Students Say

The Ivy League’s Columbia University has an international rep as “an elite institution in the greatest city in the world.” The hallmark of a Columbia education has to be its Core Curriculum, which “values intellectualism over single-minded pre-professionalism” and “ensures that students can understand and analyze the foundations of Western thought and contemporary society.”

Overview

Applicants
32,967
Acceptance Rate
7%

Test Scores

SAT Reading
25th-75th percentile (enrolled students)
690 - 780
SAT Math
25th-75th percentile (enrolled students)
700 - 790
SAT Writing
25th-75th percentile (enrolled students)
700 - 780
ACT Composite
25th-75th percentile (enrolled students)
31 - 34

Deadlines

Early Decision
November 1

Regular
January 1

Other Admission Factors

Academic

Rigor of Secondary School Record
Class Rank
Academic GPA
Standardized Test Scores
Application Essay
Recommendation(s)
Non-Academic

Character / Personal Qualities

Selectivity Rating

Overall

Students Say

The Ivy League’s Columbia University has an international rep as “an elite institution in the greatest city in the world.” The hallmark of a Columbia education has to be its Core Curriculum, which “values intellectualism over single-minded pre-professionalism” and “ensures that students can understand and analyze the foundations of Western thought and contemporary society.” “The experience of collective intellectual growth might not be unique to Columbia, but I think the Core is the only program in the nation that requires its participants to interact with each other as much as they do with the texts. The intellectual corpus created by the Core is absolutely my favorite thing about Columbia.” For the most part, classes are “thought-provoking,” and “professors are invested in the students and are extremely accessible.” One student complains, “I don’t like the fact that I have graduate students teaching some of my intro classes.” Another student confesses, “Not every class has been a home run, but the ones that have been truly knock it out of the park.” Good grades take some hard work. “Although it is difficult to get an A, it is definitely not uncommon.” Students feel that “Columbia provides amazing access to New York and will definitely change the way that you think about the world.”

Faculty and Class Information

Student/Faculty
6:1
Total Faculty
1,667
with Terminal Degree

1,097
Men
570
Women
395
Minority
139
International

Most frequent class size
10 - 19
Most frequent lab / sub section size
2 - 9


Graduation Rates

Graduate in 4 years
90%
Graduate in 5 years
95%
Graduate in 6 years
96%

Majors

  • Engineering

  • Engineering, General

  • English Language and Literature/Letters

  • English Language and Literature, General

  • Social Sciences

  • Political Science and Government, General


Degrees

Bachelor's
Doctoral
Master's

Career Services

On-Campus Job Interviews Available
Yes

Career Services

Alumni Network
Alumni Services
Classes
Interest Inventory
Internships
Opportunities at School

Coop
Experiential
Internship

Prominent Alumni


Edwin Armstrong
Inventor, FM Radio

Maggie Gyllenhaal
Actress

Lou Gehrig
Athlete

Jack Kerouac
Novelist

Alexander Hamilton
Founding Father

Barack Obama
President

Joseph Pulitzer
Writer

Academic Rating

Career overview

Students Say

The Columbia University brand goes far in this country, even though many students only need it to work downtown. Students are thankful for the wealth of resources (referring primarily to internships) available to a student at Columbia University, as well as the professors that are “keen to let you work with them through research.” Internships in New York are an excellent entry point for students trying to make themselves known to employers, and it doesn’t hurt that the city is rife with Columbia alumni. The Center for Career Education offers a boatload of resources to get students on their way, including counseling sessions, practice interviews, dossier assessments, and old reliable career fairs. Graduates who visited Payscale.com reported an average starting salary of $57,600; 48 percent of these students said they felt their job had a meaningful impact on the world.

Graduation Rates

Graduate in 4 years
90%
Graduate in 5 years
95%
Graduate in 6 years
96%

Career Services

On-Campus Job Interviews Available
Yes

Career Services

Alumni Network
Alumni Services
Classes
Interest Inventory
Internships
Opportunities at School

Coop
Experiential
Internship

ROI & Outcomes

Information from PayScale:

Median Starting Salary
$57,600

Median Mid-Career Salary
$99,600

Alumni with High Job Meaning
48%

Return on Education (ROE) rating
97

Dates

Application Deadlines
Mar 1
Notification Date
Apr 1

Required Forms

FAFSA
Forms CSSProfile
Forms Divorced Parent

Bottom Line

Earning an acceptance letter from Columbia is no easy feat. Admissions officers are looking to build a diverse class that will greatly contribute to the university. It’s the Ivy League, folks, and it’s New York City, and there is a price tag that goes with both. A year’s tuition is $46,846. Additionally, count on $12,000 in room and board (such a deal for NYC!). Columbia’s New York City campus means that every manner of distraction is literally at your fingertips, so you’ll want to factor in another nice chunk of change for things like transportation, personal expenses, outings, etc. These figures are nothing to sneeze at. Take heart: If you get over the first hurdle and manage to gain admittance to this prestigious university, you can be confident that the university will help you pay for it.

Bang For Your Buck

With nearly all undergraduate students living on campus, students are active participants in campus life through participation in hundreds of student clubs, community-service organizations, and athletic teams. One student tells us, “The opportunities Columbia has to offer, not only on campus but also throughout New York City, attracted me to its gates. The dichotomy of a self-contained campus in the largest city in the U.S. is truly unique and cannot be surpassed by any other American university.” Another student adds, “I am big on the sciences, and I knew that if I did not attend a school that had a core curriculum (required set of classes that surveys the humanities and the sciences), all I would take are science classes. With Columbia’s core, I am able to have a more holistic education. Also, the location of Columbia is perfect—the university still has a campus feel even though it is in the middle of New York City!”

Financial Aid Statistics

Average Freshman Total Need-Based Gift Aid
$47,895

Average Undergraduate Total Need-Based Gift Aid
$44,887

Average Need-Based Loan
$3,919

Undergraduates who have borrowed through any loan program
26%

Average amount of each freshman scholarship/grant package
$41,207

Financial aid provided to international students
Yes

Expenses per Academic Year

Tuition
$46,846
Required Fees
$2,292
Average Cost for Books and Supplies
$1,170

Tuition / Fees Vary by Year of Study
No
Board for Commuters
Transportation for Commuters

Available Aid

Financial Aid Methodology
Federal and Institutional

Scholarships and Grants

Need-Based
 

Need-Based College/University Scholarship or Grant Aid from Institutional Funds
Need-Based Federal Pell
Need-Based Private Scholarships
Need-Based SEOG
Need-Based State Scholarships

Federal Direct Student Loan Programs
Direct PLUS Loans
Direct Subsidized Stafford Loans
Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loans

Federal Family Education Loan Programs (FFEL)
College/university loans from institutional funds
Federal Perkins Loans

Is Institutional Employment Available (other than Federal Work Study)
Yes

Direct Lender
No

Financial Aid Rating

Overall

Students Say

The “unparalleled” student body “encompasses multiple political views” and is also “very active politically.” “Students fit in by learning to accept that they are different and that others may disagree with them on any number of issues.” One student opines, “Because the right-wing portion of the student body is a minority, it is also more outspoken and thus pretty visible on campus.” Another comments, “Being religious and/or conservative on this campus is tough.” “In terms of socioeconomic status, ethnicity, religion, age, and sexual preference, this school has everything. You will never feel as if you don’t belong.” A student sums it up this way: “We fit in because of our diversity.” As for relaxation, “everyone has their own fun on the weekends. There seems to be a nice equal mix between those who go to parties, those who go out into the city, those who stay in with friends or do work, etc. The campus really accommodates...everyone.” Students at Columbia “do all sorts of different things but the unifying factor is how passionate about what they study everyone is.”

Student Body Profile

Total Undergraduate Enrollment
6,170
Out of State
76%

International
Foreign Countries Represented
87

Demographics

48% female
52% male
76% are out of state
100% are full time
0% are part time

Overview

Students Say

“Student life here is strongly influenced by New York City. Since the city offers millions of activities, fun can range from spending the day at the Met to going to an underground rave downtown, it’s really up to each person.” Situated in the Upper Manhattan neighborhood of Morningside Heights, Columbia “offers so many free and discounted tickets to museums and cultural events, there’s always something fun to get out and do.” All you have to do is get on the subway. Students feel that Columbia “has a complete campus inside New York City, so each student is free to choose whether they want to take advantage of the urban setting or just stay on campus and have a more traditional campus experience.” Undergrads have access to a vast array of “research positions, internships, externships, and study abroad experiences.” Students want to point out that since they live in New York City, there’s no one typical activity that students take part in. Instead, “there’s a ton of things to do around campus, but then a lot of people will also go downtown to a comedy show or to a new bar or to a Broadway show.” The general consensus is that “the opportunities are just endless.”

Campus Life

Undergrads living on campus
94%
Help finding off-campus housing
Yes

First-Year Students living on campus
100%

Campus Environment
Large Urban

Housing Options

Disabled Student
Dorms Coed
Frat Sorority
Other
Theme Housing
Wellness Housing

Special Needs Admissions


College Entrance Tests Required
No

Interview Required
No

Special Need Services Offered


Student Activities

Registered Student Organizations
300
Number of Honor Societies

Number of Social Sororities
11
Number of Religious Organizations
17

19% join a fraternity
9% join a sorority

Sports

Athletic Division
Division I

Men's Sports (Lions)
14 Sports

Baseball
Basketball
Crew Rowing
Cross Country
Diving
Fencing
Football
Golf
Soccer
Swimming
Tennis
Track Field Indoor
Track Field Outdoor
Wrestling
Women's Sports (Lions)
16 Sports

Archery
Basketball
Crew Rowing
Cross Country
Diving
Fencing
Field Hockey
Golf
Lacrosse
Soccer
Softball
Swimming
Tennis
Track Field Indoor
Track Field Outdoor
Volleyball

Student Services

Health
LGBT Support Groups: www.columbia.edu/cu/cqa www.columbia.edu/cu/qoc

Minority Support Groups: www.studentaffairs.columbia.edu/sda/groups

Army ROTC Offered at cooperating institutions: Fordham University
Navy ROTC Offered on-campus
Air Force ROTC Offered at cooperating institutions: Manhattan College

Sustainability

Located within walking distance of grassy Central Park, Columbia University’s campus is evolving into one of New York City’s green landmarks in its own right. Surrounded by one of the biggest and densest collections of building in the world, the university has put its location to good use—recently launching the NYC Urban Technology Innovation Center in order to promote green building technologies in New York City. The Urban Design Lab has committed to local environmental design and sustainable economic development, combining the vast intellectual and financial resources of the architecture and engineering schools. The challenges of developing sustainable infrastructure in a bustling urban environment are real, which makes Columbia’s recent LEED Platinum for its 17-acre Manhattanville campus plan in West Harlem even more impressive. Leave it to one of the oldest and most historically rooted universities in the world to stake claim to the first Platinum of its kind in New York City. (And the first for a University plan nationally!) This estimable bit of green construction will only add to Columbia’s significant collection of LEED-certified buildings, which welcomed seven LEED Gold or LEED Silver endeavors in the last several years. Of course, construction is just one of many fortunate opportunities to advance sustainability in Manhattan—Columbia has devoted considerable effort to healthy local food, greenmarkets, vegetative roofs, and more efficient water treatment. Always a beacon in academia and leadership, students are offered a choice of twenty-four degrees in environmental study to complement thirty-three environmental research centers, while organizations such as the Earth Institute and Columbia EcoReps contribute to the active presence of the sustainability movement in everyday campus life.

School Has Formal Sustainability Committee
Yes

Sustainability-focused degree available
Yes

School employs a sustainability officer
Yes

Public GHG inventory plan
Yes

% food budget spent on local/organic food
52%

Campus Security Report

Campus Security Report

The Jeanne Clery Act requires colleges and universities to disclose their security policies, keep a public crime log, publish an annual crime report and provide timely warnings to students and campus employees about a crime posing an immediate or ongoing threat to students and campus employees.

Please visit The Princeton Review’s page on campus safety for additional resources: http://www.princetonreview.com/safety

The Princeton Review publishes links directly to each school's Campus Security Reports where available. Applicants can also access all school-specific campus safety information using the Campus Safety and Security Data Analysis Cutting Tool provided by the Office of Postsecondary Education of the U.S. Department of Education: http://ope.ed.gov/security


Other Information

Campus-wide Internet Network
Yes

Email and Web Access Available
Yes

Number of Computer Labs / Classrooms
45

Average Number of PC's per Lab
8

Network Access in Dorm Rooms
Yes

Network Access in Dorm Lounges
Yes

Fee for Network Use
No

Student Web Pages Permitted
Yes

Student Web Pages Provided
Yes

Partnerships with Technology Companies
No

Online Class Registration Available
Yes

Personal computer included in tuition for each student
No

Require Undergraduates to Own Computers
No

Discounts Available with Hardware Vendors
Yes

Description
Journeyed.com Apple Dell JandR Computer World

Webcasting, Digital Audio or Video-Streaming of Courses
Yes

Webcasting, Digital Audio or Video-Streaming of Campus Radio / TV Stations
Yes

Campus Visits Contact

Contact
Kathryn Saunders
Director, Visitors Center

Address
Visitors Center - Columbia University
212 Low Library MC 4318
New York, NY 10027

Phone
212-854-4900


Experience College Life

Most Popular Places On Campus
Low Library and Plaza
Butler Library
Postcrypt Coffee House
Ferris Booth Commons
Levien Gym
http://undergrad.admissions.columbia.edu/visit/virtual-tours

Most Popular Places Off Campus
Times Square
Greenwich Village
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Tom's Resturant
Central Park
www.nycvisit.com/home/index.cfm

Campus Tours

Campus Tours
Appointment Required: Yes
Dates: Year-round
Times: Mon-Fri: 10 and 2; some Saturdays
Average Length: 1 hour

On Campus Interview

Campus Interviews
No

Information Sessions
Not Available

Times

Faculty and Coach Visits

Dates/Times Available
Academic Year

Advance Notice
2 weeks

Contact Email Address for Visit
kl2718@columbia.edu

Class Visits

Dates/Times Available
Academic Year

Arrangements
Contact Visiting Center

Overnight Dorm Stays

Overnight Dorm Stays
Available

Arrangements
Contact Admissions Office

Limitations
Permitted for 1 night on M-TH during the fall semester while classes are in session

Transportation