2018 Admissions: More Applicants, Greater Selectivity

2018 Admissions: More Applicants, Greater Selectivity

Over 20,000 applications received
  • Illustration of diversity ©Aniwhite/ShutterstockIllustration of diversity ©Aniwhite/Shutterstock

In 2018, for the first time, the number of candidates applying to Sciences Po exceeded the 20,000 mark. Up by 16%, the number of applications shows Sciences Po has an unprecedented appeal, in particular for Master’s programmes where reforms made to the French entry procedures have caused a spike in additional applications. Since 2009, the number of international applications has tripled. This year, the top 10 countries of origin of our admitted candidates via the international procedure, are: the United States, Germany, Italy, India, China, Canada, Great Britain, Brazil, Mexico, and Switzerland.

Undergraduate College: Higher Selectivity

This past year, we observed an 8% increase in undergraduate applications from 2017, which has led to a competitive acceptance rate of 17%, compared to 19% in 2017. 46% of admitted candidates to the undergraduate college applied through the international procedure.

The 2018 intake of first-year students came from 93 different countries: European students make up 16% of those admitted, followed by students from Asia (9.3%), and the Americas (6%). 64% of the intake were French students, coming from 1,585 different high schools, and the majority come from regions outside of the capital, (61% of successful French applicants come from different regions or overseas). 

This overview testifies Sciences Po’s continued efforts to encourage social diversity, with more than 1,900 students admitted since 2001 via our Equal Opportunity Programme. On a wider scale, 26% of students have received scholarships, illustrating the efficacy of our unique social assistance and tuition fee policy. In 2017-2018, one in three students did not pay any tuition fees, and 37% of them received financial aid.

Master’s Students: Applicants From Across the Globe

Master’s applications peaked with a 30% increase compared with 2017. As the number of applications increased, so has selectivity: out of 8,915 applications, 2,108 were offered places. The acceptance rate is now 24%, comparative to 30% in 2017.

Another trend is the increase in the number of international applicants, with dual degrees gaining in popularity, producing a 16% rise since 2017. In 2018, Sciences Po received international applications coming from 124 different countries. 

In general, after several years without change, the admissions reforms adopted in 2017 resulted in a 53% increase in applications throughout the French system. In turn, more applicants have tried their hand at applying to Sciences Po following the removal of the written exam and the introduction of a dual evaluation by means of a dossier.

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