Graduate Admissions

Journalism MA

When applying to the JOURNALISM MA program, you will need to submit the following:
  • ONLINE APPLICATION, with application fee.
  • SELF-ASSESSMENT ESSAY: Within your self-assessment essay, describe your qualifications, what you expect to gain from Columbia's writing-based, public affairs reporting program, and your career goals.  Specificity is encouraged.
  • An OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPT from any and all colleges/universities attended
  • WORK SAMPLE:  Applicants must submit a representative sampling of published work or other examples of their non-fiction writing.  Articles and other journalistic samples are best.  Please do not submit poetry, plays, screenplays, or other work of this kind.
    Work Sample Submission Method: Work Sample Submission Method: You may upload up to 10 work sample files to our online portfolio submission portal at*  For best image quality and faster uploads, your image and video files should be sized to fit within 1024 x 768 pixels. Permitted file type and size limits are:

> IMAGES: jpg, .png, .gif — 5 MB per file maximum
> VIDEO: .mov, .wmv, .flv — 60 MB per file maximum
> MUSIC: .mp3 - 30 MB per file maximum
> WRITTEN DOCS: .pdf — 10 MB per file maximum

Our SlideRoom portal offers additional instruction for submitting work, including a very helpful video tutorial. For technical assistance, visit Please direct any other questions about work samples to the Graduate Office at 312-369-7260.

*SlideRoom charges users a $10 transaction fee. By using SlideRoom, applicants avoid the expense of copying and mailing their work samples and avoid the risk of corrupted files, lost mail, broken discs, or cross-platform issues. Additionally, applicants can rest assured that the Graduate Committee on Admissions will experience their portfolio exactly how they intended.

  • An interview by telephone or in person, may also be required as part of the application review process.  The department will contact the student directly regarding the interview.
  • Students entering the program should have journalistic experience, training, or an academic background in print journalism, broadcast journalism or a related field.  Those without adequate training may still apply.
  • All students who are accepted into the Journalism M.A. program are required to complete Foundations of Journalism.  The class meets twice a week 9a.m. to 5p.m. for the last three weeks in August and will count for 3 graduate credit hours.  Students must pass the course with a "B" or better before the beginning of the graduate program in the fall.
International Students

INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS must submit all of the above materials, as well as an official TOEFL score and a credential evaluation. Additional documents are required of admitted students. Please visit our International Students page for more information.