Columbia University Interview Questions

Updated Mar 8, 2015
Updated Mar 8, 2015
117 Interview Reviews

Interview Experience

Interview Experience

72%
20%
7%

Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview

60%
18%
8%

Interview Difficulty

2.6
Average

Interview Difficulty

Hard

Average

Easy

Candidate Interview Reviews

Sort: Popular Date Difficulty
  1.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Anonymous Employee
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took 3 daysinterviewed at Columbia University.

    Interview Details

    Applied for part-time developer in CUIT. Sent a email with resume and got replied in 2 business days. Then got a onsite interview with some of their development team. People are nice.

    Interview Questions
    • No coding questions. Asked something about projects and some SQL questions.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  2.  

    CUIT Part-time Developer Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Anonymous Employee
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university – interviewed at Columbia University.

    Interview Details

    I'm a graduate student in Computer Science in Columbia University. I applied the job of CUIT part-time tech developer in 2014. It was an unexpected interview and I was badly prepared for that.
     The interview mainly focus on the past experience for the projects. And something with the database management. So for about the SQL grammar.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Average Interview
  3.  

    Research Technician B Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Anonymous Employee
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2+ monthsinterviewed at Columbia University in February 2014.

    Interview Details

    Had four interviews. Asked mostly about my research history. First few rounds were very personal and comfortable. Showed me the lab and discussed the research they were doing. Were concerned primarily about work ethic.

    Interview Questions
    • Questions were not very difficult. Most difficult question was whether or not I felt like I was a good candidate for md/phd programs.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Interview Review


  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Graduate Research Assistant Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 4+ monthsinterviewed at Columbia University.

    Interview Details

    Application Process: Reach out to the prospective professor(s) to determine funding availability and if there is a place for you. If you have a strong interest and are able to conceive of a possible proposal so much the better but this amount of experience in an applicant is rare. Needless to say anyone with NSF or other independent funding is a shoe-in.

    As far as I know acceptance is finally determined by a vote of the faculty of the particular department. The culture of the university is heavily academically nepotistic, in that faculty tend to favor students from schools with a long history of Columbia association, usually with emphasis on association with that particular department's collaborative partner schools.

    Acceptance is primary driven by: undergraduate school reputation and strength of recommendations. GPA is used as a minimum bar(typically >3.5). Past experience and your willingness to participate in ongoing research (perhaps not what you'd exactly like to do) and the faculty's awareness of your interest count for a lot. Many beginning doctoral acceptees are 24-26 and have work experience/specific well-aligned research interests.

    A word about differences in the program from other schools:

    One year to study for your qualifier exam instead of two. No preassigned research rotations, go looking early for a research adviser. Focus is on getting you to the research part fast.

    Interview Questions
    Negotiation Details
    There is none. Pay is fixed by the department for all students for the first year. Thereafter you're adviser's grant determines your salary. It tends not to vary much.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  6.  

    Administrative Coordinator Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through a staffing agency. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Columbia University.

    Interview Details

    Landed the interview through a staffing agency. Asked to come into the office for an interview. The office was small but nice and was greeted in a very pleasant manner. When the interview had started, the interviewer was very nice and eager to continue with the process. She asked fairy common questions.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  7. 3 people found this helpful  

    Administrative Assistant Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Columbia University.

    Interview Details

    I applied through the Jobs at Columbia (JAC) website, but also went into the office that was hiring, just to visit. It turned out it was pretty slow that afternoon and I got to meet and talk with the assistant director who had posted the job. I told him I'd applied for the position there and we got to talk informally about my interest in the job and what the office did. That visit, I believe, is what help set me apart from the other roughly 100 applicants they had for the position. I received an email for an interview maybe a week later.

    Interview Questions
    • It was a very easy interview, but what helped was that a certain rapport had already been established with the assistant director during that first visit. It also helped that my qualifications were (thankfully) a very close match with what they were seeking.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    From the time to accepting the position and beginning my first day took about 2-3 weeks, but it was due to navigating through the human resources red-tape that slowed the process. The negotiation process was straight forward due to the pay grade system Columbia works under, and I was offered the highest in the grade range.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  8.  

    Postdoctoral Research Scientist Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Application Details

    I applied online – interviewed at Columbia University.

    Interview Details

    The interview took one entire day plus dinner. I presented a 30 minutes talk of my former work.
    Afterwards I talked to everybody in the lab. The whole process was very intense, but very informal. There were no unexpected questions.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Administrative Assistant Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took a weekinterviewed at Columbia University.

    Interview Details

    Interviewed by Program Coordinator and an Associate Director for a position to support a research center, the staff including the Director, and student employees/interns. Questions regarded the multi-faceted position, which also included errands and basic research (online / library). It was a 1 day process and I heard back within a week.

    Interview Questions
    • Not difficult at all. Asked about my interest in political science and social research. Very engaging experience.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    none
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Research Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Application Details

    I applied online – interviewed at Columbia University in October 2013.

    Interview Details

    First stage: Phone interview with HR, which includes a salary screen. I didn't fit in their range and they told me so and told me what the ceiling for the position is. We agreed to proceed.

    Second stage: An interview with HR and the head of the research team (1/2 hr), followed by a 1/2 hr with an associate director. The HR and head of the team created a good impression on me. They asked general questions about my current work and said little about what skills are needed for the position. That made it tough to show them that I have the skills needed.

    The associate director was a little strange. He was newly promoted and had no interviewing skills. Appeared unable to describe the company culture and his management style.

    The time limits of both parts of the interview were enforced strictly; they actually cut me off to say we are out of time.

    There was zero follow-up on their part, although they promised they will be in touch in "a couple of weeks." After a while, the HR person wrote to me that "we are still recruiting." No closure.

    Interview Questions
    • Frankly, the most unexpected part was how little they asked me.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
  11.  

    MAINTENANCE/PORTER Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Application Details

    I applied through a staffing agency. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Columbia University in October 2013.

    Interview Details

    I was on time or before time. Dress well. Have all my document, certificate and resume. Never left the reception area without letting then now where I was going, just incase they ask or call you while you are not present.

    Interview Questions
    • What have you done during your time unemployed?   View Answer
    Negotiation Details
    Very fast, easy and educational
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

See What Columbia University Employees Are Saying

 Former Anonymous Employee

Pros: “Mentoring, training and exposure is excellent. The type of scientific discussion and collaboration make the environment optimal to launch a scientific career. Benefits are average with a…” Full Review

Work at Columbia University? Share Your Experiences

Columbia University

 
Click to Rate
or

The difficulty rating is the average interview difficulty rating across all interview candidates.

The interview experience is the percentage of all interview candidates that said their interview experience was positive, neutral, or negative.

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.