In 2016, Harvard received a record breaking amount of first year applications: 39,044. The average is closer to 34,295, but this year saw a 5% increase on the previous. However, the school has a 3% acceptance rate, resulting in 1,980 students receiving acceptance letters. A high 83% of students decide on Harvard as their school of choice, with 1,650 enrolling. A majority of applicants are male, but the school is nearly even for the male to female ratio, with men slightly ahead.

The university is known for carefully reading every single application received. They tend to look for not only academic success, but students who are committed to their community, show promise, have strong qualities, or display special talents.

When applying, the school generally requests admission test scores (ACT or SAT), two recommendations, and your secondary school record. It’s also recommended that you submit your GPA and school’s rank. For your ACT, you should aim for a 34 - 36 in every category. For the SAT, aim for 1,500 - 1,590 combined, or 710-794 on Math and 709-794 on Verbal.

Harvard also has very strict dates for applications. If you are participating in Early Action, yours is due by November 1st. You should expect to hear back in mid-December. For the Regular Decision program, applications are due by January 1st, hearing back late March. If you are accepted, you must respond by May 1st.

Please note that Harvard has a $85 application fee for undergraduates and $105 for graduates.

Your Admission Profile - Admissions Chances

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Student ACT Scores

25th %
75th %

Student SAT Scores

25th %
75th %

First-Year Admission Statistics

Application, Acceptance, Enrollment Statistics from the 2022 Admissions Cycle
Male 28,024
Female 33,197


Male 908
Female 1,076


Enrollment Total
Male 740
Female 906

Acceptance Rate



Application Fees and Other Information

Application Fees





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