MIT Curriculum Guide

This guide will help you understand how MIT sequences its courses within each discipline and what courses MIT requires for a complete program of study. MIT OpenCourseWare provides this guide for informational purposes only. You cannot receive a degree, a certificate, or any kind of credit for your study of courses on OCW.

MIT is organized into five schools:

  • School of Architecture and Planning
  • School of Engineering
  • School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences
  • Sloan School of Management
  • School of Science

In addition, MIT and Harvard University operate a joint program in health science called the Harvard-MIT Program in Health Sciences and Technology. All together, there are over 30 degree-granting departments, programs, and divisions. In addition, a great deal of research and teaching takes place in interdisciplinary programs, laboratories, and centers whose work extends beyond traditional departmental boundaries.

Undergraduate Education

MIT strives to provide students with a strong scientific, technical, and humanistic foundation, and to encourage them to develop creativity in defining problems and seeking solutions. For the Bachelor of Science degree, students must complete a core requirement that is equally divided between science and mathematics, and the humanities, arts, and social sciences. The science/mathematics requirement includes chemistry, biology, physics, and calculus, as well as laboratory and science electives. The humanities, arts, and social sciences requirement must be fulfilled among three of five categories: literary and textual studies; language, thought, and value; the arts; cultures and societies; and historical studies. Students must also complete a four-subject communications requirement.

MIT undergraduate General Institute Requirements include:

  • An eight-subject humanities, arts, and social sciences requirement
  • A six-subject science requirement
    • Two terms of calculus
    • Two terms of physics
    • One term of chemistry
    • One term of biology
  • Two restricted electives in science and technology subjects
  • One laboratory subject

See the MIT Course Catalog for detailed information about General Institute Requirements and the Communication Requirement. Beyond these requirements, students must meet the standards of their chosen major(s). See the MIT Undergraduate Curriculum Requirements links in the table below for specific information about each major.

A typical course load is four to five courses each term. Freshmen are subject to a credit limit of no more than five courses, as they adjust to the pace and intensity of an MIT education. Upperclassmen are free to take as many courses as they like, with their academic advisor's approval.

To apply for admission as a student, please contact the MIT Admissions Office for an application.

Office of Admissions
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Room 3-108
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307

Phone: +1.617.253.3400

 

Graduate Education

Traditionally a leader in engineering graduate education, MIT has also attained national prominence for its doctoral programs in mathematics and the physical and life sciences. In addition, top-ranked graduate programs in economics; political science; linguistics; science, technology, and society; architecture; urban studies; and management have broadened the spectrum of graduate education at MIT. Graduate students may pursue any of the following degrees:

  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
  • Doctor of Science (ScD)
  • Engineer, Master of Science (SM)
  • Master of Engineering (MEng)
  • Master of Architecture (MArch)
  • Master in City Planning (MCP)
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA)

The Institute has a single faculty that is responsible for both undergraduate and graduate instruction. Each department exercises a large measure of autonomy for its graduate programs, under general guidelines established for the Institute as a whole. The administration of graduate education rests with the president, the provost, the chancellor, the dean and associate dean for graduate students, and the Committee on Graduate School Programs.

 

Curriculum Details by Department

DEPARTMENTS UNDERGRADUATE STUDIES GRADUATE STUDIES

Aeronautics and Astronautics

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering/Course 16-1

Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering with Information Technology/Course 16-2

Graduate Program

Anthropology

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Anthropology/Course 21A

Graduate Program
(see History or Science, Technology, and Society)

Architecture

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Art and Design/Course 4

Graduate Program

Athletics, Physical Education, and Recreation

No undergraduate program.  See General Institute Requirement: Physical Education Requirement.

No graduate program

Biological Engineering

Overview

Graduate Program

Biology

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Biology/Course 7

Graduate Program

Brain and Cognitive Sciences

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Brain and Cognitive Sciences/Course 9

Graduate Program

Chemical Engineering

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering/Course 10

Bachelor of Science in Chemical-Biological Engineering/Course 10-B

Graduate Program

Chemistry

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Chemistry/Course 5

Graduate Program

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering/Course 1-C

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering Science/Course 1-E

Graduate Program

Comparative Media Studies/Writing

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Comparative Media Studies/Course 21 CMS

Bachelor of Science in Writing/Course 21W

Graduate Program

Computational and Systems Biology

No Undergraduate Program

Graduate Program

Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences/Course 12

Graduate Program

Economics

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Economics/Course 14

Graduate Program

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Electrical Science and Engineering/Course 6-1

Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science/Course 6-2

Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Engineering/Course 6-3

Graduate Program

Engineering Systems Division

No undergraduate program

Graduate Program

Experimental Study Group

No undergraduate program. See Academic Programs: Freshman Year.

No graduate program

Health Sciences and Technology

No undergraduate program

Graduate Program

History

Overview

Bachelor of Science in History/Course 21H

No graduate program

Global Studies and Languages

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Foreign Languages and Literatures/Course 21F

No graduate program

Linguistics and Philosophy

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Philosophy/Course 24-1

Bachelor of Science in Linguistics & Philosophy/Course 24-2

Graduate Program

Literature

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Literature/Course 21L

No graduate program

Materials Science and Engineering

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Materials Science and Engineering/Course 3

Graduate Program

Mathematics

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Mathematics/Course 18

Bachelor of Science in Mathematics with Computer Science/Course 18-C

Graduate Program

Mechanical Engineering

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering/Course 2

Graduate Program

Media Arts and Sciences

Overview

Graduate Program

Music and Theater Arts

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Music/Course 21M

No graduate program

Nuclear Science and Engineering

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Nuclear Engineering/Course 22

Graduate Program

Operations Research Center

No Undergraduate Program

Graduate Program

Physics

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Physics/Course 8

Graduate Program

Political Science

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Political Science/Course 17

Graduate Program

Science, Technology, and Society

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Science, Technology, and Society/Dual Degree/Course STS

Graduate Program

Sloan School of Management

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Management Science/Course 15

Graduate Program

Urban Studies and Planning

Overview

Bachelor of Science in Planning/Course 11

Graduate Program

Women's and Gender Studies

Overview

No graduate program