Policies and Procedures by Category: Graduate Policies And Procedures

Academic Leave (Leave of Absence) Graduate Policy

Graduate students in good standing may take a two-semester leave of absence. Though no formal approval is required, it is suggested that students seek academic advisement. Graduate students in degree programs should contact their departments before the end of the second semester of leave of absence. Students who do not enroll by the third semester …

Academic Performance and Study Load (Graduate Policy)

Numerous requirements exist that specify the grading policies at CSUN and the academic standards and progress expected of students. These regulations are dictated by Title 5 of the California Administrative Code, the California State Universities and College System and the President of CSUN.

Admission to the Program (Graduate Policy)

The applications of students meeting University requirements for admission will be reviewed in the appropriate program. The program will determine whether the student meets requirements for admission to its program. Some programs require a separate graduate program application. Students who meet program and University requirements will be admitted as either conditionally classified or classified graduate …

Admission to the University (Graduate Policy)

To be admitted to CSUN as a graduate student, students must meet the following requirements: Have a four-year baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution. Be in good academic standing at the last college or university attended. Have satisfied one of the following conditions: Attained a GPA of at least 2.5 in a baccalaureate degree …

Animal Subjects Research (Graduate Policy)

In addition to administering grants and contracts for the University, the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects (ORSP) oversees the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC). Federal regulations require all research involving the use of animal subjects undergo a review by the IACUC to ensure that animals are handled in an ethical manner and …

Application for the Master’s/Doctorate Degree and Diploma

Students must apply for graduation one semester prior to completion of requirements. Students may obtain an Application for Graduate Degree and Diploma for graduation online. In the event that a student changes the completion date to a later time, a Master’s/Doctoral Graduation and Diploma Date Change form needs to be submitted and a processing fee will …

Change of Objective

Enrolled graduate students may change their objective and seek admission to an alternate degree program by filling out a Change of Objective form. The form can be obtained online. Transfer of previously earned units to the alternate program must have the approval of the department to which the student applies. A request for a change …

Classified Status

To be granted classified status, students must have a 3.0 GPA for all work taken as a conditionally classified student and in any courses required by the program for admission to its program. Once the requirements for classified status have been met, it is the responsibility of the student to notify the program and then …

Comprehensive Examinations

A comprehensive examination will test the range of subject matter covered in the student’s graduate program. The purpose of the examination is to allow students to demonstrate their ability to integrate content, knowledge, independent thinking and critical analysis. Each master’s program that offers a comprehensive examination option is required to maintain University-approved guidelines for the …

Conditionally Classified Status

Students who do not meet all requirements may be accepted as conditionally classified students, subject to meeting various University and program requirements for classified status. It is important to achieve full classified standing prior to completing more than 12 units of graduate coursework on the program of study. No more than 12 units of work …

Course Numbering System

001-099 Courses that carry no credit toward a degree or credential. Generally remedial or subcollegiate-level in content. 100-199 Lower Division, introductory courses that constitute the beginning of college work in a major or in General Education and which require no previous college experience. Open to Upper Division students. 200-299 Lower Division courses of freshman and sophomore level. …

Courses for Graduate Students

Graduate students are expected to take courses numbered 500 and above, as well as 400-level courses approved for graduate credit. Some graduate programs list prerequisites numbered 100-399. These courses or their equivalents should be successfully completed before admission, at another university or community college or through Open University. Graduate program coordinators will determine course equivalency. …

Credit for Work Completed Prior to Earning the Baccalaureate Degree

A maximum of 9 units of credit earned at the 500-level during a student’s final undergraduate semester at CSUN may be applied toward a master’s degree, subject to departmental approval. Requests for such credit are filed following admission to a CSUN master’s program on a Graduate Petition form. Courses are subject to the following University …

Culminating Experience (Graduate Policy)

A culminating experience is required for completion of a master’s or doctorate degree program. The University recognizes the following types of culminating experiences: Theses, Dissertations, Graduate Projects and Comprehensive Examinations. Each graduate program permits one or more of the culminating experiences as described below. Where more than one option is offered, the specific type of culminating experience …

Grading System for Graduate Students

CSUN uses the traditional A-F grading system and a non-traditional system of Credit/No Credit (CR/NC) as explained in the Regulations section of this Catalog. Note the following provisions: Normal Grading: Credit (CR) is given for A, A-, B+ or B-level scholastic performance and No Credit (NC) is given for the equivalent of B-, C+, C, …

Graduate and Post-Baccalaureate Application Procedures

The following information applies generally to all 23 campuses of the California State University system. For information specific to CSUN graduate and post-baccalaureate application procedures, please refer to the Graduate Studies section of this Catalog and to the Admissions and Records website. All graduate and post-baccalaureate applicants (e.g., Ed.D., D.P.T., joint Ph.D. applicants, master’s degree applicants, those seeking educational credentials or …

Graduate Credit for Extension and Concurrent Enrollment Courses

Courses taken prior to admission to a master’s degree program through CSUN’s Extension or Concurrent Enrollment programs are subject to the limitations that apply to graduate work taken at other institutions (see Transfer Work policy). Courses taken through Extension or Concurrent Enrollment following admission to a master’s degree program are subject to departmental approval for …

Graduate English Language Requirements

All graduate applicants, regardless of citizenship, whose native language is not English and who have not attended academic institutions for at least 3 years full-time where English is the principal language of instruction must present a score of 79/80 or above on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or a score of …

Graduate Foreign Language Reading Examination

When competency in a foreign language is a departmental requirement, students may demonstrate competency in one of three ways: Passing the Graduate Foreign Language Examination (Princeton Examination), Passing a departmental examination. The examination is given by the Department of Foreign Languages in the fifth week of each semester. Candidates who plan to take this examination should notify the …

Graduate Probation and Disqualification Policy

Academic Probation Students enrolled in a graduate program (certificate, master’s, or doctoral) will be placed on academic probation at the end of the semester when their cumulative GPA falls below 3.0. To be removed from probation, students must earn sufficient grade points in the following semester of enrollment to raise their cumulative GPA to 3.0 or above. Failure …

Graduate Status

A graduate student is one who has applied and received formal admission to a specific course of study that will lead to a master’s or doctorate degree in one of the many disciplines available at CSUN. Graduate status is subdivided into classified and conditionally classified standing, depending on whether or not certain University and program …

Graduation with Distinction (Graduate Policy)

A student may receive the master’s degree with distinction by maintaining a 3.885 or higher GPA on all formal master’s degree program coursework. The notation “With Distinction’’ is posted with the degree on the transcript, and also will appear on the diploma.

Human Subjects Research (Graduate Policy)

Federal regulations require that all research involving the use of human subjects undergo review by the Human Subjects Committee to ensure that ethical research is being conducted. This committee is composed of scientists, non-scientists and community members with diverse backgrounds to maintain a comprehensive review of the research projects. The Standing Advisory Committee for the …

Policy on GPA Requirements for Graduate Programs

Students pursuing a graduate degree must maintain a minimum 3.0 (“B”) GPA in the formal program and in the cumulative grade point average once admitted to the program. No grade below a “C” can be counted in the formal program. Any grade of “C-” or below in the formal program must be repeated after an …

Post-Baccalaureate Credential Probation and Disqualification Policy

Academic Probation Students enrolled in a post-baccalaureate credential program will be placed on academic probation at the end of the semester when their cumulative GPA falls below 2.75. To be removed from probation, students must earn sufficient grade points in the following semester of enrollment to raise their cumulative GPA to 2.75 or above. Failure to do so …

Program of Study (Graduate Policy)

The program of study is a statement of the academic requirements that students must meet for the master’s/doctorate degree. The following University requirements apply to the program: It must be composed of a minimum of 30 units of 400-, 500- and 600-level work. None of the courses on the program may have been used for any other degree earned …

Repeat of Courses (Graduate Policy)

Students must submit a Course Repeat form with prior permission of the graduate coordinator/department chair and the Associate Vice President of Graduate Studies. A graduate student may repeat up to 6 units in which a grade of “B-” or below has been earned. In these cases, only the most recent grade will count. Students seeking …

Rules and Procedures Governing Theses, Dissertation and Graduate Projects

The following rules apply to Theses and Graduate Projects: The Thesis must be an individual effort. However, the University recognizes that there are circumstances that warrant group graduate projects. In such instances, a signed addendum by each student and by the culminating experience committee chair must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies. The …

Syllabus Policy

To better inform students about the requirements, content, and methodology of the university’s curricula, all faculty teaching classes will distribute a written syllabus to each student in the class and/or post it online no later than the first class meeting. The written syllabus must be readily printable as a single document, and must contain the …

Time Limit for Completion (Graduate Policy)

Students must complete requirements for the degree within 7 calendar years from the date they were admitted to a program, unless a lesser time is specified by the department or program committee. Courses that were completed more than 7 years prior to the date on which all requirements for the degree are completed cannot be …

Transfer Work for Graduate Programs Policy

Credit for work performed in extension or at another regionally accredited institution is subject to the following limitations: Transfer of work is subject to the approval of the graduate coordinator of the major department and the Associate Vice President of Graduate Studies. An unofficial transcript must be submitted with either the formal program or course …

Upper Division Writing Proficiency Exam (UDWPE) Substitution (Graduate Policy)

All CSUN graduate students earning a degree are required by the CSU to satisfy the Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) prior to full classification.  Graduate students who completed an undergraduate degree at any CSU since 1982 have automatically met this requirement because they were required to demonstrate writing proficiency in order to graduate.  All other …

Withdrawals (Graduate Policy)

Cancellation of Registration or Withdrawal from the University Students who find it necessary to cancel their registration or to withdraw from all classes after enrolling for any academic term are required to follow the University’s official withdrawal procedures. Failure to follow formal University procedures may result in an obligation to pay fees as well as …