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Matriculation Processes

Enrollment Requirement

Students are required to remain enrolled throughout their matriculation. Students not meeting this requirement must reapply for admission.

Change of Admission Status

All provisionally admitted students must be fully admitted by the end of the first year of enrollment or as noted on their offer of admission in order to continue with their program of study. Only fully admitted students are eligible to receive federally funded financial aid. Please address all questions regarding this requirement to the Office of Financial Aid.

Readmission and Change of Program

After the third semester in which a student’s program runs, a student who has not registered must comply with the normal admissions process. If admission is granted, students will be asked to provide the reason for not continuing their studies and indicate their plan to succeed in the program. Please note the student must be in an unconditional admissions status.  Student should seek application assistance from the Graduate Admissions Office since the student may not have to provide all required documents. The Program Director/Department will follow all normal admissions processes to determine if a student will be readmitted to his or her program. The student will follow the regular admissions process and may be subject to all applicable application fees. Additionally, students that desire to change programs must do so by completing the Change of Program form.

Extension of Time

All masters programs must be completed within 5 years of initial enrollment including the transfer of any courses towards the current program of study, while all doctoral programs must be completed within 7 years of initial enrollment. Students with extenuating circumstances may petition their Advisory Committee for an extension. The committee will convene, render a decision and forward their recommendation to the Dean, School of Graduate Studies and Research. If the recommendation is to grant an extension, the recommendation will be accompanied with a review of any coursework outside the time limit and a recommendation on how the student will bridge this gap. The committee may recommend retaking any coursework that has changed during the student’s enrollment, require completion.

Plan of Study

The program director or assigned advisor should review the general program of study with each student. An individual plan should be submitted to the School of Graduate Studies and Research by the end of the student’s first semester of enrollment. This document should be signed by the student, program advisor, program director and chairperson prior to submission to the Dean, School of Graduate Studies and Research. This signifies that the student is aware of all requirements for successful matriculation. This document will be used for audit purposes as the student matriculates through the program of study. Students requesting transfer of credit should utilize this form as well accompanied by an official transcript. Transfer of credit is reviewed by the Department prior to submission to the School of Graduate Studies and Research for approval.

Advisory Committee

The program director (or designated advisor) is responsible for fostering the committee appointment process. The committee should be formulated no later than the end of the 2nd semester of enrollment for masters programs, the end of the 3rd semester of enrollment for the doctor of education program, or the 5th semester of enrollment for doctor of philosophy programs. The program director (or designee) will schedule an initial meeting with the student during the first semester of enrollment to develop a plan of study at which time the process for establishment of an advisory committee will be discussed. A meeting will be called in which all committee members will assemble to discuss the responsibilities of the committee, the student’s capstone project, and frequency (and mode) of meeting. The Chair of the Advisory Committee should hold faculty rank in the same Department/Program of the student. All committee signatures are will gathered at this meeting; a copy will be submitted and to The Office of Graduate Studies and Research Office, one retained by the student, and one copy retained in the Department Office. The Program Director will monitor student progress via this committee once established.

Application for Advancement to Candidacy

All graduate students must petition their program administrators for permission to advance to candidacy status. Students must be fully admitted and in good standing academically in order to meet this milestone. Timelines and requirements for admission to candidacy vary by program however general requirements include: proposal or prospectus development for programs requiring completion of a project, paper, or a thesis; successful completion of comprehensive or qualifier examinations for all doctoral programs. Masters students generally request admission to candidacy following successful completion of the required core curriculum and completion of any activities related to the culminating requirement, such as submission of a research proposal or prospectus for a thesis program. Non-thesis programs generally place this requirement on the culminating activity itself; such as completion of a comprehensive examination. Doctoral students are admitted to candidacy following successful completion of qualifier or comprehensive examinations. Whatever the timeline defined by the program, a student will not be allowed to matriculate past this point without meeting this milestone.

Thesis/Dissertation Submission Processes

The completed thesis/dissertation should be submitted to the respective committee for review and if deemed acceptable, an oral examination, consisting principally of a defense of the thesis/dissertation will be scheduled. Only students admitted to candidacy are eligible to schedule a defense. The Defense Scheduling Form is used for this purpose. The document must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies and Research no later than 4 weeks prior to the requested date. It is the responsibility of the Office of Graduate Studies and Research to inform the University community of the pending defense via publication in the e-news. The Defense Outcomes Form is a report to the Office of Graduate Studies and Research on the candidate’s performance (as the oral examination is in partial fulfillment of the degree) and is expected within 5 business days following the defense. No thesis or dissertation will be reviewed by the Office of Graduate Studies and Research without receipt of this documentation.

Following the defense, the Committee Chairperson will communicate the decision to the candidate. With the exception of accepting the document without any changes, the Chairperson will attach a summary of expectations and/or processes required for completion of all revisions/corrections as well as the expected timeline for completion. If the candidate fails the defense, the Chairperson will attach a summary and if/when a second examination (defense) will be scheduled. A document approved by the Committee, is submitted to the Dean of the College and finally to the Dean, School of Graduate, Adult and Extended Studies for final approval. The Office of Graduate Studies and Research is not responsible and will not provide editorial services for candidates.  Documents not adhering to general guidelines will be sent back to the Academic College for review. The Office of Graduate Studies and Research reviews general formatting and the following content areas:

  • Introduction including background, significance and scope of the study undertaken.
  • Review of the Literature
  • Research Methodology or Experimental Procedure
  • Discussion of Research Findings
  • Conclusion(s) and suggested future work

Thesis and Dissertation Handbook

The Thesis and Dissertation Handbook provides students with guidelines for the successful completion of their thesis or dissertation. Contact your department or the Office of Graduate Studies and Research for more information.