Policies (MA and PhD)

In addition to policies stated elsewhere, the following policies apply to students pursuing the Master of Humanities (MA) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degrees:

Masters-and-Scholars-e1323809546208-247x300Grading, Transcripts, and Transfer Policies

Course grades will be determined by the evaluation of assignments as stated in the syllabus for each course of the program. The theses and dissertations are graded by the supervisor, a research fellow, and two assigned readers. Proof of the necessary previous degree(s) will require the submission of an official transcript of all coursework and degree(s) to be filed in the Registrar’s Office. A student who has earned graduate credit in comparable courses (as determined by the program director) from a regionally accredited institution may transfer up to 9 semester hours toward the MA or PhD degree. No grade lower than a B is transferable toward the MA or PhD degree.

Class Attendance and Participation

The MA and PhD programs requires class attendance via Google Sites and hangout video calls. Class attendance and participation is an academic matter and absences (e.g., not being present at conference calls, submission of late work) result in academic penalty. Apart from extreme situations (which may require documentation) the student is expected to attend every conference class, be on time, and not leave early.

Thesis and Dissertation Procedural Requirements

A student must submit a written MA thesis or PhD dissertation proposal for approval by the Graduate Faculty Committee, which includes the director of the student’s program. The Committee will evaluate the proposal. A student must maintain a “regular admission” status if the thesis goes beyond the time period in which the student matriculated for the thesis course. The continuing matriculation fee for the thesis course is $100 per semester of extension.

The thesis or dissertation is guided by a faculty supervisor as requested by a student, agreed by the faculty member, and approved by the program director. Two readers are recommended by the Thesis Supervisor and approved by the Director. Via Google hangout video call, the student defends the thesis before his or her supervisor, research fellow, readers, and an outside faculty member appointed by the Director. Current students should also see the “Thesis and Dissertation Manual” for further information (Scholarnet login required).

Graduation Requirements

Students applying for graduation must earn a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 for their entire degree, including the thesis or dissertation grade. No grade lower than a C is accepted in the degree program. No more than 6 hours of coursework earning a C may be applied toward the degree. The thesis or dissertation must be successfully defended and receive no lower than a B.

Students anticipating completion of the degree should submit an application for graduation in the first month of the semester they plan to graduate. Students must also ensure that all obligations to the university are met prior to graduation. All MA and PhD graduates may participate in the on-campus commencement ceremonies but are not required to do so. In the event that the student elects to march at graduation, the student must notify the program director on the graduation application. Diplomas of those students not marching will be mailed within two weeks of the graduation ceremony.

To summarize the MA and PhD programs’ graduation requirements, students must have:

  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 for the entire program;
  • No grade lower than a C for the entire program;
  • A C for no more than 6 hours’ credit toward the degree;
  • A thesis or dissertation successfully defend with a minimum grade of B;
  • A graduation application; and
  • The fulfillment of all obligations to the University.

For additional information, please see the MA and PhD program details.