NYU releases admission rates for class of 2016

NYU saw a modest change in the acceptance rate for the class of 2016, in its fifth consecutive year of receiving a record-breaking number of applications.

NYU New York

According to the Office of Admissions, NYUNY offered admission to about 35 percent of almost 43,000 applicants. This marks approximately two percent increase from last year’s 33 percent admit rate for the class of 2015.

This year, the university implemented several changes in its admissions process. For the first time, applicants were required to indicate their primary choice of campus — either New York or Abu Dhabi. Shawn Abbott, assistance vice president of admissions, told WSN last December that the university made this change to better illustrate the portal campus structure of the university.


About 96 percent of applicants to NYUNY selected the New York campus as their primary choice of interest. This number includes students who applied exclusively to NYUNY. The remainder selected NYUNY as their alternate choice of campus to NYU Abu Dhabi.

“[The class of 2016] will arguably be the most diverse, at least geographically and ethnically, that we have welcomed in quite sometime,” Abbott said.

“In New York, a record-breaking 16 percent of this year’s class will hold passports from outside the United States while the percentage of African-American students and the number of Latino/a students are each the largest we have seen in recent history,” he added.

In its second year to offer two rounds of Early Decision, NYUNY saw about a four percent decrease in the admit rate of ED students. Approximately 31 percent of ED applicants were accepted to the university this year.

For the first time, students were also able to apply directly to Liberal Studies Program — a two-year program for those who complete the rest of their education in one of NYU’s undergraduate schools.

Abbott said that in addition to admitting students who apply directly, the university will likely refer students to LSP if the admissions committee believe they will be a better match for the program.

But because of NYU’s policy on not reporting admission data by school, he said the university will not release data specifically for LSP.

NYU Abu Dhabi

In its third year since welcoming the inaugural class, NYUAD offered admission to 1.3 percent of applicants to the class of 2016. Marking a two percent decrease from last year’s freshmen class, the rate is one of the most selective among higher education institutions. In comparison, Harvard University’s admittance rate is 5.9 percent while Stanford University’s is 6.6 percent.

Of the 15,518 applicants to NYUAD’s class of 2016, about 15 percent of students selected NYUAD as their primary choice of interest. The remainder selected NYUAD as an alternate choice to NYUNY.

“We remain gratified, albeit unsurprised, by the growing interest in NYU Abu Dhabi,” said NYUAD spokesman Josh Taylor. “We believe it shows an incredible thirst not just for NYUAD, but for the very notion of the Global Network University, and we are excited to see this grow next year when NYU Shanghai comes online.”

To its class of 2016, NYUAD accepted roughly 4 percent of its ED applicants, about double the university’s overall admission rate.

Applicants to the class of 2017 will be able to apply to NYU Shanghai, which is scheduled to open for the fall 2013 term. Students will have the option of expressing interest in one, two or three campuses, Abbott said.

The application went live on July 1 and is due by Nov. 1 for ED I applicants and by Jan. 1 for ED II and Regular Decision applicants.

A version of this article appeared in the Thursday, Oct. 18 print edition. Jaewon Kang is managing editor. Email her at [email protected]



  1. As application numbers rise each year, NYU dodges the opportunity to become more selective by simply accepting more students. Selectivity is an important criterion in some college rankings, in which NYU will never move up if it keeps accepting more students. Similarly, accepting more students each year means that the ratio of endowment dollars per student is not going to go up either, affecting financial aid and quality of teaching. Finally, a University that sees itself as an elite private school (a view reflected in the level of its tuition) shouldn’t allow the size of the undergraduate body to approach that of a large state school, as then students will be paying premium prices for an experience they could obtain more cheaply at a public institution in their home state. Dan – BA, MS, PhD – all at NYU

    • You are so correct! Thanks for stepping up with a critical commentary. Sexton is a visionary and has done so much to raise the image of NYU. Now they need to work on giving extreme value for each of those tuition dollars. It is now over $5,000 for ONE CLASS. Each class by definition should be a transformational experience given those prices. If not? Well there is a very very big problem…

  2. Having read this I believed it was rather enlightening. I appreciate you finding the time and energy to put this short article together. I once again find myself personally spending a lot of time both reading and leaving comments. But so what, it was still worthwhile!
    Parker Waichman


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