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MIT scholarships, student loans and grants
Only 28% of students graduated with student loan debt in 2017.
On top of this, MIT has a comprehensive financial aid program — with many students graduating without any student debt. However, options might be more limited for international students.
How much does it cost to go to MIT?
|Cost of attending MIT||Annual cost|
|Books and supplies||$820|
|Total annual cost||$73,160|
Source: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MIT’s price tag isn’t just tuition and fees. Costs like housing, meal plans, supplies and other living expenses also factor into the cost of attendance.
What’s the average student debt load for MIT?
MIT students graduated with an average student debt load of $19,819 in 2017, according to the school’s Student Financial Services Office. That’s 31% less than the national average.
Does MIT offer a tuition payment plan?
Yes, MIT offers a monthly payment plan to break up your expenses into five monthly installments. It costs $35 to enroll each semester, which you can do online through MITPAY.
Fall semester repayments run from August to December, while Spring semester repayments run from January to May. Students must re-enroll each semester.
How MIT’s financial aid program works
MIT is one of a handful of schools that offers full-need financial aid. It covers the full cost of attendance for all students from families that make less than $90,000 a year. And students from families that make more than that amount also typically receive need-based scholarships. About 72% of students graduate without debt, according to the school’s admissions office.
MIT uses the college board’s method of calculating financial need by considering two main factors: expected parent contribution and student contribution.
What MIT calls scholarships are actually need-based grants. They’re the main source of financial aid at the school — around 60% of students get one. Since they’re entirely based on need, you won’t be able to get more funding with high test scores or an exceptional talent. Awards are based on how much MIT thinks your parents can contribute.
MIT student employment
One of the most common ways to cover your expected contribution as a student is through work-study. Aside from the Federal Work-Study program, the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) is another popular way to cover your share of the bill — around 90% of students participate at some point in their MIT career.
In addition to earning money, UROP allows you to build up valuable experience by overseeing research from the development phase to publishing the results.
How do I apply for financial aid?
MIT’s financial aid application is a little more involved than what you might find at other schools. There are three main steps:
- Complete the FAFSA. All US citizens and permanent residents must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which you use to apply for federal grants, work-study and student loans.
- Submit a CSS Profile. You also need to fill out a College Scholarship Services (CSS) Profile with information about your family’s finances. MIT uses this to determine financial need.
- Submit tax returns or income documents. In addition, you need to submit your parent’s federal tax returns and documentation of any income from a trust or ownership in a partnership or corporation.
You can complete all three of these steps on the MIT Student Financial Services website.
Are there other scholarships and grants available?
Yes, MIT students can apply for federal and private grants and scholarships, as well as federal work-study programs. Massachusetts residents might also want to look into state scholarships, though out-of-state students won’t be able to qualify.
If you’re not from Massachusetts, look into scholarships your home state offers residents instead. Or check out scholarships and grants funded by government agencies or private organizations — these are typically based on merit and offered by academic field or to specific demographics.
Student loans to pay for MIT
Most MIT students don’t need student loans to pay for school — only 28% took on debt in the 2016–2017 academic year. If you’re a part of that group, you might want to consider federal loans first. They’re often less expensive and come with more flexible repayment options.
However, not everyone can qualify for federal funding, such as international students or those who’ve reached their federal loan limit. In those cases, you might want to look into your private student loan options.
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Chances are you won’t end up with much student debt for an MIT degree — if at all. International students might have the most trouble qualifying for funding, since federal aid is off the table and many private student lenders are restricted to citizens and residents. You can learn more about your student loan options by reading our guide.
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