A Liberal Arts Education, One Class at a Time

Welcome to the Block Plan, where you’ll take one class at a time for 3 ½ weeks. Prepare to dive into your current passion in small discussion-based classes, where professors will know your name, encourage you to grow, and respect your stride. Master the art of balance with clubs, internships, work, athletics, community service, and adjuncts. 

Welcome to block breaks, four days to relax, to climb one of Colorado’s 54 peaks higher than 14,000 feet or explore the dynamic sand dunes, forests, and canyons of the Southwest.

Welcome to a vibrant community of students eager to communicate, debate, defend, think, and engage.

Welcome to 32 blocks of curiosity, adventure, and imagination, to the moment for unearthing your passions, exploring and understanding the world, and your individual growth.

Enjoy the ride. 

Academics

Colorado College’s innovative approach to the liberal arts is the Block Plan, our unique schedule where students take (and professors teach) one class at a time. With over 80 majors, minors, and specialized programs from which to choose, Colorado College students are interested in everything from the sciences to the humanities, and many complete a major with all. All classes are small and discussion-based, allowing students and professors to delve into subjects deeply with collaboration, field study, and research opportunities.

Each block lasts for three-and-a-half weeks, beginning on a Monday and ending on a Wednesday four weeks later. One block is equal to one class on a semester plan, and CC students take four blocks a semester, eight blocks a year. Everyone—students, faculty, and staff—is on the same rhythm at CC, creating a vibrant and involved intellectual community.

Field Study and Study Abroad

Field study is an integral part of the academic experience at Colorado College. CC faculty utilize the Block Plan in innovative ways to allow students to experience their studies in ways not possible in traditional settings. From studying sustainable economies at local farmers’ markets or geology at Garden of the Gods, to studying the variety of religious traditions of the American Southwest, to taking in the great works at New York City’s MOMA, to studying the classics while sailing the Mediterranean, CC classes go far and wide. Whether you leave campus for three hours, three days, or three and a half weeks, you are not missing any other classes—ensuring that you are able to completely immerse yourself in each class.

CC students have the opportunity to take a semester and/or a year abroad at another institution with one of our pre-approved programs located on six continents and focused on all academic disciplines. Students can also take Colorado College blocks abroad, which allows students to travel off-campus for up to three and a half weeks for a single block or seven weeks for a two-block course. Over 70 percent of CC students study abroad, demonstrating that hands-on, on-location learning is an integral part of the CC experience.

Innovation@CC and Research Opportunities

Students, faculty, and staff at Colorado College are part of a vibrant community characterized by an adventurous spirit and love of learning. Named by US News in 2020 as the third “Most Innovative School,” the Colorado College community emphasizes the value of innovation and impactful work. Innovation@CC offers the collaborative focal point for new ideas and creative visions and seeks not only to facilitate the creation of ideas but also the translation of ideas into innovation action for real-world impact.

At Colorado College, we believe in creating leaders and encouraging you to take charge of your education. Throughout your time as a student, you can apply for a Venture Grant for student research. You create and submit your own research proposals and are awarded funds to delve deeper into an area of study that intrigues you. This research can take you across town or across the world. Whether you’re a first year or a senior, you’re eligible to create your own adventure and “venture” forth to explore something that speaks to you.

First-Year Program

When starting at Colorado College in the fall, each first-year student takes a  First-Year Program (FYP) course for their first two blocks. With FYP classes offered by every department, this program is designed to help all incoming students enjoy and adjust to in-depth critical thinking, analytical discussion, and the systems that make Colorado College unique. Professors familiarize students with academic resources (like the Writing Center and the Quantitative Reasoning Center, for example) and help students live and learn on rhythm of the Block Plan, while students make lasting connections with their fellow first-year classmates.

Residential Life

Since so much of the Colorado College experience happens outside the classroom, living on campus is a huge part of CC student life. Life in the residence halls is a central part of the holistic experience that characterizes a liberal arts education. Colorado College is committed to cultivating a vibrant campus lifestyle both in and out of the classroom, and therefore all students are required to live in college housing unless granted off-campus status as seniors.

Our three traditional halls, where all first-year students reside, are the perfect opportunity to build community, make new friends, study in groups, or engage in a variety of hall programs. Residential advisors (students) and residential life coordinators (professional staff) provide close mentorship and support throughout the year.

Located in various traditional halls and small houses, Living Learning Communities (LLCs) and themed spaces further integrate the living and educational experience. Residents of these areas actively participate in projects, discussions, events, and trips focused around a theme or topic. Current LLCs include: Outdoor Education, PRIDE, and Revitalizing Nations.

Small houses and language houses, located around campus and available to students after their first year, are communities with their own distinct character and culture. Some are intentionally themed—such as the Synergy House (sustainable living), the Glass House (multicultural focus), or the language houses (Spanish, French, German, Italian, Russian, Japanese, and Chinese)—while other communities develop organically through the interests of the students who live there.

Apartments are available to students with junior or senior standing and provide the convenience of on-campus living while providing an atmosphere that helps students transition to off-campus living. Senior cottages are designed to provide an educational off-campus that combines some of the best aspects of living on campus with the responsibilities of off-campus life.

Co-Curricular Life

As enthusiastic as students are inside the classroom at Colorado College, they are just as excited outside of it. Since all students are in class at the same time, getting involved with clubs, sports, and organizations in the afternoons and evenings is just part of life at CC. Passionate about music? Join the B-Side Collective, making music more accessible for all, or the Ellement A Cappella club for female-identifying singers. Want to enjoy the great outdoors? Outdoor Education at CC runs over 200 outdoor adventures during Block Breaks and weekends. With over 100 active clubs, groups, and teams, you’re bound to find everything you love—and there’s always room for you to create your own club. See the full list of CC student organizations here.

The Colorado College Tigers compete in three national athletic conferences at both the Division I level (men’s ice hockey and women’s soccer) and the Division III level (such as basketball, lacrosse, cross country, and twelve others). Outside of varsity athletics, students play over a dozen club sports. Over three-quarters of the student body participates in intramural sports, which include sports like broomball, volleyball, ultimate Frisbee, and inner tube water polo. 

Applying to Colorado College

Visit ccbasecamp for more information, timelines, and your applicant portal, where you can find important updates throughout the application process.

Deadlines

Early Action (non-binding)
  • Application Due Date: November 1
  • Admission Decision: Mid to Late-December
  • Student Reply Date: May 1
Early Decision I (binding)
  • Application Due Date: November 1
  • Admission Decision: Mid-December
Early Decision II (binding)
  • Application Due Date: January 15
  • Admission Decision: Mid-February
Regular Action
  • Application Due Date: January 15
  • Admission Decision: Mid-March
  • Student Reply Date: May 1
Transfer
  • Spring Semester Due Date: October 15
  • Fall Semester Due Date: March 1
Required Materials
  • Coalition Application, QuestBridge Application, or Common Application
  • High School Transcript
  • Secondary School Report
  • Two teacher recommendations
  • Colorado College Supplement
  • Standardized Test Scores (required from homeschooled students, students attending secondary schools offering written evaluations, Division I recruited athletes, and some international students)
Optional Materials

Financial Aid

With a strong commitment to access and affordability, Colorado College meets 100 percent of each applicant’s demonstrated need. We award more than $40 million in financial aid to approximately 56 percent of our students each year. We review each financial aid application individually, paying close attention to special family circumstances. Many families are able to afford Colorado with the combination of grants, modest loans, reasonable work-study opportunities, and family resources. In addition, we offer a limited number of merit scholarships, awarded through the admission application process.

To apply for need-based financial aid at Colorado College, you are required to submit the FAFSA, the CSS Profile, and your family’s most recent federal tax returns. To help you understand what your family might pay for a Colorado College education, we encourage you to use our Net Price Calculator.

  • Students on financial aid: 41%
  • Typical financial aid package: 89% grants, 18% loans, 2% work study
  • Average federal loan debt: $18,000
For more information, timelines, and details on CC’s financial aid process, please visit our Financial Aid website.

Colorado College continues to closely monitor developments in the outbreak of respiratory illness caused by the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). The president's cabinet and the college's multi-disciplinary COVID-19 Emergency Response Team are meeting regularly (remotely) to assess the situation and plan for impacts to our campus community. You can find updates from the college here.

Our top priority is the health and safety of students, faculty, staff, and the greater community — we must all do our part. And our mission, as always, is to deliver the finest liberal arts education in the country. Therefore, we want to come together in a way that allows us to deliver the distinctive and immersive Colorado College academic program, fostering student-faculty engagement, while responsibly adhering to health requirements and working to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

To protect the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff who will be returning to campus in August, we are not welcoming outside visitors to campus through Block 2 (October 14) and may need to extend this restriction through Thanksgiving. We will monitor our county’s recommendations for optimal safety and will update prospective students when we have additional guidance.

In the meantime, we invite you to check out our virtual opportunities intended to bring you closer to the CC community! Whether you want to connect with admission officers or our current students, we’ve got you and your family covered.  

Prospective Student Open Houses

Typically we invite students and their families to join us on campus for one of our special events throughout the summer and fall. These events can include an information session and campus tour, lunch in our dining hall, an overnight stay with a current student, an admission interview, and a Block Plan class visit. Lasting from one to two days, these events can provide a full, multi-faceted experience to get to know CC. 

To protect the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff who will be returning to campus in August, we are not welcoming outside visitors to campus through Block 2 (October 14) and may need to extend this restriction through Thanksgiving. We will monitor our county’s recommendations for optimal safety and will update prospective students when we have additional guidance. 

In the meantime, we are excited to offer virtual open houses. Please refer to this page to see our current offerings.

Funded Campus Visits

To make the campus visit experience more accessible to everyone, Colorado College offers two funded visit opportunities in the fall: Experience Colorado College.

The program is open to high school seniors, gap year students or transfer students currently residing in the United States. To apply for this program, you must meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • Self-identify as a student of color (of African American, Native American, Asian, and/or Hispanic descent)
  • Eligible for the Pell Grant
  • Qualify for Free/Reduced Lunch
  • Are a DACA or undocumented student
  • Identify as a First-Generation Student (Neither of your parents obtained a bachelor's degree)

Please note: this program will potentially shift to a virtual platform to preserve the health and safety of our campus community in light of COVID-19.

Colorado College values the great diversity that students from all backgrounds and family circumstances bring to our community. As with our domestic applicants, we meet full demonstrated financial need for all DACA, undocumented, and international admitted students.

DACA and Undocumented Students

In the interest of increasing access for all students, Colorado College fully reviews all DACA and undocumented students for admission to the college. As with all of our admitted students, we meet full demonstrated financial need for these students with institutional resources. You can find more information on campus resources for DACA and undocumented students here.

International Students

Colorado College strongly values building a global perspective in our students, and we both send students out into the world (80 percent of our students study abroad) and bring students from all over the globe to campus. Hailing from over 50 countries, our international students enrich our campus community immeasurably. As with our domestic applicants, we meet full demonstrated financial need for each international student. For more information about applying as an international student to Colorado College, visit this website.