GS at a Glance

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GS at a Glance


Lux in Tenebris Lucet—"The light that shines in the darkness"


The School of General Studies of Columbia University (GS) is the finest liberal arts college in the country dedicated specifically to students with nontraditional backgrounds seeking a traditional education at an Ivy League university. Most students at GS have, for personal or professional reasons, interrupted their education, never attended college, or are only able to attend part time.


Columbia is located in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of New York City's Upper West Side.

Degree Program

Bachelor of Arts

GS Enrollment

Note: The following enrollment statistics are based on 2017-2018 official reporting.

  • More than 2,100 undergraduate students
  • 78% full-time; 22% part-time
  • 41% female; 59% male
  • 26% of American students are Asian American, African American, Hispanic/Latino, or Native American
  • 21% international students (non-U.S. citizen or permanent resident)
  • Average age: 26

Joint Degree Program with List College at the Jewish Theological Seminary

  • 130 Joint Program students
  • 43% female; 57% male
  • Average age: 20

Dual BA Program Between Columbia University and Sciences Po

Joint Bachelor's Degree Program Between City University of Hong Kong and Columbia University

Tuition and Financial Aid

Note: The following tuition and financial aid statistics are effective for the 2018-2019 academic year.

  • $1,822 per point; Tuition and Fees
  • $24,170 estimated living and personal expenses, including room and board, books, commuting costs and miscellaneous expenses
  • Approximately 70 percent of students receive some form of need-based financial aid and/or merit scholarship
  • Average scholarship awards range between $8,000-$10,000 for first-year GS students

Additional Statistics

For full statistics about the current student population, please visit Peterson's, The Princeton Review, or College Board.

Academic Program

  • GS students must fulfill core requirements in science, literature, art, music, humanities, social sciences, quantitative reasoning, and global studies, and demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language.
  • GS students take the same classes, with the same professors, as students in Columbia's other undergraduate colleges.
  • More than 80 majors available
  • More than 1,500 courses offered every year

Student Life

  • More than 500 student clubs, organizations, and volunteer opportunities
  • NCAA Division I member, with intramural and intercollegiate sports teams
  • Countless cultural offerings on- and off-campus
  • Full-time students are eligible for University housing


  • 6 to 1 student-to-faculty ratio
  • 79 Nobel Laureates are affiliated with Columbia

University Resources

  • 13 graduate and professional schools, 3 undergraduate schools, and 4 affiliated institutions
  • More than 31,000 students enrolled
  • 22 libraries
  • More than 70 centers and institutes for specialized research
  • Endowment of more than $9 billion
  • Galleries, theaters, performance spaces, and art and architecture studios
  • Extensive network of support services

Joint Programs

GS supports several dual-, combined-, and joint-degree programs with Columbia’s graduate and professional schools, as well as affiliates including The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science and List College of the Jewish Theological Seminary.

GS is also home to the Dual BA Program Between Columbia University and Sciences Po, the Dual BA Program between Trinity College Dublin and Columbia University, and the Joint Bachelor's Degree Program between City University of Hong Kong and Columbia University.

After Graduation

  • More than 70 percent of GS graduates go on to earn advanced degrees.
  • More than 300 employers recruit on campus each year and approximately 1,000 advertise employment opportunities to our students.
  • Students have access to a global network of more than 250,000 alumni throughout the U.S. and in 180 foreign countries.