Graduate Division

Admission to graduate programs is a privilege granted to stu­dents who demonstrate the ability to excel in an academic area. In most cases, College policy is the same for graduate and under­graduate students. Where policies differ, it is because graduate students are expected to possess superior academic skills and thus may be held to a higher standard. The differences are noted below.

Graduate Admission

Departments set admission requirements specific to their own academic programs. In the case of combined degree programs where students begin their graduate studies concurrently with their final undergraduate courses, the admission requirements are based on the student’s undergraduate performance immediately prior to his or her initial semester of graduate work. Standardized test scores may be required. Refer to the appropriate academic section of this catalogue or the department chairperson for additional information.

Graduate transfer credit is awarded only after approval from the department chairperson. Only graduate courses with a B or higher earned at accredited institutions are eligible for transfer. A maximum of two courses or eight credits—whichever is greater—may be transferred. Graduate transfer credit will appear on the student’s graduate academic record and will include the credits and grades earned at the awarding institution. Graduate transfer credit is not included in the graduate grade-point index.

Graduate Courses and Registration

Credit Hours and Credit-Hour Loads

Students in combined undergraduate and graduate degree pro­grams carry the same load as undergraduate students, viz., stu­dents are full time when enrolled for 12 or more credits per semester. Once admitted to the graduate division, students in combined degree programs may not take more than 18 credits per semester. Students pursuing stand-alone graduate degrees are considered full time when enrolled for eight or more credits per semester.

Pass-Fail Courses

Graduate students may not elect courses on a pass-fail basis. However, the College may offer graduate courses (such as a graduate comprehensive) that are exclusively pass-fail.

Independent Study

In rare circumstances, students may be allowed to conduct a graduate independent study. Students are eligible for graduate independent studies after completing nine graduate credits. No more than three credits of graduate independent study may be used toward a graduate degree.

Field Placements and Internships

Graduate field placements and internships may be available in some programs. Consult with the appropriate academic chair­person for details.

Courses at Other Institutions

Except for graduate transfer credit (described in the section on Graduate Admission), all graduate degree requirements must be completed in residence.

Study Abroad

Students in combined undergraduate/graduate degree programs may include courses from abroad in their undergraduate degree. Graduate courses may not be taken abroad.

U.S. Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC)

Graduate credit will not be awarded from any ROTC program.

Graduate Grading Policies

Final grades reflect the combined results of class work and examinations. Graduate grades are computed according to the following scale:

Grade Description Quality Points
A Superior 4.0
A- Excellent 3.67
B+ Accomplished 3.33
B Very Good 3.0
B- Good 2.67
C+ Above Average 2.33
C Average 2.0
F Failing 0.0
H Honors (not computed)
P Passing (not computed)
W Withdrawal (not computed)
X Non-Attendance 0.0

Like undergraduate studies, graduate scholastic achievement is recorded by means of quality points. Points are assigned as indicated in the preceding table for each credit hour completed. The quality-point index (QPI) is obtained by multiplying the credit value of each course (whether passed or failed) by the number of points that correspond to the grade earned, adding all of the resulting quality points together and dividing the total number of quality points by the total number of credit hours.

The graduate record is kept separate from the undergraduate record, and each will have its own respective indices. Students must maintain appropriate indices at each level to remain in good standing. Undergraduate and graduate course repetition policies are different. Students should refer to the sections on Probation and Academic Dismissal and Course Repetition elsewhere in this catalogue.

Although undergraduate and graduate course work is recorded separately, the official academic record includes the student’s entire academic experience at the College. When transcripts are issued, both undergraduate and graduate records will be sent; students may not choose to send one portion without the other.

A cumulative graduate index of 3.0 is required for graduation.

C grades in Graduate Courses

A cumulative graduate index of 3.0 is required for graduation. A maximum of two course grades in the “C” range will be acceptable—as long as the cumulative graduate index of 3.0 is met. If any grade earned in a graduate course is below C, the course will have to be repeated. Only one repetition of any course will be permitted.

Class Standing

Graduate students have only one class standing—graduate.

Dean’s List

Graduate students are expected to maintain high levels of achievement, thus no additional distinction is made. There is no Dean’s List of graduate students. Graduate courses taken as part of a combined undergraduate/graduate program are not included in Dean’s List calculations.

Course Repetition

Students who wish to repeat a graduate course must obtain approval from their department chairperson before reenrolling in the course. Department chairpersons may approve up to two graduate repetitions. When pre-approval has been granted, the graduate index will compute only the last grade earned. If de­partmental approval is not granted, or a student repeats more than two graduate courses, then all grades for the repeated course will be averaged into the index. In all cases, both grades will show on the graduate transcript. Students are never given degree credit more than once for any course.

Report of Grades

Graduate students receive notice to review their final grades via WebAdvisor. Students enrolling in undergraduate (UG) and graduate (GR) courses concurrently will view UG and GR grades separately, each with its own indices. No mid-semester grades are issued for graduate courses.

Probation and Academic Dismissal

Students are in good academic standing when they make satis­factory progress toward their degree and maintain a graduate index of 3.0 or better. Students who fall below 3.0 are placed on probation. If the subsequent graduate index is below 3.0, the student is dismissed.

Graduate Degree Requirements, Graduation, and Commencement

General Education Program

Graduate programs do not have a general education component.

Comprehensive Examination or Project

During the student’s final semester, the College tests the stu­dent’s overall understanding of graduate work. The method or test will vary by department and curriculum, but students may not earn a graduate degree until this requirement is met.

Residency Requirement

Except for two courses or eight credits which may be transferred, all graduate courses must be taken in residence. Students com­pleting a combined undergraduate and graduate degree program must earn at least 30 undergraduate credits in residence for the bachelor’s degree.

Progress toward Degree/Leaves of Absence

After completing at least one graduate semester, students who do not register for any graduate courses during the next two con­secutive years must reapply for admission to the graduate divi­sion. No reapplication fee is required, however students may be required to renew their studies by taking additional coursework that is deemed more current. Students also may be required to follow new requirements or a new catalogue. All graduate courses must be completed within eight years of the first graduate se­mester.

Graduation Honors

Graduate students do not receive any distinction or academic honor (such as cum laude) on their graduate record.