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Department of Computer Science Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science Columbia University

  • New York, NY
  • Private
  • Urban
  • 25%75%
    student ratio
  • 490
    total students
  • Not Reported
    in-state tuition | out-of-state tuition
  • December 15
    fall application deadline
  • 28%
    acceptance rate
  • 5 Degrees
    degrees/awards offered


Specifically for Professionals, the M.S. Program Adds Depth and Breadth to the Understanding of Computer Science

The Master of Science program was developed specifically for professionals who desire greater depth and breadth in their understanding of computer science. Columbia University and New York City offer excellent career opportunities in multiple industries. The program provides a unique opportunity to develop in-depth knowledge of specific, leading-edge computing disciplines, with the department currently offering concentration tracks in ten such areas. In addition to course work, M.S. students are encouraged to participate in research with one or more of the twenty-three research groups and labs.

All M.S. students will finish a 12-credit core requirement, taking four of the following six courses: Programming Languages and Translators, Operating Systems I, Advanced Software Engineering, Analysis of Algorithms I, Artificial Intelligence, and Computer Architecture. Students must also complete an 18-credit concentration track, choosing from one of the following: Computational Biology, New Computer Security, Computer Security, Foundations of Computer Science, Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing, Network Systems, Software Systems, Vision and Graphics, M.S. Personalized, and M.S. Thesis.

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Comprehensive Ph.D. Program Is Primarily Focused on Research as Students Progress from Apprentices to Scholar-Scientists

The Ph.D. program is primarily focused on research, following the philosophy that students learn best by doing. Starting as apprentices, they become junior colleagues as they continue assisting faculty members on diverse scholarly research projects. Students spend at least half their time on research, typically under their adviser's direction, and are expected to participate in departmental and lab activities full-time, on campus, for the entire program. Exceptions may be made for summer internships elsewhere. Because of these requirements, the department does not admit part-time students, and study for the M.Phil., a GSAS prerequisite for the Ph.D., is also full-time only.

All Ph.D. students will have advisers for the length of their programs. Most students arrange for a research adviser during the admissions process preceding enrollment, and in most cases these faculty members become the students' thesis advisers as well. They will work intimately with the students on directed research beginning with the very first day of the program. A few students have two joint advisers.

The Department of Computer Science takes its well-developed sense of community seriously and sees it as an essential part of the Ph.D. degree program. Faculty members and advisers strongly encourage their students to contribute a year of service to the department's professional or operational needs, preferably within the first two years of their programs.

A Special M.S.-to-Ph.D. Program Is Available Only to Students Entering the Ph.D. Program Without a Recognized Master's

A special M.S.-to-Ph.D. program is available only to students who enter the Ph.D. program without a master's degree recognized by Columbia. Every M.S.-to-Ph.D. track student must apply for M.S. graduation in order to receive the M.S. degree from Columbia University and be awarded advanced standing toward the Ph.D.

Columbia University Is Among the World's Leading Universities and a New York Treasure

Columbia University, established in 1754 as King's College, today consists of sixteen schools and faculties and is among the world's leading institutions of learning, welcoming students from scores of countries. The students and faculty are hardworking and motivated, making Columbia an intellectually stimulating place. Located on Morningside Heights, New York, the university is close to Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Greenwich Village, Central Park, and midtown Manhattan.

New York City and the East Coast Offer a Multitude of Recreational, Cultural, and Artistic Opportunities

New York City is arguably the intellectual, artistic, cultural, corporate, and financial center of the United States, perhaps of the world. Renowned for its theaters, museums, and libraries, and loved for its restaurants, opera, and music, the city is easily accessible for Columbia students, for whom inexpensive student tickets make cultural and sporting events affordable. In fact, Columbia students enjoy discounts of various kinds, from museums and galleries to eateries and public transportation. The ethnic variety of the city adds greatly to its appeal, and it is bordered by uncongested areas of great beauty that provide diverse kinds of recreation, including hiking, camping, skiing, and all manner of water sports. There are first-rate beaches from Long Island to New Jersey, and to the north lie the Catskill, Green, Berkshire, and Adirondack Mountains. Close by is the beautiful Hudson River Valley, and the entire East Coast is accessible by plane, train, car, or bus for weekend trips, spring break and summer vacations. No matter the season, there is no lack of opportunity for rest or recreation for Columbia graduate students.

Location & Contact

Department of Computer Science

Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science
Columbia University

116th Street and Broadway
New York, NY 10027
United States

Dr. Julia Hirschberg

Professor and Chair, Computer Science

Phone: 212-939-7114

Ms. Remiko Moss

Assistant Director

Phone: 212-939-7002
Fax: 212-666-0140

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Degrees & Award

  • Degrees Offered
    • Major Degree Levels Offered
    • Computer Science Doctor of Engineering Science (Eng Sc D)
      Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
      Engineer (Engr)
      Master of Science (MS)
    • Computer Science And Journalism Master of Science (MS)
  • Degrees Awarded
    • Master's Degrees 162
    • Doctoral Degrees 11
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported
    • * Shows the number of degrees awarded for the last academic year that data was reported.
  • Earning Your Degree
    • Part-time study available? Yes
    • Evening/weekend programs available? No
    • Distance learning programs available? Yes
    • Terminal master's degree available? Yes
  • Degree Requirements
    • Master's Degrees
    • Doctoral Degrees
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees


28% of applicants are admitted.
  • Acceptance Rate
    • Applied 1,520
    • Accepted 428
    • Acceptance Rate 28
    • Enrolled 214
  • Applying
    • Application Fee - Domestic $85
    • Application Fee - International $85
    • Electronic applications accepted? Yes
    • Applications processed on a rolling basis? Not Reported
  • Application Deadlines
    • Type Domestic International Priority Date
    • Fall deadline December 15th December 15th Yes
    • Winter deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
    • Spring deadline October 1st October 1st Yes
  • Entrance Requirements
    • Master's DegreesGRE General Test
    • Doctoral's DegreesGRE General Test
    • First-Professional's DegreesNot Reported
    • Other Advanced DegreesGRE General Test
    • International DegreesTOEFL required, IELTS required

Tuition & Fees

  • Tuition & Fees
    • In-state tuition *Not Reported
    • Out-of-state tuition *Not Reported
    • International student tuitionNot Reported
    • *Typical tuition for this institution for full-time graduate students per academic year
  • Fees
    • Per-academic year feesNot Reported
    • Per-term feesNot Reported
    • One-time feeNot Reported
    • *Typical fees for this institution for full-time graduate students per academic year
  • Financial Support
    • Financial award applicants must submitFAFSA
    • Application deadlines for financial awardsDecember 15
    • Types of financial support availableFellowships, Research Assitantships, Teaching Assistantships, Health Care Benefits

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students490
    • Female Percentage25%
    • Male Percentage75%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students490
    • Part-time Percentage35%
    • Full-time Percentage65%
  • Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / Latino2%
    • Black / African American1%
    • White / Caucasian55%
    • American Indian / Alaskan Native0%
    • Asian30%
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander0%
    • Two or more races3%
    • Unknown9%


  • Faculty Breakout
    • Total Faculty80
    • Full-time Percentage71%
    • Part-time Percentage29%
    • Female Percentage15%
    • Male Percentage85%


  • Existing Research
    • Focus of faculty researchNatural language processing, machine learning, software systems, network systems, computer security, computational biology, foundations of computer science, vision and graphics
    • Externally sponsored research expenditures last yearNot Reported



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