Puzzled By LACs Please come help explain

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Discus: College Search and Selection: March 2004 Archive: Puzzled By LACs Please come help explain
By Gameguy56 (Gameguy56) on Friday, March 05, 2004 - 01:20 am: Edit

why do some very prestigious LACs have less than 80% from the top 10% of their class

Colgate 64%
Carleton 71%
Reed 60%
Davidson 76%
Oberlin 63%
Washington & Lee 78%
(all from princetonreview.com)

I'm puzzled, You would think prestigious schools like these would have at least 95% from the top Decile, but is it because LACs specifically stress ECs?

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Friday, March 05, 2004 - 01:28 am: Edit

it is becuase LACs look at whole student or at least aim to.
To steal carolyns explanation they may overlook someone with higher scores who may have peaked in high school, in exchange for someone who may be a late bloomer.

By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Friday, March 05, 2004 - 01:36 am: Edit

Somewhat. But the real reason is that most LACs ara much smaller than national universities. Yet they often offer the full spectrum of ECs such as sport teams, music, theatre, art. They also want a diverse population and will just as the other top schools give legacies, staff, URM, development, celebrities a break on the stats. Some of these numbers are pretty fixed, for example the number of kids on a football team, or hockey team or a full orchestra. That means as a percentage of the whole college population there are more kids with these specialties that may not have the gpas.

A good example is Oberlin. It has a nice sized, phenomonal conservatory. An highly talented violinist or musician on any instrument may gain admissions without the comparable SATs or gpa as a science or English major. Davidson and Colgate are in Division 1 for sports which means they compete against the Big Boys with a student population far smaller than the vast majority of D-1 schools.

Another reason that some of the stats may not be as high is because the LACs can take a more holistic approach to admissions. Their class is much smaller, their applicant pool is smaller so they can individually assess each application more carefully than the Big Boys. They are more concerned than many of these bigger schools in putting together a diverse community and can scrutinize each application and cut breaks when someone looks a student they really want. I have known kids who have gotten into these schools with special talents recognized that just are not as important to the bigger schools.

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Friday, March 05, 2004 - 08:47 am: Edit

Those figures may also have changed; like most publications with annual deadlines, the guides usually report data that is two-to-three years old. For more accurate figures, log on to the student profiles at the top 20 LACs and compare. Also, what Jamimom writes has a good deal of truth.

By Ariesathena (Ariesathena) on Friday, March 05, 2004 - 10:14 am: Edit

Don't forget that many of these schools have huge numbers of students come from private schools. A student can be barely in the top half of an Exeter or Andover, but still be a very competitive applicant.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Friday, March 05, 2004 - 10:22 am: Edit

A student can be barely in the top half of an Exeter or Andover, but still be a very competitive applicant.

Yes I was going to post to this. My daughter whose SAT scores were 1350, but her grades were only 3.30 ( tough school). SHe also was on of 18 students in her senior class, since several of them had straight A's, were National Merit, she ranked only around the 50% I think.( Her school didn't rank or do AP)
All of the students went to a 4 yr school within 2 years.Virtually all of the schools were fairly competitve, Pitzer, Occidental, Barnard, Carleton, Reed, Williams, Macalester,Smith.
The only person who stayed in State was forced to by his parents and he is attending a private LAC not a public u

By Tcolgate (Tcolgate) on Friday, March 05, 2004 - 06:26 pm: Edit

I'm not in the top 40% of my high school and i take the most challenging courses i can, have a 3.6 unweighted, and participate in many activities. class rank doesnt prove a thing, much of the time it just shows how hard the school you went to was

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Saturday, March 06, 2004 - 06:23 am: Edit

Tcolgate, saw your posting on the Colgate site -- Since you're only a junior, you're still going to have to get your grades up & do well on the SATs -- look at the stats of who's getting accepted now to these schools -- all 3.8 and better unweighted with SATs at 1400 minimum. Class rank & deciles are also dependent upon the secondary school's reputation as well.

By Tcolgate (Tcolgate) on Wednesday, March 10, 2004 - 10:08 pm: Edit

I have geographical help (i live in Texas) and my dad is a big alumni up there, so i got those going for me. plus im probably gonna apply early, but who knows

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Thursday, March 11, 2004 - 10:13 am: Edit

Tcolgate -- all of those things will help you. You should apply early -- and you will love it there. Any sports? --

By Tcolgate (Tcolgate) on Friday, March 12, 2004 - 02:15 am: Edit

I run track and cross country, but im not very good, definetly not good enough to run in high school (not that i would want to). I love normal sports though (baskeball,baseball) and im sure if i go there i will join every intramural one possible. my dad and I are going up to visit in a few weeks and i can't wait

im curious, did you go to Colgate?

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Friday, March 12, 2004 - 11:15 am: Edit

No -- but I am very familiar with the college through family and friends.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Monday, March 15, 2004 - 12:59 pm: Edit

My niece is a junior @ Colgate.
My impression is that it a large part of social life is driven by Greeks and sports, not a bad thing for those who are interested.
However is still a place for those who don't participate in either.
Student body seems pretty well off, students who didn't get into Ivies but can afford them. Nice clothes, nice cars, beautiful campus.

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 01:47 pm: Edit

To answer the original question, this year Colgate took 83% from the Top 10% --

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