The Columbia Experience section of the Columbia Core highlights the city of Chicago, and the creativity that drives the communities you’ll be a part of after graduation.
You’ll take nine credits in this section: one "Big Chicago" course, one Creative Communities course, and one course in Innovation and Impact.
"Big Chicago" (First-semester Experience)
Connect with the city of Chicago in fundamental ways while working with a cohort of student peers—led by some of Columbia's top scholars and professionals.
All first-semester freshmen are required to take a "Big Chicago" course.
Explore the creative ecosystem of a community, with a spotlight on Chicago as a socially and artistically relevant location in a global world. Building upon the foundational experience of the Big Chicago classes, these courses also include an intentional focus on strategies and skills for working with interdisciplinary collaborators.
All students with sophomore standing are required to take a Creative Communities course.*
*Fall 2022 transfer students, please consult with your college advisor on this requirement.
Innovation and Impact
Learn how focused innovation can drive sustained social, economic, and cultural impact. These courses teach you how to work with an idea from concept to pitch, connecting business, technology, and communications.
All students are required to take an Innovation and Impact course.