Conclusion: The Best Tips for Getting Into Stanford
Stanford is one of the most difficult universities to get into, as are UC Berkeley and Cornell. But all these schools follow the same pattern of being highly ranked and having a slight engineering tilt—and all have a common admissions pattern.
Because these three universities are so prestigious, it’s critical to keep in mind the three truths:
- You need high baseline academics, with SAT scores above 600 (ideally 750 in each section)
- You need to have a diverse set of extracurriculars at which you’re good (but not necessarily a pro)
- You need to have a “spike” for which you’re (ideally) ranked in the top 100-1,000 compared to other students
At the same time, be sure to dispel these two myths about Stanford admissions:
- Stanford admissions is all about academics
- Stanford wants you to be as evenly well rounded as possible
Keep in mind that Stanford has a slight STEM (engineering) emphasis. So if your focus is outside STEM, you should be the best you can be in that area and, if possible, try to tie that work into some potential interdisciplinary work with STEM.
If you’re already in STEM, you’ll want to strongly consider entering a prestigious math or science competition to show off the high degree of your skills.
In the end, make sure that you’re putting forward your absolute best Stanford application possible!