Admissions Record, Again

Illustration by Adam Niklewicz

 Illustration: Adam Niklewicz


Students seeking to become Blue Devils will face the most selective admissions process in the university's history: Duke has received a record 19,282 applications for 1,640 places in the class that will enter Duke this fall.

The university has seen a steady increase in applications over the last decade. This year represents a marked increase in the number of applications received--1,193 more than last year, 2,541 more than two years ago, and 4,572 more than five years ago.

Christoph Guttentag, dean of undergraduate admissions, says he attributes the sharp increase in applications over the last several years in part to "Duke's enhanced visibility and recognition among the country's elite schools. It is also partly a result of our increased recruiting efforts. Our admissions officers travel on average six weeks a year to meet with top high-school students."

This year's applicant pool includes more than 1,000 students with SAT scores above 1550, more than double the number who had similar scores just four years ago.

Other high-growth areas include applicants to the Pratt School of Engineering, international applicants, and students of color. This year, the university received applications from 3,343 students who want to pursue engineering, an increase of more than 1,000 from five years ago; 1,221 Latino students, a 13 percent increase over last year; 2,085 African-American students, a 12 percent increase over last year; and 4,718 Asian and Asian-American students, a 17 percent increase over last year.

In addition, 1,985 international students have applied for admission, nearly double the number of international applicants five years ago. "Since the university expanded the financial-aid program a few years ago to include a number of international students, we've seen a steady increase in the number of students from foreign countries who are interested in Duke," Guttentag says.

In early April, slightly more than 3,000 high-school students from across the country and around the world will receive letters of acceptance to Duke. The admissions office will notify applicants of their admissions decisions online as well as through the mail. The university expects 1,640 of the admitted students to enroll this fall, including 470 who were admitted in December through the Early Decision program.

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