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Revised to 5/15
The degrees for which candidates may be recommended to the Corporation shall be Bachelor of Science (S.B.), Master of Science (S.M.), Master of Engineering (M.Eng.), Master of Architecture (M.Arch.), Master in City Planning (M.C.P.), Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.), Master of Finance (M.Fin), Engineer in Aeronautics and Astronautics (E.A.A.), Chemical Engineer (Chem.E.), Civil Engineer (C.E.), Engineer in Computer Science (E.C.S.), Electrical Engineer (E.E.), Environmental Engineer (Env.E.), Materials Engineer (Mat.E.), Mechanical Engineer (Mech.E.), Metallurgical Engineer (Met.E.), Naval Engineer (Nav.E.), Nuclear Engineer (Nucl.E.), Ocean Engineer (Ocean E.), Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), and Doctor of Science (Sc.D.).
The graduate degrees of Engineer, Master of Science, Master of Engineering, and Doctor may be awarded jointly with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.
The Officers of the Faculty are authorized to receive the recommendations of the Committee on Academic Performance and the Committee on Graduate Programs for the awarding of degrees and to forward the recommendations to the Corporation on behalf of the Faculty. The Officers are expected to bring unusual or disputed recommendations to the Faculty for resolution. The number of degrees awarded at each level shall be reported to the Faculty at the next regular meeting. The Provost, the Chair of the Faculty, and either the Chair of the Committee on Academic Performance (in the case of S.B. degrees) or the Dean for Graduate Education (in the case of graduate degrees) together may add names to the Commencement degree list that had been recommended by the Faculty to the Corporation, for the purpose of accommodating late recognition of degree requirements that had been completed by the established deadlines.
One unit of credit toward degree requirements represents approximately one hour per week of lecture, exercise, or preparation for one term. Unit designations of courses normally shall be multiples of three units. No instructor shall require more outside work than can be satisfactorily performed under ordinary working conditions in the preparation time assigned to the course by students of average capacity, adequate preparation, and reasonably good habits of work; and, in order that this rule may be practically enforced, each instructor is expected from time to time to ascertain the amount of outside preparation actually given to each of his or her courses by students whose work is of passing grade.
The term "subject" used in the remainder of Section 2.80 is construed to be a major commitment of a student's intellectual effort, explicitly in the 9- to 15-unit range, and usually 12 units.
To be recommended for the degree of Bachelor of Science, a student must have attended the Institute at least three regular academic terms, which ordinarily must include the term of graduation. A student who does not graduate within ten years of first entry will normally be expected to fulfill the requirements of the class with which he or she graduates.
A student must have satisfactorily completed a program of study approved in accordance with the Rules and Regulations of the Faculty. Current requirements are as follows:
- The General Institute Requirements, which offer a broad education in humanistic and scientific disciplines:
- Six core science subjects, one subject from each of the following groups: 3.091, 5.111, or 5.112; 7.012, 7.013, 7.014, 7.015, or 7.016; 8.01, 8.011, 8.01L, or 8.012; 8.02, 8.021, or 8.022; 18.01, 18.01A, or 18.014; and 18.02, 18.02A, 18.022, or 18.024. The available choices shall be equivalent as prerequisites for Departmental programs.
- Two Restricted Electives in Science and Technology, at least one of which is not in a student's own department.
- One Laboratory subject of 12 units, or two Laboratory courses of at least six units each, so that the Laboratory work will call for a major commitment of the student's attention; it is suggested that students satisfy at least a portion of the Laboratory Requirements during the first two years.
- The Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences Requirement, consisting of eight subjects, including the following: a. A Distribution Component, consisting of one subject each in the following three categories: the Humanities, the Arts, and the Social Sciences. b. A Concentration Component, consisting of three or four subjects, as approved by the Subcommittee on the HASS Requirement. The remaining subjects in fulfillment of the eight-subject HASS Requirement, beyond the Distribution Component and the Concentration Component, shall be chosen by the student.
- The Communication Requirement, consisting of four Communication-Intensive subjects as voted by the Faculty.
- The Physical Educational Requirement.
- A total of at least 180 but not more than 198 units (excluding ROTC units) as follows:
- At least 96 units in courses offered by MIT.
- Unrestricted electives totaling at least 48 units.
- A Departmental program normally including up to 132 units and the equivalent of 11 subjects; but the Committee on Curricula may approve Departmental programs including up to the equivalent of 12 and one-half subjects and 150 units. In addition, Departmental programs may specify or expect up to three subjects that are also used by students to satisfy the General Institute Requirements, with the understanding that the department would allow specified substitutions of closely related subjects in other departments where possible.
Departmental requirements shall permit the student to schedule his or her program each year within a normal load of the equivalent of eight or eight and one-half subjects and shall guarantee at least 12 units of unrestricted elective time in the freshman year. It is normally expected that most of the core science subjects can be completed during the first year and that the Restricted Electives in Science and Technology and half of the Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences Requirement can be completed during the first two years.
All approved Course curricula for the degree of Bachelor of Science shall make it possible for students to complete all degree requirements in the equivalent of 32 to 34 subjects.
Within the limitations of the degree requirements specified above, the Faculty delegates to each department the authority to approve departures by individual students from approved Course curricula which are comparable to the established curricula in breadth, depth, and integrated approach to a well-defined educational objective. Departmental authority to approve departures which involve substitutions not in kind for more than one subject shall rest with a single member of the Faculty or with an appropriate department Faculty committee, rather than individual Faculty advisors, and a summary of all such departures shall be reported to the Committee on Curricula each term. The individual departments shall exert strong efforts to make it possible for students who have taken only one or two of the appropriate departmentally prescribed subjects during their first two years to complete their degree requirements in a normal four-year period.
To be recommended for the graduate degree of Master of Science, Master of Engineering, Master of Architecture, Master in City Planning, Master of Business Administration, or Master of Finance a student must not only have a clear record in an approved program of graduate study and research, but his or her scholastic standing as shown by the cumulative record must be of distinctly high grade. At their discretion, appropriate Program or Departmental Graduate committees can specify subject substitutions to be counted in the graduate program for the purpose of satisfying the graduate subject unit requirement.
For the degree of Master of Science, the student must have completed satisfactorily a program of study of at least 66 units of graduate subject credit and a thesis, both acceptable to the department in which he or she is enrolled. If 34 units and the thesis are in a single field, as determined by a Departmental Committee on Graduate Programs, the degree will be recommended with specification of the field in which the student has thus specialized; otherwise, the degree will be recommended without specification. The candidate must also have been in residence for a minimum of one regular academic term.
Any Departmental Committee on Graduate Programs may accept, in lieu of the thesis required for the degree of Master of Science, with or without specification, a record of satisfactory performance in equivalent work taken at the School of Chemical Engineering Practice.
For the degree of Master of Engineering with specification of the field in which the student has specialized, the student must have completed satisfactorily at least 66 units of subject credit (including at least 42 graduate units) and a thesis which collectively constitute a structured program of at least 90 units acceptable to the department of the School of Engineering in which the student is enrolled. The candidate must also have been in residence for a minimum of one regular term.
For the degree of Master of Architecture, the student must have completed satisfactorily a program of study of at least 312 units of graduate subject credit and a thesis, both acceptable to the Department of Architecture. The program requires three and one-half academic years of residence. Advanced entry may be considered for students with a pre-professional bachelor’s degree in architecture. The degree requirements for students pursuing advanced entry will depend on the student academic experience and waived requirements, but will be no less than two and one-half years of residence, as well as satisfactory completion of 164 units of graduate subject credit and a thesis, both acceptable to the Department of Architecture.
For the degree of Master in City Planning, the student must have completed satisfactorily a minimum of 126 units of graduate subject credit. The student must also have completed a thesis acceptable to the Department of Urban Studies and Planning and have been in residence for a minimum of two regular academic terms.
For the degree of Master of Business Administration through the two-year MBA program, the student must have completed satisfactorily a program of study of at least 189 units that includes a set of required core subjects, at least 144 units of elective graduate subject credit, and four regular academic terms in residence, as acceptable to the Sloan School of Management.
For the degree of Master of Business Administration through the one-year Sloan Fellows Program in Innovation and Global Leadership, the student must have completed satisfactorily a program of study of at least 171 units that includes a set of required core subjects and at least 48 units of graduate subject credit acceptable to the Sloan School of Management.
For the degree of Master of Business Administration through the two-year Executive MBA (EMBA) Program, the student must have completed satisfactorily a program of study of at least 174 units that includes a set of required core subjects, plus three graduate-level restricted electives taken at designated times throughout the program.
For the degree of Master of Finance, the student must have completed satisfactorily a minimum of 66 units of graduate subject credit from within a program of study that includes a slate of required courses, restricted and general electives, and a proseminar. The candidate must also have been in residence as a graduate student for at least two consecutive academic terms (fall and spring). In most cases, a summer term is also required.
To be recommended for one of the Engineer degrees listed in Regulation 2.81, a student must have completed with high scholastic standing a program of at least 162 units of advanced study and a thesis, both acceptable to the department of the School of Engineering in which the student is enrolled. The candidate must also have been in residence for a minimum of two regular academic terms.
The degree of Doctor of Philosophy and Doctor of Science are recommended, interchangeably, by departments in the Schools of Engineering and Science (except Biology) and in the fields of Medical Engineering and Medical Physics. The degree of Doctor of Philosophy is recommended by the Department of Biology in the School of Science, by the departments in the School of Architecture and Planning, by departments in the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, and by the Sloan School of Management. To be recommended for the doctorate, the student must have completed satisfactorily an approved program of advanced study in the field concerned and submitted a dissertation of high quality based upon original research relevant to the field.
The course of advanced study and research leading to the doctorate must be pursued under the direction of the Committee on Graduate Programs for at least four academic terms, except in the case of applicants who satisfy the Committee that they have successfully accomplished at another institution advanced work of a grade equal to that required at the Institute, in which case the required period of residence may be reduced. However, in no instance may the residence requirement be reduced to less than two regular academic terms and one summer session.