Massachusetts Institute of Technology / MIT Museum
Building N51 265 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02139
Open Daily 10am – 5pm / Closed Major Holidays
The MIT Museum is open today, Sunday, April 21. Cambridge Science Festival events will proceed as listed here.
FEES AND PAYMENT
Yes. The Museum gets busy! All groups planning to visit the Museum must make a reservation at least 2 weeks in advance. Otherwise, we cannot guarantee we will have space for your group.
Not only does making a reservation allow for Museum staff to prepare for your arrival and facilitate a smooth visit, but it also allows us to offer you the group-discounted rate. Groups that show up at the door with no reservation will be charged the full admission rate and may be turned away if the Museum is too crowded. Back to top
Availability is limited, so please book as soon as possible. Reservations must be made at least 2 weeks in advance. During the spring and summer busy season, we recommend that reservations be made as far in advance as possible as we fill up quickly. Back to top
All group leaders should start the reservation process using our online Reservation Request Form. When we have reviewed your request, you will be contacted by the Museum’s bookings coordinator to complete the reservation process. Reservations will be confirmedby email. Please check your reservation details and contact the bookings coordinator if you notice anything that is incorrect. Back to top
If the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is closed for inclement weather, the MIT Museum will also be closed. In this situation your reservation will be cancelled automatically. Check the MIT homepage or call the Museum to confirm closure. It is your responsibility to reschedule the visit. If your organization is closed but MIT is not, it is your responsibility to notify the Museum that you will be cancelling your visit. Back to top
Group size and type
For self-guided gallery visits, groups of up to 75 people may enter the Museum at a time. Be prepared to divide into smaller groups to explore the Museum. Student groups are required to bring 1 chaperone for every 8 students, and to divide into chaperone-led groups during your visit. For groups of more than 75 people, we will work with you to stagger your arrival or help coordinate your visit among additional resources and activities at MIT.
Workshops and guided tours can accommodate up to 25 people. Larger groups wishing to book workshops and tours will be required to divide into groups of 25 and pay for the additional workshops or tours. We will work with you to arrange the logistics of your visit. Back to top
To ensure a positive experience for all visitors, we require 1 chaperone above the age of 18 for every 8 students in Grades K-12. These chaperones are admitted free. Any additional adults must pay general admission. Please remember, chaperones must stay with their assigned students at all times during your visit to ensure the safety of your students and our exhibits. Back to top
Exhibits at the MIT Museum are geared toward middle school, high school and adult audiences. Unlike many science museums, the MIT Museum is not a hands-on museum. Although you may bring elementary school-aged students for self-guided gallery visits, please be aware that the conceptual level of the exhibits may not be appropriate for this audience. Workshops and guided gallery tours are only offered for students in Grades 6 and above. Back to top
Fees and payment
Yes. The student rate applies for children in Grades K-12 and/or anyone with a valid college ID. MIT students (and other MIT ID holders) may always enter the Museum for free. Back to top
The senior rate is for individuals of age 65 or older. Back to top
The Museum accepts cash, MasterCard, Visa, American Express, checks (made payable to MIT Museum) and Purchase Orders. Groups paying by Purchase Order must make arrangements at least one week in advance with the Museum’s Receptionist. Passes and discount coupons will not be accepted as payment for group visits.
Unfortunately, the MIT Museum cannot issue any refunds. Please make sure that all payments are for the correct number of visitors. Back to top
Depending on the size of the group and the interest level, it takes anywhere from 1 to 2 hours to tour all the exhibits fully. Shorter visits are recommended for groups of younger children.
Groups can visit the Museum during our normal operating hours of 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The earliest arrival time is 10:00 a.m. For self-guided gallery visits, the latest arrival time is 4:00 p.m. For workshops or guided gallery tours, the latest arrival time is 3:00 p.m. Visits to the Museum last anywhere from 1 to 2 hours, depending on your group’s level of interest. Back to top
We do not offer workshops or formal guided gallery tours on the weekend but we often have gallery facilitators who can answer your questions about particular exhibits. Back to top
The Museum does not have a designated lunchroom or dining facilities on site. However, groups may always eat at the cafeterias located at the MIT Student Center or the Stata Center, both in walking distance of the Museum. Additionally, there are a variety of restaurants and outdoor seating areas within a few blocks of the Museum.
The MIT Student Center is located at 84 Massachusetts Avenue. From the Museum, walk 4.5 blocks down Mass. Ave. towards the river. The Stata Center is located at 32 Vassar Street. From the Museum, walk 4 blocks down Mass. Ave. towards the river. Turn left on Vassar Street and continue 1 block until you see this distinctive building. Back to top
The MIT Museum is different than a typical science museum as we have a mixture of science, technology, art and history. Be prepared to look at things closely and engage your mind as you experience our exhibits!
In MIT Museum’s main building (at 265 Mass. Ave.) we have an exciting array of exhibitions and displays, providing a window into MIT's fascinating world of science and technology. In the galleries, you’ll find ongoing and changing exhibitions on science and technology and current research; architecture and design; oceanography, underwater robotics and ship design. Discover high-tech artifacts, research prototypes, intriguing scientific instruments, historic photographs, amazing holograms and even ingenious kinetic sculptures!
If you are willing to take a short walk to the center of MIT’s campus, you will find our satellite galleries:
Compton Gallery – where visitors encounter a wide range of changing exhibitions that encompass the varied fields of science, technology, architecture, history, and art. Admission to the Compton Gallery is free.
Hart Nautical Gallery – a display including a fascinating collection of ship models depicting 1000 years of ship building history, and current research from MIT’s Center for Ocean Engineering. Admission to the Hart Nautical Gallery is free.
The Museum is filled with intriguing objects to investigate and exhibits to experience… but primarily with your eyes and brains. During the reservation process you can request a copy of our student activity sheets to help your students fully engage with our exhibits. Please note that the MIT Museum is best suited for students in Grade 6 and above. Back to top
We do not have daily programs or hands-on activities during the school year. You may download gallery activity guides from our teacher resources page. If you are looking for a more structured experience for your middle or high school students, you may book a Museum workshop or guided gallery tour. Back to top
Lockers and coatrooms are available for the storage of personal items. The Museum is not responsible for items left in storage facilities. Back to top
Buses can drop-off and pick-up visitors at the main entrance to the Museum on the corner of Front Street and Massachusetts Avenue. Parking for buses may be available at meters along Massachusetts Avenue, Windsor Street and Front Street. Additional parking, if needed, may also be available on Albany Street or Main Street. Back to top
Please look for metered spaces on streets around the Museum. Back to top
The group leader must go the Admissions Desk to check-in and pay (if you have not done so in advance). Once admission has been paid/confirmed, you will be instructed on how to proceed. Please be sure your students are divided into their chaperone-specific groups. Back to top
• Groups will not be able to eat lunch or snacks inside the Museum – we recommend walking down Massachusetts Avenue to the main MIT campus;
• Groups that show up at the Museum without prior reservations may be turned away if the Museum is too crowded – please make your group reservations for summer early to ensure that we will have space for you.
Request a reservation for your group.