DURHAM, N.C. --
Duke University has seen a significant jump in the number of
students applying for Early Decision for the freshman class that will
enroll next fall.
Last year, 2,207 students applied for Early Decision. This year, that
number has risen to 2,716, according to the school. That’s the largest
increase in a single year, Duke said.
Students who are accepted for Early Decision commit to Duke. Last
year, Duke admitted 650 Early Decision candidates, about 38 percent of
the freshman class.
“How many students we admit this year will depend on the nature of
the applicant pool,” Christoph Guttentag, dean of undergraduate
admissions, said in a statement. “If there are a greater number of
compelling applicants, we may be able to admit more than last year. But
in any case, given the number of Regular Decision applicants we expect,
we don't want to fill much more than about 40 percent of the class with
Early Decision applicants.”
Last year, in addition to the 2,207 Early Decision applications, Duke
received more than 27,500 Regular Decision applications, the most in
Guttentag reported that application increases occurred across the
applicant pool, including among students applying both to the Trinity
College of Arts and Sciences and the Pratt School of Engineering; among
each ethnic or racial group; among both international and U.S. students,
and among students applying for financial aid.
Top states for applicants are North Carolina, New York, California, Florida, New Jersey and Texas.
Students who applied Early Decision should learn in mid-December
whether they have been accepted. Duke's deadline for Regular Decision
applications is Jan. 2.
The Duke Early Decision program is a binding commitment but all
schools do not have a binding Early Decision program, and the process is
controversial in that some belief it binds a young student to a school
UNC-Chapel Hill, for example, has a non-binding Early Action program but dropped its binding Early Decision in 2002.
"We want to encourage students to approach their education seriously,
not by using strategy, and we hope to contribute to a national climate
that encourages thoughtful choice," Chancellor James Moeser said at the
Princeton University and Harvard University dropped their single
admission program in 2006 but later returned to a single-admission
Princeton now has an early admission program for students who will
enter in September 2012. But the program only requires that a student
apply early only to Princeton, but does not require that student to
accept Princeton’s offer until the end of the regular admissions