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class size vs class rank

thefoodiethefoodie Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
edited August 2008 in University of Notre Dame
In an earlier thread, I stated that I was in the top 15-20 percent in my class. Normally, ND wouldn't accept someone with that percentile rank. I am (unofficially) 17th in my class of 99. If I went to a large public school with, say, 500 students per class, my rank would be much higher.
There's also the fact that my school is extremely competitive. We are in the Cum Laude Society and have had several students go to prestigious colleges.

I was just wondering how much thought admissions puts into the size and academic level of a school.
Post edited by thefoodie on

Replies to: class size vs class rank

  • CitricAcidCitricAcid Registered User Posts: 215 Junior Member
    A lot... and they still get mostly top 5% people. Most people overrate how competitive their schools actually are. Point being, unless your school sends the top 35% to Ivy leagues, the school is not too far off from the median school.
  • notre dame ALnotre dame AL Registered User Posts: 1,674 Senior Member
    Your school/counselor will probably send a school profile with your app as well. This info will also let ND know up to date info about your school in terms of how class rank is calculated, school/class size, colleges students from your school attend, merit finalists, etc. I am sure that ND probably has profiles on a lot of high schools, but info changes. Ask your school counselor about this.
  • irish68178irish68178 Registered User Posts: 2,209 Senior Member
    I think it is a fallacy to believe that your rank would be higher at a larger school, because there is more competition. That is why class rank is often used. For most schools, unless they are very selective, they are going to have about the same amount of competition. It always is tough near the top.

    The best advice I have is just do the best you can. If you do this, then the rank will either take care of itself, or it wasn't meant to be, but at least you can't blame yourself either way. I would shoot for the top 5% though, and certainly top 10%. Outside the top 10% makes it harder to make the argument of why they should accept you over the 3-4 other people hoping for that spot. Just do your best and good luck!
  • ww007ww007 Registered User Posts: 119 Junior Member
    My D.'s school did not rank. It was an extremely competitive HS with very rigorous courses and tough grading. The reason why they didn't rank was because the top 25 students (which would be the top 10%) all had virtually the same GPA. The top "20%" would be maybe .01 away from them and so on. So ranking would not be a fair way to assess those students.
    I knew someone who's daughter was in the top 5% at her HS and got into ND. She is very bright but I'm not sure she would have been in the top 5% in my D.'s HS. So, I think it is important that colleges take into account the caliber of the HS a student comes from and their course load and not worry so much about the exact ranking. I think ND is very fair when it comes to this. I don't think they are as concerned about the 5% as people may think.
  • irish68178irish68178 Registered User Posts: 2,209 Senior Member
    I disagree. We have seen it time and again on here, there are plenty of schools where ND will only take a few students (Brophy in AZ comes to mind). Mine was that way too, they would only take 5-6 students, and it was always that many. You either were one of the top 5-6 or you weren't, it was that simple. It didn't matter actually if you were in the top 5% or not.

    Yes, school matters, but keep in mind that the people ranked above you may be your competition. Again, just do the best you can, leave it all on the field, and if you do that then you should have no regrets.
  • CitricAcidCitricAcid Registered User Posts: 215 Junior Member
    This is not an argument on whether school difficulty matters or not, it definitely DOES and it definitely SHOULD. Whenever people list their school's difficulty, however, it is always overrated. Look through all the thread of chance threads. Every single kid has an above average/competitive high school? Realize that almost all high schools are competitive and it is tough to be in the top 10% in most places. In other words, when students list how competitive/difficult/amazing their high school is, I generally would not put too much weight on it (unless there are non-anecdotal ways to back up the claim).
  • irish68178irish68178 Registered User Posts: 2,209 Senior Member
    Amen CitricAcid
This discussion has been closed.