Chapter 5: Requirements and Policies for Master’s Degrees, Certificates of Advanced Study and Artist's Diplomas

Students are bound by the program and degree requirements in effect at their term of admission and are expected to be aware of these requirements. Students are not obligated to follow any subsequent changes to degree requirements unless the student has been Absent without Leave from the program (see Leave of Absence policy for details). Students should also review chapter 4 for more information about degree requirements.

Some academic units, such as the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, the School of Music, and some departments in the College of Education, offer post-master's degrees for students who are interested in additional professional training beyond the master's degree but are not planning to obtain the doctoral degree. More information about Certificates of Advanced Study and the Artist's Diploma can be found in the Post-Master's Degrees section.

Distinct from the C.A.S. and other post-master's degrees, some academic programs may offer certificates tied to the completion of requisite courses that are not recorded on the transcript. Students must contact those programs for more information.

A. Master’s Degrees

  1. Credit Hour Requirements
  2. Examinations
  3. Completion of Theses
  4. Time Limits

  1. Credit Hour Requirements:
    The Graduate College requires a minimum of 32 semester hours of graduate credit for the master's degree, although a number of programs require more. The Graduate College requires that at least 12 hours be at the 500-level or greater and approved for graduate credit (including thesis, research or independent study credit), and that 8 of these 12 hours be in the major. Half or more of the hours applied to a master's degree must be earned in courses counted for residence credit.  See the Graduate College Policy for the Approval of New and Revised Graduate Degree Programs for more details.
     
  2. Examinations:
    The Graduate College does not require a final examination or thesis committee for the master's degree. Departments that have such requirements determine their own rules for committee membership and administration of the examination. Master’s students are not required by the Graduate College to be registered during the term in which they take their final exam, but some departments may.
     
  3. Completion of Theses:
    When a thesis is required for the master's degree, it must be deposited with the Graduate College. The Graduate College requires that master’s theses be approved by a member of the Graduate Faculty. In programs requiring a thesis deposit, the Graduate College does not require master’s students to be registered during the term in which they deposit, but some departments may.
     
  4. Time Limits:
    A master's degree candidate is expected to complete all degree requirements within five years of first registering as a degree-seeking student in the master’s degree program, unless the student is enrolled in a program with a different time limit that has been approved by the Graduate College. Students may request an extension of this time limit through the Graduate College petition process up to one year prior to the degree conferral date.

    When supporting petitions for extensions of time to degree, it is the program’s responsibility to determine whether old coursework is still relevant to the current degree.

     

B. Certificates of Advanced Study

The Graduate School of Library and Information Science and some departments in the College of Education, offer the Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) for students who are interested in additional professional training beyond the master's degree but are not planning to obtain the doctoral degree. A master’s degree is required for admission to these degree programs.

Certificates of Advanced Study:

  1. Credit Hour Requirements. These programs require completion of at least 32 semester hours of course work beyond the master's degree. However, requirements do vary, and information concerning specific Advanced Certificate programs is available from departmental offices and in the appropriate Academic Catalog.
     
  2. Time Limits. A candidate for Certificate of Advanced Study is expected to complete all degree requirements within five years of first registering as a degree-seeking student in the degree program, unless the student is enrolled in a program with a different time limit that has been approved by the Graduate College. Students may request an extension of this time limit through the Graduate College petition process up to one year prior to the degree conferral date. When supporting petitions for extensions of time to degree, it is the program's responsibility to determine whether old course work is still relevant to the current degree.
     

C. Artist's Diplomas

The School of Music offers an Artist's Diploma degree, which is intended only for musicians at the highest level of artistic accomplishment and potential. A master's degree is required for admission to this program.

Artist's Diplomas: 
The School of Music offers an Artist’s Diploma degree, which is intended only for musicians at the highest level of artistic accomplishment and potential. Upon completion of the Diploma, students are expected to be ready for entrance into the music profession as a solo artist, member of an orchestra or chamber or jazz ensemble, or as an apprentice in an opera company.

a.   Credit Hour Requirements. This degree requires completion of 32 semester hours of course work beyond the master's degree.

b.   Time Limits. A candidate for an Artist's Diploma is expected to complete all degree requirements within five years of first registering as a degree-seeking student in the degree program, unless the student is enrolled in a program with a different time limit that has been approved by the Graduate College. Students may request an extension of this time limit through the Graduate College petition process up to one year prior to the degree conferral date. When supporting petitions for extensions of time to degree, it is the program's responsibility to determine whether old course work is still relevant to the current degree.