Admitted Students

Welcome to New York City and to the School of Social Work at Columbia University! We are so glad you’ve decided to embark on this journey with us. To help get you started, we have prepared a New Student Checklist. In addition, we offer answers to these Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Will CSSW host events for newly admitted students? How can I plan a visit to CSSW?

    Admitted students will receive invitations via email to the following events. Meanwhile, please mark your calendar for:

    Saturday, March 29th - Admitted Students Day @ CSSW

    Regional Admitted Students Receptions:
    Tuesday, March 18th - San Francisco
    Thursday, March 20th - Los Angeles
    Thursday, April 3rd - Boston

    Information sessions and webinars for admitted students are also currently being scheduled. Keep an eye on your email for more information.

  • When is Orientation and what does it cover?

    Orientation for new Two-Year, Extended, Reduced Residency and Transfer students will be held the week of August 25-29, 2014. Orientation for new Advanced Standing students will be held on Monday, July 28, 2014. During Orientation, you’ll receive your class schedule and learn about registration, your field placement, and various student resources, among many other topics.

    Orientation Schedules:

    Orientation schedules will be posted as they become available. Please check back.

  • When do classes begin?

    Fall 2014 classes will begin on Tuesday, September 2, 2014. Classes for Advanced Standing students begin earlier - on Tuesday, July 29, 2014.

  • I want to fulfill the statistics course requirement before I enroll. What are my options?

    To fulfill the statistics course requirement, you must complete an acceptable statistics course at a regionally-accredited post-secondary institution and earn a grade of B or better. On-campus or online, university or community college--any type of institution is acceptable as long as it is regionally-accredited.

    The course should cover, at minimum, the following topics:

    • frequency distribution,
    • central tendency (mean, median, and mode),
    • variability (range, standard deviation and variance),
    • random sampling,
    • probability,
    • hypotheses (null and alternative),
    • decision rule,
    • two-tailed probability evaluations,
    • z-tests,
    • t-tests,
    • ANOVA, and
    • Chi-square testing.

    It is also recommended that your statistics course covers correlation and basic linear regressions.

    You also have the option of enrolling in CSSW's online statistics course, which will be offered on four (4) consecutive Saturdays in the Fall. Dates TBA.

    If you are unsure whether the statistics course you have in mind meets our requirements, please e-mail the admissions office at with the course details, and we will assist in making an assessment.

  • When will I be notified of my field placement?

    You will receive your field placement assignment during Orientation week. (You will be notified before Orientation only if your placement requires special tests—e.g., fingerprinting or medical clearance.)

  • What days will I be in the field?

    Students entering their first year of field placement are in the field three days a week: Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays.

  • What if I have questions about housing, health insurance or related matters?

    Please go to the General Students Questions page, which provides guidance on housing, health insurance and other common student issues.

  • I am an international student. When will I receive my I-20 student visa form? Do I need to send additional documentation?

    If you are an international student, you must apply to Columbia University’s International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO) for an I-20 Certificate of Eligibility (COE) for student status. The I-20 is required to apply for a student entry visa at a U.S. consulate, to present at a port of entry upon arrival, and to transfer your SEVIS record if you are currently in the United States on an F-1 status. NOTE: SEVIS transfer students must have the current school’s international office transfer your SEVIS record to Columbia before you apply for an I-20 from Columbia.

    Application Process: I-20 Certificate of Eligibility

    1. As soon as possible, submit your online application for an I-20 to the ISSO by following the steps at: NOTE: All supporting documents must be submitted by email using the address provided on this site. 
    2. The ISSO will review your documentation and send the I-20 that is required to apply for an F-1 student entry visa at the U.S. Consulate in your home country or, for students who already have F-1 status, to complete the SEVIS transfer process. NOTE: ISSO usually sends out the I-20 forms four (4) weeks after it has received all required documentation and your application is complete.
  • Still have questions?

    Still have questions?

    Please contact the Office of Admissions at 212-851-2400 or send an e-mail to If you have financial aid related questions, please call 212-851-2293 or e-mail

    We would also love to hear your suggestions for improving the FAQs on this page. Please enter them into our online form.