Amherst College: Acceptance Rate and Admissions Statistics

Amherst College, Amherst, Massachusetts

Daderot / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain

Amherst College is a private liberal arts college with an acceptance rate of 13%. Located in a small town in Western Massachusetts, Amherst stands at #1 or #2 in national rankings of top liberal arts colleges and is one of the most selective colleges in the United States. Amherst has an open curriculum with no distribution requirements. For it's strength in the liberal arts and sciences, the college earned membership in Phi Beta Kappa. Academics at Amherst are supported by a healthy 8-to-1 student/faculty ratio. Students can round out the Amherst course offerings with classes from the other schools in the five-college consortiumMount Holyoke CollegeSmith CollegeHampshire College, and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Considering applying to this highly selective college? Here are the Amherst admissions statistics you should know.

Acceptance Rate

During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, Amherst had an acceptance rate of 13%. This means that for every 100 students who applied, 13 students were admitted, making Amherst's admissions process highly competitive.

Admissions Statistics (2017-18)
Number of Applicants 9,723
Percent Admitted 13%
Percent Admitted Who Enrolled (Yield) 39%

SAT Scores and Requirements

Amherst College requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 47% of admitted students submitted SAT scores.

SAT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
ERW 660 750
Math 670 780
ERW=Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

This admissions data tells us that most of Amherst's admitted students fall within the top 20% nationally on the SAT. For the evidence-based reading and writing section, 50% of students admitted to Amherst scored between 660 and 750, while 25% scored below 660 and 25% scored above 750. On the math section, 50% of admitted students scored between 670 and 780, while 25% score below 670 and 25% scored above 780. Applicants with a composite SAT score of 1530 or higher will have particularly competitive chances at Amherst.

Requirements

Amherst does not require, but strongly recommends, the SAT writing section. Note that Amherst participates in the scorechoice program, which means that the admissions office will consider your highest score from each individual section across all SAT test dates.

ACT Scores and Requirements

Amherst requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 54% of admitted students submitted ACT scores.

ACT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
English 32 35
Math 28 34
Composite 31 34

This admissions data tells us that most of Amherst's admitted students fall within the top 5% nationally on the ACT. The middle 50% of students admitted to Amherst received a composite ACT score between 31 and 34, while 25% scored above 34 and 25% scored below 31.

Requirements

While not required, Amherst strongly recommends the ACT writing section. Unlike many colleges, Amherst superscores ACT results; your highest subscores from multiple ACT sittings will be considered.

GPA

Amherst College does not provide data about admitted students' high school GPAs.

Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph

Amherst College Applicants' Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph.
Amherst College Applicants' Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph. Data courtesy of Cappex.

The admissions data in the graph is self-reported by applicants to Amherst College. GPAs are unweighted. Find out how you compare to accepted students, see the real-time graph, and calculate your chances of getting in with a free Cappex account.

Admissions Chances

Amherst College has a highly competitive admissions pool with a low acceptance rate and high average SAT/ACT scores. However, Amherst has a holistic admissions process involving other factors beyond your grades and test scores. A strong application essay, Amherst writing supplement, and glowing letters of recommendation can strengthen your application, as can participation in meaningful extracurricular activities and a rigorous course schedule. Applicants with special accomplishments in art, research, or athletics may submit optional additional information to Amherst. Students with particularly compelling stories or achievements can still receive serious consideration even if their test scores are outside Amherst's average range.

In the scattergram above, the blue and green dots represent accepted students, and you can see that most students who got into Amherst had averages of A- or higher, SAT scores (ERW+M) above 1300, and ACT composite scores above 27. Your chances will be significantly higher with test scores above these lower ranges. Also notice that there is quite a bit of red (rejected students) among the green and blue. High test scores and grades are no guarantee of admission to this top-ranked liberal arts college.