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.
Please visit our Tuition and Fees page for the latest and most accurate information.
In general, the tuition for the two-year program and the one-year option are roughly the same. The total tuition for the school year 2020-2021 ranges between $77-$80k. Tuition is charged per term. The low course load tuition rate is $19,900, while the high course load rate is $29,900 per semester.
The low course load tuition value (currently at $19,900) at 4 semesters, or two years is $79,600. Please keep in mind that this does not include the annual tuition adjustment. Tuition for the forthcoming academic year is set each April by the MIT Corporation based on a recommendation from the Academic Council. Historically, SDM and IDM have seen 2-5% increases, and we strive to keep that as low as possible.
Please also consider that there is health insurance, MIT student fees, and costs of living.
If a student wishes to complete the programs in one year or 13 months, we tell them to take the high tuition value (currently $29,900) and multiply that times two semesters, then add one thesis only semester (at $18,000). The total is roughly $77,800. Again, please consider other costs and fees as well.
IDM does not offer financial aid, scholarships, or fellowships directly through the program.
For financial aid assistance please visit MIT Student Financial Services. Information about fellowship opportunities and student finances can be found on the Office of Graduate Education website.
Some IDM students do take on TA and RA positions across MIT; however, this is not guaranteed, and it rarely happens in the first semester. These jobs typically cover a portion of IDM tuition and generally also provide a monthly stipend. The number of IDM students with TA or RA appointments in any semester ranges from just two or three to up to half of the class. Some students have even found positions that pay their full tuition.
Finding a TA or RA takes some work, and will depend on your unique background, knowledge acquired in your MIT coursework, and having a good fit with the needs of specific classes or research efforts at MIT. Note that it is especially difficult to secure TA and RA positions in the first semester because it takes time to network and build relationships with faculty. We typically hire second-year IDM students to serve as TAs for the IDM core course.
IDM shares with our sister track, SDM, a career officer, who works with students on career skills, vision planning, and job search preparation. Here is a copy of our employment report.
Both the low course load and the high course load are considered full time. The “low course load” terminology just means that you are taking fewer credits than the “high course load.” International students in the two-year program need to be enrolled in 33-36 credit hours each term to complete the program in 21 months and maintain full time student status.
The application deadline is January 15. All finalists for IDM admission are required to attend an in-person or phone/video interviews prior to receiving a final decision. These applicants will be contacted directly by the IDM Admissions Office. Final decisions will be released in April.
Because our Core curriculum is custom to IDM, we do not accept transfer credit. Also, since MIT courses are of high caliber and the classes in the IDM program are specific to the degree, we will only consider transfer credit once a student is admitted. The program director has discretion to approve any requests for transfer credit.
The curriculum is customizable to your career and academic goals and interests. The IDM Core is mandatory, as is the thesis requirement. Students are also required to take supplementary courses through the Sloan School of Management and School of Engineering, but the options are wide-ranging. There are lists of the available management and engineering electives for IDM students. Details about individual courses–descriptions and schedule information–are available on the MIT Subject Listing and Schedule pages. Additionally, there are 30 units available to students that can be taken from any department at MIT, and some at Harvard.
Yes. The options that we have mapped out for completion of the dual IDM/Sloan MBA degrees are within 3 years. One would essentially take the high course load at IDM and plan to complete as many credits as possible, with the exception of thesis work, within one year. The MBA is a two-year program. Separate applications are required, and our admission processes are independent of each other. If/once you are accepted, you will work closely with representatives from both Sloan and IDM to ensure that all registration, orientation, and other new student requirements are met for both programs.
The degree granted by IDM falls under “System Engineering” with CIP code 14.2701 which is included in the USCIS STEM list. Students from these programs will be eligible for 2-year OPT extension.