Columbia University

Dept. of History
1180 Amsterdam Ave.
Mail Code 2527
New York, NY 10027

Phone 212.854.4646
Fax 212.851.5963


Department Web Site

Current Dissertations in Progress

PhDs Conferred by Department


Areas of Specialization

Intellectual; International and Global; Jewish; Women and Gender; Social and Political; History of Science and Technology; and History of Medicine.


Program Description

Columbia has been one of the most important centers of graduate education in history since modern Ph.D. programs began in America over a century ago, and the recipients of our degrees hold distinguished positions in virtually every major university in the United States, and in many abroad. Our program offers a broad education in most areas of historical scholarship and attempts to train students for a discipline and a profession in the midst of considerable change. That includes not simply assisting students in acquiring the knowledge and skills essential to becoming contributing scholars, but also helping them to become effective teachers and to exist comfortably within a demanding and complicated professional world.


Special Programs or Resources

Our strength derives not only from the distinction of our faculty and the talents of our students, but also from the University and the city in which we reside. Columbia provides rich physical and intellectual resources for historians. It has one of the nation's largest and greatest university libraries. It has departments of considerable distinction in many areas of interest to historians, whose faculties interact extensively with ours. It has one of the nation's great law schools, with a legal history faculty that shares with us a law and history program. It has one of the nation's great medical schools and one of its leading public health schools, with a program in the history of medicine and public health run jointly with our department. It has a School of Public and International Affairs and some of the nation's oldest and most important area studies programs, which offer opportunities for interdisciplinary work on many areas of the world. And it has one of America's premier women's colleges, our neighbor and partner Barnard, whose distinguished history department is closely associated with our own.


Financial Aid

Students admitted into the PhD program receive a five-year fellowship, which includes five years of summer funding. Three years of service as a teaching assistant is required.


Degree Requirements

Students must complete two years of coursework, pass language examinations, pass oral examinations in four subfields, and defend a dissertation to receive the Ph.D.

University Information

Information from Department of Education
(Includes information on the size, location, and general characteristics of faculty and student body)

Information from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
(Includes rating of the institution's rating of the graduate instructional program and size and setting)


Faculty Information

Full-time Faculty: 67

Relative Size based on Number of Full-time Faculty: Large [Explain]


Student Demographics

Number of Doctoral Students in Program: 151

New Doctoral Students Entering Program: 19

Proportion of Doctoral Students Receiving Financial Aid: 100%

Average Number of Graduate Students Enrolled: 189

Relative Size Based on Graduate Student Enrollment: Large [Explain]


Degree Information

First PhD conferred: 1883

History PhDs conferred to Date: 2288

Average Number of PhDs Conferred: 21

Relative Size Based on PhDs Conferred: Large [Explain]



Last Updated: August 1, 2014