Ivy League Schools: What Canadian students need..

There are upwards of 4,000 colleges and universities in the US, but for you, nothing but the best will do, and that means an Ivy League college. Now you've narrowed it down to just eight – not bad! Here, in no particular order, is the list:

  • Harvard
  • Yale
  • Brown
  • Cornell
  • Columbia
  • Penn
  • Dartmouth
  • Princeton

Unless you are carrying out a family legacy by attending a particular Ivy League school, how will you choose among them? It is an important decision, given that you will spend the next four years of your life there. It also may be a very difficult decision, since all eight schools are academically challenging and offer incredible opportunities for networking and impressing future employers. Here are the PrepSkills tips for choosing the right Ivy League college:

  • This should be obvious, but immediately discount what you've 'heard' about these schools from people who haven't been there.
  • Make a list of what you want and need in a school – trying to disregard what other people have said, or may want for you
  • As a Canadian student applying to a US college, you'll need to do extra research. Ask your high school counselors for help.
  • Investigate your financial options: foreigners can pay upwards of $25,000 more per year for tuition than their in-state counterparts, plus there are the expenses associated with living away from home. And Ivy League schools can be among the most expensive: Harvard's average tuition is $64,000 per year. But remember that Ivy League schools are often able to give more financial aid via endowments, bursaries, grants and scholarships, so don't let that prevent you from applying; 70 percent of Harvard students, for example, receive financial aid which usually makes up the lion's share of their fees.

Canadian Admission Statistics for Ivy League Schools

One of the factors that might tip the odds in favour of a particular Ivy League school is whether or not you can actually get in! The Great Eight have notoriously low acceptance rates. You already know you need top SAT scores as a bare minimum to even have a chance…but just what kind of a chance are we talking about?

The chart below lists how many Canadians or foreign students were admitted to each Ivy League college, and what kind of SAT scores helped get them there, for the class of 2014.

College Total number admitted Acceptance rate
(% of those who apply)
Canadians admitted Average test scores
Harvard 2,110 6.9 10.1 % international Not specified – holistic approach
Yale 1,940 7.5 13.3% international 2245 on critical reading, writing & math sections
Brown 2,804 9.3 34 Canadians Not specified
Cornell 6,673 18.4 Not specified but does admit Canadians Reading 710, Math 740
Columbia 2,396 9.2 15% international 2215 on critical reading, writing & math sections
Penn 3,830 14.2 27 Canadians 2175 on critical reading, writing & math sections
Dartmouth 2,165 11.5 7.9% international 2200 on critical reading, writing & math sections
Princeton 2,148 8.2 141 international students incl. Canadians 2235 on critical reading, writing & math sections

Obviously, though high SAT scores are only part of the picture, they are still important. If you need help improving your standardized test scores or navigating the choppy waters of US college admissions, please connect with PrepSkills now. We have all the tools to help you be one Canadian who does gain entry to the Ivy League college of your dreams.