Physical Education Requirement

General Information
Physical Education Department
Dodge Physical Fitness Center

Physical Education Website 

Successful completion of two physical education courses is required for the degree. All students are also required to pass a swim test or take beginning swimming for one term to fulfill the swim requirement. A waiver of the swim test requirement may be granted if a student has a disability certified by Columbia Health that precludes swimming. Students may also request waivers and accommodations on the grounds of religious observance or gender identity/expression. All requests for waivers and accommodations are reviewed by the director of physical education.

Students may not register for more than one section of physical education each term.

To pass the course, students must fulfill the attendance and participation requirements outlined by each section and available on the physical education website. Students who are absent more than the permissible number of times are given a mark of W (Withdrawal), unless they complete and file a drop form by the official deadline to drop a course.

No more than 4 points of physical education courses may be counted toward the degree. One course of the physical education requirement may be a Barnard Physical Education course. Two courses of the physical education requirement may be a Barnard Dance/ Studio Technique course. 

A student who intends to participate in an intercollegiate sport should register for the appropriate section of PHED UN1005 Intercollegiate Athletics. Intercollegiate athletes who attend regularly receive 1 point of credit up to a maximum of 4. Student athletes who leave the team in mid-term but still wish to receive academic credit must notify the Physical Education Office and be placed in another physical education course to complete the attendance requirement. Student athletes are also responsible for fulfilling the swim requirement.

Eligibility for Intercollegiate Athletics

Any student in the College who is pursuing the undergraduate program or a combined program toward a first degree is eligible for intercollegiate athletics. To be eligible for athletic activities, the student must make appropriate progress toward the degree as defined by the NCAA, the Ivy League, and Columbia University. These criteria are monitored by the Center for Student Advising and certified by the Office of the Registrar.

Questions about athletic eligibility should be referred to the appropriate advising dean or the compliance office in the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics and Physical Education.

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