Data, code and algorithms are becoming central to research and creative work – transforming industries, reshaping lives and setting new parameters for responsible citizenship. In this data-driven world, Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism and Department of Computer Science have launched an intensive, post-bac certification program designed to equip journalists and storytellers of all kinds with the computational skills needed to turn data into narrative. The program assumes no prior experience in programming or data analysis.


Lede students take hands-on classes in data and data technologies, all taught in the critical and creative contexts of the social sciences and humanities. The program is split into two sequential sections – one providing an introduction to computing, data analysis and data visualization; and the other venturing into advanced versions of these topics. In both cases, students can expect to leave with a portfolio of data-driven clips showcasing their new skills.

Lede 12

Lede 12 is a one-semester, summer-only Certification of Professional Achievement for students who want an applied introduction to data and computation. Students take four intensive courses hosted at the Journalism School, gaining a strong foundation in coding, statistics, data, algorithms and visualization. See sample courses

Lede 24

Lede 24 is a two-semester, summer and fall Certification of Professional Achievement for students who want a deeper computational education. In the summer, they take Lede 12 classes at the J-School; in the fall, they may study through Columbia’s Department of Computer Science or Institute for Data Sciences and Engineering, or take other data-driven courses at the University. See sample courses


The Lede Program is open to applicants with a bachelor’s degree, strong academic record and demonstrated interest in data technologies. See How to Apply for application details.


For Lede 2019, Lede 12 summer classes will begin May 28 and continue through August 15. Orientation will be on Friday, May 24. For those in the Lede 24 program, the fall semester begins the first week of September and will run through the end of December (depending on finals scheduling).


As a certification program at Columbia University, Lede programs cost less than a formal degree. For more information on tuition and scholarship aid opportunities, see our Tuition and Fees page.


Please don’t hesitate to reach out with questions by emailing jrncomputation@columbia.edu, or join our mailing list to be notified when applications open.