IDM launches new design classes for all MIT students|Learn More


IDM has both a one-year and a two-year curriculum. We highly recommend the two-year option. We believe it allows students to be immersed in IDM and the MIT community in a manner that serves them well.

In two years, the students are able to complete the core curriculum in year one and to complete thesis work and electives in year two. Additionally, this approach enables students to dedicate time to starting their own companies, or participating in teaching or research assistantships.

Our program does have a one-year (13 month) option. Students who are hoping to complete IDM in one year need to seek approval from the program director. Students should make the request only after having been admitted. This option may be applied for dual IDM-MBA degree candidates.

IDM begins each year with a two-week orientation in the end of August and classes begin each September. We only have one start term.

Yes. IDM requires a minimum of 3 years of experience prior to enrollment. Students in the program learn from world-class faculty and their peers. Because we admit people from diverse educational and professional backgrounds, students learn a great deal from each other.

Experience that we count towards the 3 years required includes: starting and operating a company, relevant or extraordinary volunteering, remarkable life choices, and extraterrestrial travel. The average number of years of experience for the 2021 cohort was 5.5 years.

The portfolio should be broken down into two parts. Our advice to you is to use the first portion of the portfolio, the part that reads: “4-6 slides that tell the story of a project or product that you are proud of. Be sure to explain your design/innovation/business process, insights and values,” to focus on your strengths in the field that you feel strongest in. There, go into depth (as far as you can) to show us your work on one specific project or product. The second portion of the portfolio, can be a snapshot of multiple projects that you’ve contributed to – an overview of a handful of projects so that we can continue to see the breadth of your skillset.

Standardized tests, such as the GMAT and GRE, are a component of the application process and play an important role in our holistic evaluation process. However, in view of challenges brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, we will allow candidates for the 2020 admission cycle to submit their application without the test, and we will review their submitted material as is and without negative inferences. If admitted, candidates will not be required to take a test. That stated, we do not publish our average scores. We want every applicant to do their best on the test without undue pressure. Additionally, we do not want to discourage anyone from applying, regardless of their scores.

Yes! If you have a valid or expired test score, please include that as part of your application. We will consider both expired and valid test scores for the 2020 admission cycle.

Every application is carefully reviewed in full. We consider all aspects of each candidate’s application package, including the vision statement, letters of recommendation, test scores, transcripts, portfolio, and, when applicable, the interview in making our decision. Therefore, all decisions from the committee are final.