Posted June 27, 2008
LEWISBURG, Pa. – Bucknell University is among the most selective national liberal arts institutions in the United States, according to an internal study of public data provided to federal agencies.
Compiled by Bucknell’s Office of Admissions, the data show that Bucknell is among the top 18 most selective academic institutions in the country. Other members of the top 18 include such stalwart academic institutions as Brown, Princeton and Yale universities and Middlebury and Swarthmore colleges.
"Of those accepted students, our yield – the number accepting our offer of admission – was almost 40 percent. That fact is an impressive testament to the growing reputation of the University." -- Kurt Thiede
The study compared traditional four-year national liberal arts colleges and universities using two of the most important indicators of higher education competitiveness: admissions and yield rates. Admissions rate is the number of students admitted compared with the number who apply; lower figures indicate that the institution is of great interest to applicants. Yield rate is the number of students admitted compared with the number who enroll; high figures indicate that large numbers of students consider the institution their first choice.
“There are more than 3,600 colleges and universities in the United States,” said Kurt Thiede, vice president for enrollment management and dean of admissions. “Of those, only 18 had an admission rate of less than 30 percent and a yield rate of 38 percent or higher. By that standard, we’re in pretty exclusive company.”
Thiede said the Class of 2012 acceptance rate – the number of applicants to whom the University offered admission – was about 29 percent. “That means for every 10 students who applied to Bucknell, we offered a seat to less than three,” he said.
The University’s selectiveness was reflected in its yield rate, too.
“Of those accepted students, our yield – the number accepting our offer of admission – was almost 40 percent,” he said. “That fact is an impressive testament to the growing reputation of the University.”
The assessment is based on a comparison of Class of 2012 data for Bucknell and Class of 2010 data (the most recent publicly available) for other institutions. Admissions and yield rates tend to change only incrementally year to year among these institutions, and when Bucknell Class of 2012 data are compared to same-year data from the other schools, Bucknell should fare as well, Thiede said.
A number of recent reports have served to underscore Bucknell’s national reputation.
The Washington Monthly
Last year, The Washington Monthly ranked Bucknell No. 7 among the best liberal arts colleges in the country when it comes to fostering research and promoting an ethic of service and social mobility. This year, the Peace Corps listed Bucknell at No. 6 on its top 25 list of small colleges and universities producing Peace Corps Volunteers.
Most recently, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine rated Bucknell as the 11th best value in private liberal arts colleges.
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