MIT Technology and Policy Program


Applicants to the Technology and Policy Program are expected have a strong technical background, typically including an undergraduate degree in engineering or science. They must also be prepared to take advanced subject in economics, political science and management. When admitting students, we look for:

  • Academic excellence,
  • Interest in technology policy, and
  • Capacity for technology policy leadership.

We strive to recruit a diverse incoming class of students with these three characteristics.  Most (but not all) successful candidates have one or more years of work experience after their undergraduate degree.  In recent years, half the students have come from North America, and the rest about equally from Europe, Asia/Africa, and Latin America.

Academic Excellence

We measure applicants/ academic preparation through university grades and the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE).  We pay particular attention to recent academic performance, and grades in subjects relevant to technology and policy.  Successful applicants from North American universities generally have a B+ average or better; regional differences in grading systems are taken into account for international applicants.  Strong candidates for the program typically score in the top 10 percent of all three GRE areas (verbal, quantitative, and analytic writing).

Applicants who are not native speakers of English must also present the results of their International English Language Testing System test (IELTS), taken within the last two years. Our minimum score on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) academic format is 7.5.

While these are general guidelines, we are looking for the best possible students, and we evaluate each applicant individually.

Interest in Technology Policy

We evaluate prospective students’ interest in technology and policy through their prior experience and their personal statements.

Practical experience in understanding how technology issues are applied in real-world contexts is important to students’ success in the program. Generally, this is shown by previous work or internship experience in government, nonprofit, or industry sectors.

TPP prepares students to combine excellence in a particular field of technological development (communications, energy, environment, computers, aerospace, etc.) with rigorous applied social science (economics, politics, law, etc.) We are particularly interested in hearing about the goals and career plans of applicants through their personal statements, and how the TPP program will fulfill their objectives.


We seek students who are prepared to work for the good of a larger community. Leadership experience is interpreted broadly – we would like to hear through your personal statement how you have influenced and inspired the people around you. We are especially interested in candidates who can be effective in motivating concern about issues, catalyzing coalitions to effect change, managing implementation of new policies.

Admissions Process

Applications are accepted in December each year . Faculty review applications beginning in January, and candidates are generally sent offers of admission by mid- to late-February. Offers of financial assistance are normally made by the end of March. The incoming class begins in September.

Students who would like to apply for admission should do the following:

  1. Complete the application online. The deadline is December 15. An application fee of $75 will be required to submit the application; however, you can create an account, prepare and review the application before paying the fee. We strongly recommend starting the process early. The TPP online application will require you to submit a current resume, a cover letter, and a response to this supplemental question.
  2. Take the required tests:
    • IELTS: A score of 7.5 or above is required (To learn more about IELTS, visit
    • GRE: General test required.
      • Department code: 3514
      • Strong candidates typically score in the top 10 percent of all three GRE areas (verbal, quantitative, and analytic writing).
  3. Arrange for official transcripts and test scores to be sent to:

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology- TPP
    77 Massachusetts Avenue, Room E17-373
    Cambridge, MA 02139-4307

Please direct any questions to Ed Ballo at:

Phone: (617) 258-7295,

© MIT Technology and Policy Program | 77 Massachusetts Avenue | Cambridge, MA 02139-4307 | 617-253-7693 | L