HASTS selects a small number of qualified students for doctoral study whose research can be supported by HASTS faculty and who can bring a unique perspective to the program. For example, in Fall 2022, five new students entered the program, admitted from a pool of 287 applicants. Students in the HASTS program come from a wide range of academic disciplines and professional spheres.
Applicants often ask if their research is a good fit for our program; they should also consider if our program is the right fit for their research. We offer training in multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches to the sociocultural dimensions of science and technology. Our students do methodologically rigorous social scientific research employing archival and/or ethnographic methods.
Reading student and faculty bio pages may help to determine whether this program is right for you. You can also visit the Program section to learn more about the course and project work associated with the HASTS degree.
Our program does not admit students to study under the mentorship of a particular faculty member. We admit students to the program as a whole, and students have until the end of their first year to select an advisor. During the first year, the program’s Director of Graduate Studies serves as each student’s advisor. We look for students whose interests intersect with the research of multiple faculty members, so most students find that they have a multiplicity of possible primary advisors. For this reason, it is a good idea to identify at least a couple of faculty with whom you would like to work in your Statement of Objectives. More about advising and the importance of faculty committees in mentorship can be found in the Requirements section.
HASTS at MIT is exceptionally successful at preparing scholars for academic positions; the majority of our alumni are helping to shape the field as professors, department heads, and mentors within diverse social sciences departments at renowned universities. However, the skills and mindset—and especially the approach to critical analysis—that scholars gain at HASTS is applicable across a wide range of fields and industries.