Anyone Know anything about MIT?

If someone who, say, had been out of high school for a while, lived in Canada and wanted to go back to school, would anyone know how to go about getting admitted full time to MIT? like if I wanted to go to MIT I have no post secondary education and live in Canada...... is there any way to prove myself and get in?

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stasterisk9 years ago
Just show up, live near campus, and go to the classes. See if you like it, then apply. You get the free food, the education, and the interesting people, can do any cool thing that you want to, but avoid the academic hell. You could even get a job doing research. You can always decide to apply, after that.
You can also register to take classes through their extension school, which is run by the graduate admissions office, and then apply from there.
Patrik10 years ago
Main criteria to get into MIT: (1) you've got to be good, and (2) you've got to be interesting.

For the "Good" criterion - have you taken the SAT? I guess that would be the first place to start, since it's been so long since you've been in school. (If you're really smart and have learned a lot on you own, you could even consider taking the GRE in whatever discipline you're interested in. Most likely you won't be ready for that one though - don't sweat it.)

Other than that, letters of recommendation from people you've worked with (ideally supervisors or mentors) singing your praises.

For the "Interesting" criterion - what have you been doing all this time since high school? Any interesting/creative projects you've worked on (where's Part 2 of that USB Laptop Bag anyway?). Community service, mentoring, interesting hobbies?
chaoscampbell (author)  Patrik10 years ago
well we don't have SAT in Canada so I haven't taken that.... I was pretty sure I'd have to do it, which I know I can, just have to find where but I'm trying to kinda get an idea of weather or not I have any chance at all before I start in on it. MIT is the only US school I would consider, there are plenty of great canadian schools I could go to, MIT is the only reason I would ever consider a US education. Will my SAT score over rule my highschool? I was really bored in high school I rarly showed up.... I came for tests and assignments and thats about it. in Canadian school systems attendance counts for like 40 + % of your although I scored nothing less then 95% on any test or assignment I've ever taken my transcripts show 50 - 60 % grades. So I was kinda hoping walking in and scoring a 1600 on my sats would kinda over rule my high school. as for the other stuff I've got lots of that stuff. and the laptop bag.....sorry..... kinda forgot about it..... its finished and I have pics and everything.....just haven't written it up yet..... I'll try to get it all done tomorrow
I was really bored in high school I rarly showed up.... I came for tests and assignments and thats about it.
This is not a good way to get into "top" colleges like MIT.
You might spend a year or two at a lesser college, demonstrating that you can show up for classes and get good grades too! I believe that sort of method is pretty common for smart people who screw up in high school. (Saves money, too.)
chaoscampbell (author)  westfw10 years ago
I realize I'd have a lot of proving to do.... but I want to make it worth it. I'd hate to spend 2 years in collage or university in canada only to hear MIT say "you never had a chance to begin with, you wasted your time" I mean if I'm gonna get a degree in canada I might as well keep my job and take like ...... psychology or something related to my current job. Setting up for a chance at MIT would be a total 180 job switch and would require I quit my job and go full steam ahead in that direction
You have to keep in mind that nobody can guarantee you will get into MIT, no matter how well you're prepared. High-profile places like MIT, Harvard, Stanford etc. Get so many applications that even among the most qualified students it's still somewhat of a crap-shoot. Which is why T3h_Muffinator was sweating bricks until yesterday, even though I can't think of anyone more deserving to get accepted.

Putting all your eggs in one basket and saying "it's either MIT, or I'm not going to bother with engineering" is really a recipe for failure. MIT is a great school, but there are LOTS of places where you can get a great engineering education.

I think you should decide whether or not you want to become an engineer, and then put all your effort into getting into the best program you can. If you are only applying to the top colleges, make sure you send in at least half a dozen applications. You may not get into your top choice, but it's nice to have some options...
Your questions are reaching a complexity level that can probably ONLY be answered by the admissions department at MIT. I don't think it's out of the question that you could demonstrate ability while taking "psychology or something related to your current job"; even the techi-est engineering degree usually involves a certain amount of credits required from non-technical classes. At Penn it was 7 classes not remotely technical (ie beginning language classes weren't allowed because they only taught the technical parts of the language.) That's pretty much full year worth of a Jr College program. (Probably not all classes will transfer; going this path will probably require more than 4 years to get an MIT engineering degree.) Personally, I think you're over-valuing MIT as a school. There are lots of schools that offer engineering degrees where they'll teach approximately the same things as MIT, perhaps with better teaching (less research going on.) If Engineering "clicks" and you do well, there's always a MS to consider...
Patrik westfw10 years ago
Good advice.
Considering how long (how long?) you've been out of school, excellent SAT scores may outweigh crappy HS grades. Where does 50-60% grades put you on the bell curve anyway? Do your HS transcripts distinguish between grades for attendance vs. tests? Also, your grades in the "hard" sciences (math, physics, etc.) will likely weigh heavier than English/history/geography, etc.
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