Duke Yield Rate

October 8, 2022
By AdmissionSight

Duke Yield Rate

What does yield rate mean?

The percentage of applicants who ultimately decide to enroll in a particular college or university is known as yield in the field of college admissions. In order to appear more desirable or exclusive to candidates, colleges use their yield rate to advertise their selectivity, among other things.  It’s important that you know more about Duke’s yield rate.

Additionally, to make administration simpler, schools use the yield rate to anticipate how many students would need to be admitted to make up the incoming class.

A college’s admissions team understands they’ll need to admit 2000 students to fill their class if they need to enroll 1000 students and their yield rate is 50% because half of the admitted students generally enroll.

The draw rate of a school is another and maybe a more reliable metric of its market dominance. It is derived by subtracting their real admit rate from the yield rate.

Why does yield rate matter to colleges?

A school can more accurately forecast tuition income, housing availability, and the number of courses that can be provided that year when they are aware of just like with Duke yield rate. If they accept too many students, they risk running out of options for on-campus accommodation. If not enough students enroll, they lose money from housing and tuition and may have to cancel some sessions.

To fill their incoming class size, schools with a higher yield rate don’t need to admit as many students. These schools have a reputation for being more selective and frequently having higher academic standards. For instance, Duke’s yield rate is 54%, which has a 6% accept rate for this year.

Two people talking in an room full of books.

Students have applied to more colleges than ever before since the pandemic began (as many as 20 applications per student). This indicates that it is now tougher for schools to forecast the yield rate. The outcome? Wait lists are now being used by colleges to control yield and enrolment.

Duke and Yield Protection

Even though Duke consistently ranks among the top 15 institutions, it is frequently seen as a “safe target” school for applicants seeking admission to a more prestigious Ivy League institution. However, it is also said that Duke engages in yield protection, a process in which universities turn away or waitlist outstanding applicants who they anticipate will be admitted to more prestigious institutions. Despite this, it doesn’t employ yield protection as strictly as institutions in a comparable situation, such as Washington University St. Louis.

Duke does give special consideration to the 150-word essay that explains why it is a “safe target” institution. Additionally, it gives admission interviews greater weight than other institutions—at Duke, they account for around 10% of the whole admissions process, compared to 3% to 4% at other colleges.

Avoid the Feeling of Being a Victim of Yield Protection

There are ways you may do to avoid the feeling of being a victim of yield protection and lower your odds of getting turned down by a school you want to attend, regardless of whether or not yield protection is true. Here are a few ideas:

  • Be distinctive and follow up. Encourage your child to get in touch with the school of their choice and explain why they wish to enroll. This will provide an admissions officer additional assurance that, should your student get accepted, they might commit.
  • Display a clear interest. Your child should join mailing lists, join social media pages for the school, read and answer emails and texts from the school, visit the campus, and write further essays about their interactions with the institution.
  • Take early decision (ED) into account. This is a possibility for the school that your student values most. Use the school’s net calculator to review the sticker price first. If your student signs an ED, they are effectively promising to attend the institution (before you know your actual cost of admission).

Admissions Data and Strategies

Only 6% of candidates for the Blue Devil Class of 2026 received acceptances, and only 4.6% of Regular Decision candidates received favorable results. As a result, Duke’s admission rate is currently somewhat lower than those of Dartmouth (6.2%), Vanderbilt (6.1%), and Rice (8.5%).

Their popularity is unmatched; Duke receives the same number of applicants as Brown and Yale. Although admittance to Duke has always been demanding academically, it wasn’t always this challenging. The acceptance rate was 22% in 2004, which is four times greater than the current figure, according to a brief march through recent admissions history. AdmissionSight will give you all the information you need in order to have a chance to get into Duke University because the process of becoming a Blue Devil gets harder every year.

For the Class of 2025, Duke yield rate—defined as the proportion of admitted students who choose to enroll in the program—was 54%. For instance, universities like Stanford and Harvard had yield rates of over 80%, while the University of Chicago, MIT, and Yale all had yield rates of at least 70%. In this category, Duke came in around institutions like Northwestern, Notre Dame, and Dartmouth.

Acceptance Rate at Duke University—Class of 2026

The overall acceptance rate at Duke University for the Class of 2026 was around 6%. They received a record-breaking 49,555 applications in the previous cycle, but only 5.8% of them were accepted, the lowest rate in school history.

Changes in Acceptance Rate

At Duke University, the current academic year’s acceptance rate is 6.00%, compared to an average acceptance rate for the previous ten years of 10.12%. Duke University maintains a fairly low acceptance rate, making it challenging for applicants to gain admission. The following table shows the changes in the acceptance rate of Duke University over the previous ten years (2012–2022).

Year Total Men Women
2012-13 13.99% 13.94% 14.04%
2013-14 13.42% 14.15% 12.74%
2014-15 11.41% 11.69% 11.13%
2015-16 11.42% 11.72% 11.13%
2016-17 10.83% 10.64% 11.01%
2017-18 9.86% 9.96% 9.76%
2018-19 8.91% 9.13% 8.71%
2019-20 7.60% 7.94% 7.44%
2020-21 7.74% 7.72% 7.76%
2021-22 6.00% 6.00% 6.00%
Average 10.12% 10.29% 9.97%

Early Decision Acceptance Rate at Duke University—Class of 2026

In the 2021–2022 admission cycle, only 855 of the 4,015 Early Decision applicants were accepted. This results in an Early Decision acceptance rate of 21%, which is nearly four times the rate of the initial round. The acceptance percentage for the Class of 2025 the year before was 17%.

SAT, ACT, and Class Rank for Duke Admissions

The middle 50% SAT range of individuals who finally joined Duke’s Class of 2025 was 1510-1560; the middle 50% ACT range was 34-36. Duke students performed similarly well in the classroom; astonishingly, 95% of enrolled freshmen earned a spot in the top 10% of their graduating class, and 99% were in the top quartile.

Students studying in a table.

Changes in Admission Yield (Enrollment Rate)

In comparison to the current academic year’s Duke yield rate, the average admission yield over the previous 11 years is 50.70%. The percentage of admitted students that actually enrolled is known as the Duke yield rate, often referred to as the enrolment rate. The table below shows the variations in Duke yield rate between 2012 and 2022.

Year Total Men Women
2012-13 43.78% 43.64% 43.90%
2013-14 42.04% 42.00% 42.08%
2014-15 47.86% 47.33% 48.41%
2015-16 48.96% 49.29% 48.62%
2016-17 50.23% 50.24% 50.23%
2017-18 53.60% 52.97% 54.22%
2018-19 54.72% 52.98% 56.42%
2019-20 54.31% 54.74% 53.88%
2020-21 51.50% 51.67% 51.32%
2021-22 59.99% 59.02% 60.03%
Average 50.70% 50.39% 50.91%

 Trends and Notes in Admissions

  • The number of applications for the Class of 2026 increased from 39,783 to 49,555.
  • The Class of 2026 eventually accepted 110 deferred applicants from the early round.
  • First-generation students make up 11% of the Class of 2025’s enrollment.
  • As opposed to 840 pupils the previous year, 855 students were admitted to ED in 2020. Both numbers correspond to around half of the anticipated freshman class.
  • In contrast to the 5,036 applications for the Class of 2025, Duke only received 4,015 Early Decision applications.
  • The percentage of overseas students in the Class of 2025 was 14%.

Who Obtains Admission to Duke?

Let’s examine the characteristics of undergraduates at Duke:

Geographically, AdmissionSight found that the following states have lately admitted the most students:

  • North Carolina
  • California
  • New York
  • Florida
  • Texas

Thirteen percent of current students are from North Carolina, and as is the case with other prestigious universities, applicants from less populous, more rural areas of the country (such as Montana, South Dakota, and Idaho) have a better chance of being accepted.

The composition of the Class of 2025, when broken down by ethnicity, was as follows:

  • Asian American: 30%
  • Hispanic: 17%
  • African American: 13%
  • Caucasian: 57%
  • Native American: 2%

More women than men were offered spots in the Class of 2025, which is unusual in the postsecondary environment of today (outside of engineering-heavy schools).

  • Male: 45%
  • Female: 55%

Following is a breakdown of high schools by type:

  • Public: 60%
  • Private: 24%
  • Outside of the U.S.: 12%
  • Other: 4%

Headcount Changes for Applicants, Admitted and Enrolled

Over the past ten years, the average number of applicants has been 35,309, the average number of admissions has been 3,429, and the average number of students enrolled has been 1,722. At Duke University, there were 10,064 more applicants than the year before or a 25.39% increase. The following table shows the headcount changes for applicants, admitted and enrolled at Duke University from 2012 to 2022.

Year Applicants Admitted Enrolled
2012-13 28,145 3,938 1,724
2013-14 30,374 4,077 1,714
2014-15 31,523 3,596 1,721
2015-16 31,220 3,566 1,746
2016-17 31,671 3,430 1,723
2017-18 33,077 3,261 1,748
2018-19 35,786 3,189 1,745
2019-20 41,947 3,187 1,731
2020-21 39,639 3,068 1,580
2021-22 49,703 2,982 1,789
Average 35,309 3,429 1,722

Duke: Rating its Applicants

Duke cites eight aspects in their admission process as being “extremely essential,” including the difficulty of the secondary school record, class rank, GPA, standardized test scores, application essays, references, extracurricular activities, talent/ability, and character/personal traits.

Interviews, first-generation status, legacy status, geographic residence, state residency, religious affiliation, racial/ethnic status, volunteer experience, work experience, and the level of an applicant’s interest are all things Duke “considers,” even though none of them are deemed to be particularly significant.

College consultant taking to two people.

The institution is seeking people with a wide range of skills both inside and outside the classroom in an effort to assemble a “collaborative community of intellectual explorers.” The head of admissions, Christopher Guttentag, said that candidates who stand out from the crowd have both “talent and the inclination to use it.” Prior to evaluating an applicant’s grades, recommendations, and test results, Duke believes that it is important to have a look at their extracurricular activities and essays.

The most important aspect of a student’s extracurricular activities is proof that they actually had an impact; this can be demonstrated through volunteering, athletic competitions, or academic competitions. Joining one of Duke’s 27 Division I sports teams as an athlete is unquestionably a benefit. An estimated 5% of new students are classified as “recruited athletes.”

Requirements for Application

Following knowledge of the difficult Duke University acceptance rate, the following are some crucial papers and paperwork needed to apply to Duke University:

  • Official academic transcripts
  • English language proficiency score
  • Statement of Purpose/Personal Statement
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Work Experience (For some courses)
  • Essays (if asked)
  • Portfolio (if required)
  • Updated CV/Resume
  • Student Visa
  • Bank Statements
  • Passport copy

Advice for Duke Applications

You should be aware of the following if you intend to join the 50,000+ Blue Devil applicants for the upcoming admissions cycle:

  • It’s crucial to remember that Duke will continue to follow its temporary test-optional approach for the 2022–2023 admissions cycle (Class of 2027).
  • As a part of the admissions process, Duke offers optional alumni interviews. You will be paired with an alumni interviewer in your area after submitting your application on a first-come, first-served basis. No applicant is permitted an on-campus, evaluative interview with a Duke admissions officer, which typically lasts between 30 and 60 minutes. In the end, not every student is given the opportunity for an interview, and those who do not are asked to provide an additional letter of recommendation along with their application.
  • Duke does take into account “demonstrated interest,” so it’s crucial to get in touch with the admissions office, connect on social media, and (if COVID-19 is no longer a concern) visit campus or speak with Duke representatives at local college fairs.
  • Ensure that you put enough time and effort into the additional essays that Duke requests. There were three prompts for the 2021–2022 cycle: one that was required, one that was nominally optional but was actually required, and one that solely applied to LGBTQ people.

College Essay for Duke University

Please share with us why you consider Duke a good match for you. Is there something in particular about Duke’s academic or other offerings that attracts you? (200-word limit)

Optional #1) Duke University seeks a talented, engaged student body that embodies the wide range of human experience; we believe that the diversity of our students makes our community stronger. If you’d like to share a perspective you bring or experiences you’ve had that would help us understand you better, perhaps a community you belong to or your family or cultural background, we encourage you to do so here. Real people are reading your application, and we want to do our best to understand and appreciate the real people applying to Duke. (250-word limit)

Female student typing in a couch.

Optional #2) Duke’s commitment to diversity and inclusion includes sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. If you would like to share with us more about your identity, you can do so here, or use any previous essay prompt you feel is appropriate. (250-word limit)

Do you think you should apply for an early decision to Duke?

Duke’s early decision program is a significant choice because it is binding. If you are certain of your grades and test results as of early November and if Duke is your top choice, early decision is a suitable fit. It’s crucial to realize that regardless of the financial aid you receive, you will still be expected to commit. It could be advisable to wait and submit a standard decision application if your want to apply to other schools that require binding early action or if you need more time to strengthen your academic resume.

When compared to applicants who wait until the regular decision period, Duke accepts 16.7% more early decision applications. It’s sometimes claimed that early applicants tend to be better prepared and extremely qualified, which explains why there are more acceptances.

Young woman using a laptop in a desk.

However, applying to a single institution through the binding early decision process can indicate a level of commitment even greater than what is feasible through the non-binding early action procedure. Therefore, it’s a good idea to choose early decision (ED) if you have your heart set on a school that provides it and you’re willing to pay for it regardless of financial aid.

Do you still want to apply to Duke?

If your SAT score falls short of 1500 or more, you’ll need to make up for it with other impressive qualities, such as athletic ability or belonging to an underrepresented minority. Even those with such qualifications may not be admitted because Duke turns away many applicants with nearly ideal qualifications each year. Every kid planning to attend college should create a list of potential colleges that includes both “goal” and “safety” schools. You should do this in cooperation with a member of the admissions staff (including your own high school counselor).

At AdmissionSight, we have over 10 years of experience guiding students through the competitive admissions process to get accepted to the top universities in the world. It’s not the yield rate or acceptance rate that will get in your way to be admitted to your desired college, but your will to be there. Grab every opportunity you have. Feel free to set up an appointment today to book your initial consultation.

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