William & Mary Acceptance Rate: An In-Depth Analysis for 2024 Admissions

William & Mary is one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the United States, chartered in 1693 by King William III and Queen Mary II of England. William & Mary Acceptance Rate: An In-Depth Analysis for 2024 Admissions is here fory you, this public research university, located in Williamsburg, Virginia, is highly selective with an acceptance rate of just 33% for the class of 2024. In this comprehensive guide, we analyze William & Mary’s admissions process in detail, including average test scores, admission rates, essay prompts, and tips to get accepted.

William & Mary Admissions Overview

William & Mary has an overall acceptance rate of 33%, making it one of the most selective public universities in the country. For in-state applicants, the acceptance rate is 39%, while for out-of-state students it drops to 28%.

The middle 50% SAT score range for admitted students is 1375-1520, while the middle 50% ACT score range is 32-34, indicating that strong standardized test scores will boost your chances (although they are now optional). Successful applicants also tend to have GPAs of 4.0 or higher and take many Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) courses.

Extracurricular activities, essays, letters of recommendation and demonstrated interest in William & Mary are also important parts of a strong application. We’ll break down all these components in detail throughout this guide.

Key William & Mary Admissions Statistics:

  • Overall Acceptance Rate: 33%
  • In-state Acceptance Rate: 39%
  • Out-of-state Acceptance Rate: 28%
  • Middle 50% SAT Score Range: 1375-1520
  • Middle 50% ACT Score Range: 32-34
  • Regular Decision Application Deadline: January 1
  • Early Decision Deadline: November 1

How Selective is William & Mary?

With an acceptance rate of 33%, William & Mary is quite selective – more so than many public universities. However, it is not as competitive as some elite private colleges with single-digit admission rates. William & Mary ranks #53 in National Universities according to U.S. News & World Report’s 2024 College Rankings.

To put William & Mary’s selectivity in context, here is how its acceptance rate compares to other top Virginia public colleges among william mary students.

  • University of Virginia: 26%
  • College of William & Mary: 33%
  • Virginia Tech: 70%
  • James Madison University: 78%

So while not as exclusive as UVA, William & Mary accepts less than half of applicants, making it a reach school for many prospective students. Applicants with especially strong academic and extracurricular profiles may consider it more of a match.

An important admissions trend is that in-state students enjoy a higher acceptance rate at 39%, versus just 28% for out-of-state applicants at this Virginia public university.

William & Mary Admissions & Mary Application Deadline

William & Mary has two application rounds – Early Decision and Regular Decision – with the following deadlines:

  • Early Decision Deadline: November 1
  • Regular Decision Deadline: January 1

Early Decision is binding, meaning if you apply Early Decision and are accepted, you must attend William & Mary. However, it can provide a slight boost to your chances as the Early Decision acceptance rate is 50% compared to 33% for Regular Decision candidates.

If William & Mary is your top choice school, Early Decision is worth considering. But do make sure you’re comfortable with the binding policy before applying.

Tip: While not required, visiting campus can show demonstrated interest which may give your application a small edge. Schedule an official tour or info session!

William & Mary Acceptance Rate

William & Mary Acceptance Rate by Major

While William & Mary does not publish detailed acceptance rates by major, some majors at this top liberal arts college generally are more competitive than others. The most selective programs include:

  • Business/Finance related majors
  • Computer Science
  • International Relations
  • Public Policy

Less competitive programs that may provide a slightly better chance of admission include less capacity-constrained majors like:

  • English
  • Sociology
  • Fine Arts
  • Modern Languages

Most applicants choose to apply undeclared to keep their options open, which William & Mary allows. About half of admitted students then declare a major in Economics, Government, Public Policy, Biology or Psychology.

While it varies by major, William & Mary received over 15,300 applications for about 1,550 spots in the Class of 2024, so all programs are quite selective. In any major, you need to be at the very top of the applicant pool to gain admission.

William & Mary Class Profile: Mary SAT Scores, ACT, GPA

To assess your chances of admission and identify areas to strengthen, it helps to review the academic profile of previously admitted classes. Here are the middle 50% test score ranges, meaning 25% scored lower and 25% scored higher:

  • William mary SAT Scores (Middle 50%): 1375 – 1520
  • ACT Scores (Middle 50%): 32 – 34
  • High School GPA (Unweighted): Mostly A’s

The middle half of students earned GPAs of mostly A’s in high school. Over 75% of admitted students were in the top 10% of their graduating class as well. Mary average gpa in Competitive applicants will ideally have a 3.8 GPA or higher.

William & Mary also attracts many high-achieving students taking college-level courses, with over one-third of admitted students having taken 10+ AP/IB courses. Successful applicants frequently score 4’s and 5’s on seven or more AP tests.

Finally, William & Mary went test-optional for the classes entering Fall 2021 through Fall 2023. Applicants can still choose to submit SAT or ACT scores if they feel their results strengthen their profile, but have the flexibility not to include them.

Essays & William & Mary Writing Supplement

The William Mary application requires:

  • Common or Coalition Application Essays
  • William & Mary Writing Supplement

On the Common App, you’ll choose one out of seven essay prompts with a 650-word limit. The Coalition App has five essay prompts with a 550-word limit.

The William & Mary writing supplement (uploaded separately) has two shorter 250-word essays:

  1. What drew you to apply to William & Mary?
  2. We know there are more reasons to choose a school than its prestige or reputation. Why William & Mary for you?

These short-answer questions are still important. William & Mary seeks students who are genuinely excited about attending, so express enthusiasm for specific programs, research, professors or opportunities that appeal to you. Back up general claims (“great teaching reputation”) with specific examples too.

Important Extracurriculars & Activities

As a top liberal arts college valuing community and engagement, William & Mary wants students who will actively contribute to campus life.

Successful applicants typically have long-term dedication to a few extracurricular activities they care deeply about, taking on meaningful roles and leadership positions, rather than briefly dabbling in many clubs. Devoting all your time to a solitary activity (like an instrument) can actually hurt as colleges want multi-dimensional applicants.

Quality trumps quantity – admissions officers value passion, commitment, teamwork and growth. Share specific anecdotes highlighting these values within your activities, backed by awards and accomplishments.

Common extracurricular themes at William & Mary include:

  • Student Government: Class president, student council roles indicate leadership abilities.
  • Performing/Visual Arts: Orchestra, theater, choir or art portfolios show creativity.
  • Varsity Sports: Captain positions display athleticism plus intangibles like dedication.
  • Academic Clubs: Science Olympiad, debate, yearbook or subject-focused societies (Finance, Spanish).
  • Community Service: Consistent volunteering conveys selflessness.
  • Work Experience: Jobs and internships showcase real-world skills.

Keep in mind depth over breadth, leaving room in your schedule for academics. Craft your application activities list intentionally with your strengths and Williams & Mary’s holistic review process in mind.

Letters of Recommendation

William & Mary requires:

  • 2 Teacher Recommendations
  • 1 Other Recommendation – counselor, coach, mentor etc.

Letters of recommendation provide an additional perspective showcasing positive attributes that strengthen your candidacy like intellectual curiosity, leadership skills or persistence through challenges.

Aim for recommenders who will emphasize specific examples and anecdotes illustrating strengths relevant to excelling at William & Mary. Generally teachers of humanities, math, science or social science core courses make the most impact.

Demonstrated Interest Matters

William & Mary – like many selective colleges – tracks demonstrated interest (DI), meaning efforts that show the university you are seriously interested. While not make-or-break, demonstrated interest provides a potential tip factor supporting admissions success.

You can showcase DI through actions like:

  • Registering for an official campus tour
  • Attending an on-site information session
  • Having an interview with an alumni representative
  • Visiting William & Mary when your sports team plays nearby
  • Communicating with current students
  • Reference professors or research you might contribute to

Essentially, back up any claims of interest in William & Mary with actual engagement that they can track or document, even virtually. DI is now a normal part of holistic application evaluation at selective colleges.

Tips To Get Accepted Into William & Mary

Beyond achieving strong grades, test scores and extracurricular activities, here are some helpful tips for getting into William & Mary’s incoming first-year class:

✔️ Apply early decision if William & Mary is clearly your top choice school. ED boosts acceptance chances to 50% compared to 33% in regular decision.

✔️ Focus essays on your genuine fit and enthusiasm for specific William & Mary opportunities and culture.

✔️ Interview with an alumni representative if possible to make a personal impression conveying qualities beyond grades and scores.

✔️ Highlight connections to campus through family legacy, geographic proximity, demonstrated interest or relationships helping transition.

✔️ Emphasize extracurricular impact with leadership roles, recognitions earned and examples of increasing responsibility over time. Convey passion.

✔️ Send test scores if you are a strong standardized tester, with ACT scores 33+ or SAT 1400+.

While nothing substitutes for academic excellence, these application optimization tips could provide an extra edge if you are on the bubble between acceptance and rejection.

William & Mary Waitlist Process

While exact percentages vary annually, William & Mary places several hundred applicants on its waitlist. Historically they admit 10-20% off the waitlist to fill spots from admitted students declining enrollment offers.

If waitlisted, promptly completing the waitlist response form indicating your intent and enthusiasm to enroll if later admitted can help. Only students opting-in will receive a final waitlist decision.

Update the admissions office on any new accomplishments as well like improved grades, awards earned or impressive internships locked in. Letters of continued interest summarizing why you are an excellent match for William & Mary and would attend if admitted can aid your cause as well.

While waitlist movement is never guaranteed, proactively demonstrating eagerness through communications and updates on achievements may incentivize William & Mary to unlock that final admit spot for you!

William & Mary Transfer Acceptance Rate

William & Mary welcomes transfer applicants, with dedicated admission officers reviewing these applications. The overall William & Mary transfer acceptance rate averages around 30% each year, slightly below the regular admissions rate.

Competitive transfer applicants typically have a college GPA of 3.7 or higher. Successful transfers often come from Virginia community colleges or other prestigious 4-year universities.

To apply as a transfer:

  • Submit transfer Common App including personal statement
  • Send all college transcripts
  • Provide one letter of recommendation
  • Indicate prospective major

Key application deadlines:

  • Fall Regular Decision: March 15
  • Fall Priority Transfer: February 1

Admission is most competitive for high-demand majors like finance, economics and STEM fields. English, government, psychology and sociology tend to provide better transfer acceptance odds.

William & Mary Acceptance Rates By Year

William & Mary’s already selective admissions rates have dropped slightly lower over the past decade as application volume has surged. This graph summarizes acceptance trends since 2014:

YearAcceptance Rate
202433%
202334%
202237%
202141%
202041%
201938%
201836%
201736%
201633%
201533%
201433%

As recently as 2021, William & Mary’s acceptance rate remained near 40%. But over the last several admission cycles, the rate has dropped closer to 1 in 3 applications earning admission.

Prospective students should expect this minimal 33% acceptance norm to continue applying to William & Mary and other elite colleges moving forward, as record applicant pools intensify competition.

In-State vs. Out-of-State William Mary Acceptance Rate

William & Mary – as a public university in Virginia – offers preference during application review to in-state applicants. Given capacity constraints and legislative mandates to prioritize Virginians, this manifests in meaningfully divergent acceptance rates.

Over the past three admission cycles, the William & Mary in-state acceptance rate has been 8 to 10 percentage points higher compared to out-of-state applicants:

  • Class of 2024 william mary admissions
    • In-State Acceptance Rate: 39%
    • Out-of-State Acceptance Rate: 28%
  • Class of 2023  
    • In-State Acceptance Rate: 38%
    • Out-of-State Acceptance Rate: 29%
  • Class of 2022 william mary admissions 
    • In-State Acceptance Rate: 43%
    • Out-of-State Acceptance Rate: 35%

So while state residency offers no guarantee of acceptance with William & Mary denying nearly 2 in 3 Virginians too, applying in-state noticeably enhances an applicant’s probability of earning that coveted admissions letter.

Students from New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania face particularly long odds applying out-of-state, given proximity and large applicant pools from those states.

Early Decision vs Regular Decision Acceptance Rates

Mirroring patterns across selective colleges offering early admissions pathways, William & Mary’s Early Decision acceptance rate exceeds its Regular Decision rate – substantially so.

Over the past three years, the spread between Early Decision and Regular Decision offer rates has been:

  • Class of 2024
    • Early Decision Acceptance Rate: 50%
    • Regular Decision Acceptance Rate: 33%
  • Class of 2023
    • Early Decision Acceptance Rate: 45%
    • Regular Decision Acceptance Rate: 34%
  • Class of 2022
    • Early Decision Acceptance Rate: 48%
    • Regular Decision Acceptance Rate: 37%

So while certainly not guaranteed, students who make William & Mary their first choice find applying Early Decision provides a 15-20 percentage point lift.

The key trade-off is lack of choice, as ED truly is binding. So only apply if William & Mary is unambiguously your top selection. But for applicants confident this historic campus and community offers an ideal fit, Early Decision merits consideration.

Does William & Mary Super Score Test Results?

While submitting SAT or ACT test results is optional for upcoming William & Mary application cycles from 2021-2023, many students still choose to send scores.

Fortunately, William & Mary does super score standardized tests like the SAT and ACT. This means the university considers your highest individual section scores across test dates when making admissions decisions.

For example, if you take the SAT three times with your highest respective section scores being:

  • 740 Reading
  • 780 Math
  • 750 Writing

William & Mary would evaluate your application as if you earned an SAT composite score of 1550 (740 + 780 + 750), even if your highest total score on a single test date was lower.

Super scoring helps admissions committees evaluate you based on your highest achievement levels demonstrated across test attempts. Almost all selective U.S. colleges now super score, easing testing requirements.

William & Mary Acceptance Rate FAQs

Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about William & Mary’s highly selective admissions process:

How prestigious is William & Mary?

Extremely! William & Mary is one of only nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution. It ranks #44 among National Universities by US News. The acceptance rate is 33%, lower than most public schools.

What GPA do you need to get into William & Mary?

The middle 50% GPA range for William & Mary is about 3.8 to 4.0. Competitive applicants have mostly A grades throughout high school across challenging classes. Over 75% of admitted students ranked in the top 10% of their graduating class.

Does William & Mary accept the Common App or Coalition App?

Yes! William & Mary accepts either the Common Application or the Coalition Application with no preference for one over the other. Most applicants choose the more popular Common App.

Is William & Mary need blind for international students?

No, William & Mary is not need blind for international applicants, meaning your ability to pay full cost can influence admissions chances. That said, they do offer generous need-based aid. Over 200 international students across 80+ countries currently attend.

What majors is William and Mary known for?

As an elite liberal arts college, William & Mary does not have traditional “majors” but rather offers concentrations called majors roughly comparable to B.A./B.S. degree programs. Most popular majors span government, economics, International Relations, English, Biology and various interdisciplinary  programs.

Does William & Mary offer merit scholarships?

Yes, William & Mary provides academic scholarships, with values set upon admission based on your entering application profile. Awards span from $5,000 per year up to full in-state or out-of-state cost of attendance. Competitive applicants eligible for honors like the 1693 Scholarship get full tuition covered.

What is the total cost of attendance at William & Mary?

For the 2023-2024 academic year, total cost of attendance is $78,578 for in-state students and $89,314 for out-of-state students covering tuition, room, board, fees, books, supplies and living expenses. Over 50% of students receive need-based aid.

How much financial aid does William and Mary give on average?

William & Mary students received nearly $50 million in total financial assistance for 2021-2022. Different forms of discounts and aid reduced the average net tuition cost to $17,509 for in-state students and $31,465 for out-of-state students after subtracting scholarships, grants, education tax credits and Federal Work Study earnings.

Does William and Mary offer an honors college?

Yes! William & Mary invites select admitted students to join the W&M Honors College supporting advanced research opportunities. Students complete at least one honors course per semester plus an honors thesis working closely with faculty mentors at this highly ranked liberal arts university.

Is William and Mary a party school?

No. While providing an active and engaging campus experience including D1 sports, performing arts, 450+ clubs, Greek life and more, William & Mary emphasizes community, campus pride and school spirit over pure partying. The university ranked #2 Most Sober Schools by Niche.

What is campus life like at William & Mary?

Students praise the vibrant, close-knit campus community allowing easy access to professors. With over 450 student groups, and 70% of students living on-campus all four years, life at William & Mary revolves around residence halls, academic buildings, the picturesque Sir Christopher Wren Yard and engaged peers passionate about their interests.

Does William and Mary require recommendation letters?

Yes. All applicants must submit two teacher recommendations and one secondary recommendation letter from another source like a counselor, coach or mentor. These personalized endorsements from people familiar with your strengths provide helpful context alongside grades, test scores and extracurriculars.

What percentage of applicants get into William and Mary early decision?

Over the past three admission cycles, William & Mary’s early decision acceptance rate averaged 48% compared to 35% in regular decision. So while binding, applying ED nearly doubles an applicant’s admission chances.

Do extracurricular activities matter for William & Mary admissions?

Absolutely! William & Mary holistically reviews applicants as people not just numbers and stats. Passionate participation in a few long-term extracurricular activities – taking on meaningful roles and showing growth over time – helps convey strengths beyond academics like leadership, teamwork and perseverance.

Does William and Mary track demonstrated Interest?

Yes. William & Mary is among the selective universities documenting student demonstrated interest through actions like campus visits, info sessions, following social media accounts and communication with regional reps. While not a make or break factor, demonstrated interest helps borderline decisions.

Is William and Mary test optional?

For Fall 2021 through Fall 2023 first-year applicant cohorts, William & Mary adopted an extended test optional policy rather than requiring SAT or ACT scores given ongoing COVID-19 testing disruptions. Applicants can still choose to submit scores to potentially strengthen their candidacy if results are competitive.

What is the acceptance rate for transfers?

The William & Mary transfer acceptance rate over the past several years has averaged around 30%. While not required, visiting campus can show demonstrated interest. Competitive transfer applicants have college GPAs of 3.7+ spanning rigorous coursework. Admission is most competitive for high-demand majors like Business and STEM fields.

William & Mary Acceptance Rate