MIT Vs Stanford University 2023: The Best Comparisons | Differences & Similarities

Do you need help deciding between attending Stanford or MIT? These two schools stand on the list of the highest-ranked universities in the world, and both are primarily known for excellence in many programs.

So how can you choose between them? In this article, we compare MIT vs. Stanford on many factors. We will address each separately so you can make a great choice.

So, stay tight and read through this article the see the difference and similarities between Stanford University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

The table of contents below will help you get an overview of everything in this article, so do well to navigate through.

About MIT

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is a prestigious private research university across the river from Boston in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

MIT was founded in 1861 to increase laboratory instruction in the United States due to increased industrialization. The school encourages research, discovery, and innovation in science, engineering, and technology.

The school currently enrolls about 4,300 undergraduates and about 7,000 graduate students. There are also nearly 13,000 staff and faculty at MIT.

MIT is known as a STEM powerhouse, and almost 100 Nobel laureates are associated with the school. Also, the school attracts entrepreneurs, and the companies MIT alums have established earn about $1.9 trillion a year.

About Stanford University

Stanford University is among the most prestigious and competitive universities in the country. It’s known for teaching and research programs, especially those in engineering, economics, and the sciences. The school is in the Bay Area of California, popularly known as Silicon Valley.

Stanford University is a coed and non-denominational institute of learning founded in 1885. presently, Stanford has roughly 7,000 undergraduate students and 10,000 graduate students.

Stanford receives more money for start-ups than almost any other university, and the companies Stanford grads have to establish produce more than $2.7 trillion in annual revenue.

Read this: Berkeley Vs. Stanford University: Which College was the best in 2023

MIT Vs. Stanford: Differences

Stanford Vs. MIT: Ranking

MIT also places among the top five in many overall rankings of universities. U.S. News & World Report, the Q.S. World University Rankings for several years.

Also, the Academic Ranking of World Universities has ranked MIT’s Engineering School first, as did the 1995 National Research Council report.

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MIT’s strongest showings apart from engineering are in computer science, the natural sciences, business, architecture, economics, linguistics, mathematics, and, to a lesser extent, political science and philosophy.

On the other hand, Stanford is consistently ranked as among the most prestigious and top universities in the world by major education publications.

It is also one of the top fundraising institutions in the country, becoming the first school to raise more than a billion dollars in a year.

Stanford University is no 6 in the 2023 ranking edition of Best Colleges is National Universities.

MIT Vs. Stanford University: Tuition

Both Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Stanford University have high tuition rates. MIT’s is over $53,000 yearly, while Stanford’s tuition is over $55,000 annually.

If you include room and board and other fees, the total cost of a year at MIT is estimated at $73,160, while at Stanford, it is $78,218.

Although most students who attend either school receive remarkable financial aid to help them with these costs.

At MIT, 89% of students receive financial aid; the average amount they pay after assistance is $23,000 annually.

Also, MIT assures that they’ll meet your total financial need for all four years through scholarships, work-study programs, and loans. About 78% of MIT students graduate debt-free.

At Stanford University, approximately 70% of students get financial aid, with 58% receiving assistance directly from Stanford (including athletic scholarships).

The 47% of Stanford students receiving need-based financial aid pay an average of $13,600 annually towards their bills.

MIT Vs. Stanford: Size

Even though MIT has a smaller student body than Stanford, the two schools are quite similar in terms of size.

Stanford has 6,994 undergraduates and 9,310 graduate students, while MIT has 4,361 undergraduate students and 6,893 graduate students.

This gives Stanford a total enrollment of 16,304 and MIT a total enrollment of 11,254. Stanford’s larger student body may make the campus feel larger, which means that the school has more extracurriculars to join.

Additionally, while Stanford and MIT have an almost identical number of majors they offer (58 vs 56), Stanford has both a medical school and a law school, which MIT does not, this adds to Stanford feeling larger because of the greater diversity of schools on campus.

In addition to the student body size, Stanford’s campus is bigger than MIT’s. MIT’s campus covers 166 acres, while Stanford’s covers over 8,000 acres.

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MIT Vs Stanford: Faculty

Stanford and MIT are unique schools among other institutions in having seven schools co-located on one contiguous campus (Stanford University), and all of them possess exceptional breadth and depth of excellence. This naturally facilitates multidisciplinary collaboration.

While MIT has six schools co-located on one adjacent campus, and all of them possess excellence. So, here are the faculties of both schools. For Stanford University

  • School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences
  • School of Engineering
  • The Graduate School of Business
  • School of Humanities & Sciences
  • Graduate School of Education
  • School of Law
  • School of Medicine

On the other hand, these are MIT programs

  • School of Architecture and Planning
  • School of Engineering
  • MIT Schwarzman College of Computing
  • School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences
  • Sloan School of Management
  • More so, the School of Science

In addition to the faculty, Stanford is particularly known for its programs in engineering and the sciences (Computer science, biology, engineering). Still, due to its location in Silicon Valley, it also attracts many students interested in entrepreneurship.

While MIT is popularly known for these programs Computer science, engineering, and math.

MIT Vs. Stanford University: Admissions

Both schools are extremely competitive. MIT has an acceptance rate of 7%, while Stanford’s is just above 4%.

So, To be accepted, applicants will need strong standardized test scores, GPAs, and impressive extracurriculars.

Also, check this: Harvard vs. Dartmouth: Which School is easier to get Into in 2023

MIT Vs. Stanford: Student Life

Both MIT and Stanford are large enough and diverse enough to attract a wide variety of students.

Both schools have hundreds of student organizations, which include Greek life and other groups. However, there are some differences in the MIT vs. Stanford student life.

Generally, school sports are much more popular at Stanford compared to MIT. Stanford is known for attracting many athletes and having solid athletic programs.

MIT sports are significantly less attended, even though some students are interested in sports. Also, school spirit at games isn’t as familiar as at Stanford.

For this reason, if you want to play a sport in College, you’ll likely have a better chance at MIT because getting on the sports teams is less competitive.

Another difference in campus life is that 73% of MIT undergrad students live on campus, while 97% of Stanford undergrads do.

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As a suburban campus, Stanford isn’t located close to any other universities, and they express the campus as a bubble.

On the other hand, MIT is situated just a few miles from several other universities in Boston. They also have easy access to all that Boston has to offer.

So, it’s easier for MIT students to interact with other college students and city life than for Stanford students.

MIT students have long been stereotyped as one-dimensional nerds, but there’s much more to them than that.

While their students are always very interested in STEM subjects, they have a wide range of other personal and academic interests, as considered by the school’s variety of clubs and majors.

However, you may find students at Stanford have a wider variety of academic interests because it’s a larger school and isn’t quite STEM-focused as MIT is.

What Are The Similarities Between MIT And Stanford University?

There are a few similarities between the two schools. However, the similarities between Stanford University and MIT are that they are private institutions and don’t take part in the Ivy League.

Also, Both MIT and Stanford are world-renowned universities with robust STEM programs.


Suppose you are considering the school to attend, either Stanford University or Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and are both ranked no 1 in the country. In that case, you have to dig deeper to differentiate them.

You can get an excellent education at either school, but one is likely a better fit for you than the other.

To decide on the school, you must compare MIT vs. Stanford on various factors, including location, tuition, faculty, and student life.

Having a solid overview of what each school can offer will make it easier for you to decide whether MIT or Stanford is the better school for you.



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