The mission of the Graduate School is to promote excellence in graduate education and to facilitate educational opportunities for graduate students.The Graduate School has the responsibility for oversight and coordination of graduate programs, and for ensuring compatibility among programs and compliance with Graduate School Policies and Procedures.
The graduate faculty is responsible for academic and curricular decisions regarding graduate education at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs. Graduate faculty empowers the Graduate Executive Committee to oversee the operations of the Graduate School.
Each department or program that offers a graduate degree through the Graduate School shall have a designated graduate program director. This individual shall be recommended by the department chair (where appropriate) and appointed by the Dean of the school/college. Graduate program directors in collaboration with the program faculty have the responsibility for the curriculum and the integrity of the program. The program director shall work with graduate advisors and their students to facilitate the admission, progression, and ultimate success of all students. Duties and responsibilities of program directors shall include:
The following standing committee is appointed by and responsible to the Graduate Executive Committee:
is a four member subcommittee of the Graduate Executive Committee, and one student representative appointed by the Graduate School Dean with the approval of the Graduate Executive Committee. This committee is responsible for hearing student problems and appeals. The committee meets as required.
An independent degree program is a program existing under the authority of the graduate faculty and Graduate School Dean of this campus. Faculty members and students participating in an independent program must comply with the rules established by the graduate faculty of that program. Faculty in an independent program has the authority and responsibility for the following:
Coordinated programs are graduate degree programs that are offered cooperatively by two or more campuses in the University of Colorado System. This may be under the degree granting authority existent on one campus or through the degree granting authority of each participating campus. Administrative authority and faculty responsibilities will be specified in the agreements that establish coordinated programs.
Proposals for new degree programs/options and/or for significant modifications of existing degree programs will be initiated by the faculty of the sponsoring unit in accordance with its policies and procedures.
1. A discussion of the program and degree plan(s)
The Graduate School Dean will ask the Graduate Executive Committee for their recommendation on the proposal by voting to accept or reject the proposal. The Graduate School Dean will submit the Graduate Executive Committee recommendation and his/her own recommendation to the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs for approval/denial.
Appointment to the graduate faculty of the Graduate School recognizes the ability of the faculty member to contribute to the education of our graduate students. All members of the graduate faculty shall have earned a doctoral degree, the terminal degree appropriate to the discipline, or shall have demonstrated, through experience or other achievements, qualities that qualify them for membership in the graduate faculty. A graduate program includes all graduate faculty members appointed specifically to the faculty of that program. A list of all members of the graduate faculty shall be maintained in the Office of the Graduate School Dean and on the Graduate School website. The appointment list will be updated each semester by the Graduate School administrative staff.
The status of a regular, member or associate member of the Graduate Faculty may be revoked for cause by a two-thirds vote of the graduate faculty of the member's graduate program. This recommendation must then be approved by the Graduate Executive Committee and the Graduate School Dean.
The full membership of the graduate faculty meets when called, with reasonable notice, by the Chancellor, the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, the Graduate School Dean, the Graduate Executive Committee, the President of Faculty Assembly, or upon filing a petition with the Graduate School Dean, signed by 10% of the graduate faculty. The petition must set forth, in full, the reason for calling the meeting.
The members present at any meeting of the full membership of the graduate faculty shall constitute a quorum. The meetings shall be chaired by the Graduate School Dean and conducted in accord with Robert's Rules of Order, except that if a vote is called for, it shall be conducted in a manner that will allow all regular members of the graduate faculty present to participate.
The following are minimum standards for admission of students to a degree program of the Graduate School. Individual programs may adopt additional requirements beyond the minimum requirements.
For students who do not meet the above criteria, program faculty may assign course work and/or examinations that must be taken in order to make up deficiencies.
An applicant not meeting the criteria for admission as a regular degree student may be recommended by the faculty for admission as a provisional student. The recommendation for admission as a provisional student must include a letter from the program/department/school stating the conditions which the student must meet in order to become a regular degree student. When the conditions for regular status are met, the program director must reclassify the student's status to fully admitted, and inform the student in writing.
Provisional students are subject to the same standards of performance required of regular degree students, in addition to other requirements as specified by program faculty imposed as conditions of the provisional admission status.
Applications for admission to an advanced degree program should be sent to the appropriate University of Colorado at Colorado Springs program/department/school/college office. The complete application must include:
Students may apply for admission at any time. Complete applications (including all supporting documentation) should be submitted at least 60 days prior to the term in which admission is sought to be assured full consideration. See specific program/department/school/college admission deadlines for specific information.
A student who wishes to change the major field of study after acceptance into a program must submit a new Part I of the graduate application to the new program/department/school/college, and request the former program to forward Part II of the application, recommendations and transcripts to the student's new program. The new program/department/school/college faculty will evaluate the student for admission. No additional graduate application fee will be required.
A student who was previously admitted to a graduate program, did not complete the degree, is no longer eligible to register at the University, and now wishes to return to school must do the following:
A former student will not be charged the graduate school application fee unless any coursework to be applied to the degree was taken more than six years prior to the student's return.A student applying to a doctoral program from a master's program in the same department, with no break in attendance, will not be charged an application fee.
Transfer credits may be applied to a graduate degree only with the approval of the program director. Each master's program will establish, with the concurrence of the Graduate Executive Committee, the maximum number of semester hours (not to exceed 30% of the required credits, or 9 semester credit hours) that may be transferred from another accredited institution and applied toward its graduate degree. Additional transfer credits for doctoral programs may be allowed at the discretion of the program director, with the approval of the Graduate School Dean. The following provisions will apply:
Section F : Credit Earned at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs Before Admission to a Program
Programs may accept graduate credits earned at other campuses of the University of Colorado.
Graduate certificate programs require the student to meet the minimum graduate school admission requirements and any additional program requirements. Refer to the appropriate program/department/school/college for specific admission requirements to the certificate program. Each graduate certificate program must: (1) require between 12 and 15 credit hours of graduate coursework unless there are specific accreditation requirements that require additional coursework, (2) have a named director, or academic advisor, (3) have a clearly defined completion and exit process, and (4) be approved by the Graduate School Dean. Additionally, admission to a graduate certificate program does not constitute admission to a degree program.
A graduate student in "good standing" from another institution may take graduate courses for transfer to that institution when there is space available with the approval of the program director.
The following are minimum requirements for a degree program in the Graduate School. Individual programs may adopt additional requirements that are more restrictive.
To remain in good academic standing in the Graduate School and to receive a graduate degree, a student is required to maintain at least a B (3.0) graduate program grade point average, which includes all work required for the degree while taken at this University (classified and unclassified) and may differ from the University grade point average.
2. Grades Below B.
3. Minimal Acceptable Grades
Any course applied to a doctoral degree must have a grade of B minus or better.
Courses transferred from another institution are not included in the calculation of the University grade point average, or in the graduate program grade point average. The University grade point average does not include any courses taken while in unclassified status; however, the graduate program grade point average will include all unclassified courses applied to meeting the degree requirements.
A grade of "I" will convert to "F" if the work is not completed within the one-year maximum period of time according to University policy. A grade of "I" should be given only when the following conditions are met.
A grade of "IP" may be given only for master's thesis, capstone projects, and doctoral dissertation work "in progress". Upon completion of the thesis/capstone/dissertation defense, the committee chairperson must submit a grade change for the "IP" grade to the student's final grade.6. Student Ethics
Students are expected to adhere to the highest codes of personal and professional ethics, as set forth by the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, which appears in the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Student Academic Ethics Code. Students who do not meet these standards may be dismissed from the Graduate School by the Graduate School Dean upon recommendation of the program director and college/school dean of the student's graduate program. A student may appeal such action under the provisions of Article VI.
A student who is noticeably deficient in the written and/or oral use of the English language cannot obtain an advanced degree from University of Colorado Colorado Springs. Each program judges the qualifications of its students in the use of English. The department chair/program director is responsible for deciding whether a student is proficient in the use of English.
Courses applied to graduate degrees may not be taken as pass/fail with the exception of clinical, practicum and internship coursework.
Thesis Advisory Committee A thesis advisory committee must be established for each student pursuing a master's degree under Plan I (thesis option). This committee will consist of the thesis advisor, and at least two other members of the graduate faculty, possibly including a member from an allied program. Upon the recommendation of the thesis advisor, the committee is appointed by the program director with the approval of the college/school dean and forwarded to the Graduate School.
Dissertation Advisory Committee A dissertation advisory committee shall consist of five members of the graduate faculty, including one member of an allied department. One of the five members may be from another institution, provided the faculty member has been granted associate membership on the Graduate Faculty. Upon the recommendation of the dissertation advisor, the committee is appointed by the program director with the approval of the college/school dean and forwarded to the Graduate School.
Capstone Advisory Committee. A capstone advisory committee shall consist of a capstone chair and two other committee members of the graduate faculty. One member of the committee may be from another institution, provided the committee member has been granted Associate Membership on the Graduate Faculty. Upon the recommendation of the capstone chair, the committee is appointed by the program director with the approval of the College/School Dean and forwarded to the Graduate School.1. Master's Degree Examinations
Most master's degree programs require a comprehensive examination or a thesis defense after the other requirements for the degree have been substantially completed. A student must be registered at the time in which the comprehensive examination or thesis defense is held.
This examination is administered by a committee of at least three graduate faculty appointed by the program director. A majority of the examination committee must vote affirmatively for the student to pass. A student who fails the examination may not attempt it again until at least two months have elapsed. The student may retake the examination only once.
After the thesis has been accepted by the student's thesis advisor, a thesis defense will be administered by the thesis advisory committee. A majority of the committee must vote affirmatively for the student to pass. A student who fails the thesis defense may not attempt it again until at least two months have elapsed. A student may have only one additional defense..2. Doctoral Degree Examinations
Each doctoral program will require one or more of the following types of examinations. A student must be registered at the time any of these examinations are taken. Successful completion of either a comprehensive examination or a specialty examination must precede advancement to candidacy.
The decision on foreign language requirements for doctoral degrees is the responsibility of the graduate faculty of each graduate program.
For each student pursuing a master’s degree, an Application for Admission to Candidacy
A doctoral student who wishes to become a candidate for a degree must file an Application for Admission to Candidacy in the Office of the Graduate School Dean. Admission to candidacy will be granted only to students who have completed a significant fraction of the required course work, and have passed the comprehensive examination and language requirement (if any).
Every candidate pursuing a master’s degree under Plan I (thesis option) is required to write a thesis, which may be of a research, expository, critical or creative type. Each thesis presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a master’s degree must satisfy the specifications of the University of Colorado Colorado Springs Thesis and Dissertation Manual, and shall represent 6 semester credit hours of work..
Every candidate pursuing a doctoral degree is required to write a dissertation based upon original investigation and showing mature scholarship and critical judgment, as well as familiarity with tools and methods of research. The subject must be approved by the student's program director. Each dissertation presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a doctoral degree must satisfy the specifications of the University of Colorado Colorado Springs Thesis and Dissertation Manual. The dissertation shall represent 30 semester credit hours of work for Ph.D. candidates, but may be less in other doctoral programs.
Although students are normally expected to complete a master’s degree in one to three years, master’s degree students have six years, from the date of the start of course work, to complete all degree requirements (which includes filing the thesis if Plan I is followed). A student who fails to complete the degree in this six-year period must file a petition for extension with the program director and have it approved by the Graduate School Dean. The petition, giving reasons why the student should be allowed to continue in the program, must be endorsed by the program director.
Doctoral students are normally expected to complete all degree requirements within seven years from the date of the start of coursework in the doctoral program. A student who fails to complete the degree in the seven years must file a petition for extension with the program director and have it approved by the Graduate School Dean. The petition, giving reasons why the student should be allowed to continue in the program, must be endorsed by the program director or by three members of the student's dissertation advisory committee. If the Graduate School Dean approves, the student may continue studies for one additional year. If the Graduate School Dean does not approve the request, the college/school dean, with the concurrence of the program director, may dismiss the student from the program. If the Graduate School Dean and the program director do not agree on whether a student should be continued in the program, the Graduate Executive Committee shall make the final decision.
The procedures for a student appeal to the Graduate School Dean and the Graduate Executive Committee are:
These Policies and Procedures of the Graduate School shall take effect immediately upon approval by the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. Any program not in compliance with these policies and procedures at that time shall have two years to demonstrate full compliance. A program whose existing requirements exceed one or more of the basic requirements of these policies and procedures shall submit in writing all such differences to the Graduate Executive Committee.