When can I apply? 

Graduate programs begin multiple times a year. Now's a great time to apply and join the next cohort. 

Cohort Model: A cohort is a group of students who begin and complete the program together. We operate on a rolling admission basis, which means we make admission decisions as applications are completed. An invitation to join a cohort is extended to the first 24 qualified applicants, so some target start dates may vary. 

Have more questions about your options? Explore our online graduate degrees

How do I apply? 

1. Start Your Application 

Use our online application to get started. You can always take a break and come back to finish or check your status. Have your bachelor's from Columbia College? Learn about your application advantage below. 

Apply Application Status

2. Submit Your Personal Statement

Choose one of the essay scenarios listed below. Be sure to review the scoring rubric before you write your essay—the rubric is how we score your essay.

Essay Instructions

Essay Scenarios (Pick One)

  • Explain why you are choosing this particular program of study. Also, discuss your plans upon completion of the graduate degree.
  • Choose one important personal achievement to discuss. Share how this achievement has made a significant impact on your life choices and aspirations.
  • Describe a situation within your professional experience where leadership succeeded or failed. In your assessment, explain the “forces” which contributed to the foundations for or obstacles to success.
  • Describe in detail how you perceive the role of a leader in your field.

Essay Instructions

  • Must be at least 2 full pages, but no more than 4 pages.
  • Must be typed using Time New Roman 12 point font, double-spaced and with one-inch margins. 
  • Any cover page, lines used for identifying information (such as name and address), or citations will not count toward your page total.
  • Once you are ready, submit your completed essay to: documents@3zp64n.net.
Essay Rubric

 

 Unacceptable
0-2
Acquiring
3-5
Proficient
6-8
Distinguished
9-10
Focus & Supporting DetailsThe purpose and ideas are not clear.The topic is referenced but the purpose of writing is unclear; inconsistent use of details to support the topic.The purpose of writing is clear; provides specific details that support the topic.The purpose of writing is clear and successfully presents the topic in a unique way; consistently and effectively uses specific and vivid details that support the topic.
Content & OrganizationNo clear introduction, topic organization, or conclusion.The introduction states the main purpose; some organization; conclusion provided but not developed in a relevant or meaningful way.Clear introduction and conclusion with evidence of information presented in a logical sequence.The introduction is inviting and information is presented in a logical sequence; uses clear phrasing to distinguish between introduction and conclusion.
Expression of Voice & Word ChoiceWriting does not reveal the author's personality or view of the world; limited vocabulary use.Writing reveals the author's personality and/or view of the world; writing lacks variety.Writing reveals the author's personality and/or view of the world, leaving the reader wanting to know more. Writing uses varied word choices to support ideas.Writing reveals the author's unique personality and/or view of the world, leaving the reader wanting to know more. Writing uses words that are striking and fresh; natural, varied, and vivid.
Grammar, Spelling, and PunctuationDiction, sentence structure, and grammar do not support or clarify the message of the essay. Many errors appear and most interfere with the message.Diction, sentence structure, and grammar occasionally support or clarify the message of the essay. Several errors appear and some interfere with the message.Diction, sentence structure, and grammar support or make clear the message of the essay.Diction, sentence structure, and grammar elevate the message of the essay.

3. Request Your Transcript

Request an official copy of your transcript. Official transcripts should be sent directly from each undergraduate college or university you've attended. Indicate if you are interested in having any previous graduate studies evaluated for transfer credit. You may receive up to nine hours of credit.

4. Submit Recommendations

Submit two recommendations using the following form. 

Online Recommendation Form

5. Eligibility Documentation

Graduate students must submit one of the following:

  • Official documentation of a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Official documentation of an earned graduate degree with a cumulative GPA of 3.0

Divergent Learning, Organizational Leadership, and Higher Education applicants may also submit the following if they don't meet the GPA criteria above: 

  • MAT (Miller Analogy Test) score with a date no older than 5 years prior to the first day of class of the semester of enrollment
  • GRE (Graduate Record Exam) score with a date no older than 5 years prior to the first day of class of the semester of enrollment

Have your bachelor's degree from Columbia College? 

We know you have a strong educational foundation, and we want to give you continuous opportunities to succeed. That's why we give you an application advantage. 

All students who have a bachelor’s degree from Columbia College with a GPA of 3.0 or above—and meet the specific graduate program requirements—are accepted into any of our online graduate programs. Read on for more details. 

Koala Application Advantage Details

The graduate applicant only needs to complete the application and submit a graduate admissions essay using one of the prompts provided for evaluation. No graduate test scores or letters of recommendation are required.

Columbia College graduates with a GPA less than 3.0 but greater than 2.5 may apply with a letter of recommendation from a Columbia College faculty member or a supervisor from the workplace or an internship and submit a graduate admissions essay using one of the prompts provided for evaluation. No test scores or additional recommendations are required.

Have questions? Reach us at 803.786.3871admissions@3zp64n.net, or contact a member of our admissions team directly.  

Send Transcripts & Application Documents: 
Office of Graduate Admissions
Columbia College
1301 Columbia College
Columbia, SC 29203

Admission Decision 

In most cases, we evaluate an application and respond with an admission decision within five days of receiving all the required documents. Admitted students are notified by mail and will receive follow-up information about the next steps, like financial aid, orientation, and registration.

Have questions?

We're here to help. Reach out to our admissions team to discuss questions about deadlines, sending transcripts, or your application status, and more.