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How many offers are made in first round?


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For example, IU's frequently-asked questions page states that their typical incoming class is 25-30 students. Let's say it's 25, then; does that mean they initially make precisely 25 offers and then only make further offers as those from the first round get declined? Or do they make more, say 30-35, and then only make new offers if and when 5-10 of those decline?

Any insights into this process would be greatly appreciated.

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Depends entirely on the department. Some might do one round of acceptances and then reject the rest, some might accept some first choice candidates and deliberate more on the rest, some might reject people as they go through the admissions process, then accept those are left. Who knows.

The only thing I can tell you is to look at that department's results from last year as a general guide.

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How strong the department is also affects what fraction of admitted students they can expect will accept or decline an offer.

Interestingly UT Austin actually lists on their website the number of students who applied, were accepted and were admitted last year (271, 71, 28 respectively), although that doesn't tell us much about when the offers were made.

The results posted on gradcafe also offer some insight. For example going by that data it appears that Berkeley admits very few people after the first round. On the other hand SUNY Stony Brook appears to string out its acceptances over the whole Feb-April season.

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UT Austin actually lists on their website the number of students who applied, were accepted and were admitted last year (271, 71, 28 respectively), although that doesn't tell us much about when the offers were made.

Wow, 71 "admits" for 28 spots--that has to represent at least two rounds of offers. Which makes me feel much better about my chances!

Unfortunately, the search results here don't seem to have a "Waitlisted-then-admitted" option. Of course, it might be safe to say that last-year's admits in late March-early April are just that. It also might be safe to stop obsessing over probabilities for the next few weeks of my life.

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I'm also concerned about Austin, they have two open house days, the first on the 8th and the second on the 22nd, I thought I would hear by now if I were going to be able to go to the first, maybe they expect a lot of people to turn down after that? Its impossible to plan out my grad school visit tour until I hear back from places like these :(

Regardless, I think they definitely have more admits to make, as the 3 or 4 admits which are listed here cannot be representative of anywhere near 71 admits to the general applicant pool. The waitlisted guy confuses me, though.

Edited by origin415
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For another data point: I visited UCSB this past fall and everyone took great pains to describe the impact of the budget on their admissions process. In fact the head of the admissions committee sat down and spoke about their philosophy for a solid 20 minutes. In past years they have admitted 10-12 students, but had been trying to get this up to 14-15; this year it will be only 6. And they will have at most 6 outstanding offers at any time as they only accept those they will fully fund. He said it'd probably be a crunch down to 15 April trying to complete the process.

I spoke with other UC's and they didn't seem to have as drastic a response, so to the OP's question: it depends. This is a perfect question to ask if you have a visit or phone call.

Edited by BongRips69
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