Is MIT Ivy League? Why Is MIT Not An Ivy League School 2025?

If you’ve watched most movies about American college life, a large majority of them take place in a big-name, elite university.

House, Legally Blonde, A Beautiful Mind, Good Will Hunting – all showcase the strange parties and characters that exist within the walls of these highly respected institutions.

The name ‘Ivy League’ refers to a set of famous and highly selective universities that have a long and interesting history in American higher education.

You are probably wondering why you normally see the list of Ivy League schools and you are probably shocked that MIT, as prestigious as it is, is not on the list.

What is an Ivy League School?

Ivy League schools are considered the most prestigious of all colleges in the United States. These schools are primarily located in the Northeastern part of the country.

There are eight total colleges that are considered to be Ivy League. These schools are- Brown, Harvard, Cornell, Princeton, Dartmouth, Yale, Columbia University, and the University of Pennsylvania.

Of all institutions of higher learning, these elite schools are considered to be the most outstanding and sought-after in terms of acceptance and graduation.

All eight universities place in the top 17 of the 2025 U.S. News & World Report National Universities ranking, including four Ivies in the top five (Princeton, Columbia, Harvard, and Yale). 

U.S. News has named a member of the Ivy League as the best national university every year since 2001: as of 2025, Princeton has eleven times, Harvard twice, and the two schools tied for first five times. 

In the 2025 U.S. News & World Report Best Global University Ranking, two Ivies rank in the top 10 internationally (Harvard first and Columbia sixth).


All eight Ivy League schools are members of the Association of American Universities, the most prestigious alliance of American research universities.

Ivy League universities in the U.S. began as a group association of eight highly competitive athletic colleges and as their athletic teams attracted more funding and gained popularity, the standards for student performance and admission became increasingly more demanding and rigorous. 

While the term was in use as early as 1933, it became official only after the formation of the NCAA Division I athletic conference in 1954. 

All the Ivies (members of the Ivy League) except Cornell were founded during the colonial period; they thus account for seven of the nine Colonial Colleges chartered before the American Revolution.

The other two colonial colleges, Rutgers University and the College of William & Mary, became public institutions instead.

As a result, since the 1960s, these Ivy League schools and colleges gained a widespread reputation for producing graduates with high academic performances, social prestige, and promising career futures.

Even today, these universities maintain their reputation and have a large presence among the top-ranked universities in the U.S. 

These colleges offer the best law and medical programs across the U.S., and they have a very strict selection process. Entering into any of these schools is an accomplishment in itself, and will require outstanding work ethics.

What Makes an Ivy League School

Acceptance Rates

Ivy League schools are known for their acceptance rates. They are schools that are very hard to get into. Research has shown that it is so hard to get into these schools that their acceptance rates are below 10%, excluding Cornell with its whopping 11% acceptance rate.

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Low acceptance rates mean the school cares about its students. They don’t want to accept applicants who might be unable to complete the course.

It is usually said that smaller class sizes aid the learning process. These Ivy League schools seek to implement this.

Graduation Rates

Another characteristic of these Ivy League schools is their exceptional graduation rates. The graduation rates are exceptionally high- up to an average of 95.93%.

Employment Rates

A degree from an Ivy League school is recognized worldwide. This makes it very easy for anyone who attends school to find a job after getting their degree.

The employment rates for post-graduates at all of the schools are well above 90% within 3 months, and usually, they’ll get you internships in prestigious businesses during your studies. There’s no way you won’t find a job right after graduation.

The Prestige

This is one of the important characteristics of Ivy League schools. They are very prestigious and recognized worldwide.

What is MIT

MIT is the acronym for The Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The school is one of the most renowned and well-respected universities globally, an incredible scientific research and development incubator, and a mecca of STEM excellence.

MIT is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and shares a hometown with Harvard. MIT’s urban campus is situated along the Charles River, just a stone’s throw from Boston’s bustling metropolis.

Basically, MIT reflects the youthful, progressive, innovative ethos of Boston and is regarded as one of the most academically rigorous and innovative STEM-oriented universities in the United States and globally.

MIT has a distinctive campus culture. In their words, they are “fun and quirky, elite but not elitist, inventive and artistic, obsessed with numbers, and welcoming to talented people regardless of where they come from.”

The university values tinkering, risk-taking, outside-the-box thinking, and powerful, real-world applications of fields like engineering, the sciences, and mathematics.

Notable alumni from MIT include astronaut (and the second person to walk on the moon) Buzz Aldrin, famed physicist Richard Feynman, co-founder and CEO of BuzzFeed and co-founder of The Huffington Post Jonah Peretti, former Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi Annan, Khan Academy founder Salman Khan, and television executive Andrea Wong. 

MIT Rankings

Massachusetts Institute of Technology admissions is the most selective, with an acceptance rate of 7% and an early acceptance rate of 7.4%.

Half the applicants admitted to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have an SAT score between 1510 and 1580 or an ACT score of 34 and 36.

One-quarter of admitted applicants achieved scores above these ranges, and one-quarter scored below these ranges. The application deadline is usually Jan. 1, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology application fee is $75.

MIT has rankings that are peculiar to it alone. These rankings are from different sources. They are-

  • World University Rankings 2025, MIT is ranked #5 
  • 2025 Best Colleges in America, MIT is ranked #1 
  •, MIT is ranked #1
  • Top 200 Universities in the World, MIT is ranked #1 
  • World University Rankings 2025-21, MIT is ranked #2 
  •, MIT is ranked #6
  • 2025 Best National Universities, MIT is ranked #2
  •, MIT is ranked #2
  •, MIT is ranked #1
  • 50 best colleges on the East Coast by, MIT is ranked #1
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There are also internal rankings given by Niche, USnews, and bestcollegereviews. Generally, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is ranked #2 in National Universities.

Other rankings are-

  • #22 in Best Undergraduate Teaching (tie)
  • #2 in Best Value Schools
  • #3 in Most Innovative Schools
  • #179 in Top Performers on Social Mobility (tie)
  • #1 in Best Undergraduate Engineering Programs
  • #1 in Aerospace /Aeronautical / Astronautical
  • #2 in Biomedical#1 in Chemical
  • #4 in Civil
  • #1 in Computer
  • #1 in Electrical / Electronic / Communications
  • #4 in Environmental / Environmental Health
  • #11 in Industrial / Manufacturing (tie)
  • #1 in Materials
  • #1 in Mechanical
  • #2 in Business Programs
  • #1 in Analytics
  • #2 in Entrepreneurship (tie)
  • #4 in Finance
  • #10 in Management
  • #2 in Management Information Systems
  • #1 in Production / Operation Management
  • #1 in Quantitative Analysis
  • #5 in Supply Chain Management / Logistics
  • #1 in Computer Science (tie)
  • #2 in Artificial Intelligence
  • #1 in Biocomputing/Bioinformatics/Biotechnology (tie)
  • #1 in Computer Systems
  • #2 in Cybersecurity (tie)
  • #3 in Data Analytics/Science
  • #3 in Game/Simulation Development (tie)
  • #1 in Mobile/Web Applications
  • #2 in Programming Languages
  • #2 in Software Engineering (tie)
  • #1 in Theory
  • #1 in Undergraduate Research/Creative Projects
  • #64 in First-Year Experiences (tie)
  • #7 in Senior Capstone
  • #7 in Co-ops/Internships
  • Score (out of 100) is- 97
  • Average 6-year graduation rate (17.6%)- 95%
  • 6-year graduation rate of students who received a Pell Grant (2.5%)- 94%
  • 6-year graduation rate of students who did not receive a Pell Grant (2.5%)- 96%
  • Classes with fewer than 20 students- 70.1%
  • Classes with 50 or more students- 11%
  • Student-faculty ratio (1%)

MIT Programs

The most popular programs are-

Undergraduate Programs-

An undergraduate program is a program that is more general in nature. It covers a variety of subjects ranging from relatable things like languages to more complex things like the study of space.

Undergraduate classes are usually large, and the dedicated team of professors in Canada is always ready to help you nurture your dreams.

Diploma Programs

Diploma programs are courses of study that focus on practical skills. Unlike degree programs, diploma courses emphasize technical practices than wide theoretical knowledge.

Usually, students can complete these courses within two to three years, allowing them to enter the workforce earlier.

Masters Programs

A master’s program is an academic program geared towards completing a course of study showing mastery or a high-order overview of a specific field of study or area of professional practice.

Students who graduate with a master’s degree should possess advanced knowledge of a specialized body of theoretical and applied topics, a high level of skills and techniques associated with their chosen subject area, and a range of transferable and professional skills gained through independent and highly focused learning and research.

A master’s program is usually sought after an undergraduate program.

PHD Programs

PHDs are programs sought after at the highest academic level awarded following a course of study. PhDs are awarded for programs across the whole breadth of academic fields.

Because it is an earned research degree, those studying for a PhD are required to produce original research that expands the boundaries of knowledge, normally as a thesis or dissertation, and defend the work of experts in the field.

Is MIT an Ivy League school

MIT is NOT an Ivy League School. In terms of reputation, selectivity, national and international rankings, and overall prestige, MIT is undoubtedly on par with the Ivies.

Still, MIT is not in the Ivy League. Undergraduate enrollments range from about 4,500 to about 15,000, larger than most liberal arts colleges and smaller than most state universities.

Total enrollment, which includes graduate students, ranges from approximately 6,600 at Dartmouth to over 20,000 at Columbia, Cornell, Harvard, and Penn.

Ivy League financial endowments range from Brown’s $6.9 billion to Harvard’s $53.2 billion, the largest financial endowment of any academic institution globally. 

It comes as a shock to most people that MIT is not an Ivy League school because of its reputation and prestige. 

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Why is MIT not an ivy league school

The following reasons have been fostered as to why MIT is not listed alongside the Ivy League schools.

  • The Ivy League didn’t start as a group of the most academically prestigious and elite universities. Rather, it began as an athletic conference. Only in recent decades has it become the pinnacle of academic excellence and admissions selectivity. During the period when this was done, MIT was nowhere close in terms of athletics. Today, even though MIT now has a prestigious student-athlete accolade, they can’t rank it amongst the Ivy League schools.
  • The Ivy League schools are a consortium of eight private universities based in the northeast region of the US. No matter how prestigious or competitive a school is, if it’s not one of the eight schools listed above, then it is not an Ivy League school and can no longer be added to the list. As such, even though MIT is ranked really high, they can’t group it among the Ivy League schools.
  • The Ivy league schools, 7 of them were schools pre-dated independence of the US; Cornell was admitted later (1865). MIT was conceived in 1861 and opened in 1865. At that point, it had almost no exceptional history academically and athletic wise.
  • The Ivy League schools were elite schools. Conversely, MIT was a vocational school, and elites did not go to vocational schools.
  • The Ivy league schools have some good Math and Physics departments but not the breadth and scope of hard-core research, engineering, and science found at MIT. The Ivies are at least in part liberal arts schools. MIT is not. MIT is hardcore science and engineering with a smattering of humanities required. It is the number one research university in the world for this but at the time when the Ivy League was formed, it was not here and as such, is not an Ivy League school.
  • MIT is a newer university of a different age, created for different reasons. That is why it is not an Ivy. It is a technical school focusing mostly on engineering and math-related course. These ivy league schools are mostly popular for other subject combinations.


Can MIT still join the Ivy League schools?

No. Even though MIT is very prestigious, it cannot be added to the Ivy League Schools

Can MIT be compared to the Ivy League Schools?

Yes. MIT is prestigious, has academic excellence, and also has all the features of an Ivy League school. Going to MIT can be likened to attending an Ivy League school, though not in the real sense.

Does MIT not being an Ivy League school affect its standards?

No. Even without being an Ivy League, MIT still performs excellently.

Can MIT be regarded as the 9th Ivy league school?

No. There are only 8 Ivy League schools, and MIT is not one of them.

What feature of an Ivy League school does MIT not have?

The title ‘Ivy League’. MIT is par to par with most, if not all Ivy League schools. The only thing it does not have is the title.


MIT is universally renowned for its excellence in STEM fields, so it makes sense that many people mistake MIT for an Ivy League School.

Even though the Ivy League began as an athletic conference, today, it has much less to do with athletics and more to do with academic prestige and low admission rates. 

MIT is one of the most difficult schools in the country to get admitted to, so it’s natural that many people believe it must be in the Ivy League. 


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