Academic Policies

Columbia Credit for Academic Work at CityU

Students offered admission to the Joint Bachelor’s Degree Program will have their transcripts from City University of Hong Kong evaluated for transfer credit, and the resulting Entrance Credit Report (ECR) will be shared with them before their arrival to New York. Courses that students wish to be counted for transfer credit must satisfy certain criteria:

  • It is an academic class consistent with the General Studies curriculum. (Please note: as part of the undergraduate degree program, Columbia University does not offer online courses for credit; therefore, online courses are not eligible for transfer credit.)
  • It carries the equivalent of a grade of “C” or higher on the American grading scale and is documented by an official transcript.
  • It was not a “mini” or intersession course (however, coursework completed during a Summer Session is eligible for transfer credit evaluation).

In addition, it is important to know that students may transfer a maximum of 6 credits of eligible coursework in from pre-professional classes. More information about transfer credits is available on the School of General Studies website.

Pre-professional courses

The School of General Studies allows students to transfer up to 6 credits of professional studies coursework toward their GS degrees. Professional studies include both pre-professional and professional courses in law, business, or journalism, as well as any other course that is clearly professional in its orientation. Any professional courses that correspond to an undergraduate course with a Columbia Arts & Sciences department (such as those offered within the Business Management Concentration) are excluded from the 6-credit limit.  

Credit towards the Columbia B.A. degree

Credits from City University of Hong Kong do not automatically transfer toward the Columbia major, although they may satisfy core requirements or be counted as electives. Transfer credits toward the major are accepted at the discretion of the individual academic department and are not guaranteed by the Entrance Credit Report. The Director of Undergraduate Studies in each department is authorized to accept up to 12 GS-approved transfer credits toward the major. Some departments accept fewer than 12 credits; students must check individual department policies concerning transfer credits and are advised to consult with their GS academic advisor for more information.

Credit towards the CityU B.A. degree

Credits from Columbia University serve to fulfill major requirements at CityU, and transcripts must be submitted to the student’s College at CityU at the end of each semester for transfer evaluation.  Prior to their arrival in New York, Joint Bachelor’s Degree Program students are given course maps that detail the courses at Columbia University that can be used to fulfill major requirements at CityU.  While course maps can be used as a guideline in preparing for registration each semester, students are advised to confirm with their academic advisors to confirm that courses taken at Columbia University will fulfill CityU major requirements.

Credit towards the major

Students at CityU must be studying within one of the following majors in order to be eligible to apply for admission to the Joint Bachelor’s Degree Program:

  • Asian and International Studies
  • Applied Physics
  • Biological Sciences (subject to approval)
  • Business Analysis (subject to approval)
  • Business Economics
  • Computational Finance and Financial Technology (Computational Finance Stream only)
  • Computer Science
  • Computing Mathematics
  • Criminology and Sociology (Applied Sociology Stream only)
  • Psychology
  • Public Policy and Politics (Politics Stream only)

At Columbia University, students within the program will follow the major that matches their CityU major:

  • Biology
  • Computer Science
  • East Asian Languages and Cultures
  • Economics
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Political Science
  • Psychology 
  • Sociology 


Academic advising at City University of Hong Kong is provided by both faculty advisors and departmental coordinators who help students to plan their academic paths.  Students interested in applying to the Joint Bachelor’s Degree Program should consult with their individual departments for more information on planning their academic transition from CityU to Columbia University.


Upon accepting the offer of admission to the Joint Bachelor’s Degree Program, students will be assigned a General Studies academic advisor who will serve as their primary administrative link to GS throughout their time in the program.  Academic advisors provide guidance on university as well as GS-specific policies and procedures. 

Upon declaring a major at Columbia, students are assigned faculty advisors within their major department who assume responsibility for advising students about courses and requirements for the major. Faculty advisors in departments are also available to students completing concentrations in that discipline or program. Each academic department and program at Columbia has a designated Director of Undergraduate Studies (DUS), who is available for consultation about majors, concentrations, and their requirements.

Credit towards the Columbia Core curriculum

Upon receipt of their Entrance Credit Report, Joint Program students will consult with their GS academic advisors to determine how transfer credits will be used to fulfill Columbia Core curriculum requirements. Any Core requirements not fulfilled by CityU coursework must be completed on the Columbia University campus.