Yale Yield Rate and Acceptance Rate: How They Change Every Year?

September 11, 2022
By AdmissionSight

Yale Yield Rate and Acceptance Rate: How They Change Every Year?

Yale University is one of the most competitive Ivy League schools based on its admissions statistics. The acceptance rates at Yale University have decreased over the past eight years and are very probably going to keep down in the future, following the trends at all elite universities. It’s important to learn more about Yale’s yield rate.

Students walking in front of the gate.

The average acceptance rate at Yale University over the past ten years (2012–2022) is 6.50%, while the rate for the current year is 5.00%. Yale University has maintained a relatively low acceptance rate, making it extremely difficult for applicants to be accepted. The 2022 Yale yield rate is 71.00%, while the average Yale yield rate (enrollment rate) for the time period is 67.07%. The number of applicants to Yale University increased by 34.13% (12,020 candidates) from the previous year.

Yale Yield Rate Data for Class of 2025

Yale Yield Rate Yale Admit Rate
Yale University 82.5% 4.62%

How many applicants are there to Yale each year?

Yale got 46,905 applications last year, which is a record for the university. At 4.62%, the acceptance percentage was the lowest the school has ever seen.

Yale: Class of 2026 Early Acceptance Rate

Yale accepted 800 of the 7,288 early applications it received for a place in the Class of 2025, which is an acceptable percentage of 11%. Compared to two years earlier, when 5,777 aspirants applied to Yale, the early application pool was much higher. Thirty-one percent of early applicants in the 2021–2022 admissions cycle were deferred for reconsideration in the regular round, while 57% were flatly denied.

View of Yale University

Class of 2026 Acceptance Rate at Yale

The most applications ever received by the institution were filed for a spot in the 2022–2023 freshmen class, totaling 50,015. Just 4.46% of applications were accepted, which is a record low. This is slightly less than the Class of 2025 which is a 4.62% admit rate, though. For the Class of 2003, Yale’s admission rate was last in the double digits. The acceptance rate was actually 20% in 1995, reaching a high of 26% for the graduating class a few months before the bicentennial of the United States.

Changes in Acceptance Rate

At Yale University, the current academic year’s acceptance rate is 5.00%, compared to an average acceptance rate during the prior 10 years of 6.50%. Yale University has maintained a very low acceptance rate, making it extremely difficult for applicants to gain admission. The following table shows Yale University’s changes in acceptance rate over the previous ten years (2012–2022).

Year Total Men Women
2012-13 7.73% 8.60% 6.98%
2013-14 7.05% 7.91% 6.29%
2014-15 6.30% 6.89% 5.77%
2015-16 6.73% 7.28% 6.22%
2016-17 6.32% 6.81% 5.90%
2017-18 6.93% 7.32% 6.59%
2018-19 6.35% 7.05% 5.75%
2019-20 6.08% 6.61% 5.63%
2020-21 6.53% 7.22% 5.92%
2021-22 5.00% 6.00% 5.00%
Average 6.50% 7.17% 6.01%

 Changes in Admission Yield (Enrollment Rate)

Year Total Men Women
2012-13 63.96% 63.17% 64.81%
2013-14 66.37% 63.86% 69.19%
2014-15 69.79% 69.22% 70.43%
2015-16 67.06% 66.44% 67.71%
2016-17 68.76% 68.35% 69.17%
2017-18 69.35% 68.87% 69.80%
2018-19 70.22% 68.45% 72.07%
2019-20 69.17% 68.35% 69.99%
2020-21 54.98% 55.36% 54.58%
2021-22 71.00% 68.03% 74.03%
Average 67.07% 66.01% 68.18%

Headcount Changes for Applicants, Admitted and Enrolled

Over the past ten years, the average number of applicants has been 33,636, the average number of admissions has been 2,154, and the average number of students enrolled has been 1,444. The number of applicants to Yale University increased by 34.13% (12,020 candidates) from the previous year. The following table displays Yale University’s headcount changes for applicants, admitted, and enrolled from 2012 to 2022.

Year Applicants Admitted Enrolled
2012-13 27,283 2,109 1,349
2013-14 28,977 2,043 1,356
2014-15 30,932 1,950 1,361
2015-16 30,236 2,034 1,364
2016-17 31,445 1,988 1,367
2017-18 32,879 2,277 1,579
2018-19 35,301 2,240 1,573
2019-20 36,844 2,241 1,550
2020-21 35,220 2,299 1,264
2021-22 47,240 2,362 1,677
Average 33,636 2,154 1,444

Yale’s Admissions Trends and Notes

  • The Class of 2025 at Yale has 16% first-generation college students and 17% Pell Grant recipients.
  • The university accepted students from 72 nations and 50 U.S. states.
  • The freshmen batch for 2021–2022 include 14% legacy students.
  • Members of the Class of 2025 attended 1,221 different high schools.
  • There were admitted students from 58 nations and 49 U.S. states in the Class of 2026.
  • The Class of 2026 will include 46 postponed students who recently completed a gap year.

Yale Accepted Student Event for the Class of 2026

For the class of 2026, Yale’s acceptance rate and admission statistics

Number of Applications Accepted Students Acceptance Rate
Regular Applications 37,495 1,434 3.8%
Early Applications 7,288 800 10.9%

In addition, the Yale admissions team is eager to welcome freshly admitted students to campus for Bulldog Days, a fun event that highlights academic and extracurricular life at Yale. Due to the COVID-19 epidemic, this event was hosted for essentially two years.

Results of Yale’s Early Admissions for the Class of 2026

In December 2021, results of Yale’s early admissions for the class of 2026 were finally out. A total of 800 students received early admission, representing a 10.9% acceptance rate. AdmissionSight advises you to apply as soon as possible to improve your chances of being accepted by Yale, knowing that Yale yield rate for this year is still high.

Peabody museum made of stones in the campus.

Results of Regular Admission to Yale over the Previous Three Years

This year, Yale saw a record-breaking amount of applications and one of its lowest acceptance rates ever. The admissions data for Yale over the previous three years are displayed in the chart below.

 Acceptance Rates for Yale Admissions Overall

Class of 2024 Class of 2025 Class of 2026
Total First-Year Applicants 35,220 46,905 50,015
Admitted Applicants 2,304 2,169 2,234
Overall Admission Rate 6.54% 4.62% 4.46%

 Early Decision Statistics for Yale

Class of 2024 Class of 2025 Class of 2026
Total ED Applicants 5,777 7,939 7,288
Total ED Admissions Rate 13.8% 10.5% 10.9%

Advice for Yale Applications

AdmissionSight listed the following for the 50,000+ candidates:

  • Although it is not necessary for applicants to have an interview as part of the admissions process, doing so is always encouraged. Informational and evaluative purposes are both intended for interviews. Interviews for the SCEA round are arranged before those for the normal round. Interviews can be conducted in-person or by video chat.
  • On a first-come, first-served basis, a small number of on-campus interviews are made available each year. There are interviews available over the summer and in the fall with current Yale seniors.
  • Due to their aforementioned extraordinarily high Yale yield rate, Yale does not take “demonstrated interest” into account. As a result, you are not required to contact the institution specifically for this reason.
  • Take all necessary steps to “bring your application to life.” This entails looking for recommendations that can highlight your passion and make your distinctive personality and qualities stand out on the page. Essays will be crucial, too.
  • Ensure that you give the Yale-required extra essays and short responses enough time and effort. These are what they are:

 Questions with Short Answers

The following short answer questions will be addressed by applicants submitting the Coalition Application, Common Application, or QuestBridge Application:

  • Students at Yale have plenty of time to explore their academic interests before committing to one or more major fields of study. Many students either modify their original academic direction or change their minds entirely. As of this moment, what academic areas seem to fit your interests or goals most comfortably? Please indicate up to three from the list provided.
  • Why do these areas appeal to you? (125 words or fewer)
  • What is it about Yale that has led you to apply? (125 words or fewer)
  • What inspires you? (200 character max)
  • Yale’s residential colleges regularly host conversations with guests representing a wide range of experiences and accomplishments. What person, past or present, would you invite to speak? What question would you ask? (200 character max)
  • You are teaching a Yale course. What is it called? (200 character max)
  • Most first-year Yale students live in suites of 4 to 6 students. What do you hope to add to your suitemates’ experience? What do you hope they will add to yours? (200 character max)


Use the two brief essays (250 words or less) below to reflect on subjects and personal experiences that will help the admissions committee understand more about you. These are for applicants submitting the Coalition Application or Common Application.

  1. Yale’s extensive course offerings and vibrant conversations beyond the classroom encourage students to follow their developing intellectual interests wherever they lead. Tell us about your engagement with a topic or idea that excites you. Why are you drawn to it?
  2. Respond to one of the following prompts:
  • Reflect on your membership in a community. Why is your involvement important to you? How has it shaped you?  You may define community however you like.
  • Yale students, faculty, and alumni engage issues of local, national, and international significance. Discuss an issue that is important to you and how your college experience could help you address it.
  • Tell us about your relationship with a role model or mentor who has been influential in your life. How has their guidance been instrumental to your growth?

Be the best at one thing; avoid being “well-rounded.”

Yale University is searching for the next generation of luminaries in a number of fields, just as universities like Princeton and Harvard. The next wave of politicians (the Bush dynasty, Hilary Clinton), award-winning writers (Naomi Wolf, David McCullough, Tom Wolfe), journalists (Anderson Cooper, Bob Woodward), business leaders (Stephen Schwarzman, Indra Nooyi) and actors and actresses (Claire Danes, Jodie Foster, James Franco) are just a few of the notable Yale alumni that you may see on the list.

Even if all 10 of your extracurricular activities are excellent, spreading yourself too thin won’t impress the Yale admissions committee. The idea is to excel in one or two areas.

How Yale judges potential students?

According to a former president of Yale University, choosing prospective Yale students involved looking for people who would make the most of the amazing resources available here, people who were eager to push the boundaries of their abilities, and people who had exceptional public motivation. However, Yale is renowned for giving a lot of weight to intellectual curiosity and demonstrable passion for a chosen pursuit. Some elite schools have a tendency to favor pre-professional applicants. Applicants are urged to ” pursue what you love and tell us about that. Be yourself. Ask the teachers who really know you to recommend you. Apply and relax.”

Students smiling while hanging out in the stairs.

Application essays, references, extracurricular activities, the level of difficulty of a student’s secondary school record, class rank, GPA, test scores, and character/personal traits are among the factors listed by Yale as being “extremely essential” to the admissions process. Interviews, first-generation status, legacy status, location, state of residence, race/ethnicity, volunteer work, and paid work experience are all “considered,” but no variables are ranked as “essential.”

When applying to Yale, it is crucial to have some sort of “hook” in terms of extracurricular activities. For instance, the university has over 800 varsity athletes and 34 Division I sports teams. Your prospects of admission significantly increase if you are a top athlete being actively courted by a Yale coach, especially if your academic performance is “in range.” If athletics aren’t your thing, maybe you’re a famous orator and will join the Yale Debate Association, or maybe you have skills as a musician, actress, activist, or businessperson.

Who gets admitted into Yale?

Let’s take a closer look at the makeup of the Class of 2025.

The students in the Class of 2025 came from the following regions:

  • Northeast: 29%
  • Mid-Atlantic States: 9%
  • Southern States: 12%
  • Western States: 17%
  • Midwestern States: 10%
  • Southwestern States: 7%

Like other elite institutions, Yale enjoys achieving a level of geographic diversity that enables them to claim that their class includes students from every state. Therefore, as opposed to someone who lives in New England or New York, your location is more likely to improve your chances of admission if you are from the Deep South or a sparsely populated state like Montana or Idaho.

The distribution of the Class of 2025 by ethnicity is as follows (percentages do not total to 100% as applicants can list multiple races):

  • White: 50%
  • Asian American: 25%
  • Hispanic: 15%
  • African American: 12%
  • Native American: 3%
  • International: 12%

Looking at the several high schools the members of the Class of 2025 attended reveals the following:

  • Public: 63%
  • Independent Day: 21%
  • Boarding: 10%
  • Religious: 6%

How likely are you to be accepted by Yale?

At Yale, 6.1% of applicants are accepted.

Only six out of every 100 applications are accepted. This demonstrates how picky the school is. To get beyond their initial filters and demonstrate your academic readiness, it’s crucial to meet their GPA standards and SAT/ACT requirements.

What factors led to Yale’s admission rate falling to its lowest level in recent history?

The Office of Undergraduate Admissions reported that Yale College has admitted 2,234 individuals to the class of 2026 from its largest-ever pool of 50,015 applicants.

The lowest acceptance rate in recent history is 4.46% for the admissions cycle for 2021–2022. For the class of 2025, it decreased from 4.62%, 6.54% for Class 2024, and 5.91% for the class of 2023.

Young female student holding her books while smiling at the camera.

Of the admitted applicants, 81 were paired with Yale through QuestBridge in December, and 800 got their acceptances through early action. Yale offered 1,000 students spots on its waitlist. 46 students who were admitted during the cycle of the previous year but choose to postpone matriculation until autumn 2022 will join the class. This number includes the 46 students who postponed their attendance and excludes the 39 students who received application extensions because of exceptional circumstances. Earlier this semester, the admissions office claimed that 50,022 students had applied to Yale.

The class of 2026’s admitted students come from 58 nations, as well as 49 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and Guam. In addition to 1,998 incomplete or withdrawn applications, Yale turned down 44,783 applicants for admission.

This newly-admitted class was unique for many reasons than just the volume of applications. The third group of accepted students to do so during the COVID-19 pandemic is the class of 2026. They are the second to submit an application without taking a required standardized test, which Yale initially decided to discontinue for the 2020–2021 admissions cycle because to difficulties associated to the epidemic.

However, the admitted class of this year will be the first to be invited to New Haven for Bulldog Days since the class of 2023 arrived in Connecticut in 2019. Bulldog Days is an admitted students’ program that highlights academic and extracurricular life at Yale. The gathering, which was remote during the last two admissions seasons, took place from April 25 to 27.

Low-income accepted students may be eligible for financial aid to cover the cost of their travel to campus for Bulldog Days.

Should you continue to apply to Yale?

It is absolutely worth adding Yale to your college choice if you are at the top of your high school class and have outstanding standardized test results. However, this is one university that is a “reach” school for every single applicant, regardless of how intelligent and successful you are. It’s difficult to give anyone a better than 50/50 chance of being accepted into the Yale freshmen class unless they are a top sports recruit or a descendant of a U.S. President.

If you’re looking for guidance that will best prepare you for entry into one of the elite universities in the country, we’ve got you covered! At AdmissionSight, we have over 10 years of experience guiding students through the competitive admissions process. We will assist you throughout the entirety of the admissions process in order to increase your chances of gaining entry. Feel free to set up an appointment today to book your initial consultation.

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