MIT Student Financial Services How will I afford an MIT education


The Institute's need-blind admissions policy ensures that no student is denied admission because he or she requires financial aid. It’s important to know that MIT always meets the full financial need of its students as determined by Student Financial Services.

When we measure your family's financial strength, we take into account the difference between basic necessities like living expenses, taxes and health insurance, and lifestyle choices like credit card expenses and vacations using a formula called the 568 Consensus Approach Methodology. The result is the expected family contribution, or EFC. When you fill out a FAFSA, your family contribution at MIT may be higher or lower than what the federal government expects you to pay because they use a different formula. The EFC has two parts: the parent contribution and the student contribution.

Student expense budget
Expected family contribution
(parent contribution
+ student contribution)
Financial aid package (your financial need)

Parent contribution – This can be from any combination of sources, including savings and cash on hand, prepaid college plans, investments, current income and parent loans.

Student contribution – This is usually the same as your summer earnings expectation, unless you have significant savings of your own, or high earnings during the previous tax year. The summer earnings expectations are $1,900 for freshmen, $2,500 for sophomores, $2,800 for juniors and $3,100 for seniors.

Now you know how much you and your family will need to contribute, you may notice this figure is less than the full price. Your financial aid package will make up the difference.

Outside scholarships and grants
MIT scholarship
Financial aid package

Self-help – For 2012-2013, we meet your need first through a self-help offer of $6,000. Self-help is loans and/or work above your student contribution.

Outside scholarships and grants – If you receive any scholarships, grants or benefits from public or private sources not administered by MIT (for example, the Federal Pell Grant Program or the National Merit or Achievement Program), we use it to offset your self-help component, so you end up with a higher percentage of scholarship in your financial aid package. There are thousands of scholarship funds administered by corporations, foundations and other organizations. Some scholarships are earmarked for students with specific backgrounds or interests.

MIT scholarship – If you still don’t have enough resources to meet the student expense budget, we’ll award you an MIT scholarship (a grant that doesn’t need to be repaid) to make up the difference.

If you’re ready to apply for financial aid from MIT, click here.

Now that you know your family’s share, the next question is: What are your payment and financing options?

Student Stories Fausto Morales
Class of '12

Fausto is one of thousands of students who are paying much less than MIT's "sticker price" - because we meet every student's full financial need.

Outside scholarships

There are hundreds of outside private scholarships for every type of student.