What Does it Take to Get into Case Western Reserve University?

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Case Western’s acceptance rate is 35%. What does it take to get in?


Along with exceptional academics, Case Western Reserve University boasts more than 200 student clubs and organizations, a top-notch Greek system, and a great Cleveland location just miles from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.


Wondering if Case Western Reserve University is the right place to pursue your degree? Read on for details on Case Western’s admissions policies, along with tips for securing your acceptance letter.


Applying to Case Western Reserve University: A Quick Review


If Case Western, it pays to do your research about important dates and deadlines. Early Action and Early Decision applicants should submit all materials by Nov. 15. For Regular Decision, the deadline is January 15.


Students should submit the following materials to be considered for enrollment:


  • Official high school transcript
  • Transcripts from any other colleges/universities attended
  • Official SAT or ACT scores
  • Common App or Coalition App
  • $70 application fee
  • Optional portfolio


Case Western Acceptance Rate: How Difficult Is It to Get In?


With an undergraduate enrollment of just under 5,000 students, Case Western is naturally very competitive given many students’ interest. In fact, the acceptance rate hovers around 35%. To secure that elusive acceptance letter, students need to excel in all areas, including academics. In fact, 66% of Case Western freshmen were in the top 10% of their high school classes, while 90% ranked in the top 20%.


Other important factors are standardized test scores, extracurricular activities, community service, and character.


So, How Does One Get Into Case Western Reserve University?


Case Western holds its admits to a high standard. With that in mind, the school seeks out students who pursued challenging coursework at the high school level. The average Case Western freshman has completed the following:


  • 4 years of English
  • 3 years of mathematics
  • 3 years of science (2 of which are laboratory courses)
  • 3 years of social studies
  • 2 years of a foreign language


Students looking to major in science or engineering are advised to take four years of math and three years of laboratory sciences. On the other hand, students pursuing a liberal arts education should take four years of social studies and three years of foreign languages.


Don’t panic if your high school doesn’t offer a wide range of courses. Case Western recognizes that no two schools are the same and only assesses applicants based on the opportunities available to them.


Additionally, standardized test scores play a significant role in Case Western admissions. For the Class of 2022, the middle 50% of students scored between 1350 and 1490 on the SATs. The middle 50% of students who took the ACT earned between 30 and 34. Because Case Western superscores test results, it might be worth taking the SAT or ACT more than once to boost your score.


How to Make Your Application Stand Out


One important thing to note is that Case Western practices yield protection, or “Tufts Syndrome.” Schools highly prize their “yield,” the percentage of accepted students who choose to enroll at a certain institution; the higher the yield, the more desirable a school appears. This means that admissions committees practicing yield protection may reject or waitlist exceptional students because they believe these students only see Case as a safety school. In fact, many students accepted to more selective schools have found themselves waitlisted by Case Western.


So, how can you avoid being waitlisted or rejected if you’re among the top applicants to Case? The best way to is demonstrate your interest in the school. This is more difficult since Case does not require a writing supplement, but visiting the school, speaking with admissions officers who visit your high school, and applying earlier are all ways of showing that the school is more than a safety to you.


Student interviews are also an important part of Case Western admissions decisions, and a great way to demonstrate interest. If you want to impress during this all-important conversation, aim to ask lots of questions. Not only does asking questions show you’re interested in the school, but it also provides you with crucial information about areas like coursework, residence life, sports, and student groups.


Additionally, applicants may want to practice their answers to commonly asked questions. These include:


  • Why do you want to attend Case Western?
  • What books have you ready lately?
  • How do your friends describe you?


Arts students can also gain a leg up on the competition by submitting an arts supplement, portfolio, or audition that demonstrates high levels of skill. Note your intention to submit the arts supplement on your application. You will then receive login information and guidelines for submitting your supplement online.


What If You Get Rejected?


Getting rejected by your dream college can make you feel lonely or even depressed. However, it’s important to remember that you aren’t alone — in fact, very few students get into every school on their list. Once you accept that rejection is a necessary part of life, let yourself feel sad for a little while and then try move on. Plenty of exciting opportunities await!


Because Case Western Reserve University is highly competitive, even students at the top of their high school class can’t count on being accepted. Applying to other, similar colleges and universities is the best way to guarantee a bright future. Research shows that students who applied to Case Western opted to attend schools like Carnegie Mellon, Ohio State University, UC Berkeley, and the University of Michigan Ann Arbor. Talk to your school counselor to see what other colleges might meet your needs.


Other posts you may enjoy:

Emory’s Acceptance Rate: What Does it Take to Get In?

What Does It Really Take To Get Into Princeton?

Wake Forest Acceptance Rate: What Does It Take to Get In?


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April Maguire
Blogger at CollegeVine
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A graduate of the Master of Professional Writing program at USC, April Maguire taught freshman composition while earning her degree. Over the years, she has worked as a writer, editor, tutor, and content manager. Currently, she operates a freelance writing business and lives in Los Angeles with her husband and their three rowdy cats.