"Meeting great challenges requires technical and scientific
creativity, and an understanding of the world’s complexities —
political, cultural, and economic. The MIT SHASS disciplines
empower young engineers and scientists, with multi-dimensional
perspectives and critical thinking skills—so their vital innovations,
and their lives, can succeed."
— Deborah K. Fitzgerald, Kenan Sahin Dean,
MIT School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences
The roots of MIT's strengths in the humanities, arts, and social sciences go back to the founding days, and by mid-20th century, the Institute had created a dedicated School for these disciplines. Today, MIT research and education in the humanities, arts, and social sciences is critical to the Institute's mission. These are our principal areas of focus:
Research and Innovation
great ideas to meet the world's great challenges
MIT SHASS is home to research that has a global impact, and to superb graduate programs, all recognized as among the finest in the world. With 20+ areas of inquiry, the School's portfolio is vast—including international studies, music, economics, history, literature, anthropology, political science and security studies, new media, linguistics and philosophy.
Teaching Critical Skills
giving all MIT students the foundations for lives of success, meaning, and wisdom
Meeting great challenges requires technical and scientific creativity, and an understanding of the world’s human complexities — cultural, political, and economic. The MIT SHASS disciplines empower young engineers and scientists with a range of critical skills needed for success in every endeavor. The cultural and historical perspectives, creativity, judgment, communication and critical thinking skills gained in engagement with the School's disciplines help MIT students create innovations—and lives— that are rich in meaning and wisdom.
Fields of Study
Educating Leaders and Global Citizens
transformative international education
The School has a central role in international education at MIT, and in preparing students to be leaders and good global citizens. Through MISTI, the School's applied international education program, MIT students learn how to work, collaborate, and thrive in cultures around the globe.
3-minute video clip on MIT Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences
Part of the "Common Threads" video produced for MIT's 150th anniversary celebration, this three-minute video clip traces the rise of the sciences, humanities, arts, and social science disciplines at MIT. Watch for the appearance of Winston Churchill!
The MIT Mission
To advance knowledge and to educate students in science, technology, and other areas of scholarship that will best serve the nation and the world in the 21st century. The Institute is committed to generating, disseminating, and preserving knowledge, and to working with others to bring this knowledge to bear on the world's great challenges.
MIT is dedicated to providing its students with an education that combines rigorous academic study and the excitement of discovery with the support and intellectual stimulation of a diverse campus community. We seek to develop in each member of the MIT community the ability and passion to work wisely, creatively, and effectively for the betterment of humankind.