How to Get Into Middlebury: Admissions Stats + Tips
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- How Hard Is It to Get Into Middlebury?
- What is Middlebury College Looking for?
- Average Academic Profile of Accepted Middlebury Students
- How to Improve Your Chances of Getting into Middlbury
Tucked in the forested valley with the Adirondack Mountains on one side and the Green Mountains on the other, Middlebury is a prestigious liberal arts college. It is also known for its equally esteemed Middlebury Language Schools, and hosts one of the oldest and most well-known writers’ conferences, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conferences.
In this post, we cover Middlebury’s selectivity level, the average profile of its admitted students, how to optimize your application for Middlebury, and other tips and deadlines.
How Hard Is It to Get Into Middlebury?
For the 2020–2021 admissions cycle, Middlebury received 9,174 applicants, of which 2,022 were accepted. This means that last year, Middlebury’s acceptance rate was 22%, making it a selective school. That same year, Middlebury received 838 early decision applicants, of which 392 were accepted, which yields a 46.7% acceptance rate for early decision. Middlebury does not have early action.
Want to get a sense of how your application may stack up against other potential applicants?
Try using our free admissions calculator! By taking into account multiple elements of your profile, including your grades, test scores, extracurriculars, and more, we’ll estimate your odds of acceptance, and give you tips on improving your profile.
Average Academic Profile of Accepted Middlebury Students
Standardized tests are not required to apply to Middlebury. A student’s decision to submit scores will not impact his or her candidacy for admission. Last year, 63% of freshmen at Middlebury submitted SAT scores, and 44% submitted ACT scores. The top 25% of students scored above a 1520 on the SAT, and above a 34 on the ACT.
Although Middlebury does not offer information about its incoming class’ high school GPA or class rank, you should aim for mostly all A’s to be a competitive candidate for Middlebury.
What is Middlebury College Looking for?
With a rich history as an intellectual hub for several subjects particularly in the humanities, Middlebury aims to cultivate bold, brave, and independent thinkers, thoughtful and ethical citizens to the world. The school wants graduates to be skilled in their use of language and evidence alike in all contexts, and ready to lead engaged, creative, and meaningful lives.
How Middlebury Evaluates Applications
According to their 2020-2021 Common Data Set, Middlebury considers the following factors “very important” in a student’s application:
- Course rigor
- Class rank
- Academic GPA
- Extracurricular activities
- Character/personal qualities
These factors are “important”:
- Standardized test scores
- Application essays
- Racial/ethnic status
These are “considered”:
- First generation
- Alumni/ae relation
- Geographical residence
- Volunteer work
- Work experience
- Level of applicant’s interest
And these are “not considered”:
- Religious affiliation/commitment
- State residency
How to Improve Your Chances of Getting into Middlbury
1. Aim for all A’s while taking the most challenging classes available
While Middlebury doesn’t have a “cut-off” GPA, accepted applicants across the board have strong academics. Middlebury wants to see you excel in classes, while seeing that you’ve challenged yourself, so you should try and take advanced honors, AP, or IB classes.
If your GPA is lower, and you’re still a freshman or sophomore in your high school, check out our tips for increasing your GPA. If you’re a junior or senior, it will be harder to increase your GPA, so the easiest way to increase your Academic Index is to get a higher test score.
2. Cultivate at least one or two Tier 1-2 extracurriculars (find your “spike”)
For a globally-minded and impact-focused college like Middlebury, you especially want to make sure that your extracurriculars reflect your engagement with subjects outside the classroom. Some examples of extracurriculars that Middlebury would like to see include service activities, internationally-oriented activities such as Model UN, or any leadership position. However, if you are passionate about something different, Middlebury will want to see it.
In general, any activity that you do regularly outside the classroom counts as an extracurricular, as long as you can demonstrate that the activity has contributed to your growth as an individual. However, not all extracurriculars are created equal. Extracurricular activities can generally be divided into four “tiers.” To increase your chances at Middlebury, you should have one to two “Tier 1” or “Tier 2” extracurriculars.
- Tier 1 activities demonstrate exceptional talent, achievement, leadership, or merit. Activities and roles on the national level or which garner field-wide recognition count as Tier 1 activities. This may include winning a national award, qualifying for international competition and therefore gaining prestigious recognition, or starting a nonprofit that gains national traction. Having a Tier 1 activity marks you as a distinguished youth in the field of your activity, so having Tier 1 activities is rare.
- Tier 2 activities are more common than Tier 1, but still show high levels of achievement and potential. Holding school-wide leadership positions like student government president, winning regional competitions or awards, and local recognition as a student athlete or musician are all considered Tier 2.
- Tier 3 activities demonstrate sustained participation rather than exceptional achievement, and are frequently seen in applications, both across the board as well as in any given individual student’s application, as some students may have more than one Tier 3 activity. These activities can include holding minor positions in school clubs or being on a Varsity team.
- Tier 4 activities are the most common and have the lowest entry bar; they demonstrate interest without particular dedication. However, they are still important to include, especially if you have higher tier activities, because they can help show the diversity of your interests. Tier 4 activities can include regular volunteering, general membership in clubs or organizations, or taking any kind of music or art lesson over several years.
3. Ask the right teachers for recommendation letters
Middlebury requires two letters of recommendation from teachers. Bowdoin is a small college with a high faculty–student ratio (8:1), in which the size of the average class is 16 students, and where students and professors collaborate closely outside the classroom as well as inside.
Your letters of recommendation will show admissions officers what kind of student and peer you are. Letters of recommendation should come from instructors who know you the best and who can speak positively of your character and abilities. Take some time to think about which teacher will write you the most promising recommendation letter—and take a look at tips from CollegeVine to help guide you through the process.
4. Apply Early Decision
Remember that Middlebury’s early decision acceptance rate is 45.7%, while the regular decision acceptance rate is 22%, and there is no early action. As early decision is binding, you increase your chances of acceptance to Middlebury when you apply as an early decision applicant even after accounting for profile strength. If you have your heart set on Middlebury, applying ED can be a great way to show your commitment. However, there are some drawbacks to keep in mind about applying early decision, including less time to refine your application, fewer financial aid packages options, and the obvious inability to try your hand at other colleges if you do get in.
How to Apply to Middlebury
Ready to apply to Middlebury? Here are some dates to keep in mind for the 2021–2022 cycle.
Admissions Application Due
Financial Aid Application Due
Early Decision 1
Early Decision 2
Middlebury accepts the Coalition Application and the Common Application. To apply to Middlebury, you will need:
- All parts of your Common or Coalition application, including personal essay and application fee (option to request fee waiver)
- Secondary school report (information about school’s offerings and environment)
- Secondary school transcript
- Counselor Recommendation
- Two teacher letters of recommendations
- English proficiency test (for students whose first language is not English or whose secondary education has been at a school where English is not the primary language of instruction)
Optional materials include:
- SAT or ACT scores
- Arts supplement
Learn more about Middlebury
Take a look at our other resources on Middlebury to help you with your application process!