Cornell Acceptance Rate

So, you’re thinking about applying to Cornell, and you’re curious about your chances of admission. Well, we’re here to help!

If you’ve heard anything about Cornell, you’ve probably heard that it is highly selective. In fact, for the class of 2026, Cornell had an acceptance rate of just 8%.

As admission rates continue to decline at many Ivy League schools, including Cornell, students are going to have to work increasingly harder during high school to get into these top institutions.

To reap the benefits of attending this prestigious Ivy League, you will have to bring your ‘A’ game when you prepare your application.

Here are some factors you will want to keep in mind if you want to get into Cornell:

Cornell acceptance rates

When you’re preparing your application for Cornell, it will be helpful for you to have an idea of your chances for admission.

Look to statistics from the latest year for which Cornell has released data, the class of 2025, for an idea of what your chances of admission will be like:

Number of Applications Accepted Students Acceptance Rate
Early Decision 9,017 1,930 21%
Regular Decision 58,363 3,922 6.7%
Total 67, 380 5,836 8.7%

While this is a higher acceptance rate than some of the other Ivy League schools, it will still be difficult to get into Cornell without good grades, high standardized test scores, and an impressive application.

Here are three tips that will help you beat the odds and get accepted to Cornell:

Prepare a strong writing supplement

All first year applicants must prepare a writing supplement as a part of the Cornell admissions process.

While the prompts change each year, students can prepare for these prompts in advance by reviewing the guidelines, looking at previous year’s prompts, and working with private English tutors.

At Cornell, the prompts vary based on the school that a prospective freshmen wants to attend within Cornell.

For example, here was this year’s prompt for those looking to enter the College of Arts and Sciences:  Students in Arts and Sciences embrace the opportunity to delve into multifaceted academic interests, embodying in 21st century terms Ezra Cornell’s “any person…any study” founding vision. Tell us about the areas of study you are excited to explore, and specifically why you wish to pursue them in our College.

You’ll notice that it is different from the prompt for those applying to the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning: What is your “thing”? What energizes you or engages you so deeply that you lose track of time? Everyone has different passions, obsessions, quirks, inspirations. What are yours?

Make sure that you address the correct prompt and have several people, from teachers to tutors, look over your essay before you submit it.

Maintain a high GPA

The average GPA for accepted applicants at Cornell is 4.07. Because this GPA is over a 4.0, it means that you will have to take advanced courses, like IB, AP, or dual credit courses, to stay competitive.

To reach and maintain a GPA around a 4.07, you should consider the following:

  • Hiring a private tutor to help you excel in your advanced courses
  • Talking with your guidance counselor early so you can map out which advanced courses you are going to take throughout your high school career
  • Forming study groups so that you can do well in your classes and learn effective study habits

Score within the top percentile on the SAT or ACT

While Cornell has been test-optional since 2021 meaning that students aren’t required to report their SAT or ACT scores, over half of Cornell’s enrolling students have chosen to submit their standardized test scores anyway.

Accepted students have an average SAT score that is between 1400-1540 or an average ACT score of 32-35.

If you want your application to stand out among the thousands of other applicants vying for a chance at admission, you need to earn high standardized test scores to send in with your application. 

While this might seem easier said than done, Prep Expert has resources you can use to earn great standardized test scores without breaking the bank.

Next steps

Cornell is a prestigious school with a beautiful New York campus, dozens of niche majors, 37 intercollegiate sports, and a host of clubs and extracurriculars to help you stay connected and involved.

If you have your sights set on Cornell, you shouldn’t let the low acceptance rate deter you from applying.

You can join the ranks of famous alumni like Bill Nye, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Jane Lynch, and Bill Maher when you use the resources provided by Prep Expert to help boost your GPA and your standardized test scores.

We offer private tutoring for a host of subjects, so you can earn a GPA that will look good on your Cornell applications. We also offer prep courses for both the SAT and ACT as well as private tutoring for both of these standardized tests.

Register for a class or private tutoring today when you visit our website.