MIT Technology and Policy Program

Admissions FAQ

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Watch our Technology and Policy Program Webinar from Fall 2020:

Overview

What is the Technology & Policy Program (TPP)?
TPP is a research-based two year master’s program. It is part of the Institute for Data, Systems, and Society in the MIT Schwarzman College of Computing.

In addition to coursework in subjects such as policy making, law, quantitative methods, and economics, TPP students conduct research in departments, labs, and centers across MIT, developing a dual competency in a technical concentration and in policy analysis.

Who should apply to TPP?
Those who are interested in combining mastery of a specific technological domain (energy, environment, computation, transportation, aerospace, etc.) with an understanding of the application of social science methods (economics, political science, management, law, etc.) to policy formulation and analysis.

Individuals interested in a career at the interface of science, technology, and policy, including in industry, government, academia, regulatory agencies or consulting.

Financial Support

How are TPP students supported financially?
Most students conduct their graduate research through what is known as a research assistantship or RA. A typical 100% RA will pay the student’s full tuition, provide a monthly stipend, and fund the student’s health insurance.

While funding through research is not automatically guaranteed, all students should expect to actively seek out paid research opportunities at MIT and typically receive funding. Research assistantships are the most common means of support among TPP students, though some students receive support through fellowships (e.g. from US or international government funding agencies).

TPP does not expect students to take out loans or use family resources or personal savings to support graduate studies.

What is the responsibility of the student in the funding process?
Students are expected to reach out to prospective research labs or groups and to interview for available RA positions.

A certain amount of flexibility is highly desirable in terms of topic of specific research interest to help secure funding.

How does TPP help admitted students through the funding process?
We help incoming students secure funding via a collaborative process, including by recommending best practices for reaching out to potential advisors, passing on viable job prospects, and checking in frequently with suggestions and assistance.

Application Process

What assistance is available to prospective students during the application process?
GRE not accepted: TPP applicants are not expected to submit GRE scores due to testing limitations caused by COVID-19 and the difficulty many applicants have had accessing tests and testing sites.

Application fee waiver: Waivers of the $75 application fee can be requested from MIT’s Office of Graduate Education (OGE) for applicants who are US citizens, US permanent residents, or international applicants attending US colleges and universities. Additional criteria for the waiver are outlined on OGE’s website.

Prospective students can contact TPP students directly by e-mailing tpp_ask_a_student@mit.edu. This will send a message to a student coordinator that can connect you to students with similar academic interests, professional experiences, or identities (race/ethnicity, gender expression, nationality, etc.). Theses e-mails are not seen by faculty or staff and will not influence your application.

For additional information about the admissions process, please contact admissions coordinator Ed Ballo (eballo@mit.edu). Current students are also available to answer questions applicants may have during the application process.

What are the upcoming key dates and deadlines?
Webinar schedule: You can find our informational webinars on our events calendar. Please register in advance.

Application: TPP admits students for entry in the fall semester. Applications are due by December 15th of the previous year.


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