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Old 11-24-2012, 05:44 PM   #1
maslex
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Any MIT students/graduates here?

My DS15 has his sights on going to MIT for computer science.

What kind of grades are we talking about to get into this school?

Any other advice for him?
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Old 11-24-2012, 05:58 PM   #2
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My DS15 has his sights on going to MIT for computer science.

What kind of grades are we talking about to get into this school?

Any other advice for him?
To aim for it, but not count on it, even if he has the grades and scores.

It's in the realm of the top-tier Ivys for acceptance and requirements. They take so few of those who apply that it's a ....shoot.

That said, you never know, and if he wants it, he should go for it. For that program at that school you want absolutely top grades in applicable classes, and the most challenging applicable classes possible - plus ongoing extracurriculars demonstrating interest in the field. In addition, I'd say over 750 on the math portion of the SAT is pretty de rigueur, and the same on the math 2 SAT II and on as many of the science SAT IIs as he can.

I don't know if they require full disclosure, so check before he takes or has taken (if he's done the bio) stuff as a freshman or sophomore. Those are very, very competitive for MIT, especially the maths. It's not that they mean so much by themselves, but if he's in a pile with other applications and those kids have 800s on the SAT I math and 780s on the SAT IIs and he's got 100 pts below that, it's going to drop the attractiveness of his application packet.
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Old 11-24-2012, 06:54 PM   #3
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What she said. I was accepted, but had a scholarship closer to home. Only knew one other from my school that got in and he was a true brainiac.
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Old 11-24-2012, 06:56 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by cornflake View Post
To aim for it, but not count on it, even if he has the grades and scores.

It's in the realm of the top-tier Ivys for acceptance and requirements. They take so few of those who apply that it's a ....shoot.

That said, you never know, and if he wants it, he should go for it. For that program at that school you want absolutely top grades in applicable classes, and the most challenging applicable classes possible - plus ongoing extracurriculars demonstrating interest in the field. In addition, I'd say over 750 on the math portion of the SAT is pretty de rigueur, and the same on the math 2 SAT II and on as many of the science SAT IIs as he can.

I don't know if they require full disclosure, so check before he takes or has taken (if he's done the bio) stuff as a freshman or sophomore. Those are very, very competitive for MIT, especially the maths. It's not that they mean so much by themselves, but if he's in a pile with other applications and those kids have 800s on the SAT I math and 780s on the SAT IIs and he's got 100 pts below that, it's going to drop the attractiveness of his application packet.
Everything cornflake said

my ds and his friend graduated same time in high school and he got accepted at MIT. As you know it is very very competitive and he will need to be at least top 10% in his high school. top 5 or suma cum laude is even better. Take very challenging courses in Maths and sciences honors/gt. Try to keep all A grades. Tell him to create something if possible that shows his interest in computer science. Tell him to take all computer science courses and compete in "all" computer science competions in high school. you really have to shine for top tier colleges. Good luck
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:48 PM   #5
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Don't rule out schools in California, they might not have the name but they are very good schools as well.

Some schools might be more fond of one thing over another, so even if he doesn't do everything perfect for MIT, it might be good enough for someplace else.
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:28 PM   #6
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:41 PM   #7
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My DS15 has his sights on going to MIT for computer science.

What kind of grades are we talking about to get into this school?

Any other advice for him?
DS17 has his sights on MIT for physics, not sure if his grades and scores are enough but he wants to try so he's applied... I'll report back if he gets accepted or rejected with his grades and test scores.
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:49 PM   #8
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My older daughter is a senior at MIT. She was valedictorian of her class, took all the AP classes her school offered, plus two more (one at MIT!), and got 800 on the math portion of the SAT. She was captain of the math team, editor in chief of the school paper, president of Mu Alpha Theta. She was also a competitive synchro skater, nationally ranked at the junior level.

MIT gets over 10,000 applicants a year, and accepts about 10%. You've got to be one of the best in your school, and do something unique outside of school. They are also very concerned about the mental health status of their students, and want to see a well-rounded, social young adult.
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Old 11-24-2012, 10:36 PM   #9
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My older daughter is a senior at MIT. She was valedictorian of her class, took all the AP classes her school offered, plus two more (one at MIT!), and got 800 on the math portion of the SAT. She was captain of the math team, editor in chief of the school paper, president of Mu Alpha Theta. She was also a competitive synchro skater, nationally ranked at the junior level.

MIT gets over 10,000 applicants a year, and accepts about 10%. You've got to be one of the best in your school, and do something unique outside of school. They are also very concerned about the mental health status of their students, and want to see a well-rounded, social young adult.
Unlike some of the other schools at their level though, like Harvard, MIT has not really moved to accept the students that may be more 'well-rounded' but not have as academically rigorous and impressive a background.

Harvard, Yale, will accept kids with lower grades and scores who they feel will be interesting additions to the community. The community at MIT is full-on math/science nerd - within that realm they certainly want healthy with other things and interests concordant, but where Harvard might consider someone with a B+ average, 600s on the SATs and an interesting, globe-trotting history with various achievments, MIT would probably be much less likely to.
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Old 11-24-2012, 10:52 PM   #10
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As it should be
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Old 11-24-2012, 11:07 PM   #11
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As it should be
Heh, wasn't debating, just saying.

Who am I to argue with the school that invented the greatest of measurments - the Smoot?
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Old 11-25-2012, 12:03 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by maslex View Post
My DS15 has his sights on going to MIT for computer science.

What kind of grades are we talking about to get into this school?

Any other advice for him?
When I was applying to colleges in 2003, I was second in my class, took all AP and IB classes my school offered, had straight A's all through high school (literally no B's, not one), a 1580 on my SAT (pre the new scoring requirements), played two varsity sports (crew and tennis), along with a host of other clubs.... and got wait-listed at MIT. I'm still a little bitter
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Old 11-25-2012, 04:17 AM   #13
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I didn't, but one of my friends in high school was accepted to MIT. He only applied to Harvard and MIT and was accepted to both. He was #1 in our class, straight As, scored 1600 on his SATs (this was in 1986) and was science fair obsessed.
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Old 11-25-2012, 04:38 AM   #14
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I agree with the previous posters. I teach AP Calculus to the best of my school. I have only had one student get accepted to MIT in my 11 years teaching these kids. One year there were 3 students tied for #1. They all applied to MIT and no one got in.
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Old 11-25-2012, 06:15 AM   #15
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Unlike some of the other schools at their level though, like Harvard, MIT has not really moved to accept the students that may be more 'well-rounded' but not have as academically rigorous and impressive a background.

Harvard, Yale, will accept kids with lower grades and scores who they feel will be interesting additions to the community. The community at MIT is full-on math/science nerd - within that realm they certainly want healthy with other things and interests concordant, but where Harvard might consider someone with a B+ average, 600s on the SATs and an interesting, globe-trotting history with various achievments, MIT would probably be much less likely to.
Yes, that's why the consensus at MIT is that 'smart people who go to Harvard don't get any smarter while they are there'. Yes, they actually say that, LOL! Also, my daughter has a friend who is taking 'remedial' classes at Harvard. Harvard is quickly gaining a reputation of taking students just for the newsworthiness of their background, not because they are at some certain academic level.

Having some grandparents and great-grandparents graduate from Harvard and other Ivy league schools, and having an aunt and grandfather who worked at Harvard and MIT, I've heard a lot of stories about what actually goes on at these institutions. Harvard seems to be all about the name, while MIT actually gets students to contribute to the intellectual society that is fostered there.

For example (and it's a very narrow one, I admit) my daughter is taking an obscure language class at Harvard. There are 5 students in the class. The 3 from Harvard are struggling to keep up with the 2 from MIT. BTW, it's my daughter's 4th language.
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