Your Cost of Attendance

Understanding Your Cost of Attendance

Your cost of attendance (COA) is the amount that you will pay for graduate school after all of your financial aid has been applied to the bill. Your COA is specific to your situation. Teachers College publishes its tuition and fees each academic year, but your individual COA may be different, based on your individual circumstances. When you review the tuition and fees that are published on our website, keep in mind that these numbers do not take into account any financial aid such as scholarships, grants, loans, or work-study jobs.

Direct and Indirect Expenses

Your COA will include a variety of charges, from tuition to housing. You can categorize the individual expenses of your COA as either direct or indirect expenses. Direct expenses are charges that the Office of the Bursar adds to your student account, and you will see them on your Teachers College bill. Indirect expenses are costs that you incur as a graduate student, but they will not appear on your Teachers College bill.

 

Examples of Direct Expenses

Examples of Indirect Expenses

Tuition charges

Books, course materials, supplies, and equipment

College fees and health insurance

Personal/living expenses

On-campus room and board costs

Off-campus housing/rent and food costs

Federal Direct Loan fees 

Transportation costs

 

Licensing, certification, or professional credential fees

Health Insurance

If you are enrolled full-time and/or living in the residence halls, then you are required to have health insurance coverage through Columbia University or an external source. This rule applies to both domestic and international students. You are automatically enrolled in and billed for our basic health insurance plan, but you can have this charge removed from your bill if you provide proper proof of external insurance coverage. You should contact Columbia Student Insurance if you have any questions about official health fees and insurance costs.

Our Annual Cost of Attendance Budget

We calculate your estimated budget based on a nine-month period of enrollment across the Fall and Spring semesters. Our Office of Financial Aid puts together an annual COA budget for the Fall and Spring semesters that includes your tuition and fees, books, course materials, supplies and equipment, health fees and insurance, transportation, personal expenses, living expenses, direct loan fees, and licensing, certification, or first professional credential fees. If you intend to enroll in only one term, or if you plan to enroll in the summer, contact our office, and we will help you see an adjusted budget. Below is a breakdown of items that we factor into the budget for each academic year.

2023-2024 Academic Year (Fall 2023 & Spring 2024)

Budget Items

Estimated Annual Budgets

Tuition

Varies based on enrollment (estimated at $1,970 per credit)

College Fee

$1,016 ($508 per semester)

Books and Supplies

Varies based on enrollment (estimated at $50 per credit)

Transportation

$1,188 ($132 per month)

Personal Expenses

$9,954 ($1,106 per month)

Licensing, Certification, or First Professional Credential Fees

$150 ($75 per semester)

Living Expenses (Housing & Food)

$26,496 ($2,944 per month)

Direct Loan Fees

$1,091

Columbia Health Fee

$410 for part-time students ($205 per semester)

$1,364 for full-time students ($682 per semester)

Columbia Health Plan/Insurance

$5,647 - ($2,145 for Fall 2023 and $3,502 for Spring 2024)

2024-2025 Academic Year (Fall 2024 & Spring 2025)

Budget Items

Estimated Annual Budgets

Tuition

Varies based on enrollment (estimated at $2,049 per credit)

College Fee

$1,036 ($518 per semester)

Books and Supplies

Varies based on enrollment (estimated at $80 per credit)

Transportation

$1,188 ($132 per month)

Personal Expenses

$8,487 ($943 per month)

Licensing, Certification, or First Professional Credential Fees

$86 ($43 per semester)

Living Expenses (Housing & Food)

$27,396 ($3,044 per month)

Direct Loan Fees

$1,071

Columbia Health Fee*

$416 for part-time students ($208 per semester)

$1,388 for full-time students ($694 per semester)

Columbia Health Plan/Insurance*

$5,647 - ($2,145 for Fall 2024 and $3,502 for Spring 2025)

Note: Federal student loans, such as the Direct Unsubsidized Loan and Direct Graduate PLUS Loan have loan fees. Therefore, a direct loan fee estimate will appear in your COA.

For more information regarding the Columbia Health Fee and what is included in the cost of service, please visit Columbia Health Fee Cost of Service. For more information about Columbia's Student Health Insurance, please visit Columbia Plan (Student Health Insurance).

Your Teachers College Financial Aid Offer and COA

Your Teachers College COA budget, described above, determines the total amount of federal funding that you are eligible for, in the form of federal loans, Federal Work-Study, or grants. In addition, you may receive funding from Teachers College in the form of institutional scholarships, fellowships, grants, and other institutional financial aid. If you apply for financial aid at Teachers College, your financial aid offer letter can include federal aid up to the allowable COA, based on your financial need. Your eligibility for financial aid can change if you receive scholarships or employer tuition benefits.

Your Enrollment Level

Your financial aid offer is based on a half-time enrollment status, or five billable credits per term (with the exception of special cohort programs). If you plan to enroll for more or less than five credits per term, then your COA will be adjusted automatically, and you will see an updated financial aid offer based on your intended enrollment. 

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