Carleton College: Acceptance Rate and Admissions Statistics

Skinner Memorial Chapel, Carleton College

JenniferPhotographyImaging/Getty Images

Carleton College is a private liberal arts college with an acceptance rate of 20%. Located less than an hour from Minneapolis-St. Paul in the small town of Northfield, Minnesota, Carleton is one of the best schools in the Midwest. Features of Carleton's campus include beautiful Victorian buildings, a state-of-the-art recreation center, and the 880-acre Cowling Arboretum. With about 2,000 students and over 200 faculty members, quality teaching is top priority at Carleton College. Strengths in the liberal arts and sciences earned Carleton a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, and the college typical ranks as one of the nation's ten best liberal arts colleges. On the athletic front, the school competes in the NCAA Division III Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC).

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

Acceptance Rate

During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, Carleton College had an acceptance rate of 20%. This means that for every 100 students who applied, 20 students were admitted, making Carleton's admissions process highly competitive.

Admissions Statistics (2017-18)
Number of Applicants 7,092
Percent Admitted 20%
Percent Admitted Who Enrolled (Yield) 38%

SAT Scores and Requirements

Carleton College requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 52% of admitted students submitted SAT scores.

SAT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
ERW 670 750
Math 680 780
ERW=Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

This admissions data tells us that most of Carleton'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 Carleton scored between 670 and 750, while 25% scored below 670 and 25% scored above 750. On the math section, 50% of admitted students scored between 680 and 780, while 25% scored below 680 and 25% scored above 780. Applicants with a composite SAT score of 1530 or higher will have particularly competitive chances at Carleton College.

Requirements

Carleton does not require the SAT writing section or SAT subject tests. Applicants may submit SAT Subject test scores to Carleton for consideration in their application review, but they are not required to do so. Note that Carleton 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

Carleton requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 57% of admitted students submitted ACT scores.

ACT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
Composite 31 34

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

Requirements

Note that Carleton does not superscore ACT results; your highest composite ACT score will be considered. Carleton does not require the ACT writing section.

GPA

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

Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph

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

The admissions data in the graph is self-reported by applicants to Carleton 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

Carleton College has a competitive admissions pool with a low acceptance rate and high average SAT/ACT scores. However, Carleton has a holistic admissions process involving other factors beyond your grades and test scores. Strong application essays and glowing letters of recommendation can strengthen your application, as can participation in meaningful extracurricular activities and a challenging high school curriculum that includes AP, IB, or Honors classes. While not required, Carleton offers optional interviews. Students with particularly compelling stories or achievements can still receive serious consideration even if their test scores are outside Carleton's average range.

In the graph above, the blue and green dots represent accepted students. You can see that the majority of accepted students had "A" averages, SAT scores (ERW+M) above 1300, and ACT composite scores above 28. A successful application, however, needs more than good grades and test scores. If you look at the red and yellow on the graph, you'll see that many students with high grades and test scores did not receive acceptance letters from Carleton.

If You Like Carleton College, You May Also Like These Schools: