We get this question all the time: “How many safety schools should I apply to?”
Our definition of safety schools: schools where you have a greater than 75 percent chance of admission.
The number of schools you should apply to which are traditionally safety schools should be a 3-2-1 ratio. Meaning, you should apply to 3x as many top level schools which are considered “reach” schools as 2x as many mid level and 1x as many safety schools. This ratio allows you to concentrate and increase your odds of getting into a top school.
But it’s important not to just blindly apply to as many top schools as possible. In fact, there’s a good chance that the numbers behind Harvard University’s applicant statistics are skewed greatly by students without a strong chance of being admitted. This means that a majority of the applicants will just simply fill out a perfunctory application without serious, in-depth admissions counseling.
Harvard University Applicants (Class of 2012)
Anticipated Matriculants 1658
This means that you should spend more time on the top schools so as to differentiate yourself from the others in the applicant pool- those who simply fill out the application without hard work.
In terms of filling out the safety school applications, you should devote as much time as needed because you might have a chance of receiving a scholarship or grant. Often times, these schools lure students to their campus in order to increase their yield rate and their bottom line. These universities and colleges do so through scholarships and grants, so don’t just fill out the your college applications, get college admissions counseling help.