Columbia University: 2020 Requirements, Scores & GPAs

This is the go-to guide for getting into Columbia University in the City of New York. We suggest you read until the end... Not only will we layout the exact GPA and test scores you should aim for when applying to Columbia University, but we’ll also offer creative ways to help your application stand out from the pack. We breakdown Columbia University statistics better than any article out there and show you how these have changed over time. Also, make sure to check out Columbia University in the City of New York on CampusReel to see what it’s really like here. If you're interesting in transferring to Columbia University, the read our transfer guide. You can also use the below calculator to help determine your likelihood of acceptance at Columbia University

What are your chances at Columbia University?

Your SAT Score
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  • Your GPA*
    on a 4.0 scale

    *gpa score is required

    This free college chances tool calculates your acceptance chances at Columbia University or any other U.S. college

    Please note all chances are estimates based on test score and GPA averages.

    *or select a school above for a specific calculation

    Need chances at another college?

    What GPA do you need to get into Columbia University in the City of New York?

    Columbia University in the City of New York’s average GPA is 3.91. Columbia University in the City of New York does require GPA. This average GPA means Columbia University in the City of New York is brutally selective - the most competitive applicants in the world are already applying to the school, in hopes of taking up residence in New York, and, somehow, you need to be better. Generally speaking, if your GPA is not at least equal to 3.91 then Columbia University in the City of New York may be a reach. However, Columbia University in the City of New York considers the ENTIRE application - we can make up for a weak GPA with more factors that we’ll discuss below. If your GPA is equal to or greater than 3.91, you’re sitting right in the sweetspot.

    *BEFORE CONTINUING PLEASE NOTE: GPA and “prestige” DO NOT mean a college is right for you. Columbia University in the City of New York may seem amazing on paper, but you may hate it... That’s why 700,000 students transfer colleges every year - they end up going to the wrong school. It’s crucial to watch the videos on CampusReel and make sure you can envision yourself on Columbia University’s campus. These Columbia University admission statistics do not sufficiently tell you what a college or university is like.

    What is Columbia University in the City of New York’s acceptance rate?

    Last year Columbia University in the City of New York’s acceptance rate was 6.61. However, check out how the acceptance rate has changed over time.

    2016 2017 2018
    Acceptance Rate 7.0 % 7.0 % 6.61 %

    As you can see, Columbia University in the City of New York is getting more and more difficult to get into. If this trend continue it’s likely that Columbia University will be even more competitive by the time you apply.

    Acceptance rate alone does not indicate your likelihood for getting into Columbia University - it’s a very high level understanding of the true competition. Use the acceptance rate as a general guide for curating a list of 10-15 schools that fall into different ranges of competitiveness. Then, use the below data to get a deeper understanding of how your application will compare to the rest of the pool.

    What are your chances at Columbia University?

    Your SAT Score
    Your ACT Score
    Select a score
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  • Your GPA*
    on a 4.0 scale

    *gpa score is required

    This free college chances tool calculates your acceptance chances at Columbia University or any other U.S. college

    Please note all chances are estimates based on test score and GPA averages.

    *or select a school above for a specific calculation

    Need chances at another college?

    Does Columbia University in the City of New York Require Test Scores?

    Columbia University in the City of New York requires that you either take the SAT or ACT. See the table below for how Columbia University in the City of New York’s accepted students have performed on both tests. You may be wondering how many test scores should you submit. Generally, don’t freak out about taking the test too often. Industry consensus is that you can submit up to 6 tests as a reasonable limit.

    Columbia University in the City of New York SAT Requirements

    Columbia University in the City of New York’s average SAT score is 1500 - this is the sum of the math and reading portions of the SAT (the 1600 scale). Check out the below table for a deeper look into how students performed - it’s also very interesting to look at the average test score over time. The trend over time helps give insight into whether Columbia University in the City of New York is getting more or less competitive.

    25th Percentile 75th Percentile Average
    Math 710 800 755
    Reading 700 790 745
    2019 Total 1410 1590 1500
    2018 Total - - -
    2017 Total - - -

    Columbia University in the City of New York’s average SAT score is 1500. To be a competitive applicant for Columbia University in the City of New York your SAT score should come close to the average. If you’re closer to the 1410, you’re likely going to have a tougher time getting accepted. To consider Columbia University in the City of New York a “target” school (one that you are likely to get into) you should aim for a score of 1590.

    Columbia University in the City of New York ACT Requirements

    Columbia University in the City of New York’s average ACT score is 100. To be a competitive applicant for Columbia University in the City of New York your ACT score should come close to the average. If you’re closer to the 95, you’re likely going to have a tougher time getting accepted. To consider Columbia University in the City of New York a “target” school (one that you have a good chance of getting into) you should aim for a score of 105.

    25th Percentile 75th Percentile Average
    Math 30 35 32
    Reading 33 35 34
    Writing 32 35 33
    2019 Total 95 105 100
    2018 Total - - -
    2017 Total - - -

    How hard is it to get into Columbia University in the City of New York?

    As you can see from the data above, Columbia University in the City of New York is exceptionally difficult to get into. Not only should you be aiming for a 3.91 but also SAT scores around 1500. Getting into Columbia University in the City of New York is no easy feat and you will need to set yourself apart with more than just numbers and data. Read on to learn how.

    Columbia University in the City of New York Requirements

    Now you know where you need to be for getting into Columbia University in the City of New York from a grade and test score perspective. Let’s quickly outline what else you’ll need to provide for your application to get reviewed, and then we’ll move onto the most important section: differentiating your app.

    Recommendations Status
    School Rank Recommended
    GPA Recommended
    School Record Required

    How to get into Columbia University

    Follow these steps to maximize your chances of getting into Columbia University. Everything you read above will help prepare you for what you need to achieve to have a shot at Columbia University, but these steps will take you even further in applying that knowledge and differentiating your application.

    Main Academic Excellence that is in line with Columbia University admission standards.

    1. Score at least a 1500 on the SAT or 100 on the ACT.
    2. Maintain a GPA of at least a 3.91.

    Join Extracurriculars that Align with Columbia University’s Values.

    1. Join your school band, a sports team or another group activity. If Columbia University in the City of New York values music heavily, for example, then try to participate in an organization related to that topic.
    2. Volunteer in your hometown. New York has tons of ways to be involved beyond just the college. Columbia University in the City of New York wants applicants that are also good ambassadors for the school - they want students who will give back to the local community and broader New York area in general.
    3. Spend your summer doing something that speaks to your values, personal growth, leadership qualities and other less quantifiable characteristics. Columbia University needs to see past your test scores and grades - they need to know that you will be a valuable and contributing member of their community. You are more than grades and test scores - your experiences should demonstrate that.

    Prepare Your Application

    1. Write a stellar essay that shows Columbia University in the City of New York something they can’t figure out from the other parts of your application. For a detailed guide on writing the best college essay, check this out.
    2. Get teacher recs that speak to your character. If you know what you’re majoring in and include that in your Columbia University app, try to have at least 1 recommendation from a teacher in that department.
    3. Apply Before the Deadline. Too many students wait until the last minute to submit their application, and too much can go wrong during this precious time window. Since many students are applying on the last day, it’s possible that Columbia University’s own system crashes. Don’t risk the added stress this can cause - submit your app a few days early.

    What are your chances at Columbia University?

    Your SAT Score
    Your ACT Score
    Select a score
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  • Your GPA*
    on a 4.0 scale

    *gpa score is required

    This free college chances tool calculates your acceptance chances at Columbia University or any other U.S. college

    Please note all chances are estimates based on test score and GPA averages.

    *or select a school above for a specific calculation

    Need chances at another college?

    Related College & Universities:

    Transfering to Wilmington University
    Transfering to University of the District of Columbia
    Transfering to Berkeley College-New York
    Transfering to SUNY Empire State College
    Transfering to Strayer University-Global Region