EphBlog’s favorite Lord Jeff writes:

I’m hearing that, due to a higher than expected yield, Amherst’s
incoming class is between 480 and 490 students, easily a record
number.

Do you know if Williams is experiencing the same? Given the massive
number of college apps nationwide this year, I’m interested to see if
other schools in our group are dealing with a similar situation.

Yield management is a black art, so it is tough for any outsider to know what is going on. Comments:

1) The key issue is which students are choosing Amherst more this year than they have in the past. If Amherst is winning more head-to-head battles against Williams (and H/Y/P/S), then that is bad for Williams. If, instead, Amherst is just getting more acceptances than it expected from the “poor” students, then that is good news for Williams. Let them have the students we don’t want! Extensive discussion here.

2) Williams made extensive use of its waitlist this year (see discussion at College Confidential), which would imply that yield was not higher than expected. From the Admissions Office:

To answer your questions, we have gone to the waiting list for a small group and, based on how many in that group decide to enroll and how many regular decision admits who we’ve given extensions also choose to enroll, we could make offers to another small group of students this week.

We don’t know at this point how many students we will be able to admit off of our waiting list, however, I can tell you that over 500 students who were offered waitlist spots remain interested. We do not rank our waitlist, and we have made, and could still make, offers to both American and non-U.S. citizens. We hope to make all waitlist decisions by the end of May; however, in past years, the process has, on occasion, stretched into early June, at which point, we will notify all non-admitted candidates.

We will notify students directly by email or phone if we are able to make them an offer. Our committee tries to look at as many files as possible in making decisions among a highly qualified group of candidates. If you haven’t already, please send us any updates on your academic and extracurricular achievements since you applied in January.

I read College Confidential so you don’t have to! The Record reported:

With deposits for the Class of 2011 still trickling in this week, 492 admitted students have confirmed their spots with the admission office as of yesterday, for a yield of 43.9 percent. The office had nearly the same number of deposits at this time last year when the yield was 45.7 percent, though that yield later rose to 47 percent. With a 49 percent yield two years ago, yield appears to have fallen for the second year in a row, though more deposits will arrive this month.

Over the last few days, 25 of the 516 students on the waitlist have been offered spots with a target class size of 538. These students have a week to decide whether or not to join the 277 students matriculating via regular decision and the 215 admitted via early decision.

3) So, this would seem to be an Amherst-specific event. My guess is that Amherst admitted a bunch of students that were unlike students it has admitted in the past. It estimated that the yield for these students would be 80% (or whatever) but it ended up being much higher.

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