Columbia Commencement in Morningside Heights
The Class of 2018, a diverse group of some 16,000 men and women, receives degrees on May 16. They come from more than 100 different countries, and they range in age from 16 to 69.
Alondra Nelson Columbia Dean of Social Sciences

Photo by Jörg Meyer

Alondra Nelson was an eight-year-old when the television adaptation of Alex Haley’s Roots aired in 1977 to an audience of 130 million people. “We knew it was very important,” she said. “My parents were fairly strict about bedtimes and television time, but allowed us to stay up until 11 pm for eight nights.”

EEG experiment led by Andrew Goldman

Skilled improvisers were better than musicians with limited improvisational experience at distinguishing between chords that can be used interchangeably in a piece of music and those that cannot, says a new study led by Andrew Goldman, a postdoctoral researcher at Columbia University (pictured). 

Skilled improvisers were better than musicians with limited improvisational experience at distinguishing between chords that can be used interchangeably in a piece of music and those that cannot, a new study by Columbia researchers finds. The results suggest that musical improvisation, like so many other skills, improves with practice as the brain learns to categorize musical structures in a new way.


Top Row: Gabriela Gailea, Ndansi Elvis Nukam, Pavel Kounchev, Ana Maria Gonzalez-Forero, Oluseun Onigbinde, Omezzine Khelifa
Bottom Row: Alice Barbe, Peter Ndayihereje, Rumbidzai Chisenga, Hong Hoang, Vanessa Paranjothy, Trisha Shetty

Researchers set out four microphones like this one in the foothills of Alaska's Brooks Range to record songbird calls over five breeding seasons. In a new study, they describe an automated tool for sifting through thousands of hours of recordings to estimate when migratory birds arrive en masse in the Arctic. (Photo credit: Heather Greaves)

In a new study, scientists describe a way to quickly sift through thousands of hours of field recordings to estimate when songbirds arrive at their Arctic breeding grounds. Their research could be applied to any dataset of animal vocalizations to understand how migratory animals are responding to climate change.
Mae Ngai
Author of the award-winning book 'Impossible Subjects: Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America,' Ngai is an authority on immigration, citizenship, nationalism, and U.S. legal and political history.
Charles Armstrong
Armstrong is the Korea Foundation Professor of Korean Studies in the Social Sciences at Columbia and the author of five books on the two countries.

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