If you are an enrolled undergraduate at another university and wish to study subjects not offered at your home university, you may apply to MIT as an Undergraduate Special Student. Special Student status is available to individuals who have successfully completed a year or more of study at the university level. Secondary school students and high school students are not eligible.


If you are enrolled at another university and wish to study subjects not offered at your home university, you may apply to MIT as a non-degree undergraduate Special Student. Special Student status is available to individuals who have successfully completed at least one year of full-time study, or the equivalent, at the university level. Secondary school students and high school students are not eligible. 

If you hold a bachelor’s degree or higher, and are interested in taking classes as a non-degree student at MIT, you are considered to be at the graduate level, and must apply through MIT’s Advanced Study Program.


Special students enjoy most of the privileges of matriculating students but do not receive priority for campus housing and are not eligible for MIT financial aid. Classes with limited enrollment capacity may give priority to degree students first. 

Admission as a Special Student is valid for only one term and does not imply admission as a degree candidate at a later time. Special Students may reapply for a second term of study, but must maintain satisfactory status. Special Students are limited to a maximum of two academic terms.

Although applicants are considered undergraduate special students, the administration and application process is held within the Office of the Dean for Graduate Education. As a temporary guest status, special students may not have access to full department resources such as faculty advisors or research opportunities.

Additional limitations may be in affect if the applicants home university has an established agreement with an MIT program or department, which may include special student agreements or exchange student agreements.


A person who does not possess an undergraduate degree will be considered an Undergraduate Special Student. Undergraduate Special Students are limited to two terms. Special Student status is a guest status only and not a means to an undergraduate degree at MIT.

Qualifications for admission as a Special Student are not appreciably different from those expected of a regular student. The department to which the student applies will evaluate an applicant’s qualifications for the specific class(es) desired. Prior instructor approval does not ensure admission. If an individual is applying to take subjects in more than one department, approval of each department is required. Final approval is at the discretion of Special Student Admissions. All admitted Special Students must receive satisfactory grades in order to reapply for future terms.

For former MIT students, any course grade you receive as a Special Student will contribute to your cumulative MIT grade-point average.