Graduate Writing Exam FAQs

Graduate Writing Exam FAQs

If you do not see your question answered here, please consult your department's administrator, or send your question to fee-help@mit.edu, and we'll do our best to answer it quickly!

  • Q: What are the possible scores on the Graduate Writing Exam?
  • A: There are two possible results of the Graduate Writing Exam: pass or not pass. A passing score is 80 or above. Students who receive a score below 80 are recommended to take an IAP writing workshop.

  • Q: What if I am unable to take the online Graduate Writing Exam?
  • A: If you are unable to take the online Graduate Writing Exam over the summer, you must take the pencil-and-paper make-up exam in September.

  • Q: How do I know if I need to take the Graduate Writing Exam?
  • A: Your department administrator will notify you if you are required to take the Graduate Writing Exam.

  • Q: I have other commitments during the week of the graduate writing exam. Will the exam take the entire six days?
  • A: No. We expect that carefully reading the articles will take about 2-3 hours during the first 3-day period, and that writing the essay will take another 4-7 hours during the second 3-day period. We allow multiple days for the reading and writing because we know that people have other commitments during that time, and to allow time for a complete writing process, including reflection and revision.

  • Q: How do I get my results?
  • A: Once the Graduate Writing Exams are scored, the results will be sent to your graduate administrator; he or she will then give you your result.

  • Q: Can I use a computer at my local library/internet cafe to take the Online Graduate Writing Exam?
  • A: Yes!