, bringing up the rankings (towards the end of the clip) was a little ungainly too.
  • marlowe1marlowe1 Registered User Posts: 507 Member
    edited May 4
    Thanks for that link. It was the first time I had witnessed the fabled Nondorf charm in action. He is what he is - a bit of a huckster - but the ebullience of the guy is winning. Along with the promotional uplift he delivered a few funny lines of the whimsical academic sort: "Walking across lake Michigan" (for those who got in off the waitlist) and "you were very good at cheating" (re the high SAT scores) was pretty good, as was "many of your peers could not resist [off-color takes on the essay topic] - they're not here".

    The point of it all would seem to have been to fire up these admitted students with just how lucky they are (true), just how accomplished they are (true) and just what a great place the University of Chicago is (true). It ain't braggin' if it's true. The dropping of the statistic about the acceptance rate - also true - was part of that message. If you were one of the many disappointed kids whose rejection went to create that low statistic - well, you wouldn't have liked to hear that information delivered in that way, but you weren't there and that message wasn't for you.

    Although 4 per cent acceptance RD sounds terribly low, that was actually double the rate last year, meaning, one assumes, that the number of ED applicants offered admission must have been somewhat lower than last year. If it is really true, then, that the yield has risen from 68 percent to something above 74 percent, that can only mean that this year significantly higher numbers of RD kids who were offered admission accepted it. That is, the overall yield rose even though the numbers of ED admissions (where 100 percent acceptance is assured) declined. And, of course, defying the dire prognostications of many on this board, the number of applications overall rose very significantly.

    Nondorf would no doubt be a showboat under any circumstances, but it sounds like he's got some reason for it this year, and "it ain't bragging...etc".
  • JBStillFlyingJBStillFlying Registered User Posts: 4,959 Senior Member
    Has anyone NOT seen Nondorf giddy and gleeful? Ebullience seems to be the guy's natural personality. Or maybe it's his IN upbringing which might be a bit off-putting to those from different parts of the country. But he seems genuinely happy - with the classes he's selecting and with himself. Why hide that? Truth is, ALL college bigwigs tell the admitted class how special they are and they all pat themselves on the back in the process. The veil of modesty that schools like Stanford are pretending to hide behind are every bit about PR as it is about genuine concern over the brutal college admissions process - esp. given that they are actually the lead enablers in this 'brutal' process.

    A word about the Nondorfs of the world. The admissions industry is FILLED with these guys. The difference between Dean Jim and others is that he's convinced UChicago to let him do what he does well. Not all have the free rein that he does to aggressively alter admission practices. Wisely, Zimmerman has also placed him in charge of student advancement (ie career/grad school placement) - so if he's a BS'er he can't BS on both ends. This ensures he continues to select quality even as the yield increases.

    @marlowe1: it's possible last year's RD yield of 2% probably included the deferreds (few that they were). Nondorf was careful to break out the actual admits applying RD this year. It's hard to imagine that with 4,000 additional apps. over last year that the RD rate actually increased - although it's possible that 100% of that gain was actually in EDII(?). Keep recalling how they claimed the dip last year was due to "confusion" over the admissions process, although no such confusion existed on the front end as kids swarmed to apply ED. And no such confusion seems to exist this year, front or back-end, as they have returned to the strong application numbers of a couple years ago - and then some.

    In any case, given that EDI/EDII yields are near 100%, then RD yield can still be pretty low (30%? 25%?) as long as EA is above 50% (not unreasonable) and as long as a majority of admits were still binding (again, not unreasonable). So it comes down to how many from each group happened to be accepted. But given that they didn't have to admit as many this year as last, the yield should be higher as long as they keep enrollment steady. Class of 2021 was 72% (and a higher admit rate). Given this year's 1.5% drop in the Admit rate (big!), it's possible to work through the numbers and end up at 74 - 75% yield, even with increasing the RD admits a bit over last year.
  • marlowe1marlowe1 Registered User Posts: 507 Member
    @JBStillFlying , I'm a statistical naif, but here's what it looks like to me...Last year much was made of the 2 per cent RD acceptance rate as being a terrible discouragement to all who were not willing to commit early. That was thought to be bad. There had already been a decline in total applications that year. It was confidently predicted that there would be an even greater decline for the coming year (the year just past), especially as it became known that the acceptance rate was this very low 2 percent. That didn't happen, but it was certainly plausible. I took the 2 percent figure which was so often and so scarily cited as being not the ultimate yield of RD applicants but the percentage of offers made to all such applicants. Is that right? It was what made the figure so scary and produced those dire predictions.

    Now, if the figure for this year is 4 percent, even with some of the tweakings of that figure you suggest, isn't the simple arithmetic telling us that something like twice as many RD applicants received offers this year than last. Yes, there will probably have been a greater proportion of early applications this year, but there was also a significantly overall greater number of all applications, so it seems reasonable to assume that there was not a significant decline in the gross number of RD applications and possibly even a rise in that number. If the yield percentage simply matches whatever the percentage was last year, there will necessarily be something like twice as many RDs in the entering class this year than there were last year. Is that right?

    Whether this is good or bad as policy I pass on for the time being. What surprises me is that with that significant increase in RD offers made and accepted there was also a rise in overall yield of all classes of applicants. If that is so, isn't it reasonable (perhaps even logically necessary) to assume that those RD applicants to whom offers were made must have accepted at higher levels than they did in previous years? If they didn't, then wouldn't the greater numbers of offers made to them have dragged down the overall yield numbers? If that speculation is correct it might be demonstrating that Chicago is winning more of the cross-admit wars.

  • CU123CU123 Registered User Posts: 2,734 Senior Member
    I don’t know of any admission office that doesn’t talk about admit rates and how selective they are as a point of pride. Nondorf is naturally giddy (as posted above) so saying it’s distasteful.........that pretty much applies to every university.
  • JBStillFlyingJBStillFlying Registered User Posts: 4,959 Senior Member
    Harvards RD rate is 2.4% this year. Either a press release or on their website - can’t remember which.
  • CU123CU123 Registered User Posts: 2,734 Senior Member
    Interesting, that puts them slightly less than half the class filled via early action. My guess is that they are taking a hard look at the EA applicants (and admitting more) in order not to lose them to ED2 universities. JMHO
  • FStratfordFStratford Registered User Posts: 409 Member
    This is my updated guess on what the numbers look like. One guess is it's not RD where the increase in yield comes from, it is EA. This is more reasonable to me since at this point they would know more about EA accepts than RD


    ED1 4,000
    EA 9,000
    ED+EA 13,000
    ED2 3,291
    RD 16,000
    ED2+RD 19,291
    Total 32,291


    ED1 17.0%
    EA 4.7%
    ED+EA 8.5%
    ED2 17.0%
    RD 4.0%
    ED2+RD 6.2%
    Total 7.2%


    ED1 681
    EA 419
    ED+EA 1,100
    ED2 560
    RD 640
    ED2+RD 1200
    Total 2,329


    ED1 99.0%
    EA 75.0%
    ED+EA 89.9%
    ED2 99.0%
    RD 30.0%
    ED2+RD 63.5%
    Total 75.1%


    ED1 674
    EA 315
    ED+EA 988
    ED2 554
    RD 207
    ED2+RD 762
    Total 1,750

    % Class

    ED1 39%
    EA 18%
    ED+EA 56%
    ED2 32%
    RD 12%
    ED2+RD 44%
    Total 100%
This discussion has been closed.