Student Guide

This MA Europe Student Guide should serve as a "landing point" where key program information and resource links are gathered in one place. Some of the sections below are directed toward incoming MA, but we hope this page is also helpful for all of our continuing students!



Even more information, including program policies and guidelines, is provided in the MA Europe Program Guide


Who is our program team & who can you contact for what?

Professor Adam Tooze is the Director of the European Institute and the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Professor of History. He chairs the European History, Politics, and Society MA program and teaches a range of courses in European History. NB: Prof. Tooze is on leave in 2022-2023.

François Carrel-Billiard is the Associate Director of the European Institute. He coordinates the management of the MA program and assists students interested in conducting research in Europe. He also assists the MA students with all administrative aspects of the program such as registration, course approvals, thesis deadlines, leaves of absence, graduation certification, and program & school grants for thesis research in Europe.

Professor Tsveta Petrova is our MA program Faculty Advisor and a Lecturer in the Discipline of Political Science. She teaches the MA colloquium that introduces key topics and issues in the study of Europe and helps develop reading, writing, and public speaking skills. She provides one-on-one advising and support to our students—from identifying ideal classes and advisors to helping with thesis writing and post-graduation career planning.



Professor Adam Tooze
Please check his profile at the History Department website for more details. NB: Prof. Tooze is on leave in 2022-2023.

François Carrel-Billiard

  • Email to schedule a virtual or in-person meeting

Professor Tsveta Petrova

  • TBC: planned office hours after Colloquium I (Fridays 9:10 - 11:00 AM)
  • Email to schedule a meeting


Our offices are located at The Interchurch Center (enter at 61 Claremont Ave) on the 3rd Floor:

  • Professor Tsveta Petrova: Office 308L 
  • François Carrel-Billiard: Office 308J


You must schedule a meeting in advance so that the person you're meeting can enter you into the building's visitor system. On the day of your visit, you will receive an email from "Angus Anywhere" with instructions for the building's visitor check-in procedure:

  1. Provide a symptom attestation (using the buttons in the email).
  2. Bypass the front desk and proceed through the hallway on the right until you reach the elevator turnstiles.
  3. Provide a temperature scan at the elevator turnstiles - Hold your wrist up to the thermometer (the guard will direct you if needed).
  4. Use the barcode at the bottom of the "Angus Anywhere" email to scan through the turnstiles & proceed to the 3rd floor.

If you have any issues with building entry, please contact the person you are meeting.


All information and updates are available through the University's COVID-19 Resource Hub.

COVID-19 Resource Hub

Guide to all COVID-19 information, updates, policies, and guidelines

The Public Health page of the COVID-19 Resource Hub includes the step-by-step required protocol for return (or arrival) to campus. The protocol currently includes the following steps:

1. Get vaccinated and upload appropriate documentation

2. Read the Health and Safety Policy & sign the Columbia Health Compact

3. Take the appropriate safety training

4. Get a gateway test (must be administered by Columbia)

5. Download the ReopenCU App (for daily symptom attestation) to generate a "green pass" for campus access

COVID-19 vaccination will be mandatory for all University students, faculty, and staff who are present on campus. Getting vaccinated is now part of the 5 step protocol for returning to campus, outlined on the COVID-19 Resource Hub. You can read more about this decision here.

For international students or those currently abroad: vaccines approved by the WHO are also accepted; if you do not currently have access to a vaccine, you can also receive one upon arrival in the US (either administered by Columbia or elsewhere).

As with other vaccine requirements, medical and religious exemptions apply; please carefully review instructions to submit an exemption request.

The Public Health page of the COVID-19 Resource Hub has a handy "Timeline to Comply" with timeline information for various vaccines.

For additional (non-COVID) immunization requirements, please see Columbia Health's page on Immunization Requirements.

The Fall 2021 section of the COVID-19 Resource Hub currently contains updates on the following categories:

Fall 2021 Travel Restrictions
Space Use Guidelines
Updated Face Covering and PPE Info
Gathering Size Guidelines
COVID-19 Testing Program
Visitor Guidelines

All University policies & guidelines can be found on under the University Policy section of the COVID-19 Resource Hub. Categories include:

Fall 2021 Vaccine Policy
Testing Process
Symptom Self-checking
Vendor Clearance
Symptom Self-check App Red Screen Policy
Enhanced Health and Safety
Test and Trace
Community Health Compact
Events and Gathering on Campus
Domestic and International Travel
Space Use Guidelines


First steps for new students

What should you be looking at first, over the summer?

New student checklist

A step-by-step of what to complete before arriving on campus

FAQs for new students

Have a question about pre-arrival steps, registration, etc.? Check here first!

New student guide

GSAS resource hub for new students


*SUBJECT TO CHANGE - For the most up-to-date information, check the Registrar's Academic Calendar page and GSAS' Academic Calendar page.

*The tables below do not show all dates (registration & academic deadlines) in the year, only key items. Please view the Registrar or GSAS pages for the FULL academic calendar.

*Our MA program deadlines are noted separately on the Thesis page and on the Graduating page.

Key Dates


Students can check for "registration appointments" via SSOL.

New students
Registration should open from August 30 - September 1. (You will also get the chance to add/drop courses during the Change of Program Period.)

Continuing students
April 4 - April 8 (weekdays)
June 6 - June 17 (weekdays)
July 25 - August 5 (weekdays)
August 23 - August 25 (weekdays)
August 30 - September 1 (weekdays)

September 1
Register for at least one course AND a Residence Unit (RU) by this date. (You will also get the chance to add/drop courses during the Change of Program Period.)

September 6
First day of classes.

September 6 - September 16
Change of Program Period - You can add/drop courses during this "shopping" period and go over the 20 credit limit without impacting your tuition. Many students over-enroll in courses as they "shop".

September 16 - Usually ends 9:30pm EDT
*End of the Change of Program Period - Mark this date!
→ Last day to drop a course without it impacting your tuition or appearing on your transcript.
→ Tuition is calculated at the end of this period: GSAS will snapshot your enrollment - counting the number of courses AND the number of credits. If your registered RU is lower than your courses/credits, GSAS will increase your RU enrollment to the appropriate one. If your registered RU is higher than your courses/credits, GSAS will NOT update your RU to a lower one.

October 11
Last day to drop a course without it appearing on your transcript (the course will be counted toward your tuition).

November 17
Last day to register a course for R credit or Pass/Fail. Explanations for each category on the GSAS Grading System page. NB: R or Pass/Fail courses cannot count toward your MA degree requirements.

December 12
Last day of classes.

Students register via SSOL (Students Services Online system) during registration appointments.

Registering for courses
Each course has a "call number" that can be used to add it to your registration list. You can find course call numbers through the Directory of Classes or through Vergil. Vergil is a more user-friendly version of the Directory of Classe and  has a "schedule view" and "export to SSOL" function.

Registering for a Residence Unit (RU)
Each RU category also has its own call number that can be used for registration - You can search for "residence unit" in Vergil for the call numbers.

RU Call Numbers for Fall 2022
(CALL NUMBERS SUBJECT TO CHANGE - Please confirm the appropriate RU category when registering)

The Change of Program Period is the "shopping" or "add/drop" period where students can freely add and drop courses without impacting their tuition.

Many students over-enroll in courses as they "shop" (i.e., exceed the course or credit limit of their anticipated RU) - Please make sure you drop all unwanted courses AND remove yourself from waitlists before the end of the Change of Program Period.

After the Change of Program Period concludes, all adds or drops may impact your tuition.

Fall 2022 Dates

  • September 6 - September 16
    Change of Program Period
  • September 16 - Usually ends 9:30pm EDT
    *End of the Change of Program Period - Mark this date!
    → Last day to drop a course without it impacting your tuition or appearing on your transcript.
    → Tuition is calculated at the end of this period: GSAS will snapshot your enrollment - counting the number of courses AND the number of credits. If your registered RU is lower than your courses/credits, GSAS will increase your RU enrollment to the appropriate one. If your registered RU is higher than your courses/credits, GSAS will NOT update your RU to a lower one.

Fall 2021 Procedure ONLY

During the Change of Program Period, Courseworks/Canvas sites will be accessible to anyone with a Columbia UNI and password so that all students can access the course resources and Zoom class meeting links (if applicable). This includes SIPA courses. Look up the course in Vergil and click on the "View in Courseworks" button.

GSAS expects all course "shopping" to happen in person, but you should still have access to Courseworks to view course materials (syllabus, etc.). Individual faculty may elect to opt out of providing Courseworks access.

Each semester, students register for a Residence Unit (RU), which provides the basis for tuition charges. Students have the option to register for full Residence Unit (1 RU), half Residence Unit (0.5 RU), or quarter Residence Unit (0.25 RU).

Students must complete the equivalent of 2 Residence Units for the conferral of the MA degree. If a student completes the equivalent of 2 Residence Units before finishing their program requirements, they are required to register for Extended Residence (ER) for any term in which they register for a course.

For international students: please note that student visas require full-time enrollment at Columbia. International students therefore need to register for a full Residence Unit (1 RU) each semester. If an international student requires a third semester to complete their program requirements, they would need to register for Extended Residence (ER) in that semester.

Registration Category - Tuition Per Semester
Rates for 2022-2023 academic year

Please see the Tuition & Fees page for more information!

If you have an open registration appointment in SSOL, but you are blocked from registering, it's usually because you have a registration hold on your account.

There are several reasons why you may have a registration hold.

New students
→ Immunization compliance - Action required: submit all required immunization documentation to Columbia Health
→ Credentials verification - Action required: submit all portions of the Credentials Verification process
→ New student tutorials - Action required: complete all pre-arrival tutorials

Continuing students
→ Financial obligation - Action required: resolve any finances through Student Financial Services
→ Academic issue - Action required: resolve any issues at program or school-wide level

If issues with registration persist or if you have any concerns about your registration hold, please contact the Associate Director directly or at the general MA account [email protected]


We encourage you to explore all pages of our MA program website! The pages noted below may be of particular interest:


What courses can you take? These courses are pre-approved as having a "Europe" focus or as "exception" courses (marked with **).


What are the degree requirements? How should you structure your program of study? How can you fulfill the language requirements?


What faculty work closely with the European Institute or are affiliated? Whose courses do you want to take or who could be a potential thesis advisor?


Who are your fellow MA students? Who are recent alumni: what research did they do in the program and where are they now?


What is the MA thesis and how can you register for thesis writing? More info on Thesis Guidelines, deadlines, and past theses here.


What are the steps and deadlines for degree conferral? What info is there on the University Commencement and GSAS Convocation ceremonies?


Where's that form...? This page links to all MA program forms and guidelines & to many relevant GSAS and University forms.


The European Institute (EI) houses the MA in European History, Politics, and Society program. The EI includes a diverse network of scholars and hosts various events that may be of interest to our MA students!

European Institute

Interdisciplinary center for teaching and research on Europe: events, news, and funding opportunities!



Check school policies, staff contacts, cost of attendance, GSAS academic calendar, external funding opportunities


Portal for student information, registration, grades, billing, class schedule

Directory of Courses

Bulletin of CU courses showing course times, classrooms, instructors, call numbers for registration


More user-friendly "Directory of Courses" with course planning, course calendars, export course selection to SSOL


Learning management system with course syllabi, information sharing between instructors and students

GSAS Compass

Career development office dedicated to GSAS MA, PhD, and alumni

GSAS Connect

Career management hub with resources, job & internship database, on-campus employment postings

Writing Center

From brainstorming to final drafts: receive one-on-one feedback and suggestions from Writing Center consultants

Columbia Health Medical Services

Routine and urgent medical care, travel medicine, immunizations, sexual and reproductive health services, and more

Counseling & Psychological Services

Individual counseling to support your psychological and emotional well-being


International Students & Scholars Office (ISSO)

The ISSO team is your main stop for any questions or concerns related to your international student status! You can find information on visas, OPT, Social Security Numbers, tax returns, etc. on their website.

ISSO Student Services

ISSO's main landing page for student services - Navigate to the find the information you need or find the appropriate ISSO contact

New Students - Getting Started

Current Students

Common issues, questions, and actions below - Please see the ISSO Student Services page for a full list of services!


If you can't find the info here, feel free to reach out to the program team at their individual emails or email the general MA account at [email protected]