In the first admission cycle since the University eliminated its binding early-decision program, the staff of the Office of Admission received a pleasant surprise. Although they expected to see a significant decrease in overall yield—the percentage of students who accept their offers of admission—the rate was down less than three percentage points from the previous year’s yield of 51 percent.

This result was surprising for two reasons. First, because a student who applied in UVA’s previous early-decision program was required to enroll if accepted, a yield of 100 percent was essentially guaranteed for a third of the incoming class. Second, Harvard and Princeton—also in their first year without binding early decision—saw a significant decrease in yields and were forced to dip deep into their waiting lists to fill their entering classes.

“What happened is that within the applicant pool there were lots of students who really wanted to go to UVA and would have applied through early decision if we had it,” says John A. Blackburn, dean of admission.

Of the 18,598 total applications received, offers were made to 6,735. Of that group, 3,256 students actually enrolled, slightly more than the targeted class size of 3,170. That compares with 3,248 first years last fall.

Other admission numbers of note for the Class of 2012:

  • Median SAT scores were slightly higher, from 1,307 to 1,322.
  • About 57 percent of first years are female, 43 percent male (the same as last year).
  • About 67 percent of first years are Virginia residents (down from 69 percent in 2007).
  • About 14 percent of first years are children of alumni, which is slightly higher than in recent years.