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Harvard University Acceptance Rate 2024

Dark Clock Icon Last updated on 18 Apr '24, by Anushree Sinha (Study Abroad Expert)

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One of the most popular Ivy League institutions, Harvard University is the oldest university in United States and is consistently ranked among the top 5 global universities. Students around the globe desire to study in this university. However, only a fraction of candidates secure an admission in Harvard University due to the extremely competitive nature of Harvard.

It is interesting to note that despite of being one of toughest universities to get into, Harvard University does not mandate proof of English language proficiency for students applying for bachelor’s courses.

Harvard University Acceptance Rate 2024

Harvard University boasts an inclusive community of students from all around the globe and diverse backgrounds. For the Class of 2027, Harvard received over 56,000 applications. However, only about 2,000 candidates got enrolled in the university for their higher education. Thus, it can be concluded that with the Harvard University acceptance rate of merely 3.4%, the university is extremely competitive to get into.

Particulars

Headcount

Application Received

56,937

Admitted Students

1,966

Admitted Students from waiting list

27

Harvard University Acceptance Rate for International Students

When it comes to the Harvard acceptance rate for international students, the statistic again stands at less than 4%, making it one of the toughest study abroad universities to get into.

Harvard University international students count stands at nearly 4,000, which contributes about 15.4% to the total student population. When it comes to the geographical breakdown, a vast number of students of Harvard are from Middle Atlantic, South, New England, Pacific and more.

Region

Percentage of Students

Middle Atlantic

22.1%

South

17.4%

New England

15.9%

International

15.4%

Pacific

13.8%

Midwest

10.2%

Mountain

3.4%

Central

1.5%

Territories

0.3%

Harvard University Acceptance Rate Trends

For the class of 2026, the acceptance rate of Harvard University stood at 3.1%. Whereas, the following year observed a rise and now stands at 3.4% for the class of 2027. When it comes to the class of 2028 admissions, Harvard admitted only 692 out of 7,921 applicants through their Early Decision program. When compared to the previous year early decision acceptance rate of 7.6%, Harvard University acceptance rate for international students has observed a slight rise and stood at 8.7%.

On a usual basis, acceptance rate of Harvard is recorded between 3.0 - 3.5%. Refer to the table below for a comprehensive comparison between Harvard University acceptance rate over the last few years:

Class of

Number of Applications Received

Number of Students Accepted

Harvard University Acceptance Rate

2027

56,937

1,966

3.4%

2026

61,220

1,954

3.2%

2025

57,435

1,968

3.4%

2024

40,248

1,980

4.9%

Harvard University Early Decision vs Regular Decision

Every year, Harvard University admits international students through Early Decision as well as Regular Decision. Usually, the university’s early decision acceptance rate is higher in comparison to regular decision acceptance rate. Early decision allows applicants to apply to a university earlier than regular decision.

For the class of 2028, Harvard University Early Decision acceptance rate witnessed a surge as compared to previous years and is recorded at 8.74%. As the university is still accepting applications for Regular Decision enrollment, it is yet to release the acceptance rate data for current year.

When we talk about the class of 2027, Harvard admitted 722 out of 9,553 candidates through early decision and 1,220 out of 47,384 applicants through the regular decision program. Thus, the early decision acceptance rate stood around 7.6%. Whereas, the regular decision acceptance rate was recorded to be merely 2.6%. Hence, it can be observed that securing an enrollment in Harvard through regular decision is much more competitive as compared to the early decision program.

Class of

Harvard Early Decision Acceptance Rate

Harvard Regular Decision Acceptance Rate

2028

8.7%

Yet to be released

2027

7.6%

2.6%

2026

7.9%

2.3%

2025

7.4%

2.6%

Harvard University Requirements for International Students

Harvard University accepts international students based on their overall character and personality. Students must be all-rounder to secure admission to this prestigious Ivy League institution.

Harvard University Eligibility for Indian Students

  • Undergraduate: Harvard University takes a holistic approach when it comes to admissions. Hence, academic accomplishment in high school is crucial for prospective undergraduate students of Harvard University. Apart from this, Harvard's admissions committee also considers other criteria such as community involvement, leadership and distinction in extra-curricular activities, character, personal qualities and more.
  • Graduate: Harvard University's admission requirements for graduates comprise of 4-year undergraduate degree or equivalent, English language requirements, standardized test scores (SAT/ACT), GMAT/GRE scores, LORsSOPs and more. Apart from the academic requirements, students should be an all-rounder outside of class.

Harvard University English Proficiency Requirements

For bachelor's courses, no English language exam scores are required from international students to secure admission to Harvard University.

However, students planning to pursue master's courses from Harvard do need to fulfil the language requirements and the minimum score requirements are listed below:

English Language Exam

Score Requirements

TOEFL

80 & Above

IELTS

6.5 & Above

PTE

70 & Above

Duolingo

120 & Above

Harvard University Average GPA, SAT & ACT Scores

Harvard University is an extremely competitive university to get into and thus, students must be academically outstanding along with being all-rounder even outside class in order to secure an enrollment for their higher studies. To compete with other applicants, a candidate must obtain straight A’s in all their subjects.

When it comes to standardized test score requirements, the average SAT score submitted by Harvard applicants lies between 1490 – 1580. Whereas, the average ACT scores of the university’s applicants is around 34 – 36.

Tips to Get Selected at Harvard University

In order to secure an enrollment, the candidate must be an all-rounder as Harvard accepts students on the basis of their overall character and personality and takes a holistic approach when it comes to Harvard University admissions.

Apart from fulfilling the academic qualifications, some of the best practices that students can follow include acquiring strong letters of recommendations from their teachers/professors, participating in co-curricular activities and leaving a positive impact in the world outside classrooms.

In addition, the admissions committee of this Ivy League institution takes into account additional factors such as leadership and distinction in extracurricular activities, character, personal qualities, and involvement in the community.

Harvard University Acceptance Rate vs Oxford University Acceptance Rate

Oxford University acceptance rate stands at around 17%, which makes it an extremely competitive university to get into. However, with an acceptance rate of merely 3.4%, Harvard is considered to be much more selective in their admission criteria.

University of Oxford admissions are very selective in nature and students must be at the top of their class as well as exceptional in co-curricular activities in order to get admitted in the university.

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FAQs

Q:   Is it hard to get into Harvard University?

A: 

Getting into Harvard University is quite competitive but not impossible. Applicants can get into Harvard once they have outstanding academic grades. For the Class of 2028, 1,937 of the 54,008 applicants to class were granted admission, This is equivalent to 3.6%. Apart from the academic achievements, Harvard University also looks for these qualities in students:

  • Growth & Potential
  • Interests & Activities (Extracurricular)
  • Personal Character
  • Contribution to the Harvard Community
 

Q:   What was Harvard's the highest acceptance rate ever?

A: 

Harvard University is an extremely competitive university to get into and its acceptance rate is usually recorded to be below 5%. Every year, Harvard receives more than 50,000 applications. However, only a fraction of students manage to secure an enrollment in the university. In the year 1940, the Harvard University acceptance rate was recorded to be around 85%. However, in recent times, the highest acceptance rate was recorded during the class of 2024 admissions and it stood at 4.9%.

Given below is the trend of Harvard University acceptance rate for international students:

Class of

Number of Applications Received

Number of Students Accepted

Harvard University Acceptance Rate

2027

56,937

1,966

3.4%

2026

61,220

1,954

3.2%

2025

57,435

1,968

3.4%

2024

40,248

1,980

4.9%

 

Q:   Which Ivy League university has a higher acceptance rate than Harvard University?

A: 

Harvard University is one of the most prestigious universities around the globe and has the the lowest acceptance rate among the Ivy League universities. Nonetheless, getting into any of the Ivy Leagues is extremely competitive. Listed below is the acceptance rate of all the eight Ivy League institutions:

Ivy LeagueAcceptance Rate
Harvard University3.4%
Cornell University3.6%
Yale University4.5%
Brown University5%
Princeton University5.8%
Dartmouth College6%
Cornell University7.3%
Purdue University50%
 

Q:   How can an Indian student get into Harvard?

A: 

Harvard University is a part of the prestigious Ivy League institutions and also ranks among the top 5 universities in the world. This globally renowned university is very selective when it comes to admissions and admits students based on their holistic profile and overall academic as well as behavioral character. Indian students planning to pursue higher studies in Harvard University must be at the top of their class in order to secure an admission in this highly competitive university. Harvard University has a set of admission requirements for international students and they are listed below:

Conversion Rate: 1 USD = INR 83.20

 

Q:   What qualities does Harvard University look for in students?

A: 

Harvard University pays attention to each applicant while granting admission to international students. When it comes to the Harvard College, then admissions are offered after identifying students who will be the best educators of one another and their professors. Some of the other things that are kept in mind while granting admission to students are their growth and potential, interests and activities, personal character, contribution to the Harvard community.

 

Q:   What are the acceptance rates for Columbia University and Harvard University?

A: 

Columbia University and Harvard University are a part of the top universities worldwide and it is very difficult to get into these universities. Harvard University acceptance rate stands at 3.4%, which indicates the competitive nature of the university. In comparison, the Harvard4 University acceptance rate is recorded to be 3.9%, which again shows that the university is extremely selective.

For the Class of 2027, Columbia received over 57,000 applications. However, only about 2,200 candidates got enrolled in the university for their higher education. Thus, it can be concluded that with the Columbia University acceptance rate of merely 3.9%, the university is extremely competitive to get into.

For the Class of 2027, Harvard received over 56,000 applications. However, only about 2,000 candidates got enrolled in the university for their higher education. Thus, it can be concluded that with the Harvard University acceptance rate of merely 3.4%, the university is extremely competitive to get into.

 

Q:   Which is better: Harvard University or Oxford University?

A: 

Harvard University as well as the University of Oxford are two most prestigious universities worldwide and part of the top 5 universities in the world. When it comes to rankings, Oxford University is just a level above Harvard, with the rank #3 in World University Rankings. Whereas, the latter has obtained the rank #4. Also, Harvard is part of the prestigious Ivy League institutions. Mentioned below is the comparison between both of these globally renowned universities on the basis of some crucial parameters:

ParametersHarvard UniversityOxford University
QS World University Rankings 2024#4#3
Acceptance Rate4%18%
Tuition Fees (MBA)INR 62.1 LINR 72.6 L
Average Salary in INRINR 1.45 CrINR 69.4 L
 

Q:   How to apply to Harvard University?

A: 

Harvard University application requirements is the same for US residents as well as overseas applicants. Hence, in order to apply for Harvard University admissions, all the first-year candidates must complete the Common Application or the Coalition Application along with the required supplements. Harvard is unbiased and has no preference. Each application is treated equally by the Admissions Committee of Harvard University.

 

Q:   How many international students study in Harvard University?

A: 

Harvard University is culturally a very rich institution and admits diverse students with far-ranging talents and interests from every part of the globe. Total student head count is 25,266 and international students make up about 15.4% of Harvard University total student population.

Harvard University admission statistics:

Particulars

Student Count

Total Student Enrollment

25,266

International Students

4,000 (approx.)

Total Undergraduates

7,240

Total Graduates

14,373

 
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About the author

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Anushree Sinha

Study Abroad Expert

Anushree is a Graduate in Bachelor's degree in Journalism and Mass Communication and takes keen interest in content creation. She has affinity for writing and travelling around the world takes the top spot on her bucket list. Bringing out the creativ...Read Full Bio

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