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Dartmouth College Admissions

dartmouth college admissions

Get Into Dartmouth

Dartmouth College holds the #11 spot in the most recent US News and World Report’s list of National Universities, and it ranks #2 for Best Undergraduate Teaching. Founded in 1769, Dartmouth is among the youngest of the Ivy League schools. (The oldest, Harvard, was founded in 1636.) It currently has an undergraduate enrollment of 4,310 students, most of whom live on the school’s rural campus in Hanover, New Hampshire.

All Dartmouth students belong to one of six house communities, the College’s new residential college system. Roughly 60% of the student body is also involved in Greek life, which forms a center of social activity on campus, and almost a quarter of the student body participates in Dartmouth’s NCAA Division I varsity sports. The arts also abound on Dartmouth’s campus, and students passionate about music, theater, film, dance and visual arts can find a thriving scene at the Hopkins Center for the Arts and the newly renovated Hood Museum. Student entrepreneurs can receive support, mentoring and funding for their ventures through the Dartmouth Entrepreneurial Network. In addition, Dartmouth boasts over 160 student-managed groups and organizations, all of which are open to enrolled students. In keeping with its emphasis on the outdoors, the school’s most popular organization is the Dartmouth Outing Club, dedicated to exploring the natural landscapes of New England.

Undergraduate students at Dartmouth can pursue 57 different majors in nearly thirty different degree programs through the school’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences, including Art History, Biological Sciences, and Government. Arts and Sciences also offers almost a dozen interdisciplinary programs—such as the Environmental Studies Program and the Linguistics and Cognitive Science Program—which allows students to earn degrees that combine multiple fields of study. Dartmouth undergraduates can also earn engineering degrees through the Thayer School of Engineering, which has the distinction of being the first engineering school to enroll equal numbers of men and women pursing engineering majors. (The Thayer School offers a dual-degree programs for students from other liberal arts colleges who want to study engineering at Dartmouth.) For graduate students, Dartmouth offers a series of graduate programs through the Geisel School of Medicine, the School of Graduate and Advanced Studies, the Thayer School of Engineering, and the Tuck School of Business.

Dartmouth is renowned for its D-Plan, a system that allows students to customize their own academic calendar. Under the D-Plan, Dartmouth uses the quarter system and offers courses year-round. Students are able to pick which twelve of the sixteen possible terms they would like to spend on campus during the course of their college career. This allows them the flexibility to pursue their academic and professional goals by participating in off-campus programs, field research, internships, or jobs during any season. Dartmouth also requires students to take only three classes per term, which gives them the opportunity to truly immerse themselves in their studies.

Dartmouth is well known for its strong classroom environment and its institutional emphasis on teaching. The school boasts a student-faculty ratio of 7:1, and 62.3% of all classes have fewer than twenty students. Dartmouth pointedly allows only faculty members to teach undergraduate classes, ensuring that students will have access to the school’s leading scholars.

Applying to Dartmouth

Applicants to Dartmouth can apply Early Decision or Regular Decision. As with most schools, Early Decision applications are binding. Early Decision candidates can apply to other schools Early Action or Regular Decision, but they must withdraw these applications if they are accepted to Dartmouth. For this reason, it only makes sense to apply Early Decision to Dartmouth if it is your first-choice school.

Applying Early Decision to Dartmouth does give you an advantage, though. Dartmouth typically admits over 45% of each year’s entering class in the Early Decision round, meaning that Early Decision applicants are admitted at a higher rate than Regular Decision applicants. Dartmouth also regularly defers some Early Decision candidates for consideration in the Regular Decision round. Of these applicants, only 5% to 10% are ultimately admitted.

Students interested in Dartmouth can apply using either the Common Application or the Coalition Application. Regardless of application type, students must submit the SAT or the ACT with writing. Dartmouth superscores these tests, meaning that, if a student submits more than one SAT or ACT test, Dartmouth will consider only the highest component scores earned across multiple test dates. Dartmouth also highly recommends that students submit scores from two SAT Subject Tests. Based on our 20+ years of working with Dartmouth students and Dr. Michele Hernandez’s and Maria Laskaris’ (TTA team) experience in the Dartmouth Admissions Office, however, we can tell you that most students submit four or more strong subject tests.

In addition to test results, Dartmouth also requires recommendation letters from each applicant’s school counselor and from two teachers. Dartmouth highly recommends that applicants submit a peer recommendation. The school asks that your recommender provide insight into your life and character, speaking about you as a person rather than a student. You might choose a friend, a teammate, or a coworker to serve as your recommender. The trick is to find someone who can talk about your personal strengths and the great qualities that you would bring to the Dartmouth community. Additionally, most applicants are offered the opportunity to interview with alumni of the College.

For the class of 2022, Dartmouth received a record 2,270 Early Decision applications, which marks a 13.5% increase over the number of received last year. 565 students were accepted from this pool for an early acceptance rate of 24.9%. 95% of those accepted are expected to graduate in the top 10% of their class, while 105 are likely to be valedictorian or salutatorian. 13% are first-generation college students, 10% are international students, and 33% are Americans of color.

Last year, Dartmouth received 20,034 applications for the class of 2021, and the school accepted only 2,092 students. This means that Dartmouth’s acceptance rate was 10.3%, its lowest rate since 2013. Of those admitted students, 550 were accepted during the Early Decision round. Accepted students hailed from all 50 states and from over 63 foreign countries, but international students only made up 11% of the admitted class. Accepted students were also very academically talented: 96% were in the top 10% of their class, and over 26% were valedictorian or salutatorian. The mean SAT score for admitted students was 1495, and the mean ACT score, 33. Finally, 9% of accepted applicants were children of Dartmouth undergraduate alumni, 15% were first-generation college students, and 10% were recruited athletes.

A tip from Top Tier’s Maria Laskaris, former Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid at Dartmouth: “Key to the review of applications at Dartmouth is a deeper look at students’ intellectual and personal qualities. What you bring to the community—both in and out of class—really matters. Share your love of learning and the ways you have made a difference to your community.”

Top Tier Admissions Can Help You Get Into Dartmouth College:

"Just got in! I am extremely excited and grateful for all of the help that you've given me. Thank you so much!!" - S.N., - Application Boot Camp student
"This is to let you know that H was accepted at Cornell!!  Cornell was her early decision school, and we learned that she got in this week. Thanks again to Mimi, Michele, Kristen, Maria, and the amazing Top Tier team! We very much appreciate all your help and support." – Application Boot Camp parent, Cornell Class of 2022
"M.--Y. was accepted to Wharton! Thanks to you and everyone at Top Tier!!!!! Many, many thanks. I really believe that you gave Y. very good guidance. And now we have two more kids to focus on!"--T.R., Boot Camp parent
I finally know how to write a college essay. The one on one time with my senior counselor mentor made a big difference. - I.K., Boot Camp student
Boot Camp 2014 student
"Thank you for the study skills. I finished my essays with time to spare." - Application Boot Camp student
Boot Camp 2014 student
"My number one choice was UVA and I was accepted regular admission!" --R.E., Boot Camp student
I cannot imagine anyone being able to successfully complete a good, well-rounded application without help. ABC does does that: help. There is literally no time for procrastination at Boot Camp. Instead of stressing myself out waiting until the last minute to do my essays and the Common App 5, I literally HAD to just write. I loved that.
"It was truly an amazing experience that clarified most, if not all, of my doubts on college application." -S. G., Boot Camp student
“I believe the essay that you helped me craft was a major deciding factor in my admissions process and I am infinitely grateful. I believe Boot Camp also helped me to grow as a writer.” --S.W., Boot Camp student
“We would like to personally thank you for your help in preparing P. and S. in the college admissions process. Boot Camp provided invaluable guidance. Those four days were a very productive and extremely worthwhile time. We are thrilled they are starting senior year stress-free in terms of the college application process. Finally, thank you a ton for helping them both from the very beginning and we feel extremely fortunate to have worked with you.” –A.R., Parents of two Application Boot Camp Students
"Understanding what colleges really want to see in my essays was the most challenging thing but definitely the most beneficial part of Boot Camp!" --P.O., Boot Camp student
"P. definitely felt challenged at Boot Camp, but consistently remarked at day's end that he knew you all were driving him to another level.  He felt that he came away with excellent essays that are authentically his. All that is my way of saying a heartfelt thank you!"- I.W., Boot Camp parent
"It is SO nice to be able to get basically everything done in a couple of days! It makes the process a lot less stressful and made me feel really confident about my applications." - Application Boot Camp student
Boot Camp 2014 student
"Thanks so much for your help with the whole application process! ABC was amazing (and actually a lot of fun as well!)."--W.S., Boot Camp student accepted to Oxford, Amherst, Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Duke, Princeton, & Penn
"The report I received right after I registered showed me where my grades and scores placed me amongst my peers for the colleges I wanted to target. I appreciated the specific examples on how to improve my chances to get in at my top choice." -A.D., Boot Camp student
“Thank you so much for your advice and help over the past couple of months. I am grateful that I could finish everything in such a short amount of time. My application would not be so polished without your editing and notes! I really appreciate all of your counsel.” --P.N., Application Boot Camp student
Boot Camp is just a CRUCIAL program for gaining an understanding of the college admissions process! Thank you!
"I truly believe ABC made a dramatic difference in T's application/outcomes (and will continue to do so as the season unfolds). We were all shocked to learn on Saturday that not only had Tulane accepted him, but were offering almost full tuition, unsolicited, in merit aid with a four year guarantee. Just wanted to say "thanks" and holy cow. You guys really enabled him to put his best foot forward. Thanks again for all you guys did to help him through a confusing, challenging process for teens!" --W.P., Application Boot Camp parent
"ABC made the application process clear and taught me to optimize every chance I have in presenting myself in the best light to colleges." - Application Boot Camp Student
“What a duo you are! Thanks again for your support, patience, and understanding this past week. C. is confident and rejuvenated but realistic. He will consider all that you have said when reaching his strategic decisions.” –T.A., Parent of Application Boot Camp Student

Ready to Apply to Dartmouth? Try one these Top Tier options!

College Private Counseling

Private college admissions consulting starting as early as 8th grade for those students who want ongoing, personalized, unlimited-time access.

Application Boot Camp

The original
Application Boot Camp®! Helping students prepare the best possible applications for the last 14 years.

Personal Boot Camp

Want to work one-on-one with the best? Try our flexible Personal Boot Camp.

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