Skip navigation Jump to main navigation

Fall 2020 Advisory

Find the latest information on SPS's plans for the Fall and University resources. COVID-19 Resource Guide.
Close alert

Advanced Academic English for Graduate Students

Available in Fall

Because of COVID-19 Advanced Academic English for Graduate Students (AAEGS) will be offered remotely (online). Participants will be able to join from any location in the world.

This noncredit course in Advanced Academic English for Graduate Students will meet for for six weeks, prior to the start of a student’s Master’s program.

Please note: This course is open only to Master's students entering Columbia University in the Spring 2021.

This intensive six-week program is designed to increase proficiency in spoken and written English, enhance reading and listening skills, and prepare students for studying in a rigorous U.S academic context. It also aims to familiarize participants with Columbia and with New York City.

The course is aimed at international students whose first language is not English.

The curriculum will combine linguistic, academic and cultural objectives, and students will explore these areas through various thematic units.

The AAEGS course will include:
  • Strategies for speaking in academic contexts (discussions and presentations)
  • Spontaneous speaking skills in academic and informal contexts (including small talk)
  • Pronunciation, word stress and intonation
  • Fluency building
  • Advanced grammar review
  • Strategies for attending to and correcting errors in grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation
  • Formal and informal language choice
  • Academic vocabulary expansion
  • Academic writing skills
  • Strategies for reading academic texts
  • Lecture note-taking techniques
  • Proper email etiquette
  • Meeting professors' expectations
Our remote learning AAEGS course offers:
  • 15 hours of synchronous class hours per week via Zoom (Monday – Friday 8am-11am EDT)
  • 5+ hours of asynchronous learning per week: reading, listening and research
  • Weekly small group and 1-1 interaction with course instructors
What we offer with remote learning:
  • Expert, experienced faculty, supported by the School of Professional Studies, a leader in online education for 9 years.
  • Individual attention and one-on-one support
  • Feedback and error correction on spoken and written English
  • A supportive and collaborative learning environment
  • Small class sizes (maximum 15)
  • Digital immersion
  • A virtual New York and Columbia experience
  • A virtual community

Students studying in their home countries will not need an I-20 or F-1 visa to join the ALP. F-1 students currently in the US will need a transfer I-20.

If you have questions about this course please email: alp [[at]] columbia [[dot]] edu

Dates and Prices

Tuition and fees are subject to Board of Trustee approval and may change.

For a full explanation of fees, see below.


This course is open only to incoming Master’s students entering Columbia University in the Fall.

Application Materials

Applicants must apply online. Only applications submitted from the ALP Web site are accepted.

  1. Completed online application form.

    In general, an F-1 (student visa) is required for study in the US. International applicants are required to request an I-20 for the American Language Program (not the Master's program) in order to obtain the F-1 visa and must enroll in a full-time program (18 hours or more per week).

    All international students taking Advanced Academic English for Graduate Students must have an I-20 issued by the ALP. At the end of the Fall, we will transfer your I-20 from the ALP to the International Students & Scholars Office (ISSO) so that you can begin your studies in your Master's program.

    If you are already holding an F-1 visa and attending another school you must also transfer your SEVIS record from your current school to the ALP. Please speak with your advisor at your current school.

    To receive an I-20, please upload your ALP admission letter with the following documents (see below) to the online I-20 application page (Compass). You will receive your admission letter and I-20 instructions after you are admitted to the program.
  2. Bank statement. This document must be in English and dated within the last three months. It must be from a checking or savings account and must show sufficient available funds to pay the estimated tuition, fees and living expenses.

    • To see required balance for I-20, please see the "Total" amount for your program, above.

    For ALP purposes, we need to see sufficient funds for the ALP I-20 only. However, when we transfer your record from ALP to ISSO at the end of the Fall (and when you have your visa appointment at the US Embassy in your country), you must show financial documents with sufficient funds to cover Advanced Academic English for Graduate Students + one year of the Master's program.
  3. Sponsor letter. The letter must be in English and dated within the last three months. It must also be signed by the sponsor. If you are sending your own bank statement you are not required to submit a sponsor letter. The sponsor letter is necessary only if a bank statement will be submitted on your behalf by another person. The person whose bank statement you will submit is your sponsor.

    Your sponsor must submit a letter (sponsor letter) stating that s/he will provide you with full financial support during the period of your study in the ALP. The sponsor letter must be in English and dated within the last three months. It must also be signed by the sponsor.
  4. Photocopy of your passport’s identification page. This is the page in your passport that shows your photograph, your name, and your date of birth.

Once your completed application and accompanying materials have been received and processed, you will receive a U.S. government I-20 form. Bring the I-20 form, along with your letter of acceptance and original financial documents, to a U.S. embassy or consulate in your country to apply for a student (F-1) visa.

Students must apply online. Please select Advanced Academic English for Graduate Students as your program. If you have any questions regarding your I-20, SEVIS, transfers, or immigration in general, please contact alpvisa [[at]] columbia [[dot]] edu.

At the completion of the Advanced Academic English for Graduate Students course, you will work with the ALP Visa Office to transfer your I-20 to Columbia’s International Students and Scholar’s Office (ISSO) for the completion of the degree program.

Connect with Us

Learn more about American Language Program at Columbia University School of Professional Studies, or contact the program advisor.

Request more information

Apply to the American Language Program

Learn more about the application process, deadlines, and requirements.

Learn more