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Apply as a nondegree-seeking student if you’re interested in taking undergraduate courses but are not seeking a college degree from Columbia.

A nondegree-seeking student is a student, who wants to earn credit, but who is not seeking a college degree from Columbia College Chicago. Nondegree students may be adult students seeking to enhance skills, pursue personal interests, or explore new disciplines before committing to a full degree program.

Nondegree-seeking students may also be students from other colleges or universities who wish to satisfy degree requirements at their home institutions or explore specific disciplines or coursework not offered at their home schools.

High school or college students enrolling as part of one of Columbia's dual enrollment agreements should also complete the nondegree-seeking student application as a first step.

Four important things to know BEFORE starting your nondegree application:

  • Applicants who have been denied admission to Columbia through the regular admission process are not eligible to enroll as nondegree-seeking students.
  • Part-time tuition and fees apply to nondegree-seeking students. Please see the per credit hour rates at the link. There is no Institutional or Federal financial aid available to nondegree-seeking students.
  • Nondegree-seeking students may not be permitted to live in Columbia's student housing.
  • Columbia cannot issue visa documents for international nondegree-seeking students.
If you're interested in taking graduate-level courses as a nondegree-seeking student, please contact Graduate Admissions at 312-369-7260 before you begin your application.

Columbia accepts and reviews applications on a rolling basis, and it’s in your best interest to complete your application as early as possible.

Application fee

In addition to your completed application, please submit the following required items as a nondegree-seeking student:

  • Application fee for domestic undergraduate students (nonrefundable): $25
  • Application fee for domestic graduate students (nonrefundable): $60
  • Application fee for international undergraduate and graduate students (nonrefundable): $75


The non-degree-seeking application to Columbia is only available one semester at a time. The Fall 2024 application is available now and the submission deadline is Monday, August 26, 2024.


You must meet the prerequisites for any upper-level class. If you are interested in taking an upper-level class, you must submit official college or university transcripts showing the completion of prerequisites to Columbia College Chicago Admissions for transcript evaluation.

How to Submit Transcripts

Ask your institution(s) to send official transcripts to Columbia College Chicago Admissions at 600 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60605. All transcripts received by mail or in person must be in the original sealed envelope from the school.

We also accept transcripts—when sent directly from the institution—via email to