ilpsm wrote:hopefully being a little late to the party (comparatively) doesn't hurt us
Conventional wisdom is that applying later doesn't hurt you for Yale.
Ask Asha wrote:
Basically, at Yale, the entire permanent faculty -- over 60 people -- serve as the "Admissions Committee." It works like this. First, I review each file. Files are read in the order they become complete -- in other words, we do not sort by grades or LSATs. At this stage, I am looking for whether you can 1) perform extremely well academically at Yale and 2) make a significant contribution to the composition of the incoming class, in terms of (among other things) experience, perspective, leadership, special skills, and future goals.
We are very fortunate to have many more people who fit the above criteria than we have room for in the incoming class. To this end, I send about 25% of our applicant pool -- close to 1,000 files -- to our faculty "Committees." At this stage, each application is sent, in a stack of about 50 files, to three faculty readers. Each faculty member uses his or her own criteria to rate each file on a scale of 2-4, with 4 being the highest. Each faculty member reads independently -- that is, the faculty member does not know who the other two readers of the file will be and so there is no discussion of the files with other people --and his or her scores are kept confidential from the other readers.
Once the application is circulated through the three readers, we add up the scores in the Admissions Office. All applicants who receive a 12 (straight 4s) and most who receive an 11 (two 4s and a 3) are admitted.
In other words, you pass an initial gut-check by an admissions professional, then you get reviews by the faculty readers, and then the people with the best reviews get admitted in April. At other schools, applying later means aiming at a shrinking target, but everyone gets roughly the same shot with Yale's system.