MIT: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
for transfer students
The First Year at MIT

Your Academics

MIT offers you a wide-range of academic options and requirements for you to consider in the next few years. This page includes important information about your academics.

Declared Major

When you are admitted as a transfer student, you enter the Institute with a declared major. This provides you with the opportunity to be part of an academic department and to be advised by a faculty member upon arrival.

Once you enroll, we expect you to confirm your intended major with Leslie Bottari, She will put you in contact with the Undergraduate Administrator of your academic department prior to your arrival. The Undergraduate Administrator will be your primary contact in your new department who assign you to a faculty advisor to assist you with spring registration.

If you change your major selection at any point prior to arrival or within the first few weeks of classes, you need to inform Ms. Bottari soon as possible to ensure the accuracy of your academic records.

Transfer Credit

We realize that you might be concerned about how much transfer credit you will receive at MIT. The transfer credit process is your responsiblity and should begin before you arrive at MIT. Before credit can be evaluated, MIT must receive an official transcript of your grades from your previous college or university. Please read more about how to begin the transfer credit process.

General Institute Requirements

All MIT undergraduates must complete 17 General Institute Requirements. The GIRs lay the foundation for study in your major. Transfer students are admitted to the Institute with the majority of their GIRs completed. In your first and second semesters at MIT, you might need to take additional courses to fulfill the Science Core of the Institute requirements. These might include Calculus, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology. Many of these classes are prerequisites to more advanced classes within your major.

We encourage you to read more about the GIRs.

Freshman Essay Evaluation

Students admitted to MIT are required to take the FEE, unless they have already scored a 5 on either the AP Language and Composition test or Literature and Composition test, or a 7 on either the English A or B Higher Level International Baccalaureate (IB) exam. The FEE is offered online twice during the summer. Complete FEE deadlines, instructions, and guidelines at For additional questions about the FEE, email

Communication Requirement

All undergraduates, including transfer students, need to complete a total of two CI-H and two CI-M subjects by graduation. During your first year at MIT, you must either pass a CI subject or receive transfer credit for one. If you do not receive transfer credit for a CI subject, you will need to take two CI classes during one of your academic years at MIT.

To receive CI transfer credit for an expository writing subject you must contact the transfer credit examiner for the Writing Program. For all other transfer credit requests associated with CI subjects, you must petition the Subcommittee on the Communication Requirement. See for details on the Requirement.

HASS Requirement

MIT has an eight-subject requirement referred to as the HASS (Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences) Requirement. For a more detailed information on this Requirment and how to satisfy it, please visit the HASS website.

Physical Education Requirement

Transfer students need only complete four points of credit and the swim requirement to fulfill the PE requirement. If you are able to swim 100 yards, you are encouraged to arrange to take the swim test upon your arrival. Swim tests are held on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays at 8:00 am and 8:00 pm. If you cannot make the times listed above, please contact the aquatic office at 617-324-2200 to schedule an appointment.

For more information, visit the Physical Education Office, Room W32-125, (617) 253-4291 of go online:

Helpful Websites

We also encourage you to review details about MIT subjects, policies, and procedures on the following sites: