Sep 14

The Ultimate Guide to Ivy League Schools

by Trent Baumbach

12 World-Class Universities You Should Consider

The Ultimate Guide to Ivy League Schools

Introduction

Many international school students in Japan have their sights set on the elite Ivy League schools. The Ivy League refers to a group of eight private colleges and universities in the Northeastern United States. While the name “Ivy League” originally pertained to an athletic conference, over time it has come to represent overall academic excellence, selective admissions, historic traditions, and social prestige.

The institutions within the Ivy League are:

In this blog, we’ll give a brief overview of each Ivy League school and summarize some key statistic most relevant to international students.

Do you want to improve your chances of getting into a top-tier university? Schedule your consultation with Tokyo Academics today!

The Ivy League Schools: What to Know

While these schools share the Ivy League designation and stand out for their high academic standards, each possesses unique qualities, cultures, and locations for prospective students to consider when making their decisions.

Brown University

  • Location: Providence, Rhode Island
  • Founded: 1764

Known for its open curriculum, which allows students to design their own academic path, Brown promotes a learning environment where students explore and engage in diverse interests. Its diverse community, undergraduate research opportunities, and collaborations are some highlights.

Columbia University

  • Location: New York City, New York
  • Founded: 1754

Situated in the heart of Manhattan, Columbia offers rigorous academic programs and a core curriculum that ensures a broad-based education. Its location gives students unparalleled access to internships, cultural experiences, and more.

Cornell University

  • Location: Ithaca, New York
  • Founded: 1865

Located in upstate New York, Cornell combines rigorous academic programs with a commitment to public engagement. It boasts relatively more diverse academic programs than other Ivy League schools, from hotel administration to various engineering disciplines.

Dartmouth College

  • Location: Hanover, New Hampshire
  • Founded: 1769

The smallest in the Ivy League, Dartmouth is known for its tight-knit community and emphasis on undergraduate education. The D-Plan, a unique quarter system (versus the standard semester system), offers students greater flexibility in their studies.

Harvard University

  • Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Founded: 1636

The oldest institution of higher education in the U.S., Harvard is renowned globally for its influence, rigorous academic programs, extensive library system, and emphasis on research. It is arguably the most well-renowned university worldwide.

University of Pennsylvania (Penn)

  • Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Founded: 1740

Founded by Benjamin Franklin, Penn is recognized for integrating liberal arts and professional education. The Wharton School, Penn’s business school, is particularly renowned and often ranks as the highest-rated undergraduate business school in the United States.

Princeton University

  • Location: Princeton, New Jersey
  • Founded: 1746

Princeton is known for its commitment to undergraduate education, a strong emphasis on independent research, and a generous financial aid program. Students engage in independent projects, culminating in a senior thesis.

Yale University

  • Location: New Haven, Connecticut
  • Founded: 1701

With its vast library system, diverse academic programs, and focus on research and global initiatives, Yale is committed to enriching the intellectual lives of its students. The residential college system fosters a strong sense of community.

Non-Ivy League Schools

Of course, other non-Ivy schools like MIT, Duke, and Stanford are equally reputable to the schools listed above and absolutely worth your consideration. While the Ivy League schools carry a strong brand name, students should ultimately pick the school best aligned with their goals and interests.

Comparing the Ivy League Schools

While the overall acceptance rate of the Ivy League schools is extremely low, it’s worth noting that international students are accepted at a higher rate. These schools all value having a diverse student body, meaning your unique experiences as an international school student can stand out.

Below we’ve outlined the Ivy League rankings, share of international students, and more.

Ivy League School General Acceptance Rate International Student Acceptance Rate Share of International Students Ranking (U.S. News & World Report) Tuition and Fees
Brown
5%
15%
13%
13
$68,230
Columbia
4%
Unlisted
15%
7
$64,700
Cornell
10%
Unlisted
10%
17
$66,014
Dartmouth
6%
18%
13%
12
$65,739
Harvard
4%
15%
16%
3 (tie)
$54,269
Princeton
4%
14%
15%
1
$59,710
UPenn
6%
16%
15%
18
$66,104
Yale
4%
22%
12%
3 (tie)
$65,524
Ivy League School General Acceptance Rate
Brown
5%
Columbia
4%
Cornell
10%
Dartmouth
6%
Harvard
4%
Princeton
4%
UPenn
6%
Yale
4%
Ivy League School International Student Acceptance Rate
Brown
15%
Columbia
Unlisted
Cornell
Unlisted
Dartmouth
18%
Harvard
15%
Princeton
14%
UPenn
16%
Yale
22%
Ivy League School Share of International Students
Brown
13%
Columbia
15%
Cornell
10%
Dartmouth
13%
Harvard
16%
Princeton
15%
UPenn
15%
Yale
12%
Ivy League School Ranking (U.S. News & World Report)
Brown
13
Columbia
7
Cornell
17
Dartmouth
12
Harvard
3 (tie)
Princeton
15%
UPenn
18
Yale
3 (tie)
Ivy League School Tuition and Fees
Brown
$68,230
Columbia
$64,700
Cornell
$66,014
Dartmouth
$65,739
Harvard
$54,269
Princeton
$59,710
UPenn
$66,104
Yale
$65,524

What factors should Ivy League applicants keep in mind?

With such low acceptance rates, students can often feel stuck when planning what steps to take in high school to get into the Ivy League schools. In general, keep in mind the following factors considered by college admissions officers:

  • Grade point average (GPA)
  • Course selection
  • Standardized test scores (SAT, ACT, AP [Advanced Placement], IB [International Baccalaureate], etc.)
  • Summer school / demonstrated interest
  • Research projects, publications, presentations
  • Teacher, counselor, or mentor recommendations
  • Extracurriculars, leadership, service
  • Essays and interviews

For further details, we recommend connecting with one of Tokyo Academics’ college admissions consultants who can work with you to plan your admissions journey.

What should international school students do next?

While the Ivy League schools provide unparalleled educational opportunities and resources, getting in is tough. With private tutors who have attended these schools themselves, Tokyo Academics is equipped and ready to help you with your academic needs, from reaching a high score in SAT Math to securing your IB Diploma, getting research opportunities, and more. 

 

Join the best summer school program in Japan! Our 2024 Summer Classes are specially designed to help students excel in the fall. Explore over 200 classes tailored for grades 3-12 and make your summer count.

Enroll today and transform your academic journey!