Forever questing. Forever curious.
Meet Our Community
Columbia student Riley sitting on the lawn in front of Butler Library

Learning beyond the classroom at Columbia: "I got involved with biology research during the summer following my first year at Columbia. I worked in the Kelley Lab on frog behavior and vocalizations, and I had the chance to present my research at an undergraduate research symposium the following winter. I learned so much from my peers and supervisors in the lab."

Port Saint Lucie, FL
Columbia student Mackenzie

A traditional residential campus in New York City: "Having a campus within a city is rare and special. We have an amazing home base that really cultivates community, and yet we also have easy access to New York City thanks to the subway line right outside the gates!"

Great Falls, MT
Sociology and Education
Columbia student Scout

Professors that are both world-renowned and accessible to undergraduates: "During my first semester at Columbia, Professor Gulati invited members of my Economics class to a series of lunches with him. The conversation was the best part. We were able to connect as classmates while getting to know our professor on a more personal level."

Wooster, AR
Economics, Concentration in Sustainable Development
Columbia student Emily

In the world's greatest city: "I have attended three Broadway shows, which is definitely something I would never have expected. The tickets and transportation were all provided by Columbia, and I am grateful for the opportunity to go into the city, watch these spectacular performances and meet some of my amazing peers as we traveled together."

Los Angeles, CA
Mechanical Engineering, Minor in Earth & Environmental Engineering
Columbia student Charlie on the Law Bridge above Amsterdam Ave

A traditional residential campus in New York City: "My current suitemates are all friends that I made freshman year in Carman Floor 6.  We now use our suite in East Campus with a big and wonderful kitchen to host potluck dinners. I love coming back to my dorm everyday and seeing my closest friends while still having a single in my suite."

Denver, CO
East Asian Studies and Political Science
Columbia student Blessing on campus

Professors that are both world-renowned and accessible to undergraduates: "One of my favorite classes at Columbia has been Shakespeare in America with Professor James Shapiro.  Our final assignment was a term paper and I wrote mine on a performance done at the Public Theater. Professor Shapiro knew the director, Kenny Leon, and got me to interview him for my research!"

Houston, TX
Theater and Education
Columbia student Blanche sitting on Low Steps

The Core Curriculum: "I came to Columbia as someone who was afraid of heavy readings and never thought about diving into humanities. However, after I took Literature Humanities and Art Humanities, I discovered my interests in history, specifically art history, and I ended up majoring in it!"

Beijing, China
Visual Art and Art History
Columbia student Billy standing on College Walk in front of Low Library

Learning beyond the classroom at Columbia: "I interned this summer at the Queens District Attorney's office. I worked on a team that aimed to protect workers and tenants from fraud and workplace abuse. I found the position through my own research, but the Center for Career Education was endlessly helpful in preparation for my interviews and when speaking with the office's recruiter."

Queens, NY
Comparative Literature & Society, specialization in Hispanic Studies and Hellenic Studies
Columbia student Astrid

Find me on campus: "My favorite thing to do on campus is probably getting a meal or boba tea and sitting on the Low Library steps with my friends! We amicably call the steps "Low Beach" because of how popular it is. It is so fun to run into friends, catch up with people and watch the beautiful sunset at night."

Eden Prairie, MN
Latin American & Caribbean Studies and Political Science


student-to-faculty ratio






programs of study



faculty in the National Academy of Engineering, Academy of Science and American Academy of Arts and Sciences

A renowned research university

Columbia has been a place of deep intellectual curiosity and wide-ranging academic inquiry since 1754.

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Aerial Campus shot from behind Low Library

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Affordability & Aid

What matters most to us is your ability to thrive at Columbia, not your ability to pay for it. We are committed to making Columbia’s many opportunities accessible to all our students. If cost is a concern for your family, we encourage you to apply for financial aid.

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Calculate the cost of attendance


Columbia students hanging out outside on Engineering Terrace

How to apply

Ready to find out where Columbia Blue might take you? Here, you’ll find all the resources you need to understand the admissions process and to get ready to build a complete, authentic, and compelling application. We look forward to getting to know you. 

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Plaque which reads "In Honor of the Lenape People"

Welcome to Columbia University in the City of New York. Our campus is located specifically on the island of Manhattan, which means "island of many hills" in the language of the Lenni Lenape people. We recognize that Manhattan is part of the ancestral and traditional homeland of the Lenni Lenape and Wappinger people, who are still active members of our community throughout New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Learn more by watching this video.

Frequently asked questions

What is Columbia looking for when evaluating students for admission? What are the criteria for admission?

The Columbia University first-year class of College and Engineering students is chosen from a large and diverse group of applicants. Columbia employs a holistic approach in assessing candidates in order to evaluate which students are the best matches for Columbia's unique educational experience.

In the process of selection, the Committee on Admissions considers each applicant's academic potential, intellectual strength and ability to think independently. The Committee also considers the general attitudes and character of the applicant, special abilities and interests, maturity, motivation, curiosity and whether they are likely to make productive use of the four years at Columbia. In its final selection, Columbia seeks diversity of personalities, achievements and talents, and of economic, social, ethnic, cultural, religious, racial and geographic backgrounds.

How can I take advantage of everything I want to do in New York City on a student budget?

New York City has something for everyone, which is why it is so often rated as one of the best college towns in the nation. It is full of hidden treasures that offer an inexpensive and yet unique array of food, shopping and entertainment. Some of the most creative culinary experiences are intimate restaurants within a few blocks from campus. Websites such as NYC Visit's Go Local operates as a service for New Yorkers to get the most out of their city.

There are also a variety of e-mail lists that help students gain free access to opportunities such as going to a major motion picture premiere. There are yearly bargains such as New York Restaurant Week, which gives students an inexpensive taste at some of the finest establishments in the city. Columbia helps students by providing discounted and free tickets to many events around the city through the Columbia Arts Initiative.

What are the differences between Columbia College, Columbia Engineering, Barnard College and the School of General Studies?

Columbia College is Columbia's traditional undergraduate liberal arts college, its founding in 1754 as King's College marks the birth of Columbia University.

Columbia Engineering is the University's engineering school, offering undergraduate and graduate degrees.

Barnard College is a liberal arts college for women in partnership with Columbia University.

At Columbia College, Columbia Engineering and Barnard College, students usually come directly from high school and attend full-time.

The School of General Studies is Columbia’s college for nontraditional students who want to earn a degree while attending full- or part-time. Nontraditional students have had a break of one year or more in their educational paths or have compelling personal or professional reasons for completing their bachelor’s degrees part time. Students in the School of General Studies take the same courses with the same faculty and undertake the same majors as all other undergraduates at Columbia.

All four colleges are located on the Morningside Heights campus in New York City.



We can’t tell you the best street vendor in the city. Some things you have to learn for yourself. Other things? Give us a try.

Contact Us

If you have a question that isn’t answered by this website or have updates to your application, reach out to Undergraduate Admissions directly.