2 years ago
Admissions Advice

Got Deferred by Yale

Hi, I'm a senior living in Thailand.

I submitted my Yale application in November (EA) and got the results today. I got deferred. Although I have applied to Yale as early action, it's not really my first choice (my first choice college is a college from a different part of the world so it has not opened its application site yet) so I'm not like really devastated or anything.

By getting deferred, I feel like it could be an indication of whether I have a chance at other Ivy league schools or not. Is it?

I don't know much about colleges in the U.S. and their systems. I would like to know if getting deferred is better than getting rejected, and also, whether or not this shows that I have a chance to be accepted for other Ivy League Schools regular decision (and Stanford, MIT, Johns Hopkins) since Yale is one of the hardest Ivy League Schools to get into.

Also, does this result mean that I should change some things for my CommonApp for other colleges?

I'm looking for an honest and realistic answer.

A friend who is currently attending Yale once said that getting deferred is worse than getting rejected (assuming that our EA choice school isn't our first choice) because you don't know whether or not your application is bad or if the applicant pool was really competitive that time of year. She said that if you get rejected for EA, though, you know that your application was bad, so you can improve on it.


@LocoSay2 years ago

I think your friend's opinion is just that, an opinion. It's more common that someone gets rejected because they are not a good fit for the college or the program. There can be a million reasons why someone is deferred or even rejected that have nothing to do with how they will fare at another school. You will find that almost no students are accepted to all Ivies for example. It's nearly impossible to know why you are accepted, deferred or rejected unless your stats aren't within range.

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3 answers

2 years ago

Since all top colleges in the US have their own admissions criteria and process, getting accepted, deferred or rejected does not establish any forensic evidence that supports a trend. Applying to a School B has it's own set of independent variables that have absolutely nothing to do with School A. They might have some correlation to one another like test scores.

One thing I do notice is that Ivys do operate symbiotically to one another to some degree. So if you are really top drawer to them, you might get into all 8 of them or 6 of them. But say your weakness is expository writing, or poor in-person conversational skills or you haven't done anything impressive, then regardless of your perfect grades and test scores, you might get rejected from all of them. But if you are super STEM-Y and have lot of nerdy spikes, you may very well get admitted to MIT, Caltech, JHU. Stanford is closer to the Ivy's in terms of giving all applicants a score card and applying 100+ criteria to score card. So you are either a 1, 2, 3 or (4,5,6) and most admits are 2+,2, 2- composites. 1% of admits are 1s.

I think it's very difficult for Int'l students who are schooled a certain way to guess or anticipate how to craft their narrative so an American Admissions officer fully understands their potential and what they have to offer. I don't know how college admissions work in Asia but I'm guessing in some Asian countries, whomever has the best grades and test scores gets into the best schools. It doesn't work like that in the US.

It much more subjective and confusing. I think HS in America is like a Test Kitchen. Colleges fully expect you to know how to bake, grill, cook, make salads and soups but they don't tell you what they like to eat. So it's like a free for all. Anyone who uses their 4 years of high school to experiment, challenge themselves, fail, overcome and bring something new to the dinner table during admissions season has a good chance. And if you can fully explain how you got there even better.

My advice to you is just continue with your intended college list and apply to the schools you want to. Your Yale deferral is not a good or bad sign. Since 89% of Yale SCREA applicants were deferred or rejected, you are just swimming into a larger less competitive pool of applicants and your guess is as good as mine as to what will happen.

You really don't need a plan B, just review your list and see if there are a couple schools on there that you'd be thrilled to attend in case the Yale deferral does not convert.

Good luck.

a year ago

Yale only deferred 21% early applicants for class of 2027. This means you are a strong contender and they want to consider you with their regular application pool.

2 years ago

Hi, first off congrats a deferral is still good! It depends but still, congratulations. Your friend is right, it's kinda how you see it. If yale was your dream college, a deferral would still give you hope. If there's some other college that you love, a deferral might actually suck because now you have to wait some more months. It also means you were a borderline candidate for yale, so yes definitely apply to other colleges, you might get in. Re-evaluating your application is a good choice, but don't make any drastic changes unless you feel the need to. All the best!

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