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Academic Bulletin

University Graduate School  
Kirkwood Hall 111 
Indiana University 
Bloomington, IN 47405 
(812) 855-8853 
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General Requirements for Advanced Degrees

General Requirements
Requirements for Master’s Degrees
Requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy Degree

General Requirements

The following statements regarding degree requirements outline the minima that are acceptable. The student must meet not only the general requirements of the University Graduate School but also the specific requirements of the individual department(s). Requirements are given in this bulletin only for degrees awarded by the University Graduate School. Professional graduate degrees are also available at Indiana University (such as the Master of Business Administration, Master of Science in Education, and Doctor of Music degrees). These professional degrees are administered by the respective schools; information regarding these degrees and the requirements for each may be found in the bulletins of the individual schools.

The University Graduate School recommends that those who intend to continue graduate work toward the Ph.D. degree elect one of the traditional master’s degree programs requiring a thesis or a foreign language or both.

Academic Integrity
Students are expected to adhere to the highest ethical standards in all their course work and research. Individuals violating that code of conduct are subject to disciplinary action; such breaches could lead to expulsion of the student from Indiana University or to recision of a degree already granted. To acquaint students more fully with the range of issues relating to academic integrity, the University Graduate School has prepared a document entitled Integrity in Graduate Study, which, among other topics, deals with plagiarism, fraud, and conflicts of interest. Copies of that document may be obtained from departmental offices or from the office of the University Graduate School, Kirkwood Hall 111. Every student should be familiar with its contents.

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Requirements for Master’s Degrees

The number of credit hours required by the University Graduate School for master’s degrees varies according to the individual degree (see below for details). However, with the exception of the Dual Master’s Program, the requirements for all master’s degrees must be completed within five consecutive years.

With the exception of the Master of Arts for Teachers (M.A.T.), a thesis or reading knowledge of a foreign language is normally required for a master’s degree (see departmental entries for exceptions). If a thesis is not required, departments are encouraged to substitute some other type of special project that is creative, exploratory, or experimental in nature. In lieu of the traditional thesis, for example, the department might require seminar papers, presentations, publishable reports, artistic performances, or exhibitions. The thesis or alternative project should be equivalent to no fewer than 3 nor more than 9 hours of graduate credit; such credit should be granted under an appropriate departmental course or independent study number. Departures from traditional thesis requirements prescribed by the individual departments must be approved by both the department and the dean. If a thesis is submitted, the student must file the original and one copy (both bound) with the University Graduate School. These copies will later be placed in the University Library. At least one additional bound copy must be filed with the major department. The title page must bear the statement: “Submitted to the faculty of the University Graduate School in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Master of ______ in the Department1 of ______________ , Indiana University.” At least three members of the faculty shall normally participate in the approval of the thesis and must sign an acceptance page which appears after the title page. The statement, “Accepted by the faculty of the University Graduate School, Indiana University, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Master of ___________ ,” should precede the signatures on the acceptance page. Each copy of the thesis is to be accompanied by the student’s vita sheet inserted at the end. For details regarding the typing and duplication of theses, see “Preparation of Theses and Dissertations” below.

Three or more faculty members should participate in certification of the student’s fulfillment of the requirements for a master’s degree. Their participation may take any of several forms, such as administering a final or comprehensive examination, reviewing the candidate’s academic record, or evaluating the candidate’s thesis or alternative project. In instances where shortcomings are apparent, the student may be required to complete additional course work or assignments.

If the master’s degree is used to meet part of the requirements to convert a provisional or standard teaching certificate into a professional certificate (which is no longer a life license), the student’s degree program must include at least 18 credit hours of graduate work in the major or minor field or both.

Master of Arts
Thirty (30) credit hours are required for the M.A., all of which may be taken in a single department; at least 20 of these credit hours must be earned in the major field. A minimum of 9 credit hours of course work or at least three courses in the major field (excluding thesis) must be numbered 500 or above.

Master of Science
General requirements for the M.S. are identical with those for the M.A. (see above).2

Master of Fine Arts
The M.F.A. degree, which is offered in the Departments of English, Fine Arts, and Theatre and Drama, requires a minimum of 60 credit hours.

Master of Laws
The LL.M. degree is conferred upon those students who complete a minimum of 30 credit hours of academic work in law or in related courses approved by the University Graduate School.

Master of Arts for Teachers
In order to be admitted to this program, students must hold a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution. The degree should include sufficient hours in each discipline in which students plan to work to enable them to elect courses carrying graduate credit (see departmental entries for details).

Thirty-six (36) credit hours beyond the baccalaureate degree are required, at least 20 of which must be in the major teaching field, with the remainder allocated either to additional work in the major or to one or more minors. Certain interdepartmental programs have specific minor requirements (for details see the individual program statements). Although not specifically required, education may be offered as a minor in any M.A.T. program. Each candidate must possess a teacher’s certificate (from Indiana or another state in the United States) by the time the degree is conferred, with the exception of international students, who must be certified by their department. Graduates of Indiana University who do not hold certificates should have their credentials evaluated for teaching certification purposes by either the School of Education or the department in which they are working toward their degree. Students who graduate from institutions outside the state of Indiana and who do not hold a teacher’s certificate must send their credentials directly to the Teacher Training and Licensing Commission, State House, Indianapolis, for evaluation; such students may not be admitted into the program, nor may curricula be planned for them, until the state evaluation is a part of the student’s official record at Indiana University.

Holders of the B.A. or B.S. degree who wish to secure a secondary school certificate as part of the M.A.T. program may substitute approved courses from the following list for certain undergraduate courses in education required for provisional certification: Education H520, H530, H540, L517, P510, and P516. Education M440 through M480 may also count in some instances (see major department), both toward certification and toward fulfilling M.A.T. requirements. Upon recommendation of the department and approval by the dean, a maximum of 6 credit hours of undergraduate courses taken after completion of the baccalaureate degree may be applied toward the M.A.T. degree.

Course work for the M.A.T. that is used for provisional certification may not also be used for professional certification. Professional certification requires at least 8 credit hours of graduate work in the area chosen for certification. A student must also take 6 credit hours of graduate professional education beyond those graduate education courses substituted above to meet the minimum provisional certification requirements.

M.A.T. degrees are available in most areas represented in the high school curriculum. Interested students should consult the chairperson of the department or the division concerned to discuss programs of study.

Dual Master’s Program
Students who are concurrently enrolled in two departments may qualify for two master’s degrees under a provision that allows credit earned to satisfy the major requirements of one department to count as elective credit in a second department. To be eligible for this program, a student must be formally admitted by both departments and by the University Graduate School. All requirements of both degrees must be met, including passing any departmental examinations and satisfying foreign language/research-skill requirements. If both departments require a thesis, the student may write a single thesis that meets the requirements of both fields. The thesis committee will comprise an equal number of representatives of both departments, and the thesis credit will be split between the two. All course work for the program must be completed within a period of six years.

Preparation of Theses and Dissertations
Theses and dissertations must be typewritten or written on a word processor using a letter-quality printer. The text may be either one-and-a-half- or double-spaced and should not extend into the one-inch margins required on the three nonbinding sides (one-and-a-half inches required on the binding side). Only minor corrections are acceptable in the final copy; these must be typewritten or corrected on a word processor (handwritten corrections are not acceptable). If more substantial corrections need to be made, the page or pages should be retyped. Page numbers must be consecutive throughout, with Arabic numerals used for the body of the work and Roman numerals for the front matter.

The paper must be watermarked, 100-percent rag bond, in the format 8 1/2 by 11 inches (legal-size paper is not acceptable). Copies may be reproduced using a multilith, offset, or high-quality photocopy process, but mimeograph copies are not acceptable. If photographs are a part of the work, original prints must be included in each copy (photocopy reproductions of photographs are not acceptable). Any deviations from the above guidelines must be approved in advance by the dean of the University Graduate School. Additional information regarding the typing and duplication of theses and dissertations may be found in A Guide to the Preparation of Theses and Dissertations, which is available from the University Graduate School and the IUPUI Graduate Office. Students are strongly encouraged to get a copy of this Guide.

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Requirements for the Degree
Doctor of Philosophy

The Ph.D. degree requires completion of at least 90 credit hours of an advanced course of study. The degree is awarded in recognition of a candidate’s command of a broad field of knowledge and accomplishment in that field through an original contribution of meaningful knowledge and ideas.

Major Subject
The student will select a major subject from the departments and programs listed in this bulletin. The major department or program is responsible for monitoring the student’s progress toward the degree and for making recommendations to the University Graduate School regarding the nomination to candidacy, the appointment of a research committee, the defense of the dissertation, and the conferring of the degree.

Minor Subjects
The student will select at least one minor subject. A minor provides additional breadth and depth to the individual’s program. It must be taken outside the major department from among those areas of study listed in this bulletin or in a specifically approved inter- or intra-departmental area (see departmental entries).3 The determination of the minimum requirements and examination procedure (if any) for the minor is entirely at the discretion of the minor department or program. In certain cases, special interdepartmental minors (12 or more credit hours of work in two or more departments) or minors not specifically listed in this bulletin may be approved by the dean upon recommendation of the student’s advisory committee provided such approval is requested prior to pursual of any of the proposed courses of study. Examination procedures (if any) or other requirements (for example, stipulation of the minimum grades acceptable) should also be specified in the proposal to the dean.

Double Major
Students may pursue two majors in two departments simultaneously, if so recommended by each department and approved by the dean.

Two general requirements pertain to double majors:

(1) there must be a substantive relationship between the two major fields, particularly with respect to the topic of the student’s dissertation; and (2) all degree requirements for each major must be fulfilled, including the passing of two sets of qualifying examinations. In some instances it may be possible to count the same work toward requirements in both departments (e.g., a specific foreign language acceptable in both programs). The exact courses of study and examinations required are to be determined by members of the research committee from each of the majors. Any area of substantial overlap in the two courses of study or in the examinations is to be negotiated by the committee as a whole and approved by the dean.

There must be at least four faculty members on both the advisory and research committees for a double major, with two from each of the majors. If other minor fields are involved, a representative must also be present from each of these.

A total of 90 credit hours is required for the Ph.D. degree with a double major. While judicious program planning may permit completion of some double majors within the 90 credit hours, other students may accrue additional hours due to the programs of study required for each major. In recognition of such a possibility, students in the program will be allowed one additional year before they must take the qualifying examinations. For a complete set of rules relating to double majors, students should consult the University Graduate School office.

Combined Degree Program
The School of Medicine, the School of Dentistry, and the University Graduate School offer selected students an opportunity to pursue the M.S. or Ph.D. degrees, concurrently or sequentially, with a coordinated and flexible program leading also to the M.D. or D.D.S. degree. Combined degree programs are available in anatomy, biochemistry, dental science, medical biophysics, medical genetics, medical neurobiology, microbiology and immunology, pathology, pharmacology, physiology, and toxicology. At Bloomington, the combined degree is available not only in these basic medical, biological, and physical sciences but also in the humanities and social studies. The combined degree program is designed to meet the student’s particular objectives and needs and is planned by the student and an advisory committee of faculty representing the School of Medicine or the School of Dentistry and the respective department or program.

Entry into a combined degree program requires approval of both the School of Medicine or the School of Dentistry and the University Graduate School. Two applications are necessary: one to the Indiana University School of Medicine or of Dentistry, and another to the Indiana University University Graduate School via the sponsoring department or program.

Indiana University School of Medicine has established an Indiana Medical Scientist Program for fellowship and tuition support of students in the combined M.D.-Ph.D. program. A faculty committee nominates students for the program based on commitment to a career as a physician scientist, research experience, undergraduate grade point average, and MCAT scores. A flexible entry program allows students up to one year to identify a research laboratory and degree program. Information can be obtained from the Graduate Division of the School of Medicine.

Completion of the program entails meeting all requirements for both degrees. Many nonclinical courses of the curriculum of the School of Medicine satisfy course requirements for both degrees, and credit given for graduate study may fulfill some of the School of Medicine requirements. The combined degrees may thus be acquired in less time than would be required if both were taken separately.

As well as fulfilling requirements for the M.D. program, a minimum of 30 credit hours of graduate study is required for the combined M.S./M.D. degree. Of these, 10 credit hours may be transferred from exclusively School of Medicine courses with the approval of the student’s advisory committee and the University Graduate School. Similarly, a minimum of 90 credit hours of graduate study is required for the combined Ph.D./M.D. degree. A maximum of 30 credit hours of exclusively School of Medicine courses may count toward the Ph.D. degree.

Within the University Graduate School, combined degrees are available in American Studies and Cognitive Science. Students in these programs must be accepted both by a Ph.D.-granting department and by either the American studies or the cognitive science program, and must satisfy the requirements for both chosen fields. Requirements are the same as those for the Ph.D. degree with a dual major (see above).

Advisory Committee
The student’s major department or program shall assign the student to an advisory committee no later than one year after admission to the Ph.D. program. The advisory committee must include at least two members from the major area and one from another. At least two members of the advisory committee must be members of the graduate faculty. The names of faculty members nominated to serve on the advisory committee shall be forwarded to the student’s school or college for approval no later than one year after the student has been admitted to the Ph.D. program. The advisory committee shall approve the student’s program of study and counsel the student until the passing of the qualifying examination.

Qualifying Examination
This examination, given at such time and in such manner as the major department shall determine, shall be written, although additional oral examinations may be required. The qualifying examination shall cover the major subjects and may, at the discretion of the minor department(s) or the interdepartmental committee, cover the minor subjects as well.

Normally, the qualifying examination is taken after the student has completed all course work for the Ph.D. All such work offered in partial fulfillment of degree requirements must either have been completed within seven consecutive calendar years of the passing of the qualifying examination or be revalidated according to procedures outlined in this bulletin (see regulations)4. Reading proficiency required in one or more foreign languages must also have been demonstrated, whether by course work or examination, no more than seven years before the passing of the qualifying examination. In the case of an examination of more than one part, the date of passing is regarded as the date of passing the final portion of the examination, typically the oral examination. Students who fail the qualifying examination are normally allowed to retake it only once. The qualifying examination must be passed at least eight months before the date the degree is awarded.

Admission to Candidacy
Following the passing of the qualifying examination and the completion of all course work and departmental language or research-skill requirements (if any), the student’s advisory committee will submit a Nomination to Candidacy Form to the University Graduate School. Upon approval of the dean, the student will be admitted to candidacy and awarded a Certificate of Candidacy. The date of successful completion of the qualifying examinations (not the date of final approval of candidacy) is the one used in determining the seven-year periods for currency of courses (see regulations) and completion of the dissertation (see degree conferral).

Continuing Enrollment
Students who have passed the qualifying examination must enroll each semester (excluding summer sessions) for any remaining required course work or dissertation credits. Once such students have accumulated 90 credit hours in completed course work and deferred dissertation credits, they must enroll for a minimum of 1 hour of graduate credit each semester until the degree is completed. Failure to meet this requirement will automatically terminate the student’s enrollment in the degree program. Students who have completed 90 credit hours and all requirements for the Ph.D. are eligible to enroll in G901 for a flat fee of $150 per semester. Enrollment in G901 is limited to a total of six semesters. (For students not on campus, enrollment may be completed by mail.)

A candidate who will be graduated in June, July, or August of any year must enroll in a minimum of 1 hour of credit as described above in either the current or the immediately preceding summer session.

The culmination of the Ph.D. program is the writing of the dissertation, which is required of all doctoral students. The dissertation must be an original contribution to knowledge and of high scholarly merit. The candidate’s research must reveal critical ability and powers of imagination and synthesis. The dissertation is written under the supervision of a research director and a research committee, as described below. Although work published by the student may be incorporated into the dissertation, a collection of unrelated published papers, alone, is not acceptable. There must be a logical connection between all components of the dissertation, and these must be integrated in a rational and coherent fashion. It is the responsibility of the student’s research committee to determine the kind and amount of published materials which may be included in a dissertation.

Research Committee
To initiate research for the dissertation, the student chooses a professor who will agree to direct the dissertation. The department shall then recommend to the dean for approval a research committee composed of the chosen director (who will also normally serve as chairperson of the committee), two or more additional faculty members from the major department, and a representative of each minor. The committee should be selected from the members of the graduate faculty who are best qualified to assist the student in conducting the research for the dissertation. In the event that the dissertation research does not involve the area(s) of the minor(s)-whether outside or inside the department-the major department may request, with the consent of the minor-field representative(s), the substitution of a representative or of representatives from some other field(s) more appropriate to the topic of the dissertation. The committee has the responsibility of supervising the research, reading the dissertation, and conducting the final examination.

All chairpersons of research committees and directors of research must be full members of the graduate faculty. If, however, special expertise in an area is held by an associate or an affiliate member which is not held by a full member, the departmental chairperson may request that the dean approve such an individual as research committee chairperson or director of the dissertation research.

All members of a research committee must be members of the graduate faculty. At least half of the members of the committee must be full members of the graduate faculty; others may be associate or affiliate members.

After consultation with and approval by the dissertation director and research committee, the student will submit to the University Graduate School a one- or two-page prospectus of the dissertation research. If the proposed research involves human subjects, animals, biohazards, or radiation, approval from the appropriate university committee must also be obtained. The membership of the research committee and the dissertation prospectus must be approved by the University Graduate School at least six months before the defense of the dissertation.

Defense of the Dissertation
When the dissertation has been completed, the student should submit an unbound copy to each member of the research committee as the initial step in scheduling the defense of the dissertation. All members of the research committee should read the dissertation in its entirety before attending the defense. At this stage both the student and the faculty members must extend certain courtesies to each other. It is the responsibility of the student to give faculty members sufficient time to read the dissertation without making unreasonable requests of them based upon University Graduate School time limitations, immediate job possibilities, contract renewal, or some other reason. Similarly, a faculty member should not keep a student’s work for inordinate periods of time because of the press of other duties. Once a faculty member assumes membership on a research committee, it becomes another part of his or her teaching assignment, comparable to conducting regularly scheduled classes.

After the committee members have read the dissertation, there should be direct communication (either in writing or orally) between the research committee chairperson and the other committee members about its readiness for defense. Readiness for defense, however, is not tantamount to acceptance of the dissertation; it means that the committee is ready to make a decision. The decision to hold a doctoral defense, moreover, is not entirely up to the research committee. If a student insists upon the right to a defense before the committee believes the dissertation is ready, that student does have the right to due process (i.e., to an oral defense) but exercises it at some risk.

If the decision to proceed with the defense of the dissertation is made against the judgment of one or more members of the committee, or if one or more members of the committee disapprove of parts or all of the dissertation, the committee member(s) should not resign from the committee in order to avoid frustration or collegial confrontation. The University Graduate School urges that such committee members, after ample communication with both the student and the chairperson, remain on the committee and thus prevent the nomination of a committee that might eventually accept what could be unsatisfactory work. Such a committee member could agree that a dissertation is ready for defense but should not be passed (or should not be passed without substantial modification). There will, of course, be situations in which the membership of research committees should or must be changed (e.g., turnover of faculty), but changes because of modifications in the dissertation topic or some equally plausible reason should be made early in the writing of the dissertation.

Thirty days prior to the scheduled defense of the dissertation, the candidate must submit to the University Graduate School a one-page announcement of the final examination. This announcement must follow a format available in the University Graduate School and be typed with a good black ribbon on white paper. The announcement contains, among other things, a summary of the dissertation (not less than 150 words) which is informative and contains a brief statement of the principal results and conclusions. The announcement must bear the signature of the research committee chairperson. If the candidate has published any scholarly articles relevant to the topic of the dissertation, bibliographical references should be included in the summary. A copy of such announcements will be sent to any member of the graduate faculty upon request.

Once the final examination has been scheduled, the announced time and place of the defense must not be changed without the approval of the dean. Any member of the graduate faculty who wishes to attend the final examination is encouraged to do so; it is requested, however, that the faculty member notify the chairperson of the research committee in advance so that space can be arranged. With the approval of the research committee and the consent of the candidate, other graduate students may attend the defense of the dissertation; normally such students will act as observers, not as participants.

At the end of the oral examination, the research committee must vote upon the outcome of the examination. Four options are available to the committee: (1) pass, (2) conditional pass, (3) deferred decision, and (4) failure. If the decision to pass is unanimous, the dissertation is approved once it is received by the University Graduate School along with an acceptance page signed by the members of the research committee. If the decision is not unanimous, majority and minority reports should be submitted to the dean who, within 10 working days, will investigate and consult with the research committee. Upon completion of the dean’s investigation and consultation, another meeting of the research committee will be held, and if a majority votes to pass, the dissertation is approved when it is received by the University Graduate School with an acceptance page signed by a majority of the members of the research committee.

The student must have received acceptance of his or her dissertation and must submit a copy to the University Graduate School within seven years after passing the qualifying examination. Failure to meet this requirement will result in the termination of candidacy and of the student’s enrollment in the degree program. Any student whose candidacy lapses will be required to apply to the University Graduate School for reinstatement before further work toward the degree may formally be done. To be reinstated to candidacy in the University Graduate School, the student must: (1) obtain the permission of the departmental chairperson; (2) fulfill the departmental requirements in effect at the time of the application for reinstatement; (3) pass the current Ph.D. qualifying examination or its equivalent (defined in advance)5; and (4) request reinstatement to candidacy from the dean. Such reinstatement, if granted, will be valid for a period of three years, during which time the candidate must enroll each semester for a minimum of one credit.

Submission of the Dissertation
Following acceptance by the research committee, the dissertation is submitted to the University Graduate School. Each dissertation must include a title page bearing the statement: “Submitted to the faculty of the University Graduate School in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Doctor of Philosophy in the Department1 of ____________ , Indiana University.” The date of this page should be the month and year in which the degree will be granted. Following the title page there must be an acceptance page with the statement: “Accepted by the faculty of the University Graduate School, Indiana University, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Doctor of Philosophy”; the acceptance page must be signed by members of the research committee. For guidelines regarding the typing and duplication of dissertations, see above under “Preparation of Theses and Dissertations.”

The original (unbound, in a box suitable for mailing) and one copy (bound) of the dissertation must be filed with the University Graduate School, and one copy (bound) must be filed with the major department. (The copies filed with the University Graduate School will later be placed in the University Library.)

The candidate must also submit to the University Graduate School a 350-word abstract of the dissertation that has been approved by the research committee. This abstract will appear in Dissertation Abstracts International, published by University Microfilms, Ann Arbor, Michigan. The original copy of the final, approved version of the candidate’s dissertation will be submitted on loan to University Microfilms for complete microfilming, the resulting copy or copies to be available for purchase by all who request them. Copyright may be secured; see the University Graduate School for details. The original copy will be returned by University Microfilms to the library, where it will be bound. The required fee for publishing the abstract and for microfilming the dissertation is currently $55.

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1 Students majoring in programs will use the word “Program”; students majoring in departments outside of the College of Arts and Sciences will use the word “School.”
2 M.S. students in computer science are currently exempted from the regulation requiring that 9 credit hours of course work or three courses in the major field (exclusive of thesis) be numbered 500 or above. Students in the combined M.S.-M.D. program have seven years in which to complete requirements for the M.S. degree; students in the M.S. program in Geology at Indianapolis have six years in which to complete the requirement.
3 As an exception to this rule, Indiana University doctoral students may take a minor in Purdue University graduate degree programs at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI).
4 For students in combined M.D.-Ph.D. programs, all course work offered in partial fulfillment of degree requirements of the Ph.D. must have been completed within nine consecutive calendar years preceding the passing of the qualifying examination; for students in Ph.D. programs in music, within 10 consecutive years.
5 A department must define in advance specifically what is meant if an “equivalent” examination is to be used, and that definition must be approved by the dean.

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Last updated: 21 Aug 2001
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