Class of 2025 – Ivy League & Elite College Early Decision Acceptance Rates

January 25, 2021

Welcome to College Transitions’ first look at early round acceptance rates at Ivy League and other highly-selective colleges and universities for the 2020-21 cycle. As of this posting in January of 2021, there are still many schools who have yet to report their early round results. As such, you will see a number of “TBD” designations in the charts below. These will be updated as soon as additional data becomes available.

What follows are two charts, both showing Class of 2025 and Class of 2024 data for the Early Action, Early Decision, and Single Choice Early Action/Restrictive Early Action rounds. One is for Ivy League schools and the other is for additional elite schools who are known for reporting their early acceptance information in a timely manner. We will also highlight trends and notable facts from schools that have reported their present-year acceptance rates.

Ivy League – ED/SCEA Acceptance Rates

School Name #of Early Applicants for Class of 2025 # of Early Applicants Accepted into Class of 2025 Early Acceptance Rate for Class of 2025 Early Acceptance Rate for Class of 2024
Brown University (ED) 5,540 885 16% 17.5%
Columbia University (ED) ~6,400 TBD TBD 15%
Cornell University (ED) TBD TBD TBD 23.8%
Dartmouth College (ED) 2,664 566 21.2% 26.4%
Harvard University (SCEA) 10,086 747 7.4% 13.9%
University of Pennsylvania (ED) 7,962 1,194 15% 19.7%
Princeton University (SCEA) N/A N/A N/A N/A
Yale University (SCEA) 7,939 837 10.5% 13.8%


Ivy League Early Decision Facts & Trends:


  • It is the fourth consecutive year that early decision applications have increased.
  • Among this year’s admitted early decision students, 59% applied for financial aid, and 16% of students will be first in their family to attend college.
  • Collectively, the accepted early decision students represent 46 nations, 44 U.S. states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.


  • The number of early decision applications, 2,664, this year increased by almost 29%.
  • The percentage of accepted students from low-income households is almost 26% and the projected percentage of students who are eligible for federal Pell grants is 18%.
  • The children of Dartmouth alumni represent 15% of admitted students, the same as last year’s percentage.


  • The percentage of students accepted early action from first-generation college backgrounds increased by nearly 7 percentage points — from 10.1 percent last year to 17 percent this admission’s cycle.
  • The number of applicants increased by 57 percent from last year, while the College admitted 148 fewer students.
  • The percentage of admitted students who identify as African American increased to 16.6 percent this year from 12.7 percent last year.


  • 13% of the class are international students based on their citizenship, hailing from 56 countries from Australia to Zimbabwe. 52% of admits identify as a member of a minority group.
  • 22% of the admitted students had a parent or grandparent attend Penn in prior generations.
  • The highest concentration of admitted students were from Pennsylvania (198), New York (152), California (122), New Jersey (113) and Florida (48). Fifty-six students reside in the city of Philadelphia.


  • 50% of students who applied through early action were deferred for reconsideration in the spring, 38% were denied admission, and 1% were withdrawn or incomplete.
  • The admissions office received a record 7,939 applications in the early action round — an increase of 38% over last year.
  • Yale also offered admission to 72 students through the QuestBridge National College Match program.

Other Highly-Selective Colleges ED/EA Acceptance Rates

School Name #of Early Applicants for Class of 2024 # of Early Applicants Accepted into Class of 2024 Early Acceptance Rate for Class of 2024 ED Acceptance Rate for Class of 2023
Duke University (ED) 5,036 840 16.7% 21%
Emory University (ED) 1,975 769 38.9% 40.2%
Georgetown (EA) 8,710 940 10.8% 11.7%
Johns Hopkins University (ED) N/A 520 N/A 28%
Rice University (ED) 2,635 421 16% 18.9%
University of Virginia (ED) 2,937 968 32.9% 35%


Highly-Selective Colleges & Universities Early Decision Facts & Trends:


  • Duke received 5,036 early decision applications — a 16 percent increase over last year and the most early decision applicants in the university’s history.
  • The states most represented by the early decision admits are North Carolina, New York, California and Florida.
  • 676 students plan to enroll in the Trinity School of Arts & Sciences, and 164 in the Pratt School of Engineering.


  • Emory College admitted 614 students and Oxford College admitted 337 students.
  • Emory’s Early Decision I applications increased 8% over last year and 43% from five years ago.
  • The university welcomed a new group of 56 QuestBridge Scholars to the Class of 2025, nearly doubling the number of QuestBridge Scholars matched with Emory University last year.


  • The number of applications saw a 19% increase from last year.
  • The school with the highest 2025 ED acceptance rate was Georgetown College at 10.17%.
  • Of the early action pool, only 7.34% of applicants who did not submit standardized test scores were admitted.

Johns Hopkins

  • A record number of students made the decision that Hopkins is their first choice college, with an 11% increase in early applicants from last year.


  • The total number of applications increased by 29 percent compared to last year.
  • 12 percent were international students, while the remaining 88 percent was split evenly between in-state and out-of-state students.
  • 57 additional students were also recently admitted through the QuestBridge National College Match program.

University of Virginia

  • The admission rate for Virginia residents was 39.2%, compared to 25.7% for out-of-state students.
  • 7% percent are first-generation college students.
  • This year’s early decision applicant pool increased by 38%.
  • There are 554 female students in the early decision pool and 414 males.

Check back for more updates on Class of 2025 acceptance rate data as it becomes public.