Three years of fundamental undergraduate physics courses, individual laboratories, and a working knowledge of ordinary differential equations are generally required for admission. Applicants are also required to present the results of the advanced Graduate Record Examination in physics as well as the aptitude test. Students whose first language is not English are required to take the standardized Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).

Graduate student support during the first two academic years is primarily through Faculty Teaching Fellowships; these pay tuition and fees and provide stipends.

Columbia's Graduate School of Arts & Sciences provides an online teaching manual that is organized around the diverse teaching roles filled by graduate students and offers practical advice concerning issues that arise from instructing students. A manual for those serving as teaching assistants is available at the Teaching Program's Website.


The online application for the Columbia Graduate School of Arts and Sciences can be found here.

When filing an application form, the student should specify the department or doctoral program subcommittee under which he or she wishes to study. In any given term, a student may apply for study under only one department or subcommittee. A nonrefundable fee of $115 must accompany the completed form.
A complete application includes transcripts of all previous post-secondary education, a personal statement, three letters of recommendation, scores from the GRE and, if applicable, the TOEFL examination.

The Graduate School requires the submission of scores from the Graduate Record Examination General Test and Subject Test scores for all applicants. Applicants are urged to take either the paper-and-pencil or computerized GRE well in advance of the January admissions deadline. For complete information about the GRE, contact:

Educational Testing Service
20 Nassau Street
Princeton, NJ 08540
Telephone: (609) 771-7670

Students denied admission may reapply in a subsequent year if further training or experience is presented to strengthen the application


Students whose credentials for admission are received by the appropriate deadline will also be considered for fellowship support. In order to guarantee consideration for Columbia-administered fellowships, complete applications must be received by January 2, 2020 for the fall semester.