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Communication Requirement

Full information about MIT’s Communication Requirement is available at the Registrar’s website.

What you need to know

The Communication Requirement was developed out of the belief that MIT students, regardless of their field of study, should learn to write prose that is clear, organized, and effective, and to marshal facts and ideas into convincing written and oral presentations.

The Requirement includes four Communication Intensive (CI) subjects over the course of your four years as an MIT undergraduate. Two are Communication Intensive in the Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (CI‑H) and two are Communication Intensive in the Major (CI‑M). You must complete one CI subject per year in order to remain in compliance with the required pace. This progression not only helps you develop and strengthen your skills, but also places you on a trajectory to become a persuasive, dynamic, and confident communicator by the time you leave MIT.

Some key points to remember:

  • The results of your First-Year Essay Evaluation (FEE) determine what kind of CI‑H subject you will take in your first year.
  • You must pass your CI‑H and CI‑M subjects in order to receive credit.
  • You may receive CI credit for only one CI‑H subject per semester.
  • You may receive credit for more than one CI‑M per term or for both a CI‑H and a CI‑M taken in the same term.
  • Most CI subjects also satisfy other GIR or major requirements.
  • If you will be unable to meet the required pace of the Communication Requirement, please email commreq@mit.edu to discuss your individual circumstances.


  • You are in noncompliance if you fail to complete one CI subject per year.
  • At the end of each term, the Committee on Academic Performance (CAP) may take action to bring noncompliant students into good academic standing.
  • If the CAP votes for a Communication Requirement warning, you will have a credit limit for the following term.