Preparing to Apply

Before beginning the application, you should identify one or more faculty members with whom you'd like to work. Only full-time Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, and Professors are eligible to supervise Ph.D. research. You can find the profiles of core faculty members here and the list of approved dissertation sponsors here.

Please note that Lecturers-in-the-Discipline, Adjunct Professors, and other Affiliated Professors are not eligible to supervise Ph.D. research. 

Therefore, only the following faculty members may be supporting graduate students in the upcoming year: Mariam Aly, Chris Baldassano, Peter Balsam, Niall Bolger, Geraldine Downey, Norma Graham, Carl Hart, Larisa Heiphetz, Tory Higgins, Nico Kriegeskorte, Janet Metcalfe, Kevin Ochsner, Shige Oishi, Valerie Purdie Greenaway, Daphna Shohamy, Rae Silver, Herb Terrace, Nim Tottenham, and Sarah Woolley. 

  • Take the GRE (the General Test is required, and the Subject Test is strongly recommended) in the fall.

    Take the GRE in the fall so the official scores will have been submitted well before the December 7th Columbia application deadline.

    Send your scores to Columbia University GSAS using school code 2162. Applicants should not send application materials to the Psychology Department. This department strongly encourages a combined verbal/quantitative GRE score of at least 310 to be considered for admission to the program.

  • If applicable, take the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or the IELTS.

    Send your scores to Columbia University, not the Psychology Department, using school code 2162. 

    International students must hold the equivalent of an American university baccalaureate (B.A. or B.S.) and be fluent in both written and spoken English. For more information on testing or degrees, please check the GSAS Admission page

  • Arrange to have 3 academic references sent to GSAS.

    Ask the professors from whom you are requesting evaluations to use our on-line system for submission of your recommendations. You will need to obtain the email addresses of your professors. If professors are unable to submit academic references on-line, those documents should be mailed to the GSAS Office of Admissions with a Letter of Recommendation Cover Sheet which can be downloaded from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences site.

  • Other Requirements:

    • A statement of academic purpose – submit a statement on-line of approximately 1000 words concerning your plans for graduate study and a professional career. Please be sure to include the areas in which you are interested and the names of faculty whose research attracts you.
    • Transcripts – Unofficial paper transcripts or documents downloaded from your school's student services website may be uploaded for consideration for admission. Official transcripts will be required only after an offer of admission has been made.
  • If your transcripts are being sent from a foreign country, be sure to request that they are in English with explanations of the grading system.

    A certified translation may be done by the consulate or a professional agency if your school does not provide one.

  • Application fee payment method

    • Applicants must use the online application. Applicants must use a credit or debit card to pay the application fee of $105.
    • The fee should be in the form of a personal or bank check in U.S. funds drawn on a U.S. bank, U.S. Postal Money Orders or Travelers Checks made payable to “Columbia University.” If you are an international student, applying from outside the United States, these are the following conditions: pre-printed on the check must be: a) the U.S. address, and b) the nine-digit ABA or routing number at the bottom. Applications are not considered complete unless accompanied by the fee.

Go to information on the application