Policies & Procedures

Other Graduate Policies


The purpose of a residency requirement in graduate programs is for students to become closely involved in the academic life of their program and of the university; to become fully immersed in their graduate study for a substantial period of time; and to develop a relationship of scholarly and professional collegiality with faculty and fellow students. To this end, it is desirable for students in graduate programs, especially those in doctoral programs, to be full-time, residential students for a significant period. During their residency period, students are expected not only to take courses, but to participate in other aspects of the intellectual life of their discipline and of the university community. Many doctoral students have research assistantships in which they work closely with faculty members and peers on research and development projects. Some have teaching assistantships. There are also numerous opportunities to attend presentations, colloquia, conferences, and brown-bag lunches in which they are invited to participate in discussions about both theoretical and practical issues in their discipline. Participation in national and regional professional meetings, including the presentation of scholarly papers, is encouraged during this time.

For Ph.D. and Ed.D. students, two consecutive semesters in a single academic year (exclusive of summer session) must be spent in residence on the Bloomington or Indianapolis campus. This residency period must be subsequent to admission to the program. Nine (9) credit hours of program course work must be completed in each of these semesters. Ed.D. students who are working full time may fulfill residency requirements with three consecutive 6 credit hour terms. (Summer Session I and Summer Session II are not counted as separate terms.) Dissertation credit hours (799 or G901) may not be used to fulfill residency requirements.

Ed.S. students must fulfill residency requirements by completing 9 credit hours in one semester or summer, subsequent to admission to the program. There is no full-time residency requirement for master's students.

Semester Load

Full-time graduate students typically enroll in 9 to 15 credit hours per semester. Specialist and doctoral students should normally carry no more than 12 credit hours per semester. The maximum allowable course load for graduate students is 16 credit hours in any semester. At Bloomington, the maximum load in Summer Session I (six weeks) is 6 credit hours. The maximum load in Summer Session II (eight weeks) is 9 credit hours. At Indianapolis, each summer session is six weeks long, and the maximum allowable course load for each session is 7 credit hours. A maximum of 3 credit hours may be earned in each summer intensive session.

Graduate students holding appointments such as associate instructor, graduate assistant, and research assistant for 15 hours per weekv(.375 full time equivalency) or more must be registered for 6 credit hours during each semester (no registration is required during summer sessions). Fellowship holders must enroll in a minimum of 6-8 credit hours per semester. International students must enroll in at least 8 credit hours per semester in order to meet visa requirements. Students holding government-guaranteed student loans must be enrolled in at least 8 credit hours per semester.

Undergraduate Students in Graduate Courses

There are two conditions under which undergraduate students may enroll in graduate courses: (1) students in their junior or senior year may take graduate courses which will count toward their undergraduate degree if the graduate courses are relevant to their program of study and there is no similar undergraduate course available; (2) students in their last undergraduate semester may take graduate courses which may later be applied to a graduate degree. Graduate courses taken prior to the last semester may, ordinarily, not be applied to a graduate program, and no course may be applied to both an undergraduate and a graduate program. Students who meet either of these conditions must, in addition, have an undergraduate GPA of 3.00 or higher (exceptions are made in majors where grading is especially stringent). The student must also complete the Senior Graduate Course Approval Form, which requires the signatures of the instructor and of the associate dean for graduate studies.

Concurrent Degrees

Students may not be admitted to two degree programs concurrently, except in the case where a student admitted to an advanced degree program wishes to gain a lesser degree in the same program area during the course of study for the more advanced degree. For instance, a student initially admitted to a doctoral program may wish to be granted a master's degree in the same program area. In such cases a letter addressed to the associate dean for graduate studies requesting admission to the lesser degree program will begin the process. Admission status in the more advanced degree program is maintained.

Using Graduate Course Work in Two Programs

Course work applied toward a master's degree may also be applied to a specialist or doctoral degree (with the exception of the 60 credit hour post-master's Ed.D. program), and course work applied toward a specialist degree may also be applied to a doctoral degree, providing such course work is relevant to the requirements of the more advanced degree and that it is less than seven years old or is revalidated. Students seeking to earn a second master's degree may apply relevant course work above 30 credit hours from the first master's degree program to the second master's degree. In all cases, a program advisor must approve the use of such course work.

Certification Students Applying for a Master's Degree

Students in certification programs who wish to seek a master's degree must go through the standard process for admission to graduate study. Furthermore, in order to be accepted into any of the School of Education's specialization areas in which a master's degree may be earned, students must be admitted to a master's degree program in one of these specialization areas in the semester prior to the semester in which they intend to graduate and they must be officially registered in the semester in which they graduate.

Credit hours earned by a certification student who has been admitted to a master's degree program may or may not be counted in the student's master's program. The department chair or program head and the associate dean of graduate studies must approve the inclusion of courses taken while the student was earning credits toward certification but was not admitted to a master's degree program. Furthermore, a certification student who has been admitted to a master's degree program may use a maximum of 15 credits taken while the student was working on certification but was not admitted to the master's degree program.

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Additional program information can be found at the Office of Graduate Studies.