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First-year applicants: Tests & scores

Testing requirement

We require the SAT or the ACT01 You can read more about why we require them <a href="">here</a>. for both prospective first year and transfer students. We do not require the ACT writing section or the SAT optional essay. We accept both the paper and digital SAT.

While MIT does not require the ACT writing section or SAT optional essay, MIT does value writing and communication highly. We believe that students in any field should learn to write prose that is clear, organized, and eloquent, and to convincingly present facts, data, and ideas. As such, all MIT undergraduates must fulfill a communication requirement that integrates instruction and practice in writing and speaking into all four years and across all parts of MIT’s undergraduate program.

Resources for free test preparation

Khan Academy,02 Khan Academy is now recognized by the College Board as their official test preparation source, fully integrated with their suite of assessments. offers personalized—and free—SAT test prep. Founded by MIT alum, Sal Khan, Khan Academy offers world-class instruction to anyone, online, for free. Their personalized practice recommendations will help you build your own practice plan, let you take practice tests, and give you tips for taking the test. They also offer AP prep, should you be considering AP exams.

ACT also offers free test preparation guides and practice exams. is a free peer tutoring platform that offers SAT tutoring and SAT prep classes online. They also offer live, one-on-one support from tutors who are certified to help in math—from pre-algebra to calculus—all at no cost.

For non-native English speakers

For non-native English speakers, we strongly recommend providing the results of an English proficiency exam if you have been using English for fewer than 5 years or do not speak English at home or in school, so that we may consider that information alongside the rest of your application. We accept the following English proficiency exams:

Competitive scores

We do not have cut off or recommended scores for the ACT or SAT as scores are evaluated within an applicant’s context. To view test score statistics from the most recent admissions year, visit our admissions statistics page.

We do have minimum and recommended scores for our English language tests. These minimums are in place to ensure your level of English proficiency. Because English is the language of instruction at MIT, all students must show that they will thrive in our community.

TOEFL Minimum: 90 Recommended: 100
IELTS Minimum: 7 Recommended: 7.5
Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic Minimum: 65 Recommended: 70
Cambridge English Qualifications (C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency) Minimum: 185 Recommended: 190
Duolingo English Test (DET) Minimum: 120 Recommended: 125


If you take the same test multiple times, we will consider the highest score achieved in each section. We do this in order to consider all applicants in their best light.

Students should report official full sittings (including future sittings) of the SAT, ACT, or English proficiency exams on the application. For each examination, required subscores are indicated with an asterisk. They should not list practice results or enter a superscore as a single sitting. Students should self-report scores from all exams taken, and MIT will consider the super-score in our review process.

Self-reported scores

We do not require applicants to officially send their SAT, ACT, or English proficiency test scores as part of their application. Instead, you will self-report your scores on the application, and we’ll verify these scores upon enrollment. There will be an opportunity to update us with any test results that become available after your application is submitted.

Testing deadlines

In order to apply for first-year admission, you must take the required tests before November 30 for Early Action, and before December 31 for Regular Action. We will also accept English language proficiency test scores for RA applicants through the January test dates.

Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and other standardized exams

Students should self-report scores for standardized exams they have taken or plan to take, such as Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, A-level, Baccalauréat, etc., on the Test scores section of the application. We do not require applicants to officially send scores as part of their application, and instead have a verification process upon enrollment.

  1. You can read more about why we require them here. back to text
  2. Khan Academy is now recognized by the College Board as their official test preparation source, fully integrated with their suite of assessments. back to text