MIT School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences - Great Ideas Change the World

Take the TOUR de SHASS
Explore and Discover



Greetings students, and all — 

At MIT, we view the humanities, arts, and social sciences as essential, both for educating great engineers, scientists, thinkers, and citizens, and for sustaining the Institute’s capacity for innovation. On the Power of the Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences at MIT.

From this page, you can take a virtual tour through the entire range of the MIT SHASS Fields of Study and discover which of MIT's humanities, arts, and social science (HASS) options are the most meaningful for your goals. Get started by clicking on the photographs below, which will take you to more detailed information about each field you'd like to explore.  


All MIT HASS classes are designed to empower MIT students to serve the world well, with innovations and lives that are rich in meaning and wisdom. In MIT's HASS studies and explorations, students gain powerful critical thinking and communication skills, cultural and historical perspectives, fluent language abilities, and economic and political understandings. Mission

Future proof the mind

In the HASS fields, you can explore a passion that supports, balances, or expands your studies in the STEM fields. MIT's HASS classes can empower professional success, whatever one's major field — and open windows onto a lifetime of creativity and growth. Enjoy the virtual tour! And join us each September for the TOUR de SHASS event on campus.

                                                 Take the TOUR  


Anthropology | 21A


Field Office: E53-335
Main Number: 617-452-2837

"Culture is not quaint or exotic tradition, nor produced only by artists. Culture is a system of signs and practices through which humans interact and communicate."  
 — Susan Silbey, Professor of Anthropology



Comparative Media Studies/Writing | CMS/21W


Field Office: E15-331
Main Number: 617-253-3599
"CMS/Writing is applied humanities. We combine the world's most culturally and technologically connected students with MIT's extensive resources—in particular our unparalleled tradition of innovation in media thinking and practice."  
— William Uricchio, Professor of Comparative Media Studies



Economics | Course 14

Field Office: E19-715
Main Number: 617-253-0951

“Even the very best ideas in science or engineering do not automatically translate into broader economic prosperity. In large measure, the material benefits of innovation spring from complementarities between technology and economics.”  
— Ben Bernanke, MIT PhD ’79; Chairman, US Federal Reserve Board


Global Studies and Languages | 21F


Field Office: 14N-305
Main Number: 617-253-4771
"These classes opened my eyes to the staggering breadth of human achievement beyond science and engineering, showing that human interaction is as nuanced and fascinating and relevant as any physics model or math proof or computer system."  
— Chris Yang SB '08 in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science



History | 21H


Field Office: E51-255
Main Number: 617-253-4965
"Because everything has a past, the discipline of History is, of necessity, a big tent. Over this broad purview the historian's task is to strip away the obscuring layers of myth that accrete with time—and to reveal instead the true richness of the human experience."  
— Anne McCants, Professor of History, MacVicar Faculty Fellow


Linguistics | 24


Field Office: 32-D808
Main Number: 617-253-4141
"We are working to unravel the system that unites all the languages in the world."  
— David Pesetsky, Ward Professor of Modern Languages and Linguistics



Literature | 21L


Field Office: 14N-407
Main Number: 617-253-3581
"When you study Literature, you learn how to read—how to actively engage with the meanings that inform...everything from novels, poetry, drama, epics, and folk tales to film, television, comics and new media."  
— James Buzard, Professor of Literature 



Music | 21M


Field Office: 4-246
Main Number: 617-253-3210
"At MIT, you can have a conservatory-level music experience within the world's finest technical institute."  
— Janet Sonenberg, Professor of Theater Arts



Philosophy | 24


Field Office: 32-D808
Main Number: 617-253-4141

"The most enduring value and benefit from my MIT education turned out to be the introduction to philosophy and the history of ideas."  
Ray Stata, SB '57, SM '58, Founder, Chairman of Analog Devices



Political Science | 17 


Field Office: E53-484
Main Number: 617-253-3649

"At MIT we are engaged in cutting edge research and teaching that helps us understand and solve some of the world's greatest challenges."  


Science, Technology, and Society | STS


Field Office: E51-163
Main Number: 617-253-9759

STS scholars ask such questions as: "How do changes in science and technology affect what it means to be human?,” and "How do science and technology express human values?" 



Theater Arts | 21M


Field Office: 4-246
Main Number: 617-253-3210
"Studying physics has enabled me to step back and analyze the mechanics of problems. Theater shows me how to examine them in terms of their human relevance."  
— Kenneth L. Roraback SB '06 in Physics and Theater



Women’s and Gender Studies | WGS


Field Office: 14E-316
Main Number: 617-253-8844
"Where else can feminist scholars of every possible discipline come together to share ideas, to discuss everything from adoption to genetics, from Aphra Behn in the 17th century to poverty in America in the 20th?"  
— Elizabeth Wood, Professor of History, and WGS Faculty