Frequently asked questions cover general topics regarding curriculum, teaching style, student life, and career support. Here you’ll find the specifics on application procedures and requirements, visiting campus, interviews, and financial considerations. You'll also find recordings of past events that you may have missed. They include tips on how to create a successful application, learning about the student experience from current Sloanies, and more.
Admissions and Financial Aid FAQ
What is the size of the program? How many students are in the class?
We have approximately 350 MBA students and 50 LGO students per class year. We currently do not have any plans to increase the class size. First-year students are divided into cohorts of approximately 60 students and take their core semester courses as a group.
How can I request a copy of the MIT Sloan MBA program brochure?
Download a brochure here.
Are there any programs that connect prospective applicants with current students? How can I contact a current student?
The Class Visit Program runs throughout the academic year and provides you the opportunity to meet current students on campus and to ask them many of the questions that you may have. If you are not able to join us on campus, you can connect with students by contacting them via our student profile page, connecting with club leaders, or joining one of our online student panels.
Do you accept transfer credits into the program?
MIT does not accept transfer credits from other schools.
Do you offer any distance learning and/or part-time opportunities?
The MIT Sloan MBA is a full-time, two-year, on-campus program; we do not offer a part-time or online MBA.. For mid-level executives with 15+ years of experience, we offer an Executive MBA program that meets every 3rd weekend of the month for 20 months.
How many students are international?
We have a strong international presence, this past year about 40% of the class comes from outside the U.S. Our international alumni network is also very active.
What is the Class Profile?
What are the Admissions criteria and desired qualifications for admissions?
General Criteria: We seek students whose personal characteristics demonstrate that they will make the most of the incredible opportunities at MIT, both academic and non-academic. We are on a quest to find those whose presence will enhance the experience of other students. We seek thoughtful leaders with exceptional intellectual abilities and the drive and determination to put their stamp on the world. We welcome people who are independent, authentic, and fearlessly creative — true doers. We want people who can redefine solutions to conventional problems, and strive to preempt unconventional dilemmas with cutting-edge ideas. We demand integrity and respect passion.
Desired Qualifications: The Admissions Committee looks for applicants with demonstrated academic excellence, proven personal achievement, and strong self-motivation to make an impact and to inspire, no matter where they are in an organization. High academic potential and personal achievement are typically reflected in test scores, academic records, and recommendations that go beyond a polite endorsement.
How does the Admissions process work?
Our professionally trained admissions committee reviews all applications after the application deadline. Based on our initial assessment, a small percentage of applicants are invited to interview in person with a staff member, either on campus or in a hub city around the world. We interview all admitted candidates.
Are some parts of the application weighted more than others?
We have a holistic review process and carefully consider every section of your application; no single component is more or less important than any other. Each applicant is evaluated as a whole.
Does MIT let applicants apply as a couple?
Couples each need to submit a separate application, but there is a question on the application where you can indicate if you are applying with a spouse/significant other.
Does MIT Sloan have rolling admissions? Are there advantages to applying early?
MIT Sloan does not have rolling admissions. Applications are reviewed in three rounds, immediately following each deadline. There may be some advantages to applying in Round 1, although applicants should apply when their application has been completed to the best of their ability. International applicants should apply in Round 1 or Round 2. LGO applicants must apply in one of the LGO rounds. If you are not accepted to the LGO program, your application may be considered for the MBA program in the following round.
Can I apply in both application rounds?
You can only apply once per year. You’ll have to decide which round is best for you.
Is it possible to waive the application fee?
We offer fee waivers to the following applicants:
- Current college seniors who are U.S. citizens and who will graduate from a U.S. university in 2019
- Active U.S. military personnel
- Teach for America members
- Peace Corps members
- Forté MBA Launch participants
- MLT and Jumpstart Fellows
- Attendees at special events (i.e Women's Week, Diversity Days, etc.)
Applicants who qualify must submit the fee waiver form at least ONE week before the application deadline. Your request will be reviewed and you will receive an email with the results. If your fee is waived, you will be able to proceed to submit your application.
Do you compare all international applicants against one another? Or the comparison is based on a country-by-country basis?
There are no quotas for international applicants. We review each applicant individually.
Who reads our applications and conducts the interviews? Is it only the admissions office or do MIT Sloan professors participate?
All of the interviews are conducted by a professional staff member of the admissions committee who has read your application. Professors, current students, and outside alumni are not involved in reading applications or interviewing candidates.
What is the format of the interview? What are you looking for when interviewing candidates?
We conduct in-person behavioral interviews, which look at past behaviors as a way to indicate how you would handle future situations. We are looking for specific examples of how you have built relationships, influenced others, and made decisions. Additionally, we're looking for English ability. There will be one interviewer and it will typically last 30-45 minutes.
Does an applicant have to travel to Cambridge, MA for interviews?
We conduct interviews at hub cities around the world, as well as on-campus. You will be asked in your application to list the closest city to where you live and receive an invitation accordingly.
When are interviews for each Round?
Round I interviews will occur in late October-early December, Round II usually occurs in late February and March, and Round III interviews take place in May.
How does the waitlist work at MIT Sloan?
The waitlist process is a little different each year, depending on the number of applicants. However, if you are waitlisted in a round, then you are automatically considered in the next round and will receive an updated decision in that round.
Do you offer deferrals?
Our general policy is not to defer admission but we will consider requests for deferral on a case-by-case basis.
Do I need to mail in copies of my transcripts?
You will be required to scan your unofficial transcripts and submit them as part of your online application. Applicants admitted to the program will be required to provide an official transcript from each school attended. All admitted students will receive further instructions after the decision deadline on where to send the materials. Any discrepancy between the scanned transcripts and official transcripts may result in a rejection in our decision or a withdrawal of our offer of admission. For more information, visit the How to Apply section here.
If my transcript is not in English, does it need to be translated?
We require both the original version and an official translation of all transcripts, if not already in English. Any professional translator in your city can provide this service. If your university is able to do this, we will accept that as well.
Do I need to convert my GPA? What if I did my undergraduate studies outside of the U.S.?
You do not need to convert your GPA for the online application. Simply enter in the grading system used by your school. We are familiar with the various grading systems and can evaluate it on our end. No need to try to translate an international GPA into a US one.
My university does not provide class rank, what should I do?
Many schools do not provide a class ranking system so you can leave this blank.
How relevant are previous academic grades to get admitted to the program?
All of your previous academic work is important to us, and we consider it all in the evaluation process.
What is MIT Sloan’s code for the GMAT?
The School’s code for the GMAT is X5X-QS-41 when applying to the MBA Program.
Can you confirm receipt of my GMAT score?
We cannot confirm receipt of your GMAT score. Please check with ETS to confirm that you have designated MIT Sloan (Code: X5X-QS-41) to receive your score.
Where can I get more information on the GMAT?
You may visit MBA.com for more information on the GMAT, including sample questions and information on test registration.
Can my GRE score take the place of the GMAT?
Yes, MIT Sloan will accept the GRE in lieu of the GMAT. The School’s code for the GRE is 3791. We have no preference for the exam you take.
Is there a minimum acceptable GMAT/GRE score?
MIT Sloan does not require a minimum GMAT score. View our class profile to see the average GMAT score.
Where can I get more information on the GRE?
You may visit GRE.com for more information on the GRE as well as test registration information.
Which do you prefer, the GMAT or the GRE? If I have taken both, do I need to submit both?
We have no preference between the two exams. We view them equally and only require applicants to submit one score. If you have taken both, you may choose to submit one score or both.
Where can I find the average scores for GRE in your class profile?
We do not publish our average GRE scores since the test has only been recently accepted and based on the percentage of people who apply, we do not have enough data.
If I have taken both the GMAT and the GRE, can I submit both scores? What if I took the GMAT or the GRE several times? Do you receive each score?
Yes, you can submit multiple scores. We only require you to submit one (your highest test score), so we don't necessarily look at how many times you have tested or how many different types of test you took unless you report them in the application.
Should I submit a test score with a higher overall score but lower quant score or a test score with a lower overall score but a higher quant score?
You may submit both- the application allows you to enter multiple scores.
How long are GMAT or GRE scores valid?
Test Scores are valid for 5 years, calculated using your application round deadline. Please refer to the chart below to confirm the validity of your test score.
Round Deadline Round Deadline Test Must be Taken On or After:
Round 1 October 1, 2014
Round 2 January 21, 2015
Round 3 April 9, 2015
What is the last date on which I can take the GMAT?
You may take the GMAT anytime up to the last day of the application deadline. The GMAT must be taken before the online application form is submitted and must be self-reported on that electronic application. No submissions will be allowed without complete GMAT or GRE scoring information.
Do I have to send you the official GMAT/GRE score report now? Or, must it be sent upon admission?
We require that the official GMAT/GRE test scores are sent to us by the application deadline. We understand that sometimes it takes 1-2 weeks for the test centers to release the scores. Therefore, it is acceptable if we receive the scores shortly after the application deadline.
I recently took my GMAT and will not receive the AWA score for another four weeks. Can I submit my application without the AWA score?
Yes, you may submit the electronic application without reporting the AWA score.
If my score is not in the middle 80% for MIT, does the fact that I performed well in quantitative classes on my undergraduate transcript help? Is this something that the admissions committee will consider in comparison to my GMAT score?
We consider all parts of the application. And for those who don’t score as high on the GMAT/GRE, we are looking for evidence of academic success and quantitative professional experience.
How much of a disadvantage is a low GMAT/GRE score?
We accept candidates with a wide range of test scores. If your GMAT/GRE is on the lower side, we'll look to use other parts of your application to balance out that score. For example, we'll look for strong academic work, and quantitative work experience.
Is the TOEFL required to apply to the MBA program?
A TOEFL is not required to apply to the MBA program.
Since it is not required to submit a TOEFL, how do you measure English speaking ability?
We measure this during personal interviews. This is our best gauge of English ability. We will also use the verbal sections of the GMAT or GRE to evaluate English language ability.
Do I need work experience to apply?
Work experience is not required for admission, although students have an average of 5 years of work experience and having work experience can help leverage the opportunities at MIT Sloan. Students who already have a framework of experience against which to apply their education, and who understand workplace issues, generally get more out of the program and contribute more to classroom discussions and team projects. Use your own judgment in deciding the best time for you to pursue an MBA. If you do not have work experience, you might consider our MBA Early Admission process.
Does internship experience count as full-time work experience?
We will look at your internship experience, but it is not considered full-time employment.
Does PhD research count towards work experience?
Yes, you should count all research done to achieve your PhD as work experience.
If you have been absent from work for a period of time, does it affect the chances of being admitted?
It’s important to address this in your application and explain why you haven’t been working.
How do you measure the quality of work experience in such a diverse range of experiences?
We have a competency model we use to evaluate candidates. We are looking for candidates to demonstrate evidence of these competencies, and they can come from any type of experience.
Are there specific types of work experience and industries that you look for in potential candidates? Would lack of work experience in a major organization count against me in my application, despite the success of my independent venture?
We aren’t looking for any specific industry experience; instead we want to see that you've been successful at whatever it is you've chosen to do prior to the MBA. Often working at a small organization or start-up provides much more interesting and rich experiences, so you do not need to have experience at a big firm.
How do you factor in applicants with advanced degrees (previous MBA, PhD, etc.)? Am I eligible to apply?
Candidates with previous advanced degrees are eligible to apply. These candidates should, however, detail the reasons for their pursuit of an MBA degree in the application. We consider those with an advanced degree as other applicants. Advanced degrees are additional evidence toward academic success, but are not considered instead of undergraduate transcripts.
Do I need an undergraduate degree in a specific major to apply? Does MIT Sloan prefer students who have more quantitative background, due to MIT’s strength in that area?
We welcome applications from all areas of undergraduate concentration, including the humanities, the social and physical sciences, business and engineering. View our class profile to see the academic background of our students. We look for candidates who are strong in both verbal and quantitative abilities.
Is a prior background in finance (major and/or work experience in finance) required for the Finance Track?
We would recommend the Finance Track for any students considering a career in finance in the future, regardless of what you studied in undergrad.
Is there any academic preparation or pre-requisites required prior to applying or enrolling? Should I take any finance or accounting courses at a local college prior to applying to the MIT Sloan MBA program, if I have no experience in those fields?
The only pre-requisite is a Bachelor’s Degree. However, accepted applicants may be given conditional acceptance and required to take a course(s) in microeconomics, calculus, or financial accounting prior to starting MBA studies. If you feel as though you’re missing a quantitative background from your undergraduate years or want to bolster your quant ability, you may want to take a microeconomics or a calculus course.
MIT Sloan asks for my calculus grade in college. I took a series of calculus classes back then, so which grade should I report on the application?
You should report your Calculus I grade. If you advanced out of this course, write in "AP" as the grade.
I have taken an economics course but not microeconomics. Can I report this grade where it asks for a microeconomics class?
You should only report a grade if the class was titled microeconomics.
I have a three-year bachelor's degree from outside of the U.S. Am I eligible to apply?
Yes. Candidates with a three-year bachelor’s degree from outside of the U.S. may apply.
Can you tell me my chances given my background?
The admissions process at MIT Sloan does not include a pre-screening of resumes. Requests for pre-screening of resumes to determine eligibility cannot be conducted by our staff. Please take a look at our Class Profile to see where our MBA students come from.
How important are extracurricular activities? Is it ok if some are work related?
We are interested in learning about what is important to you and how you spend your time. Please include details of extracurricular activities and hobbies on your resume and/or in your video.
Should I include only professional experience and goals in my cover letter, or also include some personal interests to paint a more complete picture?
We advise you to paint a clear picture of yourself using a mix of personal and professional examples that best answer our questions.
In the cover letter, should all of the content and stories come from within the past three years alone?
We highly encourage you to use examples within the past three years, and the more recent the better.
Should I focus on past achievements or future goals in my cover letter?
Concentrate on your past achievements. Help us better understand you and what you have already accomplished: past performance is the best predictor of future performance. Your essays should focus on what you have already done, your past performance, rather than what you want to do. We do not evaluate you on why you want an MBA or what you intend to do with it afterwards, but do want to get to know you and your interests better.
The video asks us to introduce ourselves to our future classmates. What is the Admissions Committee looking for in this video?
The Admissions Committee is looking to get to know you better. We encourage you to be authentic and tell us more about yourself. Videos should be a single take (no editing) lasting no more than one minute and consisting if you speaking directly to the camera.
How are the letters of recommendation accepted?
Starting in 2019, only one professional letter of recommendation is required. The letter of recommendation must be submitted electronically through the online application process. We do not accept mailed in hard copies. For more information, please visit the How to Apply section here.
Is it okay if I translate the recommendation because my boss does not speak English?
No, we don't want the applicant to translate the recommendation; either an official translator or the assistant of the recommender will be fine.
May I submit an additional letter of recommendation?
Applicants to the MBA program are required to submit one letter of recommendation. You should not submit more than one official letters of recommendation through the online application.
Does MIT Sloan accept peer recommendations from either current MIT Sloan students or alumni?
We do accept letters of support from alums or current students. They can be emailed to email@example.com and we will attach them to your application as supplemental information. We would not recommend using them as your official recommenders unless they can speak to you from a professional perspective as well (i.e. your direct supervisor also is an MIT Sloan alum).
What is Admissions looking for in the recommendation letter?
We prefer professional recommendations over peer, personal, or academic recommendations. We want to understand your accomplishments relative to your peers and also get representative examples of your professional accomplishments.
What if I own my own business, or work for a family business? Who can I use as a recommender?
We do not suggest not using family members as a recommender. Recommenders should be people who know you best and can best speak to your leadership development. They should be people who are in supervisory positions to you. You may ask a client, a mentor, or a co-founder for a recommendation in this case.
What if I cannot get a recommendation from my current employer or supervisor because I don’t want to risk losing my job? What if my supervisor changes frequently?
Recommenders should be people who know you best and can best speak to your leadership development. This decision is up to you. If you are unable to get a recommendation from your current employer, you should still find someone who can speak to your accomplishments in a professional setting.
What is the purpose of including two additional professional references?
Similar to the recommendation letter- we may contact these additional references for more information about your background. Questions would be similar to those on a letter of recommendation form. The Admissions Committee may contact them at any time.
What should I do if my additional reference contact(s) do not speak English?
Please include your references regardless of their English language ability. We will use a translator from our end to contact the reference, should we have additional questions.
Why are you asking for an organizational chart? How will you use it in the evaluation process?
The organizational chart is intended for us to better understand the role you play within your organization. It helps us to see who you report to, who may report to you, and the impact you may have on your department or company. This application component gives us greater visibility into where you sit and helps us to evaluate candidates in the context of their professional paths. We encourage you to think of the organizational chart as a visual representation of your resume, providing us with a scaled illustration of your role and who you interact with in your company. The organizational chart may also show us your career progression when viewed in conjunction with your resume; your resume might outline internal advancement and your organizational chart can help us conceptualize that path.
I don’t have any direct reports. Will the organizational chart put me at a disadvantage?
The organizational chart is not intended for us to count the number of direct reports you have, but rather to give us a clearer picture of the role you play within your organization and who you interact with.
My organization’s structure is confidential. How can I complete this requirement?
We recognize that some organizations may keep their internal structures classified or confidential. In these scenarios, we rely on you to help us best visualize your place in the organization within these constraints. This may include redacting names or titles or displaying only up to a certain level of your organization.
If I work in consulting, should I submit a chart of the overall firm or of a recent project team I worked on?
Given the traditional structure of consulting firms, we would prefer you submit a chart displaying the structure of a recent project you were staffed on and the role you played on that team.
I’m a solo entrepreneur or external contractor. What is the best way to display my chart when I am a part of an organization of one?
In the case of a solo entrepreneur or contractor, you might consider placing yourself at the center of the chart with branches displaying the various constituents you interact with (for example, clients, investors, board of directors).
What constitutes a re-applicant?
Any applicant that has applied to the MBA program before.
When re-applying, will the admissions committee review both the current and past year’s applications?
If you applied last year, we will review your previous application along with your new application. It’s important to consider this when submitting the new application. You don’t want to be too repetitive of last year’s application, but at the same time there should be some continuity.
Do I need to provide a new recommendation if my workplace has not changed?
It is best to include a new letter of recommendation and required. You have a unique opportunity to submit additional information and you should take advantage of this.
What is the biggest mistake you see a re-applicant make?
The biggest mistake re-applicants make is submitting the same exact package as the year before. If something didn’t work the first time around, this is your chance to adjust your application materials.
Do you recommend re-applicants use the optional question to explain how their candidacy has evolved since they last applied?
You can address this topic in the re-applicant short answer essay question but should use more recent examples throughout your essays to show how your candidacy has changed from last year. The optional question should be used for extenuating circumstances only.
What percent of re-applicants have been accepted?
This percent varies, but typically the acceptance rate for re-applicants is a few percentage points higher than our average. So if on average we have a 12% acceptance rate, re-applicants are at about 15% acceptance rate.
How do you evaluate a re-applicant’s submission differently than a first-time application?
We are looking for all of the same characteristics as in regular applicants: we are looking for examples of the applicant’s success professionally and academically, ability to lead and influence others, and for those who demonstrate a collaborative spirit and a community focus. But re-applicants have twice as much information that we can draw from (last year’s application and this year’s application) in the evaluation process.
Should you still highlight some strong experiences even if it means retelling a story?
It is important to be clear on what you’ve been doing since the last time you applied.
Do you have any advice for a re-applicant who was invited to interview the prior year and was rejected? Is it fair to assume that the interview was poor and to improve in that area if the opportunity is presented again?
It’s not safe to assume it was just the interview that didn’t go well. Therefore, it is important to make sure your new written application is strong as well.
What types of financial aid are available from MIT?
Financial aid for MIT Sloan MBA students is primarily in the form of loans, either from two government programs, from MIT directly, or through an alternative loan source. In addition, many students receive funding through teaching and research assistantships on campus. You can apply for these after the completion of your first semester. Visit here for more information.
What financial resources are available outside MIT?
Opportunities for funding do exist outside MIT and MIT Sloan. Potential students should begin researching other sources of financial aid beyond MIT as early as possible. Visit here for more information.
What are the first steps in the financial aid application process for U.S. applicants?
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is required of all U.S. citizens and permanent residents who wish to apply for federal student loans. To expedite the processing of federal loan applications, we recommend that you complete the FAFSA as early as possible. The FAFSA School Code for MIT is 002178. Please visit the U.S. Department of Education homepage for more information on the FAFSA, write to:
FAFSA Information Center P.O. Box 84, Washington, DC, 20044
Or call FAFSA at: 1-800-433-3243
All other aspects of the financial aid application process do not begin until students have been formally admitted into the program.
Are there benefits to applying in on Round over another in terms of financial aid and scholarship availability?
Applicants in each Round have equal access to scholarships and financial aid.
Are there any special fellowships and/or scholarships for international students?
All of our general fellowships/scholarships are open to both domestic and international students.
Does Sloan provide provisions for loans for international students without U.S. cosigners?
International students are eligible for loans without U.S. co-signers.
Can my spouse get a visa if I’m a student at MIT Sloan?
We can only give our students visas. Typically, spouses would need to find sponsorship from their employers in order to work here.
Do scholarships cover tuition and living expenses?
Scholarships cover part of your tuition cost; we don't offer any full scholarships although many students receive different amounts of awards. Visit here for more information.
How are applicants evaluated for fellowships and scholarships?
The application process is a needs-blind process, meaning we do not review the need for fellowships or scholarships until after we admit students. Each fellowship and scholarship have different criteria and you can indicate on your application which ones you would like to be considered for. Visit here for more information.
When are applicants notified of fellowships and scholarships?
The status of these awards is communicated when you receive your decision letter.