U.S. Colleges that are Hardest to Get Into

Colleges with the Lowest Acceptance Rate in America for 2020

These are the most selective colleges in the United States. We've ranked the schools which reject over fifty percent of applicants. Leading the list is Stanford University which sent acceptance letters to only 4% of the 47,452 students who applied and rejected 96%. Interestingly, not all schools on our "most selective" lists are overly academically challenging. Schools with less rigorous standardized test and high school GPA requirements may receive a large numbers of qualified applicants and the school does not have space to admit them all.

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    • SAT Range 1420/1570
    • ACT Range 32/35
    • Average HS GPA 4.18
    • Students: 17,381
    • Tuition:$51,354
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 4%
    photo credit / license

    Stanford University

    • SAT Range 1460/1580
    • ACT Range 33/35
    • Average HS GPA 4.04
    • Students: 31,566
    • Tuition:$50,420
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 5%
    photo credit / license

    Harvard University

    • SAT Range 1440/1570
    • ACT Range 32/35
    • Average HS GPA 3.87
    • Students: 8,374
    • Tuition:$50,340
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 5%
    photo credit / license

    Princeton University

    • SAT Range 1460/1570
    • ACT Range 33/35
    • Average HS GPA 3.95*
    • Students: 13,433
    • Tuition:$53,430
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 6%
    photo credit / license

    Yale University

    • SAT Range 1450/1560
    • ACT Range 33/35
    • Average HS GPA 3.91*
    • Students: 31,077
    • Tuition:$59,430
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 6%
    photo credit / license

    Columbia University in the City of New York

    • SAT Range 1530/1580
    • ACT Range 35/36
    • Average HS GPA 3.97*
    • Students: 2,233
    • Tuition:$52,362
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 7%
    photo credit / license

    California Institute of Technology

    • SAT Range 1470/1570
    • ACT Range 33/35
    • Average HS GPA 4.0
    • Students: 17,002
    • Tuition:$58,230
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 7%
    photo credit / license

    University of Chicago

    • SAT Range 1500/1570
    • ACT Range 34/36
    • Average HS GPA 3.96*
    • Students: 11,574
    • Tuition:$51,832
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 7%
    photo credit / license

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    • SAT Range 1400/1540
    • ACT Range 31/34
    • Average HS GPA 3.89*
    • Students: 1,573
    • Tuition:$52,780
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 8%
    photo credit / license

    Pomona College

    • SAT Range 1430/1550
    • ACT Range 33/35
    • Average HS GPA 3.92*
    • Students: 22,127
    • Tuition:$54,568
      Admissions Standards  Exceptionally High Standards
    • Acceptance Rate 8%
    photo credit / license

    Northwestern University