Academic Policies

Graduate Program Responsibilities

Each graduate program that offers graduate degrees or certificates lists the requirements of those degrees or certificates in the Graduate Catalog and in their Graduate Program Policy Statements which are available on the departmental websites. Each graduate program has a faculty member who serves as the Graduate Program Director for overseeing academic matters in the graduate program.

The Faculty Senate Committee on Graduate Studies reviews and considers matters relating to graduate education and shall receive and approve proposals for changes in existing graduate programs as well as new graduate programs. The Committee has the power to act on modifications of approved graduate programs and shall make recommendation to the Faculty Senate on courses of study leading to graduate degrees and on matters of policy concerning graduate study. The Committee has the authority and responsibility for general policies concerning the judicial system for graduate students. The Faculty Senate Committee on Graduate Studies shall periodically receive from the Vice Provost for Academic Programs a review of the status of each department’s program of graduate studies and appropriate recommendations for any action that may be deemed necessary.

 

Graduate Student Responsibilities

It is the student’s responsibilities to satisfy all university requirements described in the Academic Regulations for Graduate Students section in the Graduate Catalog as well as any additional requirements established by the faculty in the academic program in which the student is enrolled.

All students enrolled at the University of Delaware are subject to student life policies set by the University and documented in the University publication, Student Guide to University Policies.

 

Exceptions to Policies

Exceptions to policies may be requested of the Office of Graduate and Professional Education. A request for an exception should cite the policy, justify the request, and provide appropriate departmental support for the request from the graduate student’s advisor, the graduate program director and department chair.

ACADEMIC PROGRESS

 

Academic Good Standing

To be considered in good academic standing, a student must maintain a minimum cumulative graduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale each semester. To be eligible for an advanced degree, a student’s cumulative grade point average shall be at least a 3.00 and the student’s grades in courses counted toward the degree requirements of the program shall equal at least a 3.00. A grade below a C- will not be counted toward the course requirements for a degree but is calculated in the student’s cumulative grade point average.

In addition to the University’s definition of good standing, some programs may also require minimum grades in specific courses in the program. These courses are identified in each program’s policy and procedures manual and these unit-specific requirements have been approved by the Faculty Senate.

Performance in graduate lecture courses and seminars is evaluated according to the University’s Grading Policy. When the work required in research (868/968), dissertation (969), master’s thesis (869), or special problem (866) extends beyond the regular semester period, temporary grades of “S” and “U” should be recorded. Final letter grades are to be recorded only at the completion of the project.

 

Academic Probation

The Office of Graduate Studies monitors the academic progress of all graduate students and notifies students in writing of all academic deficiencies. The cumulative GPA after each 9-hour increment determines academic standing. In addition to the University policy regarding minimum grade point averages, some departments require graduate students to maintain certain performance minima in their programs of study in all or in particular courses. Failure to meet the stated minima may lead to academic dismissal from the program.

If a student is onAnd earns a cumulative GPA of:The status will become:
Any status (or clear)3.0 or above Clear
Clear2.99-2.5Warning
Clear2.49-2.0Probation
ProbationBelow 3.0Dismissal
WarningBelow 3.0Probation
Any statusBelow 2.0Dismissal

In addition to the University policy regarding minimum grade point averages, some departments require graduate students to maintain certain performance minima in their programs of study in all or in particular courses. Failure to meet the stated minima may lead to academic dismissal from the program.

 

GPA Requirements

Students must have a minimum overall cumulative grade point average of 3.0 to be eligible for the degree. In addition, the grades in courses specifically required for the degree program must average at least 3.0. All graduate-numbered courses taken with graduate student classification at the University of Delaware are applied to the cumulative index. Credit hours and courses for which the grade is below “C-” do not count toward the degree even though the grade is applied to the index.

 

Satisfactory Progress toward a Graduate Degree

If a graduate student fails to make satisfactory progress toward all degree requirements, permission may be denied to continue in the degree program. At the close of each semester, winter session or summer session, in those circumstances deemed appropriate by the department or program faculty exercising its professional judgment, the faculty of each department or program may evaluate the progress of a graduate student toward meeting the academic standards of the program in which the student is enrolled. In addition to graded course work, academic standards include, but are not limited to, professional, ethical, clinical and other standards required of graduate students. In the case of dismissal, the program director is required to send a report to the Office of Graduate and Professional Education that states the faculty vote on the decision causing dismissal and the justification for this action. The Office of Graduate and Professional Education will notify a student in writing when the student is being dismissed for failure to make satisfactory progress in the program and the procedures for the student to appeal the action.

 

Degree Time Limits

Time limits for the completion of degree requirements begin with the date of matriculation and are specifically expressed in the student’s letter of admission. The University time limit is ten consecutive semesters to complete the degree requirements for students entering a master’s degree program. Students completing the requirements for the master’s degree who are subsequently granted permission to continue toward the doctoral degree are given an additional ten consecutive semesters. Students entering a doctoral program with a master’s degree are given ten consecutive semesters to complete the requirements. Students entering a doctoral program without a master’s degree are given fourteen consecutive semesters to complete the requirements. Students who change their degree plan and have transferred from one degree program to another degree program are given ten consecutive semesters from the beginning of the first year in the latest program.

 

 

Degree Time Limit Extension

Requests for time extensions must be made in writing and approved by the student’s advisory committee and the chair of the department’s graduate committee. The department will forward the request to the Office of Graduate and Professional Education. The Office will determine the student’s eligibility for a time extension and will notify the student in writing of its decision to grant an extension of time.

 

DISMISSAL POLICIES

 

The University’s Academic Probation Policy is expressed in the following chart:

The Office of Graduate and Professional Education notifies students when they are dismissed from graduate programs without completing a degree. Dismissals usually take place at the end of a term. Students may be dismissed for the following reasons:

– Upon the expiration of the five-year time limit for master’s degree programs or for those students in a doctoral program who were admitted with a master’s degree. Upon the expiration of the seven-year time limit for doctoral students who were admitted without a master’s degree.

– Upon the failure to meet the grade point average requirements as stated in the policy on Academic Deficiency and Probation.

– Upon written notice to the Office of Graduate and Professional Education of voluntary withdrawal from the program.

– Upon failure to pass the preliminary, language, or comprehensive/candidacy examination(s), a thesis/dissertation/executive position paper proposal defense, or a thesis/dissertation/executive position paper defense.

– Upon the failure to achieve a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 upon the completion of the stated number of required credits for a degree.

– Upon the failure to meet the stated minima in specific course requirements as identified by individual programs when a department has a policy that such failure leads to dismissal from the program.

– Upon failure to satisfactorily conduct research required for the degree.

– Upon the determination by the faculty of the student’s department that the student has failed to meet or has failed to make satisfactory progress towards meeting academic standards required of the student’s program other than the failure to achieve a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 upon the completion of the stated number of required credits for a degree.

–Upon failure of a graduate, research or teaching assistant to perform assigned duties adequately. A student’s stipend may not be terminated without the Dean’s approval and the approval of the Assistant Provost for Graduate and Professional Education. The Office of Graduate and Professional Education must be informed of a student’s stipend termination prior to the initiation of an HR Employee Termination Form.

At the close of each semester, winter session or summer session, in those circumstances deemed appropriate by the department or program faculty exercising its professional judgment, the faculty of each department or program may evaluate the progress of a graduate student toward meeting the academic standards of the program in which the student is enrolled. In addition to graded course work, academic standards include, but are not limited to, professional, ethical, clinical and other standards required of graduate students.

Students are entitled to know the procedures and standards by which their academic performance is assessed. Each program has a statement of policies and procedures by which student academic progress is monitored and by which comprehensive, qualifying, and final examinations/defenses are conducted and graded. If, in the professional judgment of a department or program faculty, a student has failed to make satisfactory progress toward meeting the academic standards of the program in which that student is enrolled, the faculty may vote to dismiss that student from the program.

In the case of dismissal, the program director is required to send a report to the Office of Graduate and Professional Education that states the faculty vote on the decision causing dismissal and the justification for this action. The Office of Graduate and Professional Education will notify a student in writing when the student is being dismissed for failure to make satisfactory progress in the program.

In the case of academic dismissal, the student may appeal the termination by writing to the Office of Graduate and Professional Education. This appeal must be made within ten class days from the date on which the student has been notified of academic dismissal. The Vice Provost will review the appeal and may either uphold the dismissal, grant reinstatement or refer the case to the Graduate Hearing Board for resolution. If the Vice Provost grants reinstatement, the student must meet the conditions of the reinstatement. Failure to meet these conditions will result in dismissal from the program. A graduate student may be reinstated only once to a given major. The student’s academic transcript will reflect the reinstatement with the appropriate academic probation status.

 

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