If studying at an Ivy League university in the USA sounds like the holy grail for you, then you know your Master’s degree application is the key that opens it. But like many other students who dream big, you might be a little bit confused and maybe a little bit intimidated by the whole Master’s admission process.
After all, Ivy League universities are the most prestigious higher education institutions in the USA and getting into one of these schools is a highly competitive business. But with good information, you might be one of the brilliant students that will follow in the footsteps of great scientists, politicians, lawyers, humanists and businessmen who have started with a degree at an Ivy League school.
Right here on infolearners, you are privy to a litany of relevant information on ivy league transfer gpa, ivy league transfer rates, ivy league transfer deadlines, transfer to ivy league, ivy league schools, application requirements for ivy league schools, ivy league graduate school acceptance rates, ivy league requirements for international students and so much more. Take out time to visit our catalog for more information on similar topics.
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The eight schools of the Ivy League are some of the most hallowed institutions in the United States, counting presidents, Nobel Prize winners, founders, and CEOs among their alumni. Because of this, the best and brightest minds from around the world compete for admission into the Ivy League. While no Ivy League school is easy to get into, gaining admission into some Ivies is easier than others. Keep reading to learn about the easiest Ivy League Schools to get into.
What is the Ivy League?
Known for containing some of the United States’ oldest, most well-known and well-respected institutions in the northeast, the eight schools of the Ivy League were originally grouped together as an athletic conference. And while these schools have histories dating back hundreds of years, the Ivy League itself was only formed in 1954. Despite its underpinnings in athletics, the Ivy League today is better known for its scholars more than its sports, as admission into these institutions is highly competitive.
Here are the schools in the Ivy League and some more basic information about them.
|School Name||Location||Acceptance Rate||Undergraduate Enrollment|
|Cornell University||Ithaca, New York||10.6%||15,043|
|Dartmouth College||Hanover, New Hampshire||7.9%||4,417|
|University of Pennsylvania||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania||7.7%||6,311|
|Brown University||Providence, Rhode Island||6.6%||6,752|
|Yale University||New Haven, Connecticut||6.3%||5,964|
|Princeton University||Princeton, New Jersey||5.7%||5,267|
|Columbia University||New York, New York||5.2%||9,001|
|Harvard University||Cambridge, Massachusetts||5.1%||6,699|
How to Get Into Ivy League for Masters
Ivy League schools are private universities. When it comes to graduate studies a key thing to remember is that in most cases you will not apply directly to the university but to one of its graduate schools. Graduate schools are part of the university but only take in Master’s and Ph.D. students.
For example, if you want to pursue a graduate degree at Harvard University, you need to first know the subject you want to study and apply to the graduate school that offers a Master’s on that subject. Some examples are:
- Harvard Business School
- Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
- Harvard Graduate School of Education
- Harvard Law School
- Harvard Kennedy School
The same applies to Yale University, Columbia University, University of Pennsylvania or Cornell University which are all Ivy League schools.
Because these universities do not have a centralised system of graduate studies, each school is responsible for establishing their own application procedure and requirements. That is why you should always check the admission details on the web page of the graduate school you want to apply to.
Luckily there are some common points for graduate admissions that apply to most schools. Up next we will look at relevant application information for Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Brown, Dartmouth, Pennsylvania and Cornell.
Application Requirements for Ivy League schools
To put it simply, there isn’t a single magic formula to apply to an elite American school. Students who get accepted come from diverse academic and cultural backgrounds, but it is ultimately up to each Admissions Committee to evaluate if there’s a right mix between your goals, academic record, and experience and what the university has to offer.
In general, you need the following in order to be eligible to apply to a graduate program at an Ivy League school:
- the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree
- transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate academic institutions you have attended (GPA included)
- proof of English proficiency (TOEFL, IELTS)
- Standardized test scores (GMAT, GRE, LSAT)
- 3 Letters of recommendation
- Personal statement
- Resume/ CV
- Non-refundable application fee
Okay, these requirements are pretty much the same as at many universities around the world. So, what’s so special about applying to Ivy League universities? Well, they usually accept only students that have the highest test scores and language tests. Here are the average scores for accepted students:
- Average GPA: 3.71 on a 4.0 scale
- TOEFL: 100 or higher on the Internet-based TOEFL test
- 7.5 or higher on the IELTS test
- GRE average scores ranges: 155- 170 for all subjects
- LSAT: 173 and higher
- MCAT: 36.6 and higher
While most universities are happy with one or two recommendation letters, Ivy League schools want three of them – from individuals in academia or other professional sectors who know you well and can tell us about your qualifications for our programs.
Easiest Ivy League To Transfer Into
Table: Transfer Students as a Percent of Total Admissions at Top-Tier Schools
|SCHOOL||TRANSFERS||FRESHMEN||TOTAL||TRANSFER % OF TOTAL|
|Massachusetts Institute of Technology||16||1043||1059||2%|
|University of Pennsylvania||150||2425||2575||6%|
|California Institute of Technology||3||226||229||1%|
|Johns Hopkins University||40||1414||1454||3%|
|Washington University in St. Louis||110||1734||1844||6%|
|University of Notre Dame||118||2011||2129||6%|
|University of California-Berkeley||2187||5466||7653||29%|
|Carnegie Mellon University||20||1474||1494||1%|
|University of California-Los Angeles||3167||5764||8931||35%|
|University of Southern California||1435||3098||4533||32%|
|University of Virginia||665||3709||4374||15%|
|Wake Forest University||30||1287||1317||2%|
|University of Michigan-Ann Arbor||1041||6505||7546||14%|
|University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill||886||3976||4862||18%|
|New York University||854||5913||6767||13%|
|College of William and Mary||157||1511||1668||9%|
|Georgia Institute of Technology||499||2809||3308||15%|
|Case Western Reserve University||38||1282||1320||3%|
|University of California-Santa Barbara||1592||4747||6339||25%|
|University of California-Irvine||2024||5424||7448||27%|
|University of California-San Diego||2461||4921||7382||33%|
|Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute||121||1331||1452||8%|
|University of California-Davis||3138||5377||8515||37%|
|University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign||1331||6937||8268||16%|
|University of Wisconsin-Madison||770||6264||7034||11%|
|Pennsylvania State University||425||8183||8608||5%|
|University of Florida||1968||6537||8505||23%|
|University of Miami||592||2076||2668||22%|
|Ohio State University||2606||7079||9685||27%|
|University of Texas-Austin||2325||7285||9610||24%|
|University of Washington||1730||6360||8090||21%|
|George Washington University||492||2416||2908||17%|
|University of Connecticut||805||3588||4393||18%|
|University of Maryland at College Park||2004||4129||6133||33%|
|Worcester Polytechnic Institute||42||1056||1098||4%|
|Purdue University-West Lafayette||586||6372||6958||8%|
|Southern Methodist University||287||1459||1746||16%|
|University of Georgia||1116||5261||6377||18%|
|Brigham Young University-Provo||734||4072||4806||15%|
|University of Pittsburgh||762||3847||4609||17%|
|University of Minnesota-Twin Cities||2175||5530||7705||28%|
|Texas A&M University-College Station||2525||10835||13360||19%|
|Colorado School of Mines||159||999||1158||14%|
|Michigan State University||1668||8055||9723||17%|
|University of Delaware||426||4179||4605||9%|
|University of Massachusetts-Amherst||1158||4642||5800||20%|
3 Easiest Ivy League Schools to Get Into
Note: We want to reiterate that no Ivy League is “easy” to get into, but some historically have higher acceptance rates than others. This is the case for these 3 schools.
1. Cornell University
- Location: Ithaca, New York
- Acceptance rate: 10.6%
- Undergraduate enrollment: 15,043
Founded in 1865, Cornell University’s motto, “I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study,” is as relevant today as when the words were first uttered by its cofounder, Ezra Cornell. The easiest Ivy to get into based on acceptance rate, Cornell offers over 4,000 courses through its seven undergraduate schools, meaning that students are sure to find a subject of interest to study. Cornell was the first university to offer a degree in journalism and the first to teach modern Far Eastern languages. Students will find more than academics to interest them at Cornell—start with these 161 Things Every Cornellian Should Do. Set in the Finger Lakes region of New York, the 2,300-acre campus is replete with green space and natural beauty.
Note on Cornell’s Acceptance Rate: Cornell requires students to apply directly to one of their eight undergraduate colleges. While the overall acceptance rate at Cornell makes it the easiest Ivy League school to get into, the acceptance rates vary quite a bit by college. For example, below are the acceptance rates for the eight undergraduate colleges in 2019:
- College of Agriculture and Life Sciences: 11.38%
- College of Architecture-Art and Planning: 10.25%
- College of Arts and Science: 9.87%
- Cornell SC Johnson College of Business: 6.4%
- College of Engineering: 10.53%
- Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration: 24.17%
- College of Human Ecology: 18.34%
- School of Industrial and Labor Relations (ILR): 15.89%
Explore the different acceptance rates between Cornell’s Colleges further on their website.
2. Dartmouth College
- Location: Hanover, New Hampshire
- Acceptance rate: 7.9%
- Undergraduate enrollment: 4,417
The second-easiest Ivy League school to get into, Dartmouth College was founded in 1769. Dartmouth is the smallest Ivy League school, but don’t be fooled by its diminutive undergraduate class size—the school has a large number of offerings. The university is notable for its outstanding faculty, small class sizes, and incredible research opportunities—the Carnegie Foundation has classified Dartmouth as a university with “very high research activity.” Dartmouth is also home to the nation’s oldest and largest outing club, which provides students the opportunity to explore and enjoy the beautiful natural landscape surrounding the school’s rural campus.
3. University of Pennsylvania
- Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Acceptance rate: 7.7%
- Undergraduate enrollment: 6,311
Founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin, University of Pennsylvania seamlessly blends its rich history with the innovative spirit it was founded on: Franklin believed that higher education should focus not merely on the education of the clergy, but on teaching knowledge of arts and humanities, plus the practical skills needed to make a living and to do public good. The University of Pennsylvania is home to the world’s first collegiate business school (the Wharton School), as well as the oldest medical school in the United States. On campus, students can take in a game at Franklin Field, the nation’s oldest operational football stadium.
Note on UPenn’s Acceptance Rate: When applying to the University of Pennsylvania, you don’t apply to the school as a whole; rather, you apply to one of its four schools: the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Nursing, Penn Engineering, and the Wharton School of Business. If you’re interested in a dual-degree program and that program falls under the umbrella of two schools, you need to get accepted by both. Acceptance rates for the individual schools aren’t available, but acceptance rates for specialized schools are likely lower than that of the College of Arts and Sciences.