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Spring 2021 Advisory

Find the latest information SPS's plans for the Spring and University resources. Message from the Dean.
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Curriculum & Courses

  • Part-Time
  • 30 points for degree completion
  • Online instruction
  • 2 in-person residencies*
  • Fall intake only
  • 4 consecutive terms to complete

The program follows a cohort module with students taking the same courses at the same time on a part-time basis for four semesters (including a summer session). In addition to conducting online coursework, students participate in two in-person sessions at the opening and conclusion of the program. These residencies consist of group activities to apply concepts and develop career advancement strategies, and networking opportunities among the students, faculty, and guest speakers. 

International students are responsible for ensuring they have read and understand the University’s student visa application eligibility and requirements. Please note that it is not permissible to enroll while in B-1/B-2 status. In addition, if studying on a student visa, you must enroll full-time (12 credits per term) and study on campus. Please note that this is a part-time program and therefore does not qualify for an F1 student visa.

*Due to COVID-19, in-person residencies may be postponed, virtual, or canceled.

Residency Dates

For Fall 2020 Cohort

  • Residency I: Thursday, August 27th – Friday, August 28th, 2020 (online)
  • Residency II: Monday, December 13th – Wednesday, December 15th, 2021 (online or in-person)

For Fall 2021 Cohort

  • Residency I: Wednesday, August 11th – Friday, August 13th, 2021 (online or in-person)
  • Residency II: December 2022 (TBD)

New students will begin the program orientation in August. If permissible under COVID-19 state guidelines, this will be an in-person two and a half-day residency at Columbia University’s campus in New York City. If not permissible, this will be held online. 

The second in person-residency will take place at the end of the program in December of the following year. An online version of this residency will be available for students who cannot attend in person although in person attendance is strongly preferred.

International students are welcome to attend the in-person residencies. An online version of the residencies is available for international students who cannot attend in person.

Disclaimer: The University reserves the right to withdraw or modify the courses or sequence of instruction or to change the instructors as may become necessary. Due to COVID-19, in-person residencies may be postponed or canceled.


Course Sequence

Each semester consists of either two or three required courses: two 14-week courses for the entire duration of the semester, two 12-week courses for the entire duration of the semester, or one 14-week course for the entire duration of the semester and two successive 7-week courses. Students will only take up to two courses at any given time. There are no electives.

All students enrolled in the program must take all 10 courses in the following order.

Expand the course accordions to see the duration of each course.

Semester 1 (Fall I)

Semester 2 (Spring)

Semester 3 (Summer)

Semester 4 (Fall II)

All coursework in this program is required and will enable students to qualify to take the CFP exam* and be prepared to transition into a career as an advisor. Students should familiarize themselves with the Terms and Conditions of taking the exam and obtaining the certification at

*There is no citizenship requirement to sit for the CFP exam. Once certified, however, you may only use CFP certification marks in the United States. Students should familiarize themselves with the Terms and Conditions of taking the exam and obtaining the certification at