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Yield Rate

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Replies to: Yield Rate

  • xiggixiggi 148 replies9 discussions Junior Member
    curvyteen:

    It's true that Penn and Columbia use ED to fill a substantially and unusually large portion of their class (in the mid-to-upper 40%'s). My beef with Duke and Northwestern is that they've been filling up more and more of their class during the ED round year-after-year in an attempt to artificially boost their yield (going from the 20%'s to the 40%'s, in the case of Northwestern, and with similar numbers at Duke), and it's gotten to the point where the schools are admitting close to 40% during the ED round and near 10% during RD. Columbia and Penn are NOT in this situation, which is why I don't level criticism at them as much.

    Essentially, the idea is to convince applicants that getting accepted during the RD rounds is near impossible, so if you want to attend Duke/NU, you NEED to apply ED. In fact, there have been threads here mentioning that the head of admissions at Duke is explicitly telling this to applicants. It's a scheme to use fear to get inside the minds of applicants and scare them into applying ED even if they don't really have their heart set. Frankly, it's repulsingly unethical, and the sheer suggestion that UChicago's mass marketing is in the same ballpark of unethicality is ridiculous and shameful.

    Frankly, no matter how many hyperboles you throw at the end, the only conclusion one could draw from your tirade is that you DO NOT HAVE a clue about what you are discussing.

    First of all, you obviously confuse the quest (if there is one) to lower the admission rates and to increase the yield. Then, one ought to question why this issue of YIELD is so important to you to warrant that "attack."

    Obviously, one does not have to look further than an obsession with positive comparative numbers. Now that the admit rate has aligned itself with its more prestigious competitors, the next battle is to find bragging rights in a yield of above 50 percent. Ain't that wonderful to cure the past wounds of the lower selectivity that plagued Chicago until recently!

    Or is it a spirited defense of the Non Restrictive EA? But if it is why not "attacking: MIT that admitted 650 students and compare that to its total open spots. And what about at looking in mirror and wonder about the schools that have routinely admitted more EA students than they had spots. What would happen if more than 50 percent of the EA admits accept the offer? Did Chicago not admit well over 1500 students in its EA round last year? Aren't you bragging about 50 percent yield? How is that any different from Duke's yield in ... absolute numbers of students? How is Duke different from Stanford, except that one is ED and the other SCEA? 725 students admitted at Stanford versus ... a bit over 750 at Duke!

    You criticize Duke and NU for having adapted their policies and admission decisions to their direct competitors. You accept the schools with a higher ED as long as they did not increase the numbers lately. Is there another example of a school that has changed it stripes to become more like the schools it competes against? A school that has relentlessly pursued an increase in applications after dropping .... Ted's "uncommon" requirements. What did Chicago do that deserves praise and what did Duke do that deserves scorn? They did the same, and that is borrow from the competitors that are winning the games. Simple!

    The first step to acquire a modicum of understanding of how admissions really work is to drop the blinders and the rose-tinted glasses.

    Try it.
    edited May 2013
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  • LearningLoverLearningLover 7 replies0 discussions
    ^logic and contextual analysis slam!
    edited May 2013
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  • invasioninvasion 6 replies0 discussions
    Not sure if you could consider that a "slam" because I could hardly follow the post in the middle (due to terribly muddled/confusing writing).

    Xiggi, you're kidding yourself if you don't think there's a moral difference between (SC)EA and ED.

    I also find it odd you used MIT as an example, because MIT has a very small gap between EA and RD acceptance rates. In fact, most EA schools have a much smaller gap between their early and overall acceptance rates: (Note these compare early to overall, not early to regular, because I couldn't find the RD rates readily)

    MIT 10% EA / 8.2% overall
    UChicago 13.3% EA / 8.8% overall
    Georgetown 12.8% EA / 16.6% (!) overall

    Then look at ED schools:

    Northwestern 32% ED / 13% overall
    Columbia 19% ED / 6.8% overall
    Duke 29.6% ED / 11% overall

    These are much larger gaps than EA schools.

    [This also ignores the fact that while MIT accepts a large portion of their class early, not everyone who is accepted early will come. Also, EA schools receive many more early applications than do ED schools, so the numbers aren't as skewed. MIT gets 6000 applicants early, and then 12000 regular, while Penn gets 4000 early and then 27000 regular. Filling up half the class from 1/3 of the pool is much better than filling up half the class from 1/8 of the pool, don't you think? You only need to look at the acceptance rates to see that.]

    There's no way ED pools are stronger than EA pools, and you yourself argued that EA "poaches" applicants from ED. For example, a middle class student who is dependent on fin aid would be hesitant to apply ED, but they would not have any qualms about applying EA. So EA pools would logically be stronger than ED pools, yet fewer are accepted. Why?

    It's because a college with ED automatically has this extremely tempting pool of students who sign a contract with the school saying, "Yes, I will 100% attend if you accept me." What school wouldn't jump to accept as many of these students as they possibly can, even if it means lowering admission standards?

    OTOH, the EA applicant pool makes no such promise to the college. In fact, many people have used Chicago EA as pretty much a safety for their ED/RD schools. EA lets students receive multiple offers, and then lets them choose between multiple offers. There's no possible way you can say this is as bad or worse than ED.

    I'm not sure why you think that there are no shades of gray when it comes to college marketing morals. Sure, Chicago does try to improve its numbers. It sends out tons of booklets, emails, merchandise, etc. to entice students to apply and matriculate. But so do other schools, and many of those other schools use ED on top of that.
    edited May 2013
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  • xiggixiggi 148 replies9 discussions Junior Member
    Describing the (well-known) differences in the dynamics of EA and ED admissions does not change anything to my previous post. And, you might want to take a look at the evolution of the data in the past five years when analyzing the volume of applications for each type of admissions.
    edited May 2013
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  • invasioninvasion 6 replies0 discussions
    Did you not read the rest of my post? Both MIT (6000/19000) and Chicago (10000/30000) receive roughly 1/3 of their total apps from the early round. So even if they fill half their class from early admissions alone, that practice is far better than Penn, which fills up 1/2 the class from 1/8 of their total apps (4000 early apps from a total pool of 31000), or Columbia which fills up 1/2 from 1/11 of their total apps (3000 early apps from a pool of 33000).

    And in fact, simply explaining the difference between EA and ED should be enough for anyone to see how EA is much better for applicants. Both financially and for the reason that 18 year olds are prone to changing their minds.

    Also, I partially disagree with phuriku. If anything, Penn should be criticized more for starting this trend. My personal "beef" with these schools is that they use ED at all. (OTOH his criticism seems to stem from a personal dislike of NU/Duke.)
    edited May 2013
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  • Sam LeeSam Lee 18 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    a middle class student who is dependent on fin aid would be hesitant to apply ED, but they would not have any qualms about applying EA. So EA pools would logically be stronger than ED pools, yet fewer are accepted. Why?
    This is awesome. The school with the most aggressive marketing is now having some of its fans with "holier than thou" attitude. A middle class student can get out of ED if he/she can't afford it. Of course fewer percentage of EA will be accepted because the EA pool is hell a lot larger!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    While EA does offer more options, it is more selective. ED gives the applicants higher chance to get in due to much smaller size of the pool. In that sense, it offers higher chance to the applicants. People who can't afford have a lot of others to choose from; nobody is under any kind of duress in the process. Are you going to pick on schools that offer merit-based scholarships that could have been used to covert loans to more grants? Are you going to criticize schools that don't give as much grants to students as HYP? Are you going to further argue RD and EA should really have similar admit rates if you are really that particular about doing the right thing? While you are at it, maybe you should start a campaign, starting with your own school, to ask all schools to stop all admission games; get rid of all early admission, be it EA or ED.
    edited May 2013
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  • xiggixiggi 148 replies9 discussions Junior Member
    Did you not read the rest of my post? Both MIT (6000/19000) and Chicago (10000/30000) receive roughly 1/3 of their total apps from the early round. So even if they fill half their class from early admissions alone, that practice is far better than Penn, which fills up 1/2 the class from 1/8 of their total apps (4000 early apps from a total pool of 31000), or Columbia which fills up 1/2 from 1/11 of their total apps (3000 early apps from a pool of 33000).

    And in fact, simply explaining the difference between EA and ED should be enough for anyone to see how EA is much better for applicants. Both financially and for the reason that 18 year olds are prone to changing their minds.

    Also, I partially disagree with phuriku. If anything, Penn should be criticized more for starting this trend. My personal "beef" with these schools is that they use ED at all. (OTOH his criticism seems to stem from a personal dislike of NU/Duke.)

    I did read your post in its entirety, and decided to answer in a general manner.

    It is obvious that you find one type of early admission better than a different one. That is a matter of personal choices and personal interpretation. The issue of moral superiority, however, is a loudly quacking canard. There is no ranking order in terms of morality with the superior being the non restrictive EA one. I assume you consider the REA and the ED to be morally inferior. That is silly!

    As far as numbers go, should we ask if a school that admits 1,500 students out of 3,500 is morally inferior to one that admits the same number out of pool of 10,500? If both are EA and target a 50 percent yield rate, does it really make any difference? They still target 700 to 800 students from the same size pool of admitted students. Within a few percentages, the above example is for the same school in different years, namely Chicago now and a few years ago.

    Regarding your comparisons with Penn (or Duke in a previous example) they are simply different paths to the same result, which is to "secure" a large percentage of students via an early admission process. That percentage seems to be at around 40 to 55 percent at the schools debated here. At many other schools, including LACs, the percentage of ED application is so low that the impact on the total application is minimum, and the admit rate might be stratospheric. It is not long ago that the ED rate at Smith or Wellesley was substantially above 60 percent.

    While there are variables established by the restrictive criteria, the outcome is not that different. A non-restrictive admission process should in theory attract a lot more applicants. Of course, not every school attracts large number of EA applicants. Without looking at the previous years, I will assume that the EA pool at Chicago might have been smaller than at many of its competitors for those past years.

    All in all, the number of applications in a particular pool is not very relevant. The proportion of the admitted students versus the available spot is more relevant, but still not comparable because of the presence or absence of obligations.

    As always, one can compile selected data and extract the numbers to support almost any point. The art is to draw the appropriate and relevant conclusions.

    PS When analyzing the patterns of early admissions, the history at the Ivy League is fascinating. Schools changed policies to gain competitive advantage. The recent changes by Harvard and Princeton to single admissions and back to an EA form provide a glimpse at what can be done to the competition when the 800 lbs gorillas pick their battles.
    edited May 2013
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  • JHSJHS 36 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    I'm sorry, but I, too, am bewildered by xiggi's posts. While I agree that ED at highly selective schools can be a viable option even for applicants who need financial aid, the fact is that most of those applicants don't think so. Almost every EA college, including SCEA colleges, attracts more applicants than any ED college. Back when Chicago was only getting 8,000-10,000 applications per year, it was still getting more early applications than any but two or three of the most popular ED colleges. And that wasn't because of the marketing, it was because EA was a better, more comfortable deal for students, period. That's true even of SCEA/REA.

    What's wrong with ED is the implicit pressure it puts on kids to surrender their flexibility and bargaining leverage for an admissions advantage. What's right about EA is that it doesn't require kids to surrender their flexibility or bargaining leverage.

    That said, some of the apparent admissions advantage of ED is illusory. (Which does not make me love the institution more, because I think colleges exploit the illusory advantage.) Many of the ED colleges, the ones we are talking about here, use ED for athletic recruiting, and athletic recruits (and development cases and other special admits) form a significant part of the ED accepted pool. They are really a separate pool, one with a 90-100% admission rate. If you take them out of both the numerator and the denominator of the ED admission calculation, you get an admission rate that is meaningfully closer to the RD rate (although still not even in the ballpark of being equal).

    The same dynamic applies to EA colleges, but they tend to have more admissions in the numerator (because there isn't 100% yield on them), so the effect is smaller.
    edited May 2013
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  • curvyteencurvyteen 17 replies7 discussions
    Phuriku, I don't know where you get your stats from, but you definitely need a new source. I don't know about NU, but Duke was more selective than Penn was in the ED round last year. Also, Duke's yield hasn't been less than 40% even once in the last several decades (look it up). Chicago has experienced a drastic increase in yield over the past few years. Duke has remained static for all intents and purposes. Your criticism of the ED policy at Duke and NU is therefore unwarranted because you refuse to extend the same criticism to Penn and Columbia (which reveals the extent of your bias).
    edited May 2013
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  • xiggixiggi 148 replies9 discussions Junior Member
    What is it that bewilders you, JHS? Perhaps, a couple of things you misunderstood such as my point about higher early applications at Chicago's competitors.
    edited May 2013
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  • Cue7Cue7 6 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    I have to agree with JHS here - I'm confused by Xiggi's posts. When assessing the "moral supremacy" of one early plan to another, the baseline question is: what offers applicants the most choice?

    In a more perfect world, there would be no early policies whatsoever. In the current world, unrestricted EA offers more choice than ED or SCEA. As the moral goal would be to maximize choice for applicants, even if it comes at the cost of admissions offices' labor, unrestricted EA > other early policies. I don't agree with Phuriku's vehemency, but the general assertion is sound.

    Xiggi's claims, on the other hand, aren't clear to me.
    edited May 2013
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  • JHSJHS 36 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    a couple of things you misunderstood such as my point about higher early applications at Chicago's competitors

    Yes. xiggi, for the most part I really value your posts, even when I disagree with them. You are a passionate thinker and writer, and you generally know your stuff. But, in your recent posts . . . you had a point about higher early applications at Chicago's competitors? Where? Not only did I apparently misunderstand it; I think I failed to perceive that you were addressing the topic.

    phuriku addressed it, basically claiming that some of the ED schools were trying to create a climate of fear that would drive more people to apply ED. That's a little much for me, although it's true that for a number of years the norm in my generally affluent, high-education-value community has been for educationally ambitious kids to apply somewhere ED (or SCEA) as a matter of course. And it's an odd charge for a Chicago partisan to level, since one of the elements of Jim Nondorf's master plan seems to be drawing an ever larger percentage of the ultimate enrolled class from the EA pool, thus driving more and more applications to EA. So in a sense Chicago is peddling the same drugs, although its EA admission rate (especially its athlete-adjusted EA admission rate) is not so different from its overall admission rate as to engender fear.

    The thing is, EA is still a good deal for students. And the main reason I think Chicago's EA numbers have rocketed is that as the college has gotten more popular, more applicants are figuring out what a good deal it is (along with the similar deal at MIT and other places).
    edited May 2013
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  • Sam LeeSam Lee 18 replies0 discussions Junior Member
    JHS,
    What's wrong with ED is the implicit pressure it puts on kids to surrender their flexibility and bargaining leverage for an admissions advantage. What's right about EA is that it doesn't require kids to surrender their flexibility or bargaining leverage.

    Yet, ED is the best deal for *some* students, who take the restrictive nature into account and still decide to apply because they compete in a significantly smaller pool and their odds of getting in significantly improves. That's all part of the bargaining. I totally agree with xiggi's saying that "one can compile selected data and extract the numbers to support almost any point". If one really wants to, he/she can argue EA is morally inferior to those that don't have early admission.
    While I agree that ED at highly selective schools can be a viable option even for applicants who need financial aid, the fact is that most of those applicants don't think so. Almost every EA college, including SCEA colleges, attracts more applicants than any ED college.
    I don't see how that says anything about financial viability. The EA allows you to get into schools that you are pretty happy with early while at the same time still lets you try your luck at places like Harvard/Yale/Stanford. That alone is enough to explain the size difference between EA and ED pools.
    edited May 2013
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  • xiggixiggi 148 replies9 discussions Junior Member
    JHS, I addressed the issue of "moral" superiority by claiming that ALL schools use the enrollment devices that fit their situation the best. In so many words, I do not buy that Chicago, or MIT and Georgetown, are more morally virtuous than Duke or any other school that relies on ED. The objectives are one and the same, namely to grab a share of the very valuable students, be it academically or financially.

    IMHO, where the morality takes a hit is when a school is misleading the applicants, and perhaps that is an element that could be improved.

    In the meantime, restrictive admissions include as the name says restrictions. Those restrictions are, however, known to the applicants. We have had dozens (or more) discussions about the value and merits of ED, and enough has been written about it to know that the conclusion is that it works for some and not for others. My point is that it works very well for the very poor and the very rich, and a little less well for the huge middle class. Less well because there are a few handicaps for not being able to compare packages in May, but that handicap is not the same as being a prisoner as applicants can reject the offer and toss their hat in the RD will all other schools.

    As far as the number questions, I mentioned that the early applications at the most notable competitors of Chicago were not necessarily smaller. Looking back at the past decade, I think that schools with large ED applicants (think Penn) fit that example, but my point was about ALL the restrictive admissions tools, including SCEA. My reference point were made by relying on memory from the years I followed the various admission cycles with more dedication. In so many words, I was comparing the numbers of Chicago versus HYPS et al. My answer was not a DIRECT rebuttal to Invasion's posts about the size of the ED pools, because my point is that the ED and SCEA are part of the same group of ED plus REA.

    In conclusion, I repeat that I was responding to Phuriku's and Invasion's posts. And the basis of that reply is that the early admissions processes are determined by the objective of the schools, and that they all are exercises in compromises, and that none is universally superior or inferior to the rest. Morally or technically.

    All of the above is also subject to personal interpretation.
    edited May 2013
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  • invasioninvasion 6 replies0 discussions
    It doesn't matter whether EA is "better" for UChicago. I never denied that UChicago is self-interested. What matters is what is better for the applicants, and in that regard, EA is unquestionably better.
    ...as applicants can reject the offer and toss their hat in the RD will all other schools.
    Also keep in mind that if you do this at an Ivy school, you automatically forfeit all chances at another Ivy League (because they share with each other who has backed out of an ED agreement, even though they don't necessarily give out the same amount of aid).

    Even at a non-Ivy, it's another unnecessary hoop to go through if financial aid is a concern. ED decisions only come out a few weeks before RD apps are due, giving applicants little time to appeal, and little time to decide whether or not to actually withdraw from ED - and if they do decide to, there's no going back. ED creates a lot of inflexibility for the sake of higher yield; EA and aggressive marketing don't.
    edited May 2013
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