Economics Department corridor


Have questions about applying? Please check our FAQ page before emailing us at

We partner with Harvard Economics to connect prospective students from underrepresented groups with graduate student mentors. Details of this Application Assistance and Mentoring Program are available below.

Application requirements

The application to our doctoral program is open annually from September 15-December 15 for admission the following September. The application for September 2024 admission is now closed.

Your application is considered complete when you have successfully submitted the following requirements by the December 15 application deadline:

  • Online application
  • $75 application fee
  • Scanned copy of college transcripts
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • TOEFL, IELTS, or Cambridge English Qualification (C1 & C2) test score (any one) for international students whose native language is not English
  • The GRE is required as part of applications for the 2025-2026 cycle (for September 2025 admission)

To request a fee waiver, please complete MIT's application fee waiver form. You should carefully review the eligibility criteria prior to applying. A representative from MIT’s Office of Graduate Education will be in touch about the outcome of your request.

Please upload one copy of each transcript from all universities you have attended. If you're admitted to the program, we'll require you to have an official copy of your transcript(s) sent to us from the university's registrar. Your transcript will be verified upon receipt and any discrepancy between the transcript you uploaded and the official transcript will result in a withdrawal of our offer of admission.

Letters must be submitted/uploaded by the letter writers by December 15. Please send the email request to your letter writers via the 'Letter Status' section in your application.

International students whose first language is not English are required to submit English language proficiency test scores unless they are a US citizen or permanent resident. The department will also waive the requirement for international non-native speakers of English who have spent three or more years studying in an accredited school or university where English is the language of instruction. (Please note: verification of the institution’s language of instruction may be requested.)

We accept the following test scores:

  • Cambridge English C1 Advanced
  • Cambridge English C2 Proficiency

If you meet the criteria for a waiver, you can make a request to waive the English proficiency exam requirement on the online application, under the "test scores" section.

TOEFL, IELTS, and Cambridge English Qualification scores are valid or accepted for two years. Scores that expire while an application is under review will be considered valid.

Submitting your scores

Your online application will prompt you to attach a scanned copy of your test scores. Your scores must also be sent directly to MIT from ETS, IELTS, or Cambridge. MIT's school code for the TOEFL is 3514. The TOEFL code for the Department of Economics is 84. IELTS and Cambridge do not require a code. Please enter "Massachusetts Institute of Technology- Graduate Admissions."

Official scores must be received from ETS, IELTS, or Cambridge by December 15. Please take your proficiency exam of choice by November 30 to allow for proper reporting time. If your score report arrives shortly after the deadline, it will be accepted, but your application may not be reviewed until your scores are received.

Minimum score requirements

The minimum requirement for the TOEFL is PBT: 600, iBT: 100. The minimum requirement for the IELTS is 7. The minimum requirement for the Cambridge English Qualifications is a CEFR score of 185.

Your online application will give you the option to attach a scanned copy of your test scores or a screenshot of the scores from the ETS website. You can also send a score report directly to MIT from ETS. MIT's school code for the GRE is 3514. The code for the Department of Economics is 1801.

To allow for your scores to arrive by the application deadline, you should take the GRE by November 30 to allow for reporting time.

We encourage applicants to include a statement of objectives/personal statement with their application, though it is not required. The statement is an opportunity to explain what makes you a good candidate for the program. You should describe why you wish to attend graduate school, what you would like to study, and any research experience. Describe one or more accomplishments you are particularly proud of that suggest that you will succeed in your chosen area of research. You can also share any unique perspective or life experience that would contribute to the program. Statements are typically two single-spaced pages.

Many students interested in an economics PhD experience disparate degrees of support in the application process. The Economics Mentoring Program (EMP, formerly known as AAMP) aims to mitigate these gaps by helping students from underrepresented groups connect with graduate student mentors in the economics PhD programs at Duke, Harvard, MIT, and Stanford. These mentors can provide:

  • Advice on graduate school and fellowship applications, including questions about the application process and feedback on application materials.
  • Information about economics research, life as a PhD student or in an academic career, for students who are deciding whether a PhD in economics is the right choice for them.

The EMP aims to increase the pipeline of diverse talent in economics PhD programs and welcomes participation from all groups underrepresented in economics, including but not limited to: Black, Hispanic-Latin, Native American, low-income, and LGBTQ+ students, women, students with disabilities, and students who are the first in their families to go to college. The EMP welcomes participation among students at various stages of their economics studies, including undergraduates and college graduates. The EMP is open to students who are curious about the academic economics experience and interested in figuring out if it’s right for them. 

Interested participants should fill out the application linked below. We will accept applications until July 22, 2024. Mentorship will begin over the summer and continue through Fall 2024. Mentees who prefer to meet for a single “coffee chat” may indicate their preference on the form. We will do our best to match all interested applicants with a mentor; however, demand may exceed the availability of mentors.

Please note that the EMP is a volunteer-based, student-run program. This program is not considered part of the admissions process for the economics PhD at Duke, Harvard, MIT, or Stanford nor will any student's participation in the EMP be considered by the graduate admissions committee at any school.

Please direct any questions to 

To join the program, please click the link below to fill out the form. For more information, please visit our website. 

EMP application form:
We will accept applications until July 22, 2024