SAT IIs going to kill me?

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Discus: What Are My Chances?: January 2003 Archive: SAT IIs going to kill me?
By Josh on Thursday, January 16, 2003 - 03:21 pm: Edit

I was just wondering how much emphasis is placed on SAT II scores at prestigious universities like Yale, where I've applied, in light of admission decisions. I made 600 on Bio., 610 on Lit., and 630 on Math IIC. Will this kill my chances on getting into Yale, or will they not matter that much?

By josh on Thursday, January 16, 2003 - 04:22 pm: Edit


By Ann85 (Ann85) on Thursday, January 16, 2003 - 04:33 pm: Edit

What did you get on your SAT's? Whats your average, class rank etc? I think if everything else is in place it wont matter that much but im not sure

By Josh on Thursday, January 16, 2003 - 04:41 pm: Edit

I got a 1370 on the SAT (690 M, 680 V). Class rank is 7/245 with a 4.5 weighted/3.8 unweighted.
I have great EC's like 3-vars.-sport scholar athlete. captain of wrestling (4 yrs) and football (2yrs), played vars. baseball, AAU wrestling state qualifier, National Student Leadership Conference 1st place, Vice Prez. of Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, French Club, YMCA Youth and Govt., FBLA. LOTS of community service. Began and conducted school's first youth wrestling camp. etc.
Will my SAT II scores hurt me that bad?

By sdfks on Thursday, January 16, 2003 - 05:01 pm: Edit

I think your SAT IIs will hurt you and your SAT I is below Yale's average as well. Sorry, but your stats are really low. You still have an OK shot if you write a good essay etc..., but your SAT scores will hurt you.

By josh on Thursday, January 16, 2003 - 09:54 pm: Edit


By Thedad (Thedad) on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 03:01 am: Edit

According to the book "A" IS FOR ADMISSION, written by Michele Hernandez, a former admissions officer at Dartmouth, the Ivies all do pretty much do the same thing, constructing a single-number Academic Index (AI) that is 1/3 SAT I divided by 20, 1/3 sum of best three relevant SAT II's divided by 30, 1/3 a class rank number forced onto a 1-80 scale. The last is tricky depending upon how the student's high school reports rank: absolute, percentile range, or none at all. Even if no rank is reported, there's a way they [the university] will force a number based upon grades and size of graduating class.

So, using that model, the SAT II's matter a fair amount for the elite schools.

Your SAT II's give you a component of 61.3--let's be generous and round to 62--and for the data reported in the book, the "normal" cut-off, for which there are all sorts of routine exceptions as well as for legacies, URM's, and athletes, is 211 or so. Which means you'd need to get a 149 on the remaining two components...say a 75 out of 80 on the class rank and a 1480 SAT I.

By Listen on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 05:02 am: Edit

I emailed cornell asking them, among other things, whetether they use an "Academic Index". Here is the pertinent portion of the reply: "We do not use an academic index in selection."

The respondent was Wendy Schaerer, Sr. Associate Director,Undergraduate Admissions. I think that's quite interesting, considering all the hoo-ha that has been made over this AI, dont you?

By Kk02 (Kk02) on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 07:38 am: Edit

Hernández mentions in her book that Cornell is different from the other ivies in that it doesnt use the AI and the files are read by the individual deptts. depending on the major.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 11:54 am: Edit

Apologies. I remembered the broad brush-stroke,
not the exception. Helps that my daughter is not
the least bit interested in Cornell.

By f fsdh on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 03:34 pm: Edit

FYI- Academic Index Calculator:

Most of us know what this is.

By biogirl on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 07:14 pm: Edit

Man, a 600 on Bio sucks. I think that was the easiest SAT II I've ever taken in my life.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 08:19 pm: Edit

Thanks for the pointer, f fdsh.

My daughter's school doesn't provide exact ranks, reporting percentage ranking instead. However, at the top end, they do better than deciles, i.e., top 5 percent, top 2 percent, top 1 percent.

Does anyone know _for sure_ that colleges will use those better percentages instead of deciles? Deciles screw you if you're towards the top.

By Tex on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 09:43 pm: Edit

AHHHHHH!!!! All of you are so darn negative. Why must you crush people's dreams? I know that the best medicine is strong medicine, but this is ridiculous. None of you are the acceptance officers at Yale, Harvard, Columbia, etc. How can any of you say definitively whether someone has a 'good' shot or not? I understand this forum is here to discuss so-called 'chances' at particular schools, but no one can say with indefinite certainty whether you can or cannot get into a particular school. There are no SET statistics, only averages.

Josh: You should not be asking the question "Will get me in?" but instead "Do I have something to offer?" That's all that Yale--and consequently every other school in this country--is concerned with. If you have what they want, then no matter what your damned SAT II scores are, you'll be admitted.

End Rant.

By sensegrl on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 09:46 pm: Edit

tex kicks ass. finally, a guy who speaks sense!

By Texans suck. on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 10:02 pm: Edit


Just wanted to point out that your little rant is just stating the obvious. Everyone who asks what they thinks their chances are know that we are not admissions officers at Yale and that what we say is in absolute certainty. Sheesh.

And if it wasn't obvious enough, on the top of the "What Are My Chances?" page, it says, "(Be wary, of course - admission at an elite college is VERY difficult to predict."

Your little rant was utterly pointless and just shows how slow it takes for you to process things.

By Pat57575 (Pat57575) on Friday, January 17, 2003 - 10:12 pm: Edit

hey, he's just trying to keep things in perspective...

"texans suck", let's not stereotype!

-another texan

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