Question about Fiske Guide re: "overlaps"

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Discus: College Admissions: 2002 - 2003 Archive: March 2003 Archive: Question about Fiske Guide re: "overlaps"
By Argus (Argus) on Friday, March 28, 2003 - 03:33 pm: Edit

The Fiske Guide to Colleges lists a bunch of schools and then, at the end of every write-up, it gives you the top five overlaps for that school. The front section of the book says that overlaps are those schools with whom the target school shares the most applicants.

I have two questions about this. First, what exactly does this mean with regards to selectivity? Is selectivity governed more by how low your admit rate is or by who you share the most applicants with? In other words, should I rate selectivity by how few people a school admits or by the company the school keeps?

Second, do the overlaps of one school ultimately make a difference in the kind of student that attends that school? In my 2001 edition of the Fiske Guide Dartmouth lists Brown as its top overlap - but I don't really think of those two schools as attracting the same kind of person.

Any thoughts that you guys have I'd be interested in hearing.

By Wadad (Wadad) on Friday, March 28, 2003 - 03:42 pm: Edit

I think overlaps are just what Fiske says, places that get many applications from the same people. Darthmouth and Brown probably have many overlaps from people applying to most or all of the Ivy League.

I don't know how Fiske calculates selectivity, but I would think it should be a combination of the achievments (academic and otherwise) necessary to gain admission along with the admit rate. Overlap schools should have little or nothing to do with selectivity.

Just my $0.02.

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