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The Independent Study is available to students who would like to explore a significant research problem related to their professional needs; the nature and extent of this independent study are determined by the student and a faculty sponsor. Sponsors should be faculty members at Columbia Business School; adjunct professors are also eligible to serve as sponsors.
For the Independent Study, students are required to meet with the faculty sponsor a minimum of two times: once, for an initial planning discussion, and again in the middle of the semester to confirm that the project is on track. Students are expected to commit to the original project plan approved by the faculty sponsor; any change to the topic or scope of the project must be agreed to by the professor prior to the midpoint of the semester. Students who fail to obtain this approval risk not receiving academic credit for the course.
The student may register for up to 3 credits of Independent Study per semester; the course may be taken for either 1.5 or 3 credits. The independent study is designed to be independent of the classroom experience; it may not be used as a means of adding a seat to a course with a full capacity.
No more than six credits of Independent Study will be counted toward the MBA degree. (For dual degree students, the maximum number of independent study credits is 3.) Students may count a combined maximum of 6 credits of Independent Study, Cross-Cultural Seminar, Global Business Project, and graduate-level courses from other Columbia schools toward the MBA degree.
Students should bring a completed independent study application form, signed by the faculty sponsor, to the Office of Student Affairs to register for the course prior to the end of the B-term add/drop period.
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Here are the most frequently asked questions by current students.
Information on courses and all bidding-related information (including statistics) can be found on BOSS (Business Online Selection System). To see important dates for the Business School, navigate to the MBA Academic Calendar tab in BOSS.
More information regarding independent studies can be found on the Indepedent Study webpage , and you can pick up the required form, as well as additional information, in Uris 105. Students may register for up to 3 credits of independent study per term (the study can be either 1.5 or 3 credits). Independent studies are designed to be independent of the classroom experience and may not be used as a means of adding a seat to a full course.
More information can be found on the Cross-Registration webpage. MBA students may count up to six credits of graduate-level coursework at other schools within the University toward the MBA degree. Graduate-level courses are denoted by a number of 4000 or higher. Undergraduate courses may be taken as long as they are in addition to the 60 credits of graduate-level course work required for the MBA degree. Although the credits from an undergraduate course will not count toward the MBA degree, the grade earned in an undergraduate course will be included in calculating student GPA.
Membership on the dean's list is awarded at the end of the first term to students who achieve a 9.0 weighted GPA. In subsequent terms, membership is awarded to all students who achieve a 9.25 weighted term GPA.
First, meet with a club advisor in OSA, who will connect you with the Student Government’s VP of clubs and careers. You’ll be required to fill out an application form, collect signatures from potential club members, plan out your first year’s budget, and make a presentation to the Student Government’s club committee.
Many local vendors accept a voucher in lieu of cash payment. You can pick up the voucher from Financial Planning in Uris 216. Vouchers are essentially blank checks that you give to the delivery person upon arrival and can include a tip. Vendors send the voucher is sent back to Financial Planning as an invoice and the funds are debited from your club account.
Only students pursuing an MBA degree can join Business School clubs. Business School students seeking MS and PhD degrees are not eligible.
All loan funds - federal or private - are sent to the University's Student Financial Services (SFS) office electronically via EFT (Electronic Funds Transfer). Once the SFS office is in receipt of the funds, they place the amount(s) onto your tuition bill as a "credit" to your account. You do not need to pick up any physical checks. Any loan amounts above tuition and fees will be refunded to you. Direct deposit helps to expedite the refund process.
Refunds are issued within 7–10 days of funds arriving at the University. Assuming your loans are in place for the earliest federally allowable date, your refunds should reach you within a week following the first day of classes. For the fastest refund processing, please sign up for direct deposit on ssol.columbia.edu.
Students who face higher costs due to extenuating circumstances may request a budget increase by submitting a formal appeal along with appropriate documentation. If approved, the budget increase allows students to borrow additional loan funds, subject to lender or Department of Education approval. Appeals are not an entitlement and can be turned down by the Appeals Committee. Learn more about appeals and download the appeal form.