Termination of Status and Academic Dismissal

During a student’s degree program, certain circumstances may lead to termination of status or dismissal from The Graduate School.

Termination of Status

To remain in good standing, a student must at all times have a major advisor and be within the degree time limits for the degree she/he is seeking. Once a student’s plan of study has been approved by The Graduate School, the student at all times must have a duly constituted advisory committee, minimally including a major advisor. (Refer to the Advisory System section for additional information regarding the advisory committee.)

A student’s major advisor may resign from the advisory committee by written notice to The Graduate School and the student. If the student does not identify a new major advisor within thirty (30) business days of the resignation, the student’s graduate degree program status is terminated. When the resignation occurs during a summer session or winter session, then the thirty (30) business days begin on the first (1st) day of classes of the next fall or spring semester.

A graduate student and the major advisor must always be cognizant of the time limits associated with the student’s degree. (Refer to Standards & Degree Requirements indicated under Time Limits for specific degree programs.) The student, the major advisor, and the graduate program director and/or department head are notified of the date by which requirements must be completed when The Graduate School sends approved copies of the student’s plan of study. Any request to extend the date by which requirements must be completed must be submitted in writing to The Graduate School, and must be accompanied by a written endorsement from the major advisor.

Extensions of the terminal date are granted by The Graduate School only on the basis of substantial evidence that the student is making consistent and satisfactory progress toward the completion of degree requirements, and with certification by the major advisor that the student is likely to complete within the requested extension period. If an extension is granted, it establishes a new terminal degree date for the student. Whenever a student’s graduate degree program status is terminated, the student receives notice from The Graduate School. The student may appeal the termination under the provisions outlined below under the “Academic Dismissal and Termination of Status Appeal Procedures” sections.

Academic Dismissal

A graduate student’s progress in a degree program must be monitored regularly by the student’s advisory committee. If at any time, a student’s academic performance, progress in a graduate degree program, or professional development and/or suitability is judged by the advisory committee to be unsatisfactory to the degree that dismissal is warranted, the advisory committee must submit its written recommendation that the student be dismissed on such grounds. A student may be dismissed if she/he:

  1. Fails to maintain the minimum cumulative grade point average required by The Graduate School (3.00);
  2. Receives a grade of D+, D, D-, F, or U in any course;
  3. If required, fails to satisfy a foreign language requirement for a degree;
  4. Fails the doctoral General Examination, if one is required;
  5. Fails to produce an acceptable doctoral Dissertation Proposal, if one is required;
  6. Performs unsatisfactorily in any aspect of the research or writing for a required master’s thesis or doctoral dissertation;
  7. Fails a required final examination for the master’s or doctoral degree; or
  8. Fails to satisfy any other requirement of the student’s graduate degree program.

The major advisor submits the written recommendation for academic dismissal to The Graduate School on behalf of the entire advisory committee, indicating the specific judgment on which the advisory committee’s recommendation is based. For a student who does not have an established advisory committee, the major advisor alone submits the recommendation. Whenever a student is dismissed on academic grounds, the student receives notice from The Graduate School. The student may appeal the termination under the provisions outlined in Complaint, Appeal, and Hearing Procedures.

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