Applications Down 2.6% for Class of 2018
Published: Tuesday, February 4, 2014
Updated: Tuesday, February 4, 2014 02:02
Regular decision applications declined by 2.62 percent this year from 20,025 for the current freshman class to 19,500 for the Class of 2018.
This slight decrease continues a trend from last year, in which applications plateaued, declining by 0.1 percent from the year before.
The Class of 2018 applicant pool, however, has an average critical reading SAT score of 674, up seven points from last year. The average math SAT score rose four points to 681.
“Even though the pool has gone down a little bit, it’s gotten stronger,” Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Charles Deacon said. “From an admissions committee’s point of view, it will be every bit as competitive [as] or even more competitive than it was two years ago when we had that peak number.”
The applicant pool includes 1,875 self-identified African-American students, or 9.6 percent of applicants, and 2,200 self-identified Hispanics, or 11.3 percent of applicants. Fewer than half of this year’s applicants self-identified as white.
“Although the pool hasn’t grown, it’s become more diverse, both socioeconomically and in particular by ethnic background,” Deacon said.
While this year’s applicant pool saw higher levels of diversity, the number of international applicants declined. International students made up 12.8 percent of applicants to the Class of 2017 but just 10.5 percent of applicants for next year’s incoming class.
“We hadn’t counted on the rather significant drop-off in international applicants,” Deacon said. “We would have been even [with last year] if it hadn’t dropped off internationally.”
After receiving a record number of 3,370 applicants last year, the McDonough School of Business experienced decreases of 1.63 percent. The School of Nursing and Health Studies which had approximately 1,250 applicants last year, experienced decreases of 8.47 percent.
“We had been seeing a pattern where there was a big growth for the McDonough School of Business and the School of Nursing and Health Studies, which are job creators, but that has leveled off,” Deacon said.Applicants to the School of Foreign Service decreased by 5.28 percent. The College’s pool decreased by 1.83 percent, with fewer applicants indicating a major in hard sciences or entering as undecided, a change Deacon sees in line with an economy that has yet to settle since the 2008 recession.
Last year, Deacon attributed a 4.2 percent jump in applications to the NHS to an increased interest in the sciences.
“Students are more interested in job security. They are gravitating [toward] science and pre-med tracks,” he said in February 2013.
This year, Deacon analyzed pre-professional trends differently.
“If you’re in college today, you really want to say that you want to be adept at being flexible and making moves that make sense based on what the economy is going to be like when you graduate,” Deacon said. “It’s hard to know what it’s going to be because the world is changing so quickly.”
Deacon anticipates an acceptance rate of between 16 and 17 percent across the four schools for an incoming freshman class of around 1,580 students. Last year’s acceptance rate was 16.6 percent.
This year’s admissions process included the debut of an individualized online form for secondary school reports and teacher recommendations. The form requires teachers and counselors to answer Georgetown-specific questions, rather than sending identical information to each school to which a student is applying. Two-thirds of applicants, or those who chose to submit the form electronically, utilized the new form.
“For those who did use the system, we have much better information about the students. We know a lot more about them personally, and we have individual comments about how great this person would be, especially for Georgetown,” Deacon said.
The Office of Admissions will release regular application decisions in late March.