4 years ago
Admissions Advice

Why does the chance tool show two schools with similar academics as both a reach and a safety?

I already asked a question similar to this earlier, but I want to find out a bit more.

I’m going to be a senior this upcoming year and am beginning to apply to colleges.

I recently used Chancing to calculate my chance of admission to my #1 school, University of Wisconsin Madison.

It says my chances are at 88-92% (safety) which seems extremely optimistic.

My SAT is 1230 compared to Wisconsin whose average is 1360 and lower end of the middle 50% is 1280.

My GPA is 3.69 compared to Wisconsin’s average of 3.80.

My course load is impressive as by the end of senior year I will have completed at least 11 honors courses, 10 AP courses, and 2-4 courses at the University of Pittsburgh.

My extracurriculars are very good as I hold leadership positions in multiple Soccer organizations (one community, one regional among 3 different states). I also play soccer competitively for a club although I don’t letter varsity or JV as I chose other activities over school sport. I play Trumpet for my High School’s Marching Band (and organized sheer music for our stand songs if it looks more impressive) and university of Pittsburgh pep band as well playing Piano for Carnegie Mellon University (I at a level where I can play the tougher pieces of composers like Chopin, Rachmaninov, Mozart etc.). I’m also in Model UN. Those are the bigger ECs, although I have a couple more.

I’m half Taiwanese half Ashkenazi Jewish (Practicing), but For my Chance profile, I just put Asian as it is probably what will stand out (possibly not in a good way) to college admissions officers, also because “mixed race” on the Chance tool is too vague and will give me non existent bumps.

I’m from a wealthier middle class family in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, although I attend an urban public school where around half of the students are low income.

But does my impressive extracurriculars, extremely heavy course load overcome my poor SAT score and below average GPA?

Another University, University of Illinois Champaign, has my chances at 24-28% (reach), even though Wisconsin has virtually the same, maybe even better, academic averages.

Does Diversity really play that big of a part? It’s not like Wisconsin is robbed of Diversity and they’re desperate to get Asian students. I don’t understand the huge blip in Admission chance for Wisconsin.

So overall the main question is does the chancing tool reliably tell me I’m in very good standing to gain admission to University of Wisconsin Madison, and should I feel confident about the prospect of admission (not overly confident of course)?

I signed up for the August SAT so my scores will most likely only improve from there, unless it gets canceled.

@DebaterMAX4 years ago

Uh did I already answer this? I thought I did.

@cp8394 years ago

Wisconsin is a lot less diverse than Illinois (68% White and 5% Asian compared to 43% White and 15% Asian) so it is possible that's the reason but unless you have the data and know the algorithm you can't say for sure.

[🎤 AUTHOR]@BL19764 years ago

Yeah it was sort of answered before, but 88-92 vs 24-28 is a massive difference for two schools with virtually the same admission averages (Wisconsin even better). Yes Illinois has around 10% more Asian Americans but Wisconsin has a massive international population of around 16% and we can bet a solid majority of that 16% is East Asian. So I’m still a bit confused on the massive difference in chances.

@DebaterMAX4 years ago

Also @BL1976 email support@collegevine.com if you have a question

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1 answer

4 years ago

It might be due to major. UIUC has a very competitive engineering/physical science program, and their CS program has less than a 10% acceptance rate. If you could check your major, that may help.

What are your chances of acceptance?
Your chance of acceptance
Duke University
+ add school
Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

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