Teachers College Columbia University

Academic Catalog

Other Admission Policies

Notification of Decision

The length of the application review process varies from program to program. The Office of Admission will notify the applicant via e-mail once a decision has been published. This notification will include instructions on how to retrieve the application decision through the online application. The official notification of the decision is the letter bearing the signature of the Director of Admission. Decisions will not be given over the telephone.

For Summer/Fall applicants who submit a complete application by the published early application deadlines, it is our goal to publish decisions around mid-March. Spring term applicants and applicants applying after the early deadline will be notified on a rolling basis.

Members of the Admissions staff are not permitted to discuss specifics regarding the decision on any application. Admission committee meetings are confidential and information cannot be shared with applications or any other party. Admission decisions are final.

If you have applied to Teachers College three times and were denied admission each time, you must wait three years before submitting another application.   

In order to ensure a place in a program, a $300 U.S. non-refundable tuition deposit must be received by Teachers College. Deposit deadlines will be included in the letter of admission. The tuition deposit must be submitted electronically through the Admission Response Form (credit card or checking or savings account routing number). Deposits made by checking or savings account routing number must be drawn on a U.S. bank. Upon enrollment, the tuition deposit will be credited to the student’s account.  

Deferral of Admission

Students may defer their admission to a Master of Arts, Master of Education, or Master of Science degree program for one year, unless otherwise specified by the program. Students admitted to doctoral programs must have the written permission of the program to which they were admitted to defer an offer of admission. Requests for deferral of admission must be indicated on the Admission Response Form. Students wishing to defer are required to submit a non-refundable tuition deposit at the time of the deferral request. 

Transfer Credit

Students may apply for transfer credit upon acceptance at Teachers College.  Transfer credit is defined as coursework completed at another institution prior to enrolling at Teachers College that is then applied toward a Teachers College degree.  Previously completed Teachers College coursework is not considered transfer credit.  Use of these previously-completed Teachers College credits is an academic decision made by a student's advisor outside of the transfer credit process.

Master of Arts students are not eligible for transfer credit.  Master of Science students enrolled in a degree program that requires fewer than 60 credits are not eligible for transfer credit.  Master of Science students enrolled in a program that requires 60 or more credits, Master of Education students, and Doctor of Philosophy students are eligible to transfer up to 30 credits.  Doctor of Education and Doctor of Education in the College Teaching of an Academic Subject are eligible to transfer up to 45 credits.

Only graduate courses which have been (1) completed with grades of B or higher, (2) submitted on an official transcript from a regionally accredited institution, (3) granted/assigned graduate credit on the transcript of that institution, and (4) completed prior to enrollment at Teachers College.  For educational institutions outside of the United States or Canada, a course-by course evaluation is required.  

Transfer credit is awarded at the discretion of the Transfer Credit Coordinator and the student's faculty advisor.

For more information please refer to the "Degree Requirements" section of the Catalog, visit the  transfer credit website , or e-mail the Transfer Credit Coordinator at TCTransfer@tc.edu.


International Applicants

International applicants must hold, or be in the process of obtaining, the equivalent of a U.S. baccalaureate degree in order to be reviewed for admission to Teachers College. Applicants who do not meet this requirement will not be considered for admission.

Applicants are expected to collect and prepare international educational credentials well in advance of the application deadline. Incomplete records will not be reviewed for admission.

If an applicant’s credentials are from an institution outside of the United States and Canada, the Office of Admission requires a course-by-course evaluation of all post-secondary credentials (undergraduate and graduate, if applicable).  It is the applicant's responsibility to provide the necessary paperwork and payment to an evaluation service, and to request and official copy of the report to be sent to the Office of Admission.  The completed evaluation must be received by the appropriate admission deadline.  The evaluation copy provided to Teachers College becomes an official academic record document and the sole property of Teachers College upon its receipt.  Evaluations will be reviewed by Teachers College administrators and the determination of degree equivalency to U.S. degrees is at the discretion of Teachers College.  For more information, please visit the Office of Admission website at www.tc.columbia.edu/apply.

If a school an applicant attended is no longer in existence or it is impossible to obtain official documents from the school attended, the applicant should have the Ministry of Education of that country furnish an official statement testifying to the impossibility of obtaining records. The Ministry should also supply Teachers College with a list of courses ordinarily required in the degree program an applicant has followed in that school or university.  

Students who have earned a baccalaureate degree or its equivalent from a college or university where English is not the sole official language of instruction must take an exam to establish English Language proficiency. Refer to “Standardized Tests” for more information.  

Applicants should not submit bank statements or other proof of funds with application materials.  

Documents necessary to obtain a student visa (I-20 or DS-2019) are sent only after an applicant is officially admitted to Teachers College and has submitted the Application for Visa Certificate (AVC) (available online at www.tc.columbia.edu/international), and supporting documents certifying that the applicant has the necessary funds to meet the cost of full-time study at Teachers College. Holders of student visas (F-1 or J-1) are required to study full-time (at least 12 points per semester). A copy of the ID page(s) of the passport or national ID card, as well as address in the applicant’s country of permanent residence are also required. 

Be certain that any form not issued in English is accompanied by a notarized English translation.   

Individuals holding B-1 or B-2 status, or who entered the United States on a visa waiver, may be in violation of their status if they enroll in classes.

Contact International Services at tcintl@tc.columbia.edu with any questions related to visas or visit www.tc.columbia.edu/international.  

Students with Disabilities

The Office of Access and Services for Individuals with Disabilities (www.tc.columbia.edu/oasid) ensures that programs and services at Teachers College are physically, programmatically, and attitudinally accessible to individuals with disabilities. Equal access is achieved through individualized responses addressing the needs of individuals with conditions including, but not limited to, vision, hearing or mobility impairments, medical conditions, or learning disabilities that affect one or more academic activities.  

Office of Access and Services for Individuals with Disabilities
163 Thorndike Hall  
Teachers College, Columbia University  
Box 105
525 West 120th Street  
New York, NY 10027-6696

Tel/Voice: (212) 678-3689 
TTY: (212) 678-3853  
Video Phone: (866) 624-3281
Fax: (212) 678-3793
Email: oasid@tc.columbia.edu

Admission as a Non-Degree Student

Non-degree status is available to all applicants holding the equivalent to a U.S. baccalaureate degree.   

The non-degree application is available online at www.tc.columbia.edu/apply. A valid e-mail address must be included on the application form, as it will be used for correspondence from the Office of Admission.

The non-degree application consists of the online non-degree application form, $65.00 non-refundable application fee, and proof of a baccalaureate degree (a photocopy of official transcript or diploma is acceptable). All three application items can be submitted electronically through the online non-degree application process.

A non-degree student may take up to 16 credit points as long as the academic standards of the College are met.  

In order to exceed the maximum of 16 points, a non-degree student must either: 

  • Be admitted to a Teachers College degree program, or  
  • Obtain approval from the Registrar for continued registration under non-degree status.  

Admission to non-degree status implies no commitment for admission to a degree program. Should a non-degree student become a degree candidate, a maximum of 16 points (8 in the major field) taken in non-degree status may be applied toward a degree program.

Program Change Form

Current Teachers College students enrolled in a teacher certification program or a program that offers multiple tracks may use a Program Change Form to apply to switch from one certification/track to another in the same program.  The Program Change Form must be signed and approved by the Program Coordinator before the Office of Admission can begin to process the form.  A signed and approved Program Change Form does not guarantee admission until after it is reviewed by the Office of Admission.  The Director of Admission reserves the right to request additional application materials from the applicant, even after the form has been signed by the Program Coordinator.  The Program Change Form is not intended to be used as a means to re-apply to different programs or advanced degrees at Teachers College.   For these requests the online application is recommended.  The Office of Admission will notify the applicant via e-mail once a decision has been published.  The official notification of the decision is the letter bearing the signature of the Director of Admission. Decisions will not be given over the telephone.

Contact Information                   

Office of Admission
Thorndike Hall, 3rd Floor
Phone: (212) 678-3710
Fax: (212) 678-4171
Email: tcinfo@tc.columbia.edu

Statement of Non Discrimination

Teachers College does not disciminate on the basis of race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, acestry, age, marital status, citizenship status, veteran status, disability, pregnancy and gender expression or any other criterion specified by federal, state or local laws in the adminitration of its admission, employment and educational policies or scholarships, loan, athletic and other school administrated programs.