Policies & Procedures

Policies Governing All Graduate Programs

Retention in Graduate Programs

Students admitted to graduate degree programs are expected to maintain a high level of scholarship and to make regular and sufficient progress toward program completion.

Maintaining Active Student Status

Students who have matriculated in a graduate program but fail to enroll in program coursework for a period of two academic years are automatically terminated from the program. Students whose admission status is terminated because of a two-year lapse in enrollment may apply for readmission. They must meet current criteria for admission, and, if readmitted, are subject to current program requirements.

Minimum Grade Point Average

Indiana University course grading is on the following four-point scale:

A            =            4.0                                      C            =            2.0

A-          =            3.7                                      C-           =            1.7

B+          =            3.3                                      D+         =            1.3

B            =            3.0                                      D            =            1.0

B-           =            2.7                                      D-          =            0.7

C+          =            2.3                                      F            =            0.0

Students in certificate programs are expected to maintain a GPA of 3.00 or higher in graduate coursework. Master’s students are expected to maintain a GPA of 3.30 or higher in graduate coursework. Specialist and doctoral program students are expected to maintain a GPA of 3.50 or higher in graduate coursework. Graduate students whose program GPA falls below the minimum for their program are subject to probation and dismissal. Additionally, doctoral students may be dismissed for failure to maintain adequate progress toward the degree. For doctoral candidates, this standard is set by the faculty of each program or by the student's dissertation committee. The student must first be notified of deficient academic progress by being placed on probation for one semester. If the deficiency is not rectified then the student may be dismissed by the School of Education Associate Dean for Graduate Studies. Students may not graduate with GPA’s in their programs coursework below the minimum specified level. Students so dismissed may apply for readmission. Application to any School of Education program will not be accepted for a period of two years from the date of an academic dismissal. They will be readmitted only if there is a substantial reason to expect that their academic performance will improve.

Policy for Assigning Grades

The following grading policy has been adopted for graduate courses in the School of Education:

A = Outstanding achievement. Unusually complete command of the course content; exceptionally high level of scholarship.

A- = Excellent achievement. Very thorough command of course content; very high level of scholarship.

B+ = Very good achievement. Thorough command of course material.

B = Good achievement. Solid, acceptable performance.

B- = Fair achievement. Acceptable performance.

C+ = Adequate achievement and performance.

C = Not wholly satisfactory achievement. Marginal performance on some aspects of the course requirements. Marginal achievement. Minimally acceptable performance on course assignments. Lowest grade which may be counted in graduate programs.

C- = Unsatisfactory achievement. Inadequate knowledge of course content. (Courses with a grade of C- or lower may not be counted in graduate programs.)

Pass/Fail Grading (P/F)

Pass/Fail grading allows any grade from an A to a D in a course to be recorded as a grade of P on the transcript. A grade of F issued in a P/F course included in the GPA, but the P grade is not averaged in the GPA. Students may not use courses graded Pass/Fail in their degree programs.

Satisfactory/Fail Grading (S/F)

Courses graded Satisfactory/Fail (S/F) are not the same as courses graded Pass/Fail (P/F). S/F grading is applied to all students in a class. Only a few graduate courses, including some workshop courses and thesis courses, are eligible for S/F grading. A grade of F in an S/F course is included in the GPA, but a grade of S is not averaged into the GPA.

In order to count a course graded S/F towards a graduate degree program a memo is be required from the instructor showing that a grade of B or higher would have been issued to the student for the course. Without this memo the course will not be counted toward a degree program.

Incomplete Course Work (I)

A grade of Incomplete may be assigned when, at the end of the term, a student has not completed all coursework. This grade may be given only when the completed work is of passing quality.

Unfinished coursework must be completed within one calendar year from the date the grade of I is assigned. The course must ordinarily be completed with the original course instructor. The instructor then completes an e- Grade Change to remove the incomplete and assigns a letter grade. Incomplete grades that are not removed within one year are changed to a grade of F. This change occurs automatically unless the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies receives and approves a petition for extension from the course instructor.

Accumulation of Incomplete Courses

Graduate students with 9 or more credit hours of incomplete (I or R grade) courses (excluding dissertation credits) may not be allowed to register in additional courses.

Deferred Grade (R)

An R, indicating that the grade has been deferred, may be assigned in thesis and dissertation courses, internship courses, and a few other selected courses where work is expected to take longer than one year to complete. Unlike a grade of I, a grade of R does not automatically change to an F.

Withdrawal from Courses (W and WF)

Withdrawal from enrollment in a course during the drop/add period (in the first week of each term) is not recorded on a student's transcript. Withdrawal after this time is recorded as a W on the student's transcript. During the first quarter of each term, students may withdraw without instructor consent. After this date, instructor approval is required. If a student is failing at the time of withdrawal, or simply discontinues attending the class, a grade of WF (withdrawal with failure) is assigned. This is treated as an F in grade point averaging. Near the end of the term withdrawal is not allowed at all, except in cases where a student is withdrawing from all classes. See the Schedule of Classes at http://enrollmentbulletin.indiana.edu/pages/index.php for pertinent dates.

Courses Counted in Graduate Programs

Courses at the 500 level and above are designated as graduate courses at Indiana University. Beginning master's courses are at the 500 level; advanced master's and beginning doctoral courses are at the 600 level; and advanced doctoral courses are at the 700 level. Some 300- and 400-level courses in the College of Arts and Sciences are also approved for graduate credit. These are listed in the University Graduate School Bulletin.

Courses counted toward the requirements for one advance degree or certificate may not be counted toward requirements for another at the same level with the exception of the master's degree where up to 6 credits may be applied from a previous master's degree if the coursework is relevant and approved by the advisor.

Not all courses listed in this bulletin are offered every year. Inquiries concerning the availability or suitability of a particular course should be directed to the appropriate departmental chairperson.

Correspondence courses and activity courses may not be used in graduate programs. (Activity courses are courses for learning and practicing a nonprofessional skill, such as a sports activity or playing a musical instrument.)

Students in Residential Programs Taking Online Courses

Students in residential programs may take online courses, but on campus courses must account for at least half of their coursework. Online courses do not count towards the residency requirement. Information on tuition and fees can be found on the Bursar website.

Students in Online Programs Taking Courses on Campus

Students in online programs are allowed to take on campus courses. However, students doing this can be subject to not only higher tuition rates but also additional on campus fees. Information on tuition and fees can be found on the Bursar website.

Using Graduate Coursework in Two Programs

Coursework applied toward a master's degree may also be applied to a specialist or doctoral degree (with the exception of the Master’s degree required for admission toward the 60 credit hour post-master's Ed.D. program), and coursework applied toward a specialist degree may also be applied to a doctoral degree, providing such coursework is relevant to the requirements of the more advanced degree and that it is less than seven years old or is revalidated. This does not apply when degrees are earned in the opposite direction. If coursework is applied to a completed, more advanced degree, then it may not be counted afterward to a lesser degree. Students seeking to earn a second master's degree may apply 6 credit hours of relevant coursework from the first conferred master's degree to the second master's degree. The number of credits applied from one degree to another may not exceed the limits of allowable credits transferred into that degree, even if the credits were earned at Indiana University. In all cases, a program advisor and the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies must approve the use of such coursework.

Certificate and Licensure Students Applying for a Master's Degree

Students in certificate and licensure 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 licensure 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 licensure but was not admitted to a master's degree program. A licensure 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 licensure but was not admitted to the master's degree program toward the master’s degree.

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 Verification Coursework was not Applied to a Bachelor’s Degree Form, which requires advisor approval in addition to the signatures of the undergraduate recorder from the applicable program, and of the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies.

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. The maximum load for summer sessions is 16 credit hours.

Graduate students holding appointments such as associate instructor, graduate assistant, and research assistant for 15 hours per week (.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 should check with the Office of International Services concerning required credit hours to meet visa requirements. 

Additional policies apply. Please refer to the degree sections (Certificate, Masters, Ed.S., Ed.D., or Ph.D.).

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