H
Cambridge, Massachusetts

Harvard Admission Requirements

Chances of getting into Harvard University

Acceptance Rate

Acceptance Rate
5.2%
Admission Difficulty for Harvard University
Measure Difficulty
Admission StandardsElite
Applicant CompetitionExtreme

How hard is it to get into Harvard and can I get accepted? The school has a 5% acceptance rate ranking it #1 in Massachusetts for lowest rate of acceptance. Last year, 2,037 out of 39,506 applicants were admitted making Harvard an extremely competitive school to get into with a very low chance of acceptance - even for applicants with the highest scores and grades.  Academically, it has exceptionally high requirements for admission test scores, generally admitting students who score in the top 2 percent. Harvard University typically accepts and attracts "A" average high school students. Of those applicants who were admitted, 83% chose to enroll. This indicates that admission to the school is highly desirable and it may be a primary choice for many students. Most incoming freshmen graduated in the top ten percent of their high school class.

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Harvard SAT Scores

SAT Requirements & Average SAT Score

SAT Range
1500-1590
Applicants Submitting SAT
67%
SAT Scores for Harvard University
SAT Test 25th Percentile Score
SAT Reading 25th 740
SAT Math 25th 760
SAT Composite 25th 1500
SAT Scores for Harvard University
SAT Test 25th Percentile Score
SAT Reading 75th 790
SAT Math 75th 800
SAT Composite 75th 1590
Average SAT Score 1550

SAT Scores you need to get in

What are the SAT requirements for students to be admitted to Harvard University?

Harvard University typically requires applicants to be in the top 1 percent of SAT test takers. The school consistently takes SAT composite scores down to 1500 on a 1600 scale, below which admission should be considered a reach. We estimate some students could be accepted with SAT's as low as 1450. The estimated average SAT composite for admitted freshman is 1550 out of 1600. The school ranks #2 in Massachusetts for highest average SAT composite score. A competitive SAT score is critical as 67 percent of applicants submit SAT scores to the school. Note: SAT scores presented on this page have been adjusted upwards per the College Board's concordance tables for test takers after March 2016.

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by SAT Score

Harvard University admission chances by SAT score
SAT Score (1600 scale) Competitiveness Admission Chances
1590 and Above Good >8%
1545 to 1590 Avg + 5%-8%
1500 to 1545 Avg - 3%-5%
1455 to 1500 Reach 2%-3%
Less than 1455 Low <2%
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Harvard ACT Scores

ACT Requirements & Average ACT Score

ACT Range
32-35 
Applicants Submitting ACT
53%
ACT Scores for Harvard University
ACT Test 25th Percentile Score
ACT Reading 25th 34
ACT Math 25th 31
ACT Composite 25th 32
ACT Scores for Harvard University
ACT Test 75th Percentile Score
ACT Reading 75th 36
ACT Math 75th 35
ACT Composite 75th 35
Average ACT Score 33

ACT Scores needed to get accepted

What are the ACT requirements for prospective students to get into Harvard?

Admission data indicates that Harvard regularly accepts students with ACT's of 32 and above. Successful applicants typically send ACT scores in the top 3 percent nationally. We estimate the school accepting minimum ACT composite scores around 30 in some instances. Prospective students submitting an ACT composite of 34 or higher should be in the upper half of applicants - and students with a 35 and above have very competitive chances. The school ranks #4 in Massachusetts for highest average ACT composite score. 53 percent of applicants submit ACT scores to Harvard University.

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by ACT Score

Harvard University admission chances by ACT score
ACT Score Competitiveness Admission Chances
35 and Above Good >10%
33 to 35 Avg + 5%-10%
32 to 33 Avg - 4%-5%
31 to 32 Reach 3%-4%
Less than 31 Low <3%
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Estimated GPA Requirements & Average GPA

Avg. High School GPA
4.04
Typical High School Grades
A

You will need exceptionally good grades to get into Harvard University. The average high school GPA of the admitted freshman class at Harvard University was 4.04 on the 4.0 scale indicating that primarily A students are accepted and ultimately attend. The school ranks #1 in Massachusetts for highest average GPA. Given the school's very highly selective admissions, acceptance at Harvard extremely difficult and unlikely even with a 4.04 GPA. The school should be considered a reach even if you have a 4.04 GPA.

 What do these ratings mean?

High School GPA's for admitted Harvard University students
High School GPA Freshmen Within Range Competitiveness
3.75+ 87% Good
3.50 to 3.75 9% Reach
3.25 to 3.50 2% Reach
3.00 to 3.25 1% Reach
2.75 to 3.00 1% Reach
2.50 to 2.75 N/A% Low
2.25 to 2.50 N/A% Low
2.00 to 2.25 N/A% Low

High School Class Rank

95% of Harvard University freshman were in the top ten percent of their high school graduating class.

High School Class Rank for admitted Harvard University students
High School Class Rank Freshmen Within Range
Top 10% of class 95%
Top 25% of class 99%
Top 50% of class 100%
Bottom 50% of class 0%
Bottom 25% of class 0%

Admission Statistics

Harvard University admission statistics
Women Men Total
Applied 19,724 19,782 39,506
Accepted 1,004 1,033 2,037
Acceptance Rate 5% 5% 5%
Enrolled 837 850 1,687
Percent of Admitted Who Enrolled (Admission Yield) 83% 82% 83%

Fall 2020 Application Deadline

Applications are Due
Jan 1, 2020
Days left to Apply
22

Applicants have 22 days left until the Fall 2020 term applications are due on Jan 1, 2020.

Seniors, these are the SAT and ACT test dates you can still sit for a test and send your results to Harvard before the Jan 1 application deadline.

ACT Test Date Scores Available
Dec 14 Dec 24

Admission Requirements

What are the requirements for admission to Harvard University and what considerations affect admission decisions?

Harvard University Admission Requirements
Test Scores Required
High School GPA Recommended
High School Class Rank Recommended
Completion of College Preparatory Program Recommended
Recommendations Required
Demonstration of Competencies Neither required nor recommended

Credits Accepted

High School Credits Accepted at Harvard University
AP Credit Yes
Dual Credit No
Credit for Life Experiences No

Primary data source, U.S. Department of Education https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?id=166027 IPEDS survey data for Harvard University.

Frequently Asked Questions

67% of students submit their SAT scores to Harvard. 53% of applicants send their ACT scores when applying.

5% of those who apply are granted admission to Harvard. Admission competition is extreme and the college has elite admission standards. See if your grades and scores are good enough for admission.

The middle 50% of addmitted applicants have SAT scores between 1500 and 1590. 67% of students submit SAT scores when applying. See if your SAT score is good enough for admission.

The middle 50% of addmitted applicants have ACT scores between 32 and 35. 53% of students submit ACT scores when applying. See if your ACT score is good enough for admission.