Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences: Complete Overview

Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences offers Masters, Doctoral, and joint degrees to learners seeking advanced degrees in various fields. It’s located in New York and has dozens of departments under it. This arts and sciences institution ranks well, has a reasonably good acceptance rate, and provides lots of financial aid opportunities.

Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Admissions & Considerations

Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences admissions council assesses applicants’ academic and off-class standings. A cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 is preferred. However, a lower GPA may be considered for conditional admission in some courses. An applicant must also show desired qualities such as leadership potential, integrity, responsibility, and academic preparation.The school is very competitive, and a candidate’s application is thoroughly evaluated to determine their potential to complete a degree. Admission decision for Ph.D. applications is usually made in March. As for Master’s, they are communicated in early spring or by the end of July.

Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Acceptance Rate & Competitiveness

Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences application should be made electronically through the university website. When applying, you must give details about the department and the masters/ Ph.D. course you want to pursue. You may also need to state the term in which you seek enrolment. The application documentation should include:
  • Unofficial transcripts;
  • A statement of purpose (300-500 words);
  • Your resume;
  • Writing sample.
Added to this checklist is your GRE scores. TOEFL or IELTS may be necessary for international candidates. To finish applying, you will pay an application charge of $115. The institution also asks applicants to authenticate their applications, i.e., attest that the details are correct and authentic.

Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Rankings in the Country

Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences rankings are not quite great. The university, as a whole, ranks third nationally. The arts and sciences graduate division is ranked among the top ten in most courses, according to U.S. News & World Report. For example, it is 3rd in English, 5th in earth science, 6th in History, and 7th in political science.

Tuition and Other Costs

Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences cost differs with the academic level and concentration. For Ph.Ds., it costs $24,512 for a resident unit per semester, with matriculation and facilities amounting to $2,344. Tuition for Master’s courses is different for every course, ranging between $30,590 and $38,506 per semester. Other costs include medical insurance, university services & support charges, student activity charge, and living expenses.


Columbia’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences offers a range of courses at the postgraduate level. The facility seeks individuals who present a good educational record as well as all-rounded brilliance. Though a little costly, the university provides options for full or partial financial aid.
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Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
#19 Best Graduate Arts and Sciences School

One of the oldest and most distinguished graduate schools in the United States, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences administers the education of graduate students in the humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences, and grants the PhD for all divisions of Columbia University. Partnerships with research and cultural institutions in New York enhance Columbia’s educational offerings, while the vast array of industries centered in the city provide numerous opportunities for professional development. The Graduate School’s support in academic matters includes facilitating the integration of graduate students into the research and educational enterprises of the university, establishing standards and policies for best practices among graduate programs, and fostering an environment for collegial, fruitful interaction and collaboration across a range of disciplines.

Total students ~6,000
Established in
New York, New York, United States
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How to Apply
All Steps of the Application Process
Applicants should upload a transcript or record (e.g., web-based transcripts, mark sheets, relevé de notes) of any academic work from each university-level institution you have attended for use in review of your application. Official transcripts are required only after an offer of admission has been made and accepted.
You are required to have taken the GRE test. All test scores should be reported to the GSAS Office of Admissions. GRE scores are valid for five years from the date taken.
Applicants who have studied for at least two years at a U.S. institution or at an institution in a country where the official language is English and earned the undergraduate (or bachelor’s) degree at that institution are not required to complete the English proficiency requirement.
As an essay it is required to submit the Statement of Academic purpose. For more information about the topic and the size of the essay you should contact the admissions office.
Columbia GSAS accepts up to four letters of recommendation.Letter of recommendation to which an applicant has had access are not acceptable and are not considered official.
You are obligated to apply your resume with both working and studying experience.
A nonrefundable fee of $115 will be required for the 2021 online application.
Columbia University is committed to providing a learning, living, and working environment free from unlawful discrimination. Please note that all application materials become the property of Columbia University and are not returnable. Additionally, materials will not be shared with or forwarded to third-parties. Applicants who have not waived their right to view letters of recommendation may request to view the letters only after they enroll in the GSAS program to which they have been admitted. Under the guidelines of the Federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), students who do not receive an offer of admission, or who are admitted but do not enroll, are not permitted access to the letters at any time.
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International Applicants
What International Applicants to Must Have
The admissions criteria applied in evaluating international applicants are the same as those for U.S. citizens. All application materials, including transcripts and recommendations, must be submitted online and in English.
To be eligible for admission, applicants must have earned a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution by the date on which they enroll at the Graduate School.
Applicants should upload all their transcripts translated into English. All the official transcripts will be required after the admission.
If your mother tongue is not English language, you are supposed to pass the English proficiency test to assure the admission committee that you are able to study without any difficulties. The English proficiency requirement can be fulfilled through the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or the Duolingo English Test. Applicants are strongly urged to make arrangements to take these examinations early in the fall. Scores more than 2 years old are not accepted. Student score reports are not considered official.
  • - transcripts of all previous post-secondary education
  • - a statement of academic purpose
  • - a curriculum vitae or résumé
  • - three letters of recommendation from academic sources
  • - GRE scores and, if applicable, results of the TOEFL or IELTS examination to fulfill the English Proficiency Requirement
  • - a sample of scholarly writing, if required by the department or program
  • - payment of the application fee
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