Aging effects of as-deposited and passivated slanted columnar thin films from cobalt determined by generalized ellipsometry within the visible spectral region are reported. Slanted columnar thin films have been grown by glancing angle electron beam deposition and subsequently coated with Al2O 3 by an atomic layer deposition process. An anisotropic Bruggeman effective medium approximation developed for highly ordered three dimensional metal nanostructures is employed to analyze spectroscopic Mueller matrix ellipsometry data. Our model approach allows for determination of biaxial optical and structural properties as well as fractions of multiple film constituents. While the optical properties of the uncoated film change over time, the alumina passivation layer prevents oxidation in air and therefore aging effects; however, it affects the intrinsic bulk-like Co optical properties.