Founded in 1852, Tufts University’s most popular majors include computer science, international relations, and biology.
Those who attend Tufts enjoy the campus pride and college presence, as well as the proximity to fun activities.
Located on the border of Medford and Somerville, Tufts is only a few miles away from all the history, culture, and entertainment that the city of Boston has to offer.
Tufts has consistently remained at or near #28 on the U.S. News & World Report Best National University ranking for the past several decades.
In the last few years, the Office of Admission has observed an uptick in the number of applications, and for good reason.
In the following article, we’ll share up-to-date statistics regarding Tufts’ early decision acceptance rate, important deadlines, and required application materials.
Tufts Early Decision Acceptance Rate
For the class of 2024, 662 students were admitted through the Early Decision Program out of 2,560 applications for a rate of nearly 26%.
The overall acceptance rate for the class of 2025 was a highly selective 11.4%. As the school processes more applications in the years to come, future applicants can expect an increasingly competitive admissions process.
Tufts has recently witnessed significant increases in diverse applicants. From 2019 to 2021, 51% more first-generation college students and 30% more students of color applied to the school.
Tufts partly attributes this increase to its decision to move the application deadline from November 1 to November 17, a decision made to support students managing COVID-related disruptions to their lives.
One important detail for students applying to the Early Decision Program at Tufts – if a student is accepted, that decision is binding. This means that students will be expected to enroll upon receiving notification of admission to Tufts.
Tufts Early Decision Decision Date
Tufts conducts two rounds in their Early Decision Program. Early Decision I applicants should expect to receive an admission decision by mid-December.
There are three potential decisions that applicants may receive: accepted, deferred, or denied.
Accepted students may enroll at the university, while deferred students’ applications will move to the regular application pool. Denied students will not be able to reapply to Tufts for the entire academic year.
Accepted students who submit all of their financial aid application materials by the deadline will learn details about their financial aid package within seven days of receiving their admission decision.
Tufts Early Decision Deadline
Applications from Early Decision I applicants are due November 1, the CSS Profile and FAFSA should be turned in by November 22, and federal tax forms should be sent by December 1.
If a student applies to the Early Decision Program at Tufts, they will receive more advanced notice of an admission decision than those adhering to the regular decision timeline.
Students who have a clear top choice for where they wish to attend college may benefit from applying early and cementing college plans or receiving a deferral/denial letter, which would signal them to apply to their next favorite institutions.
Does Tufts Have Early Decision 2?
Tufts does have two rounds in their Early Decision Program.
Early Decision II applicants have separate deadlines – the school should receive their application by January 6, the CSS Profile and FAFSA by January 17, and federal tax forms by February 1.
Students should keep in mind that the FAFSA is only required from U.S. citizens and permanent residents, and their federal tax forms should include W-2s (or equivalents for non-filers), business tax returns (if applicable), and all Schedule forms. Early Decision II applicants will receive notice by mid-February.
Tufts ED Deferral Rate
While Tufts has not published statistics related to its deferral rate, it is possible for deferred students to gain admittance to the university in a later admissions round.
If an applicant is deferred, their application will be relocated to the regular decision application pool, and they will not need to go through the application process again.
However, if they are admitted, their decision will not be binding. They will not be obligated to enroll at Tufts.
Deferred Early Decision Program applicants will receive their final admission decision by April 1, the exact date that regular decision candidates receive a notification.
How to Apply to Tufts for Early Decision
Tufts requires the same application materials from early decision and regular decision applicants, and early decision applications must submit a signed Early Decision Form with their signature, a signature from a parent or guardian, and a signature from a school counselor.
Applicants have the option to complete the Common Application, Coalition Application, or QuestBridge Application – as a reminder, Early Decision I applicants should submit their applications by November 1 while Early Decision II applicants should do so by January 6.
Students have the option to engage in an alumni interview, with interviews being completed by the deadlines listed above.
Alumni volunteers from the Tufts Admissions Network and Tufts senior students participate in these relaxed interviews with potential Tufts students, which are currently conducted online.
Tufts advises student applicants to be ready to talk about their college plans, reflect on their K-12 experience, and share why they’re interested in attending Tufts, specifically. It is also a wise idea to prepare several questions to ask the interviewer.
If an applicant foregoes the option to participate in an alumni interview, the next required items – the Secondary School Report and two letters of recommendation – are due November 23 for Early Decision I applicants and January 11 for Early Decision II applicants.
The letters of recommendation should come from a teacher in an 11th or 12th grade core course (i.e., English language arts, mathematics, social science, natural science, or foreign language) and a guidance counselor. Students applying to the BFA or Combined Degree Program (BFA + BA/BS) will also need to submit a letter of recommendation from their art teacher.
The applications will include spaces where students should share about their extracurricular activities and answer short response prompts.
Typically, early decision applicants will be expected to share their answer to “Why Tufts?” They should explain how or why Tufts is the ideal school for them to attend college. Additionally, applicants might discuss their love of learning, the impact of their environment on their lives, or their journey advocating for social justice.
Art school candidates will additionally have the opportunity to discuss what they’d like to explore through their artwork at Tufts. They will need to submit a portfolio of 15-20 original and recent pieces that represent their skills and interests.
Remaining application materials include an official copy of the high school transcript, senior year grades (when completely available), and proof of English Language Proficiency for applicants whose primary language is not English.
The application should be accompanied by the $75 application fee, which can be waived. In order to receive a waiver, a school counselor or administrator must write to Tufts explaining that the fee would pose a financial hardship on the applying student of their family. They can also obtain a form from the College Board.
Like many other schools in the United States, Tufts recently adopted a testing-optional admissions policy (adhering from the fall 2021 semester and onwards).
For that year, 55% of Early Decision I and II applicants did not submit an SAT or ACT score and 52% of admitted Early Decision Program applicants did not submit either score.
Applicants who submit to their schools should expect to compete against high-scoring peers. On the Critical Reading and Writing section of the SAT, the middle 50% of accepted applicants scored between 720-770. For the Math section, the same group of applicants ranged between 740-790. The ACT score range for the middle 50% of accepted students was between 33 and 35.
Those who do choose to submit their scores do so through self-reporting on the Common Application, Coalition Application, or QuestBridge Application.
For early decision candidates, Tufts will accept tests from administration dates as late as October for the ACT and November for the SAT.
Students who are admitted to Tufts will need to submit their official scores for verification in order to enroll.
All Early Decision applicants must also submit their mid-year grades. Round I students should turn these in by February 15, while Round II students should do so by February 2 (grades for both cohorts will have been issued by that point).
While receiving an admission decision early on in the college application process can relieve a significant amount of stress, it is critical that accepted early decision applicants continue to perform at the highest level in their academic courses.