Columbia Financial Aid and Educational Financing

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Congratulations on your admission to Columbia University! We know you may have many questions about financing your educational expenses. Our staff is dedicated to partnering with you in planning how best to finance your education, and we look forward to working with you. We encourage you to explore some important information regarding financial aid at Columbia on the website pages below.

Check your Financial Aid
Log in with your Columbia Student ID to view important details regarding your financial aid eligibility.
Submit the 2024-2025 FAFSA
There is no penalty for students (US Citizens and Eligible Noncitizens) whose FAFSA applications are received after their financial aid deadline.
Explore On-Campus Jobs
Learn more about Federal Work-Study and Student Employment.
Review Outside Scholarship Policy
Understand how scholarships from outside organizations may impact your aid.
Plan for your E-Bill
Fall E-Bills are expected to be released in mid-August and will be due around mid-September.
If a parent or other family member is responsible for your bill, you will need to add them as an Authorized Payer. Please see the Student Financial Services website for details.
Families are encouraged to explore financing options: both short-term (10-Month Payment Plan) and long-term options (Student Loans, Parent Loans) are available.
Confirm your enrollment
Accept your offer of admission! No deposit required.
REquest an appeal
An appeal is a formal request to reevaluate a family's financial aid package if you have experienced a change in your financial situation or encounter special circumstances not already included in your application. For more information, please visit our Request An Appeal page by clicking here.
Schedule a virtual appointment
Discuss your specific financial aid and educational financing questions with a Financial Aid staff member.

If you have any questions about your financial aid eligibility or would like to discuss financing options with a Financial Aid Officer, please contact our office.

Related FAQs

What is the Net Cost?

The net cost is the amount your family should expect to pay towards your billed and non-billed education expenses for the academic year. It is the combination of the Student Responsibility and the Parent Contribution.

What is the Student Responsibility?

All financial aid recipients are expected to contribute towards the Student Responsibility, which consists of the Student Contribution and Student Employment.

All incoming First-Year students have a minimum Student Contribution of $2,400 as part of their financial aid award; a contribution from student assets may be included. The expectation is that the student will earn this amount in the summer preceding their first academic year. Alternatively, students and their families may cover this amount with outside scholarships, savings, parental assistance, and/or other financing options if they choose to.

Student Employment is also part of the financial aid award. Students earn this amount during the Fall and Spring semesters. These earnings are generally used to pay for non-billed expenses, such as books/supplies and other personal expenses. This expectation is also not required, and may be covered by outside scholarships, savings, parental assistance, and/or other financing options.

In future years, students who obtain unpaid summer or semester internships may apply for additional grant to cover these expectations through the Work Exemption Program.

What if my financial aid application is still incomplete?

If your financial aid application was incomplete at the time of admission, you can still complete it and receive a financial aid evaluation. Please submit the missing items at your earliest convenience. If you have any questions regarding any of the missing materials please contact our office.

Will my financial aid eligibility be the same all four years?

Students and families are asked to submit a financial aid application in each year the student attends. In general, if the family’s income and asset levels remain steady, the Parent Contribution (PC) will as well. Some common causes for change in future financial aid awards include:

  • Change in the number of students in the household enrolled in an undergraduate program
  • Changes to household income or assets
Are there student/parent loans available?

Some students and families choose to finance a portion of their Parent Contribution (PC) or Student Contribution (SC) with education loans. Information on different financing options is available on the Education Loans portion of our website.