Standardized Test Scores

My GRE, TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE score(s) will expire soon. How do I know if the scores are still valid?
GRE scores expire in five years. TOEFLIELTS, and PTE scores expire in two years. Expired test scores will not be accepted.  If you are still not sure please contact the testing service directly.

The GRE General Test has been revised. Do you take the newly revised test?
Yes, we take both revised and old versions of the GRE General Test. All GRE General Tests expire after 5 years. Check with ETS if you took the old version and you are not sure when your scores expire. As of August 2011 the old version of the test will not be offered.

Who is required to take the English language test?
Applicants who earned their undergraduate degree in a country in which English is not the official and spoken language must take either the TOEFL, the IELTS or PTE test. Only one test is required.

An exception is made for applicants, who have earned or will complete a master's degree in the United States before enrollment, in this case the applicant is not required to submit English language test scores for admission.

Currently enrolled Columbia Engineering graduate students who are applying again to another program do not have to submit English language test scores.

What is the minimum English language test score required?
There are no minimum test score requirements to apply for admission.  However, admitted students that were required to take the English language test for admission are encouraged and may be advised to deal with verbal and/or written English proficiency needs by utilizing the resources available for them through Columbia University’s American Language Program. It may be necessary to improve your English proficiency if you scored:

  • 599 or lower on the TOEFL paper-based test; or
  • 99 or lower on the TOEFL internet-based test; or
  • 6.5 or lower on the IELTS

What is the minimum GRE score?

There are no minimum test score requirements to apply for admission.
The average GRE scores for past entering classes, in recent years, rank 64% or above for the verbal and writing sections, and above 82% for the quantitative section. Therefore, it is recommended that your scores be comparable.  You can check the percentiles provided along with your scores from ETS to find your ranking and compare.

Do I need to take a GRE subject test?
If you are a doctoral applicant (MS leading to PhD, PhD, Eng.Sc.D.) applying to the Applied Physics program you are required to submit the official GRE Physics test score.

I am not required to submit the GRE subject test to apply, but can I submit GRE subject test scores anyway to enhance my chances for admission?
We do not recommend that you submit the GRE Subject Test, or any other material, unless it is specifically required for the application. Submitting extra materials will not enhance your chances for admission.

I am applying to a joint MS/MBA degree program and I have taken the GMAT, can I use this test in place of the GRE?
Both tests are required to apply in this case.  Unfortunately, the GMAT may not replace the GRE test requirement.

I have entered my scores in the “test scores” section. Do I still need to get an official score report sent to Columbia University?
Yes. Although copies or self-reported scores can be used for review purposes, admission may not be granted without official test scores.

Send official scores from ETS to our institutional code 2111.

For IELTS scores enter your TRF number on the application and provide the test center with the school name and address:

Office of Graduate Student Affairs
Columbia University
The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science
500 West 120th Steet, MC 4708
New York, NY 10027

For PTE scores, login to your account and select our School from the list provided to send.

I am applying for another Master's degree. I earned my Bachelor’s degree in another country, but I have a Master’s degree that was completed in the U.S..  Do I still need to take the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE test?
Yes, you are required to take the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE test. 

I am required to take the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE test according to the policy at this School, but I am very fluent in the English language, and/or I have resided in the US for many years, and/or I can prove my English language ability in some other way. Do I still need to take the TOEFL, IELTS, PTE test?

Unfortunately, no exceptions will be made for reasons outside of the policy. 

I took more than one of the English language tests, which test should I use to apply?
You may use either test to apply. There is no preference.

I am a current Columbia Engineering graduate student. I took the one of the English language tests when I first applied and it is now expired. I want to apply to another program or degree do I need to take the test again?
No. Current Columbia Engineering graduate students are not required to submit TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE scores.

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