Yield in college admissions is the percent of students who enroll in a particular college or university after having been offered admission.[1][2] It is calculated by dividing the number of students who enroll at a school in a given year by the total number of offers of acceptance sent. The yield rate is usually calculated once per year.


A higher yield is ofter taken to indicate greater interest in enrolling at a particular school of higher education. As a statistical measure, it has been used by college ratings services as a measure of selectivity, such that a higher yield rate is a sign of a more selective college. For example, the yield rate for Princeton University was 69% in 2016, while the yield rate for Dartmouth was 55%, and the yield rate for Colorado College was 37%.[1] The yield rate has sometimes been criticized for being subject to manipulation by college admissions staffs; in 2001, a report by Daniel Golden in The Wall Street Journal suggested that some college admissions departments reject or wait list well-qualified applicants on the assumption that they will not enroll, as a way to boost the college's overall yield rate. According to the report, these actions were part of an effort to improve a college's scores on the U.S. News college ranking.[2] This practice is known as yield protection.


  1. ^ a b Steinberg, Jacques (May 12, 2010). "The Early Line on Admission Yields (and Wait-List Offers)". The New York Times. Retrieved December 31, 2011.
  2. ^ a b Golden, Daniel (May 29, 2001). "Glass Floor: Colleges Reject Top Applicants, Accepting Only the Students Likely to Enroll". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved November 19, 2015.