Jan 23, 2019

List of Ivy League Universities and How to Apply to Them

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If you are an aspiring study abroad student, interested in studying in USA, you might have heard about the Ivy League Universities. In American Culture and academic circles, Ivy League colleges and Universities are considered the best of US Universities. But what are Ivy League Universities, and how can you get into one? Here are the answers:

List of Ivy League Universities and How to Apply to Them

What are Ivy League Universities? Ivy League Meaning:

As we have mentioned, Ivy League Universities are some of the most prestigious Universities in USA. It is a group of athletic universities that are highly competitive in nature. The universities are very selective with their acceptance in enrollment, and they are considered elite. The quality of the education in these universities are unmatched in the USA.

The term Ivy League itself is used for an athletic event between the Ivy League Universities, which are situated mostly in North-Eastern America.

The Ivy League Universities are among the top ranked universities not only in  the US, but also across the world. The admission requirements are very high, and the selection committees are highly selective. Right from the 1960s, the Ivy League Universities carry this reputation, and it is still ongoing. With streams ranging from Engineering and science, to Art, Law and Medicine, the Universities are known for everything.

Ivy League Universities List:

There are eight members of Ivy League Universities, and here is the Ivy League Universities list with Ivy League Schools Ranked by QS, US News, Forbes and Niche Ranking:

Ivy League Universities


QS World Rankings

US News Ranking Forbes Ranking Niche Ranking

Brown University

Rhode Island


14 8 9

Columbia University

New York


3 15 7

Cornell University

New York


16 13 21

Dartmouth College

New Hampshire


12 9 19

Harvard University



2 1 3

Princeton University

New Jersey


1 5 5

University of Pennsylvania



8 7 6

Yale University



3 2 4

Universities like Stanford University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and CalTech are not technically Ivy League Universities, but observes the same prestigious status, education quality and higher acceptance standards.

Acceptance Rate for the Ivy League Universities:

Acceptance Rate is the ratio of the new students selected by the University to the number of the students who applied in form of percentage. When the high ranked institutions like Ivy League Universities are very selective in the admission process, the acceptance rate of these Universities will be extremely low.

In short, it is difficult to get admission at the Universities with lower acceptance rate like Ivy League Universities. Here are the acceptance rates for Ivy League Universities:

List of Ivy League Universities

Acceptance Rate

Cornell University


Dartmouth College


Brown University


Columbia University


University of Pennsylvania


Princeton University


Yale University


Harvard University



How to Get into Ivy League University? Application Process:

General Application Requirements for the Ivy League Universities:

  • Previous Academic Records

  • Bachelor’s Degree or Equivalent (For postgraduate programs)

  • Proof of English Language Proficiency (IELTS, TOEFL)

  • Test Scores Required for specific courses (GMAT, GRE, LSAT, MCAT)

  • Letters of Recommendation

  • Statement of Purpose / Application Essays

  • Resume / CV

  • Application Fees

As we mentioned, the selection process at these universities is rigorous and the requirements are quite higher. Though the requirements will change with the universities, the average values required for a postgraduate program are, a GPA between 3.7 to 4. The TOEFL score around 100+ and IELTS 7.5. Average GRE scores required are 155 to 170, LSAT 173+ and MCAT 36.6 or higher.

Ivy League Universities and their special requirements:

Ivy League Universities


Admission Requirements

Harvard University

Arts, Humanities, Social Science, Journalism, etc.

Specific Answers / Essays

Business, Management, Engineering and Design

Work Experience & Portfolios

Personal Interview and Interview Reflection

Yale University



Design and Architecture


Humanities, Journalism, Social Science

Specific Answers / Essays

Research and Education

Research Proposal

Columbia University



Humanities and Journalism

Writing Samples, Tests and Essays

GRE optional except some courses

Dartmouth College

Science related Courses

Recommendation Letters from Scientists of the field

GRE Preferred

TSE (Test of Spoken English) Alongside TOEFL / IELTS

University of Pennsylvania

Master's Programs

Specific Answers / Essays

GRE Required for all Courses

Brown University

GRE not Required, Course specific Writing Samples Required


These are still the course and field specific general requirements to give you an idea about the admission process and eligibility criteria at Ivy League Universities. For specific courses, the best way is to visit University Websites and see course specific requirements.

Ivy League Universities are prestigious and they are culturally impactful, and there is no doubt about that. But there are equally good Universities in USA to look forward. You can check them out here: Top 100 Universities in USA to Study in 2019.

About The Author:

Dhruv is fond of words and everything related to them. Writing about different things from around the world gives him immense pleasure, and a very healthy by-product is sharing of the information and helping others in the process.

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