Technology, Innovation, and Education

Frequently Asked Questions

All questions about application requirements, necessary tests, admitted student profiles, deadlines, and schoolwide information are best directed to the Admissions Office.

When do classes begin?

Fall semester classes begin on Wednesday, August 31, 2011. The HGSE academic calendar can be viewed online.

When and what is Orientation?

You will be contacted by the Office of Student Affairs sometime late in the summer with information detailing a full Orientation schedule. The schedule itself will be posted on MyGSE, HGSE's intranet (this resource will become available to you once you've received your Harvard student ID in the middle of the summer). Orientation activities include an L&T program meeting, meetings with your advisor, presentations from various HGSE offices, 2 days of course shopping (explained in an FAQ a bit further down this list), and also some fun social events.

How can I find a place to live?

Many newly admitted students express nervousness about finding housing in the Cambridge/Boston area but, while it can present challenges to some, rest assured that something will and always does work out! You can find many listings at the Harvard Housing Office at 7 Holyoke St. (bring along information showing you are a Harvard student in order to get in). Additionally, Craigslist is a popular alternative in finding affordable and nearby housing. If you are not familiar with the Boston area, please note that there are many areas outside of Harvard Square that are considerably more affordable while still easily accessible by train or bus. Alternatives to Harvard Square include Central, Porter and Davis Squares (in Cambridge and Somerville). Other options include Allston, Brighton, Brookline, and Dorchester.

What about campus and/or housing tours?

In terms of campus tours, HGSE's campus is limited to just a few buildings, so there aren't any official tours here. However, free Harvard University tours are offered twice a day - at 10am and 2pm. For more specific information, please visit the Harvard News Office. The tours leave the Harvard Information Center in Holyoke Center, 1350 Massachusetts Ave. To inquire about housing tours, your best bet is probably to contact the GSAS Housing Services office directly.

Do I choose an advisor or is one assigned to me?

All students in the TIE program are assigned an advisor who is a member of the TIE faculty. While we do our best to match each student with someone who appears to have a related interest or background, we think you'll find most members of the TIE faculty to be easily accessible and committed to the success of students in the program. You will receive your advisor assignment when you pick up your information packet on the first day of Orientation.

When/How do I register for courses?

Course enrollment day is Tuesday, August 30, 2011, the last day of Orientation. On Thursday and Friday (25-26) of Orientation, students will take part in what we call "Course Shopping." Shopping is held at the beginning of each semester, and is a time for faculty to provide students with an overview of the course. We advise that you shop all courses in which you may be interested; it is a great opportunity to sample a course and to meet the faculty member prior to registering for the class.

Can HGSE students cross-register at other schools within Harvard?

Cross-registration is popular among HGSE students - particularly at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard Business School, Harvard Law School, and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences - and the chance to engage in studies at another Harvard school is one of the many benefits of being a student here. Please read the section on Cross-Registration carefully for logistics concerning this option.

How many classes can we take per semester?

A full course load for full-time students is four classes a semester; two courses for part-time students. Full-time students have the opportunity to enroll in a fifth class at no additional tuition cost.

When do I need to let HGSE know that I plan on attending?

Please let the Admissions Office know your decision to attend by Friday, April 16.

How many students are in the TIE program?

There are generally about 30 to 40 students in the TIE Program.

Where can I get additional information about TIE and the Harvard Graduate School of Education?

The most current information about TIE can be found on this website. For more information on HGSE, contact the Admissions Office.

How long do students take to complete the program?

The majority of TIE students attend the program full-time and complete the degree in one year. Others attend part-time and graduate in two years.

Do you offer a doctoral program?

TIE is a master's degree (Ed.M.) program only -- but a substantial number of HGSE doctoral students (currently, about 20) have a strong technology focus in their project work and dissertation research. Your best resource for information on doctoral study here at HGSE is the doctoral program website. The doctoral program coordinator, Stacy Peazant, will be an invaluable contact for additional information. You can email her directly at

What kinds of jobs do TIE graduates obtain?

TIE graduates work wherever education is supported with technology: as teachers and technology advisors in schools, colleges, and universities; in corporate training; in public and network television; in museums; in educational software companies... The possibilities abound! Find out more about what some TIE graduates are doing.

Read the HGSE Career Services' Graduate Placement Surveys.

How many courses do students take to complete the program?

Students must take eight courses in order to graduate--generally taking four per semester. Five of these eight courses must be selected from the approved TIE requirements list (details can be found in the TIE Student Handbook posted on this site). Full-time students may enroll in up to ten courses (five per semester) and incur no additional cost.

Do I have to write a thesis or complete a final project in order to graduate from the TIE master's program?

Our master's program does not require a thesis or final project in order to graduate, but the program will require an extensive amount of writing and research. Writing skills are a must.

Do you offer courses via distance education?

No, although several TIE courses have a distance education component, all require students to attend class on campus. We believe that the program is lively and exciting because of the interactions among students, faculty, and staff, in addition to our rich virtual environment.

If you are interested in non-degree, HGSE-affiliated online professional development opportunities, two HGSE professors, David Perkins and Stone Wiske, are involved with a research project known as WIDE World. WIDE offers online professional development programs for educators. To learn more about WIDE's non-degree offerings, please visit WIDE's website.

How much prior experience with technology is required?

Every year, students enter the program with quite varied levels of technology experience. We assume that entering students will have basic computer skills such as word-processing. Many students come with a sophisticated programming background, while others arrive with moderate to basic technology experience.

I've never taught or worked professionally in a school environment. Does this disqualify me from admission to the program?

No, TIE students arrive with differing amounts of experience in education, but all TIE students share an interest in educational technology.

I am planning on visiting campus soon, what should I do to make the most of my visit?

Informational meetings

Small group informational meetings are offered throughout the summer and fall months at 9:15 am in the Admissions Office. Please RSVP for a session. The Admissions Office may also be able to assist you in setting up a visit to a HGSE class during the academic year, September-May.

While visiting campus, you may also want to make an appointment to meet with the program coordinator for this program. Please view contact information for the program coordinator under the "Contact Us" page on the site.


HGSE's campus is small, so no regular formal tour is offered. However, if you are interested in taking a Harvard University tour, any visitor is welcome to join one of the free campus tours offered daily by the Harvard News Office. The tours leave the Harvard Information Center in Holyoke Center, 1350 Massachusetts Ave, at 10am and 2pm.


HGSE does not provide housing to visiting prospective students. However, information about local, off-campus accommodations is available.

If you have questions about...

Career Opportunities

For more information please visit HGSE's Career Services Office.

Cross Registration

Many HGSE students choose to take courses at other Harvard graduate schools (aka, cross registering), including the Harvard Business School (HBS) and the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS). For more information about cross registering at other Harvard schools, please visit the Cross Registration website.

HGSE Course Catalog

For more information about HGSE course offerings, view the entire HGSE course catalogue