MA requirements (years 1 and second)
Beyond a Primary Advisor (typically chosen at the time of admission
to the program), students must select a Secondary Advisor who is a core faculty
member in the Department (not an affiliate or lecturer) no later than the end of
their first year. The Secondary Advisor may be, but does not have to be, the
same person as the Second Reader of the MA thesis. The Secondary Advisor will
provide mentorship on research, teaching and career plans, and must be
explicitly asked and agree to serve in this role. Students should forward an
email from Secondary Advisors stating that they will serve this role to Joanna
Borchert-Kopczuk who will keep records of Primary (lab PIs) and Secondary
Advisors for each student.
1) Register for Monday Seminar each semester.
This seminar (listed as GR9397x and GR9398y) will expose the student to research
being conducted by faculty and students within the Department of Psychology, at
other departments within Columbia University and in the NYC area more generally.
NOTE: In December of their first year, students will give a 10-minute talk in
this seminar, outlining their planned MA research.
2) Register for
the Colloquium Series each semester. (This is listed as GR9999x and GR9999y).
This series of talks will expose students to a broad range of research within
psychological science from experts in the field. Students are encouraged to
actively engage with speakers and attend the reception after the talk.
3)Register for Supervised Individual Research each semester (GR6600x and GR6600y).
4) Presentation at the Annual Research Day each year. This will be held at
the end of the spring semester each year. All MA students will present. Second
year students will present their MA talk (see below) to the entire department
at this event. Further details will be sent by email each year.
5) Yearly Reviews of Satisfactory Progress. The student must demonstrate to the Primary
and Secondary Advisors satisfactory progress at the end of Year 1 and Year 2.
Prior to May 1st of each academic year, the student needs to meet with both
his/her Primary and Secondary Advisor to review progress on their research and
to discuss any issues of concern. Prior to this meeting, the student should
prepare a 1-2 page written proposal/plan for the upcoming summer. Summer funding
is contingent upon residence in NYC during the summer and upon an acceptable
research plan, approved at this meeting, for the summer and for the following
6) Apply for External Funding (e.g., NSF, NSERC, etc.) for
which you are eligible.
7) Completion of the MA Research Project in Year 2.
You will give a brief (15-20 minute) presentation on your MA research project
near the end of your second year during the Annual Research Day. A write-up of
the MA research project should be prepared in a format appropriate for
publication. On June 1st of Year 2, an initial write-up of the research is due
to your Primary Advisor and a Second Reader (a faculty with appropriate
expertise in the area of research). On July 1st of Year 2, your Primary Advisor
and Reader will return comments/feedback to you. Between July 1 and September 1
there can be one or more rounds of editing between you and your advisor/reader,
as is appropriate, but the paper must be finalized and approved by September 1.
Approvals must be sent by email to both the DGS and Joanna Borchert-Kopczuk by
8) Seminar Course Requirements. Students will take three
graduate level seminar courses within the department. These seminars, with one
exception (Hassin's GR9350), cannot be 9000 level courses. The grade of B- or
better must be obtained in each course in order to receive credit for completion
of the requirement. Any course that is offered by a core faculty member of the
Department of Psychology is eligible to be one of these three courses. If a
student wishes to take a graduate level course that is not offered by a core
member of the department to meet this requirement, he or she must consult with
his or her advisor and obtain permission to do so from the DGS. Students are
encouraged to use these seminar requirements to gain a broad understanding of
9) Statistics Course Requirement
a) Currently a two course
sequence (GR6006x and GR6007y) is being offered. As part of your MA requirements
one of these two courses should be taken.
b) In the event that the above is
not being offered in a particular year, a list of approved statistics courses
that may be used to meet this requirement is provided at the following link.
10) TAships. Teaching is considered to be an integral part of your graduate
training. As such, you are expected to serve as a TA for one course per year.
Across your graduate career, at least two of your TA appointments should be in
“hard” classes (i.e., lab or stats courses).
11) Training for Teaching.
Some training in the methods and theory of teaching prior to or concurrent with
your first TA assignment is required for all GSAS students. This GSAS
requirement can be fulfilled in any of the following ways:
in at least 3 TA Workshops offered through the Psychology Department
Participation in at least 3 teaching workshops offered through the Columbia
Center for Teaching and Learning
c) Any combination of (a) and (b) totaling
at least 3 workshops
d) Enrollment in G6200x/y, Teaching Practicum (if
Note that enrollment in Teaching Practicum is required for students
who want to submit a Teaching Scholar Award.
Students who have fulfilled all of the requirements must apply for the MA through this link
by *Sept 1* to get the MA in October of 3rd year. This is an additional step, aside from sending the requirements to Joanna for the courses, masters paper and advisor approval. Once submitted, students can check the status of their degree applications in SSOL.
Mphil requirements (years 3 and 4)
The requirements for the M.Phil.
degree must be completed by end of Year 4 and appropriate paperwork
indicating completion of requirements must be submitted to GSAS by May 15th
of Year 4 (i.e., by the end of the 8th semester of graduate work). The
M.Phil students need both a primary and secondary advisor (as per the MA
1) Completion of all MA Requirements.
2) Register for Monday Seminar each semester (listed as PSYC GR9397x and
3) Register for the Colloquium series each semester.
(This is listed as GR9999x and GR9999y).
4) Register for Supervised Individual Research each semester (GR6600x and GR6600y).
5) Presentation at the Annual Research Day. This will be held at the end
of the spring semester, each year. Further details will be sent by email
each year. All advanced students will make a yearly presentation of their
research to the entire department at the Annual Research Day.
6) Yearly Reviews of Satisfactory Progress. The student must demonstrate to the
Primary and Secondary Advisors satisfactory progress at the end of each
year. Prior to May 1st of each academic year, the student needs to meet with
both his/her Primary and Secondary Advisor to review progress on their
research and to discuss any issues of concern. Prior to this meeting, the
student should prepare a 1-2 page written proposal/plan for the upcoming
summer. Summer funding is contingent upon residence in NYC during the summer
and upon an acceptable research plan, approved at this meeting, for the
summer and for the following academic year.
7) Apply for External funding (e.g., NSF, NSERC, NRSA) for which you are eligible. Note that a
grant application can be used to fulfill one of the comprehensive
requirements (please see below).
8) Two Additional Elective Graduate Level Courses. These can be graduate level seminars or lecture courses from
Psychology or from another department at Columbia (or institution that
offers cross-registration, such as NYU). Monday seminar and lab meetings
offered for credit do not count for this requirement. You must receive a
grade of B- or better in any elective course that you want to count towards
your M. Phil.
9) One Statistics Course Beyond the One Taken to
Fulfill the MA Requirement.
a) Currently, a two course statistics
sequence (G6006-G6007) is being offered. These courses are specifically
designed for you, and you are urged to fulfill the statistics requirement
with these courses. If you took one of these two courses as part of your MA
requirements, the other can count for the M.Phil. requirement.
b) Alternatively, as long as you have taken one of these courses, you can take
another course selected from an approved list of statistics courses,
including Niall Bolger’s new methodology course G6050 as well as many other
courses from outside the department. The second statistics course should be
completed by the end of your third year. For a list of approved statistics
courses see the following link.
10) Comprehensives. There will be a
'comps' requirement. We will post the exact specifications soon.