Comprehensive Guide on Carleton College Acceptance Rate in 2024

Thinking about what the Carleton College Acceptance Rate is? Carleton College boasts an acceptance rate of 17%, making it a highly selective institution among admitted students who provided test scores, approximately half of whom fall within the SAT range of 1430 to 1550 or the ACT range of 32 to 35. However, a quarter of admitted applicants surpass these score brackets, while another quarter fall below them. Prospective students aiming to join Carleton College must submit their applications by January 15th.

Carleton College Acceptance Rate

At Carleton College, admissions officials prioritize various factors in their decision-making process. Foremost among these is an applicant’s GPA, which holds significant weight. Also, if available, high school class rank is important, as are letters of recommendation. These elements collectively contribute to the holistic evaluation of each applicant by the admissions committee at Carleton College.

Established in 1866, Carleton College stands as a prestigious liberal arts college located in Northfield, Minnesota. Renowned for its academic excellence, vibrant campus culture, and commitment to fostering intellectual curiosity, Carleton attracts students from across the globe. Among the many considerations for prospective students is the college’s acceptance rate, a crucial factor in understanding the competitive nature of admissions. In this comprehensive article, we delve into the intricacies of Carleton College’s acceptance rate, exploring its historical trends, underlying factors, and implications for prospective applicants.

Understanding the historical trajectory of Carleton College’s acceptance rate provides valuable insights into its evolving admissions landscape. Over the years, Carleton has maintained a reputation for selective admissions, attracting a diverse pool of high-achieving students. Historical data reveals fluctuations in the acceptance rate, influenced by various internal and external factors such as changes in application volume, shifts in admissions strategies, and broader trends in higher education.

Is gaining admission to Carleton College challenging?

With a mere 17% acceptance rate, securing a spot at Carleton College is competitive. Only half of the applicants who submitted test scores fall within the SAT range of 1430 to 1550 or the ACT range of 32 to 35. However, one-quarter of admitted students surpassed these score ranges, while another quarter scored below them. This data underscores Carleton College’s admissions process’s rigorous standards and selective nature.

Carleton College Admission Requirements

When considering Carleton College’s admission requirements, there are several key aspects to focus on:

1. GPA Requirements: Carleton College expects applicants to perform strongly academically. While the specific GPA requirement isn’t mentioned, aiming for excellence in your high school coursework is essential.

2. Testing Requirements: Carleton College considers standardized test scores, including SAT and ACT. Achieving competitive scores on these tests is crucial for a successful application. However, specific score requirements are not provided.

3. Application Requirements: Carleton College evaluates applicants based on various application components, GPA, and test scores. These may include extracurricular activities, essays, letters of recommendation, and any additional materials required for the application process.

Location: Northfield, MN

Admissions Rate: 17%

The acceptance rate at Carleton College is 17%, indicating its highly selective admissions process. With such a low acceptance rate, meeting GPA and standardized testing requirements becomes even more critical. Applicants must demonstrate exceptional academic readiness to stand out in the competitive pool of candidates.

It’s important to note that simply meeting these academic criteria may not guarantee admission. Carleton College also evaluates applicants based on their involvement in extracurricular activities, the quality of their essays, and the strength of their letters of recommendation. Therefore, presenting a well-rounded and compelling application is essential to impressing Carleton College’s admissions committee.

Carleton College GPA Requirements:

While many schools outline a minimum GPA requirement, it’s often just the threshold for applying without immediate rejection. The GPA that truly matters is needed for a realistic chance of admission. In this context, we examine the average GPA of the school’s current students.

Average GPA: 4.09

The average GPA at Carleton College stands at 4.09. This indicates that successful applicants typically excel academically and are among the top performers in their high school classes.

With a GPA of 4.09, Carleton College expects applicants to demonstrate exceptional academic achievement. This translates to maintaining nearly straight A’s across all courses. Additionally, taking challenging courses such as AP or IB classes is advisable to showcase readiness for college-level academics.

For juniors or seniors, altering their GPA significantly before college applications can be challenging. If your GPA aligns with or falls below Carleton College’s average of 4.09, compensating with a higher SAT or ACT score becomes crucial. This allows you to remain competitive against other applicants with higher GPAs, enhancing your chances of admission.

SAT and ACT Requirements at Carleton College

Carleton College does not explicitly state a policy regarding SAT/ACT requirements, suggesting a likely test-flexible approach. This means that while the school does not mandate submission of SAT or ACT scores, it will consider them if submitted. Typically, schools with such policies advise applicants to submit scores if they believe they accurately represent their academic abilities.

Despite this policy, the majority of applicants to Carleton College still choose to submit their SAT or ACT scores. Doing so provides an additional dimension for showcasing academic readiness and may enhance one’s overall application. Therefore, it is advisable for applicants to seriously consider taking the SAT or ACT and striving for strong performance.

Carleton College SAT Requirements

While Carleton College claims to have no SAT score cutoff, an implicit requirement is based on the school’s average score.

Average SAT Score: 1490

The average SAT score composite at Carleton College is 1490 out of 1600, indicating a highly competitive SAT-score environment.

Further analysis reveals that the 25th percentile SAT score is 1430, while the 75th percentile SAT score is 1540. This means that scoring below 1430 places an applicant below average while scoring above 1540 places them above average compared to other applicants.

In summary, while Carleton College does not have a strict SAT score cutoff, achieving a score closer to or above the school’s average is advisable for competitive consideration during admissions.

Carleton College ACT Requirements

Similar to its approach to the SAT, Carleton College likely does not have a strict ACT cutoff score. However, scoring too low on the ACT could significantly diminish your chances of acceptance.

Average ACT Score: 33

The average ACT score at Carleton College is 33, indicating a highly competitive environment for ACT scores.

Further analysis shows that the 25th percentile ACT score is 32, while the 75th percentile ACT score is 35. Applicants with ACT scores below 32 may face considerable challenges in gaining admission unless they possess other exceptional qualities in their application.

Although Carleton College may claim no minimum ACT requirement, applicants with 32 or below may find it difficult to compete with the large pool of applicants scoring 33 and above. Thus, aiming for a score closer to or above the school’s average is advisable for a competitive application.

ACT Score Sending Policy

Unlike the SAT, where schools often require all test scores to be sent, ACT test-takers have greater control over which scores they send to colleges. This provides opportunities for applicants to improve their scores and strategically select their best performance for submission.

To align with Carleton College’s recommended target ACT score of 35 and above, applicants should consider taking the ACT multiple times to improve their scores. Once they achieve a satisfactory score, they can send only their highest score to Carleton College and other institutions.

ACT Superscore Policy

While many colleges do not super score on the ACT, where the best section scores from multiple test dates are combined, Carleton College’s super-scoring policy is not readily available. Regardless, applicants can select their best ACT score to submit, so aiming for the target score of 35 is advisable.

Conclusion on Carleton College Acceptance Rate

Given Carleton College’s extremely selective nature, achieving high SAT/ACT scores and a stellar GPA is paramount to being considered for admission. Failing to meet their SAT/ACT and GPA requirements may result in rejection without extensive consideration.

Aiming for scores at or above the 75th percentile is advisable to maximize your chances of acceptance, equating to a 1540 SAT or a 35 ACT. Additionally, maintaining a GPA of 4.09 or higher is recommended. Compensating with a higher SAT/ACT score becomes essential if your GPA falls below this threshold.

Considering Carleton College’s selectivity, impressing the admissions committee with the rest of your application is equally crucial. This includes showcasing your extracurricular activities, essays, letters of recommendation, and other relevant achievements or experiences.

However, applying with scores below a 1540 SAT or a 35 ACT significantly diminishes your odds of acceptance. The fierce competition among applicants with high SAT/ACT scores and strong applications makes securing admission with lower scores challenging. Therefore, striving for excellence in all aspects of your application is essential to stand out among the highly qualified candidates.


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