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The information in this graduate catalog applies to the academic year 2020-21. The university reserves the right to change programs of study, academic requirements, the announced university calendar, and other matters described herein without prior notice, in accordance with established procedures. Each graduate student should understand that published descriptions of degree requirements establish only minimum requirements. It is the prerogative of the graduate program to make changes in degree requirements at any time. The policies in the document are for all graduate programs. Please see individual program policies for additional information. In lieu of no specific EMU graduate program policy, the individual graduate department policies apply. Please review individual program policies for additional information. This graduate catalog is descriptive and is not to be construed as a legal contract.

 Please see the graduate student handbook for student life-related policies.

Academic Integrity Policy

Eastern Mennonite University fosters a culture where faculty, staff, and students respect themselves and others. In this culture, faculty, staff, and students gain confidence in their desire and ability to discover their ideas, construct new knowledge, and think critically about their own ideas and the ideas of others. In doing so, EMU community members grow as competent thinkers and writers.

 EMU faculty and staff care about the integrity of their own work and the work of their students. They create assignments that promote interpretative thinking and work intentionally with students during the learning process. Honesty, trust, fairness, respect, and responsibility are characteristics of a community that is active in loving mercy, doing justice, and walking humbly before God.

At EMU, academic integrity means

  • honesty in producing one’s own work.
  • use of documented course information and aids.
  • submission of work that is one’s own.
  • honesty in representation of research results, one’s credentials, and facts or opinions.
  • honesty in use of technology, including cell phones and the Internet.
  • honesty in acknowledging sources used in research and presented in papers and other assignments.
  • honesty in establishing and maintaining the appropriate parameters of collaborative work. 

Academic integrity includes

  • using accurate quotations. When used, quotations are exact, word-for-word as they appear in the original document. Every quotation, including a short phrase or a single word if it is unusual, includes the required citation and quotation marks.
  • using appropriate paraphrasing with documentation.  Paraphrasing is more than rewording the original material. It must be nearly entirely in the writer’s own words, using new phrases and synonyms. The writer may repeat technical terms. Place quotation marks around any exact words that are retained. The sentence structure should not be the same as in the source. In the paraphrase, do not add interpretations, ideas, and assessment that are not in the original source.
  • documenting and citing work that was created for a previous assignment, whether for the current course or for another one.
  • using appropriate documentation when using words from a class speaker, including the class instructor, in an assignment, i.e. cite professors’ lectures.
  • using common knowledge appropriately. Common knowledge is information that is easily observed, commonly reported facts (George Washington was the first president of the United States.), or proverbs. Common knowledge does not need to be cited, but be certain that these words are in the public domain. When in doubt, ask the professor.
  • using a dictionary to produce original work in a second language. When using software like Google Translate, to translate words, sentences, or paragraphs from one’s native language to the second language, the student is copying and not learning the language or applying skills learned in the classroom. Use a translation dictionary (i.e. English-Spanish, English-Bulgarian) to find the precise word or idiom needed to construct a sentence. Entries in a dictionary are more accurate than software that translates phrases and paragraphs. Professors would like to see your original work, not the work of a machine.

EMU defines plagiarism as occurring when a person presents as one’s own someone else’s language, ideas, or other original (not common-knowledge) material without acknowledging its source (adapted from the Council of Writing Program Administrators, 2005,

Academic integrity violation for students may be evidenced as a:

Minimal Violation

A minimal violation of academic integrity codes includes doing the following without appropriate documentation:

  1. using a minimal number of distinguishing words from a source.
  2. rearranging the word order of a sentence.
  3. producing a similar sentence or style from a source.
  4. using an idea or argument from a source.
  5. reproducing one’s own work from a previous work.

(These items are adapted from “Westmont College Plagiarism Policy” (2002),

Substantial Violation

A substantial violation of academic integrity codes includes (but is not limited to):

  1. cheating on a quiz, test, or exam.
  2. copying or attempting to copy someone else’s work, including paraphrasing or quoting a professor’s classroom lectures, handouts, and presentations without appropriate documentation.
  3. falsifying results and credentials, withholding data, misrepresenting facts.
  4. using someone else’s work as one’s own work.
  5. using quotations with no documentation.
  6. using an online source by copying and pasting with no documentation. Online sources may appear free. In this case, free means economically free. While a source may not be paid for, it is to be used only for its specified use. A citation must be given if words, graphics, or ideas are used.
  7. presenting material as one’s own from a site that sells essays. Some of the papers-for-sale sites do have disclaimers that state the work must be cited. Remember, if a source can be found, the professor can also find it.
  8. frequently committing minimal violations within a single document or repeatedly over time.
  9. Assisting another student to cheat or to copy one’s own or someone else’s work without appropriate documentation.
  10. Using Google Translator or other software to translate work from one’s native language to the language of instruction and submitting the work as one’s own work.

Undergraduate academic departments and graduate units are responsible for establishing right-of-use parameters for non-print materials (e.g. presentations).

Procedures (Graduate, Seminary, and Undergraduate)

When a student violates academic integrity values, the student and professor/advisor will work together to restore the student to community. For reference, see the academic integrity violation flow chart.

Procedures for Minimal Violations

When a first-time minimal violation is noted, the professor will use this as an opportunity to teach the student/s explicitly about academic integrity. A minimal violation should be reported to the respective dean’s office using the Academic Integrity Violation form. When a second minimal violation occurs, either within the same class or in multiple classes with the same instructor, faculty will document this as a substantial offense using the Academic Integrity Violation form.

Procedures for Substantial Violations¹

At EMU, when academic integrity codes are violated to this level, the following procedure will be followed.

The professor will:

  • notify the student of the violation.
  • determine whether the student is guilty of the violation.
  • contact the respective chair or program director’s office to check on previous student violations in order to determine first, second or third offense.
  • document the finding and the action either taken (First-time offense) or repeated (Second and Third-time offenses) on the Violation of Academic Integrity Record.
  • meet with the student to obtain the student’s signature, either acknowledging her/his violation or acknowledging discussion in which the professor explained the charges to the student. In the event that a student refuses to sign, the professor will document that the violation was discussed with the student and the student refused to sign. (Under some circumstances, the professor may want to request another professor present as witness. Students have the option to include a faculty or staff member, e.g. academic advisor, student life personnel, coach.)
  • submit the Violation of Academic Integrity Record to the respective chair or program director.  Copies are forwarded to the dean.

The dean will:

  • for undergraduate students, inform the Vice President for Student Life of violations and actions taken.
  • for all students, follow steps described below for Second and Third-time offenses.

The student will either:

  1.  accept the decision or
  2.  submit an appeal to the respective dean in writing within five (5) working days following notification of the Academic Integrity Violation report. Reasons for the appeal must be clearly stated and based on one of the following:
    1. Significant and relevant new evidence,
    2. Alleged procedural error that may have affected the decision, or
    3. Unduly harsh and arbitrary consequences of the academic integrity violation.

On the basis of these factors, the dean will review the appeal and, in consultation with the course professor, make a decision to uphold or modify the academic integrity violation record. This decision will be communicated to the student in writing within five (5) days after the receipt of the appeal. The decision is final.

Each dean will maintain a database recording all violation of academic integrity reports. Reports of substantial violations will be kept as part of the student’s permanent record, unless a report is withdrawn following appeal. 

 Consequences for Undergraduate Students

  • First-time substantial violation: If a student cheats on a quiz, test, blog, forum, other online assignments, or exam or plagiarizes material in an assignment, assignment receives an F or 0 grade at faculty discretion. For an extreme first time offense, a professor may give the student an F for the course (e.g. essay taken from Internet, test answers from another source). At the discretion of the professor, educational and restorative outcomes could include enrolling in an Academic Integrity workshop, provided by EMU’s Writing Program Director, revising and re-submitting the assignment. 
  •  Second-time substantial violation: If the student repeats the above violation in the same or another course or commits another violation in the same or another course, a professor may give the student an F for the course, and the student may receive a Letter of Probation.
  • Third-time substantial violation: If the student commits the violation for the third time, the professor may give the student an F for the course, and the student may receive a Letter of Indefinite Suspension/Disciplinary Withdrawal.
  • Letters of Probation and Indefinite Suspension/Disciplinary Withdrawal will be sent by the dean of the school which houses the student’s major.
  • Upon re-enrollment and a subsequent violation, the professor may give the student an F for the course, and the student may be subject to a Letter of Dismissal at the discretion of the university.
  • When a professor gives a student an F for the course, the student will not be allowed to withdraw from the course. The student is prohibited from attending class after the professor assigns the F grade. The course continues to apply towards the number of credits the student is pursuing that semester.

Consequences for Graduate Students

  • Educative violation: At the faculty member’s discretion, this first-time violation may be used for the purpose of instruction when a student plagiarizes any type of assignment (quiz, test, blog, forum, other online assignments, or exam or plagiarizes material in an assignment). At the discretion of the professor, grade consequences may occur and educational and restorative outcomes could include enrolling in an Academic Integrity workshop, provided by EMU’s Writing Program Director, revising and re-submitting the assignment.

  • First-time substantial violation: If a student cheats on a quiz, test, blog, forum, other online assignments, or exam or plagiarizes material in an assignment, a professor may give the student an F for the course (e.g. essay taken from Internet, test answers from another source) and the student may receive a Letter of Probation. When a professor gives a student an F for the course, the student will not be allowed to withdraw from the course. The student is prohibited from attending class after the professor assigns the F grade. The course continues to apply towards the number of credits the student is pursuing that semester.

  • Second-time substantial violation: If the student commits the violation for the second time, the student may receive a Letter of Indefinite Suspension/Disciplinary Withdrawal. (See Student Handbook, University Policies.)

Faculty and staff who violate academic integrity codes are subject to review by the provost’s office.

The graduate, seminary, and undergraduate units use this policy for processing academic integrity violations with the exception of student appeal (see above).  This policy appears in yearly course catalogs; the Student Handbook; on graduate, seminary, and undergraduate websites; and at z://provost/policies.  The Academic Integrity Policy flow chart is also available at z://provost/policies.   

¹ Adapted from American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (2007) Academic Dishonesty: Developing and Implementing Institutional Policy                                                      

Responsible Party
The provost is responsible for this policy.

Policy Review
This policy is to be reviewed annually.

Reviewed by Undergraduate Council, Graduate Council, and Faculty Senate
Approved by Academic Cabinet, March 25, 2009 and revised October 6, 2010
Revised by Academic Cabinet, February 26, 2013
Revised by Academic Cabinet, November 19, 2014
Revised by Provost’s Council, December 16, 2015
Revised by Graduate Council, April 1, 2019 and approved by Provost’s Council, April 10, 2019

Admission to Candidacy

When students have been admitted to graduate study and enter into their graduate work, they are not yet candidates for a degree. Admission to candidacy (MA in Counseling calls this "admission to internship") is contingent upon successful completion of such program specific requirements as a comprehensive exam, supervised practicum, successful completion of coursework, etc.

The student will normally meet all requirements for admission to candidacy upon completion of half of the credit hours required. The specific number of hours or required courses is defined within each degree program. Admission to candidacy is required for work in the program beyond this point.

To be admitted to candidacy, the student must have completed the requisite number of semester hours, including any courses prerequisite to admission to candidacy with a 3.00 minimum GPA; met any program specific competency assessment criteria; actively participated in the advising process and met all advising objectives; and obtained the formal approval of the faculty in the degree program.

Students are reviewed for admission to candidacy during the semester in which they are expected to meet the requirements. Specific procedures for admission to candidacy are established within each degree program.

Admission: Decisions and Appeals

Each graduate program establishes and maintains its admission requirements. Admission committees, composed of faculty and staff members, make admission decisions in each graduate program. A student denied admission may address a written appeal to the admission committee, providing additional information pertinent to an admission decision. Prospective students may appeal a second denial of admission to the appropriate academic dean, whose determination for admission is final.

Admission: Matriculation Deferral 

Students who apply and are admitted to the graduate program but are unable to enroll in the term specified may request to have their admission deferred for one academic year. If after one year the student is still unable to enroll, the student must re-apply for admission.

Individual graduate programs will work with applicants on documentation needed for reapplication.


Each graduate student is appointed a faculty member to serve as an advisor. Until the faculty advisor’s appointment, the program director/coordinator serves as the advisor. The faculty advisor helps the graduate student with career planning and course selection. The advisor also functions as a mentor, monitoring the student’s academic progress and working as an informal advocate for the student to the program faculty. Requests to change academic advisors should be made to the program director/coordinator.


Students may enroll to audit classes when there is room in a class and with permission of the instructor or program director/coordinator.  Individual programs may offer one or two options for auditing: the standard audit or the participation audit. Some courses may not be open to either type of audit.  Please contact the teaching program for more information about participation expectations. No academic credit is granted for either type of audit. Students who enroll as auditors (standard or participation) will register and pay the designated audit fee.  (See financial section for audit fees). At the end of the class an audit designation will appear on the student’s transcript.

Class Attendance

Students are expected to be prepared, attend, and participate in all class meetings. If unusual or emergency circumstances prevent class attendance, the student should notify the professor in advance if possible. Multiple absences from class will result in lower grades. The student is responsible for the material presented in classes missed.

Graduate Degree Requirements

The semester hour requirements for graduate degrees at EMU vary by program, ranging from 33-60 semester hours. Students must complete the required number of credit hours for the program of study in which they are enrolled.  A cumulative grade point average of 3.00 is required for a graduate degree.

Senior Citizen Class Attendance

Senior citizens who wish to take a graduate course are invited to audit the course (see auditing policy for details). Graduate courses generally are not open to non-auditing visitors.  However, permission to visit a single class period may be given at the discretion of the instructor.

Commencement Participation

To be eligible to participate in spring commencement ceremonies, students must have a curriculum plan that will allow them to complete all degree requirements by the December following spring commencement.

Course, Credit and Enrollment Information

Completion of Coursework

Each student is expected to complete all coursework on time and to the satisfaction of the graduate instructor. Incomplete grades will be allowed only in cases of emergency, when circumstances beyond the control of the student prevent completion of course requirements on time. An incomplete shall be requested at least one week before the end of the term and must be approved by the instructor and the director of the program or advisor. Incomplete work must be completed within the specified time frame or a grade will be assigned based on the work completed.

Course Cancellation

The university reserves the right to cancel courses or to combine class sections when insufficient enrollment occurs.

Courses Taken by EMU Students at Other Schools

A student should secure advance approval from the graduate program director/coordinator or advisor before enrolling for work in other universities, where credit is to be transferred back to EMU for graduation. The graduate program reserves the right to limit the amount of transfer credit which may be applied to degree requirements. In all cases the majority of credits must be earned through instruction offered by EMU.

Courses Taken Through Eastern Mennonite Seminary

Credit earned through Eastern Mennonite Seminary may be applied to EMU graduate programs in this catalog as deemed appropriate by the respective graduate program director/coordinator or advisor.

Courses Taken as a Non-Degree Student

Persons are invited to take courses in a graduate program as a non-degree student prior to applying to the graduate program, subject to the approval of the program director/coordinator and the course faculty member. A maximum of 9 semester hours taken as a non-degree student can later be applied to the graduate degree program upon matriculation. (Graduate Teacher Education (GTE) non-degree students are exempt from program director approvals. Additional hours as a non-degree student may be appealed to the GTE program director.)

Course Syllabi

Instructors will prepare a syllabus for each course describing its purpose, requirements, and other appropriate information such as bibliography and schedule. Students may request to see course syllabi when making course selections. Such requests should be made to the program office. Graduate programs will specify course requirements in research, learning projects, and reading.

Credit for Practicum/Internship Experience

The expected number of work hours required per semester hour (credit) of practicum or internship experience is congruent with the expectations for a traditional course. However, accreditation standards and/or standard practice in the discipline take precedence in establishing hours within a particular program.

Classroom and Study Time

Course work for a graduate course involves a significant commitment of time. For courses with face to face class time, the typical formula for determining academic activities related to a course is 2.5 to 3 hours outside of class for each hour in class. Thus, if enrolled in a typical 3 semester hour course that meets for three hours each week, a student should expect to spend between 10 and 12 hours total time per week devoted to that course. Assuming a 15 week semester, the student would devote on average 150 to 180 hours to that course. 

Classroom and Study Time for Online Students

EMU assumes that online students will spend a similar amount of time with online classes as face to face students. Whether or not there are synchronous or asynchronous activities, the student should expect to spend 10 to 12 hours per week on course activities when enrolled in a typical 3 semester hour online course.

Graduate Full-time Enrollment

A graduate student taking 9 semester hours in a given semester is considered full-time for the purposes of institutional enrollment, reporting, student visa, and financial assistance. See specific program information for additional consideration related to enrollment status.

Grading System and Quality Points

EMU uses the four-point system. The grade point average (GPA) is computed by dividing the number of quality points earned by the number of graded semester hours.

A Excellent


4.0 quality points per semester hour


3.7 quality points per semester hour

B Good


3.3 quality points per semester hour


3.0 quality points per semester hour


2.7 quality points per semester hour

C Marginal


2.3 quality points per semester hour


2.0 quality points per semester hour


Failure, 0 quality points


Pass: Applies only to approved courses, no quality points. Indicates performance at a B- level or better.


Satisfactory Progress: A non-terminal grade for a continuing course


Withdrawal: Indicates student withdrawal from the course


Audit or Participation Audit: No credit given.



Academic Probation and Dismissal

Students who have completed 9 semester hours in a graduate program will be placed on academic probation if their GPA falls below 3.0 for a master’s degree and 2.75 for graduate certificates. The director of the program will notify such students in writing of the probationary status, which remains in effect until they raise their GPA above the requirement or are dismissed from the program. Those on probation should work with their faculty advisor to develop a plan for maximizing future academic success. 

Graduate students may be dismissed from a graduate program upon:

  • Receiving a grade of “C” or below on 9 semester hours of graded work or
  • Receiving a second grade of “F” or
  • Exhibiting attitudes, behaviors, or a lifestyle inconsistent with the mission of Eastern Mennonite University or the graduate program. 

Dismissal decisions are made by the individual graduate programs.

Grade Reporting

Grades are available to students through myEMU at Payment of account is required for the release of grades.

Grade Appeals

A student who believes that a grade received for a course does not accurately reflect their achievement of course requirements and expectations should confer with the instructor who assigned the grade, stating the reason(s) they believe a grade change is warranted.

If the instructor does not agree to change the grade, the student may appeal to the program director/coordinator. This appeal must state in writing the evidence the student believes indicates that a grade change is warranted.

If the program director/coordinator does not agree to ask the instructor to change the grade, the student may appeal in writing to the respective dean, whose decision will be final. All grade changes must be submitted by the person who agreed to the change and use the formal grade change process of the university registrar’s office.

An appeal to any grade assigned between September 1 and December 31 must be initiated no later than February 15 of the following year, an appeal to any grade assigned between January 1 and May 15 must be initiated by July 1, and an appeal to any grade assigned between May 16 and August 31 must be initiated by October 15.

Graduation GPA

A GPA of 3.0 is the minimum requirement for graduation for all master’s degree students.

A GPA of 2.75 is the minimum requirement for graduation for all graduate certificate students. 

Conflict and Grievance Procedure

Conflict is a part of life in any healthy community. Conflict may arise whenever individuals work closely with each other. They may result from philosophical disagreements, personality differences, habitual behaviors, miscommunication, misunderstanding, or willful intent to promote one’s own agendas with insufficient regard to the well-being of others. When handled poorly, conflicts can create exclusion, harm, and violence; when handled well, they can produce growth, safety, and healthy community life.

Grievances, for purposes of this document, are a specific and potentially more serious kind of dispute. They may arise from inadequate or missing institutional policies, the misapplication of policies, or the failure to apply policies, which may result in discriminatory or harmful outcomes.

Eastern Mennonite University is committed to maximizing the positive energy of conflict while minimizing its negative consequences. To this end, we strive to create a community of conflict-competent persons living and working in systems that promote repair of harms and restoration of relationships as a preferred response to conflict.

At EMU the first approach to any conflict or grievance should be non-adversarial, undertaken with careful attention to fostering understanding and promoting problem solving. Our hope is that the majority of conflicts or grievances can be resolved through an informal process of conflict resolution. Nonetheless, individuals have the right to request a formal process at any time. In some instances, especially for particular kinds of grievances (for example, sexual harassment or misconduct), more formal processes may be necessary and appropriate as the first response.

These procedures are applicable to all students, faculty, and staff of EMU as well as applicants for faculty, staff, or student status. These procedures are intended to comply with the requirements of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the general employee grievance policy of EMU. These procedures are subject to amendment and/or pre-emption by applicable law to the extent required to achieve compliance with existing or future regulations, statutes, or court decisions, and nothing herein is intended to deny or limit any person’s right to any remedy under any state or federal law now or hereafter in effect. Furthermore, nothing contained in this document should be construed as legal advice. Persons are advised to seek legal counsel should they have specific legal questions or concerns.

A complete copy of these procedures is available in the Graduate Student Handbook.

Intellectual Property (excerpt from Intellectual Property Policy)

The purpose of this policy is to clarify issues related to the ownership, use, and sale of intellectual property created by university personnel. Eastern Mennonite University wishes to foster an intellectual environment that encourages creativity, innovation, and excellence while managing its resources for the benefit of all constituents. In this policy the university seeks to foster these goals and honor traditions in the academic setting while recognizing federal laws.

Intellectual property refers to any copyrightable or patentable work.

Policy with respect to students attempts to balance student and institutional needs. Intellectual property created by students is considered the property of the student. The university, however, reserves the right to use such material, with appropriate discretion and attribution, in promotion of the university. Intellectual property created by students and employees jointly is considered to be jointly owned by the creators. (The employee shall have decision-making powers in regard to permissions and sales of jointly created property.)

Student Complaint Policy*

Eastern Mennonite University welcomes open communication from students regarding its policies and practices. Student feedback helps administrators determine effectiveness and clarify and improve processes and procedures. If a student has a complaint it should be communicated to the administrator responsible for the area of the complaint. Most complaints can be dealt with through informal communication between the parties.

When a student wishes to lodge a more formal written complaint in writing, the following student complaint form is submitted:

This form is directed to the executive advisor to the president, who determines the appropriate person to respond to the stated concerns. A formal written response will occur within five business days of notification of the concern. This response will be copied to the executive advisor to the president.

In the event that a student is not satisfied with the response to the complaint, the student may choose to follow up by utilizing the Conflict and Grievance Policy and Procedure for resolution, available in student handbooks. The university recognizes its obligation to ensure that students who make complaints do not suffer adverse treatment as a result of the complaint. In the event that a student alleges such treatment, the student shall be referred to the Conflict and Grievance Policy and Procedure for resolution.

If an issue cannot be resolved by the university’s internal processes, students may file a formal complaint with the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) at

Approved by President’s Cabinet May 21, 2003
Revised March 12, 2007
Revised February 11, 2009
Updated March 2021

* Formerly Open Communication Policy

Outcomes Assessment

Graduate programs reserve the right to require students to participate in institutional testing programs as part of ongoing assessment of student outcomes.

Non-Degree Seeking Students 

Non-degree seeking students may enroll to take classes for graduate credit when there is room in a class and with permission of the instructor or the program director/coordinator.


Registration materials will be provided by graduate program personnel prior to each term of study. A student wishing to add or drop a course shall contact his or her advisor for approval to register online. For courses offered on a standard semester basis, courses may be added online through the first day of the semester and then by the program through the first five days of the semester with program approval and may be dropped with no grade through the first four weeks. Courses dropped during the fifth through ninth week are recorded as “W” (withdrawal). No change is permitted after the ninth week. Drop/Add deadlines are adjusted accordingly for courses offered on other time frames.

Student Responsibility

The graduate student carries complete responsibility for knowing and fulfilling course requirements, program regulations, and degree requirements. Graduate students should take the initiative to meet with their advisors to assure that they are making satisfactory progress toward meeting all program requirements.

Time Limits for Completing Degree Requirements

All work for a graduate degree must be completed within six years from the date of matriculation to the graduate program. To request an extension of the time limit, the student must submit a written request to the director of the graduate program, specifying the amount of time needed and the reasons for the extension.

The director, in consultation with the program faculty, will notify the student in writing of the decision of the extension request.


Requests for official transcripts should be made to the university registrar’s office, allowing one week for processing. Payment of account is required for the release of transcripts. Information regarding transcript requests may be found on the registrar's web page.

Transfer Credits

EMU graduate programs accept a limited number of graduate transfer credits from other colleges and universities. The university registrar determines the eligibility of credits to transfer from another institution, and the director of the graduate program makes the final determination of the applicability of transfer credit to an individual’s graduate program. See the respective graduate program for additional transfer regulations. Transfer courses will be recorded with the same titles and grades as appear on the transcript from the transfering school. Transfer grades will not apply toward the EMU grade point average.

Policy for Taking a Course Outside of the Home Graduate Program 

There are three situations when a graduate student may need to take a course outside of their home graduate program:

  • Earning a graduate certificate along with a master’s degree
  • Taking a class required for a master’s degree
  • Taking an elective class*

In each of the above situations, the student will be charged the tuition rate of their home program.
Note: Tuition for the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (MAIS) degree will be the charge per course of the program in which the course is taken.

Policies for Graduate Certificates and Master’s Degrees

Policy for pursuing a master’s degree and a graduate certificate

Graduate students may use credits from a graduate certificate (GC) towards a master’s degree. In other words, if a student completes a GC, they can then use those same credits toward a master’s degree according to the policies of the individual graduate programs through which the student is pursuing coursework. Additionally, students can design, with the approval of their advisor, a master’s degree that includes a GC within the same number of credit hours (assuming the requirements for both the master’s degree and GC are met). Before making final plans for a graduate certificate and a master’s degree, students are advised to consult the program director/coordinator of the graduate program.

Approved by Graduate Council, April 20, 2015

Updated by Graduate Council, April 1, 2019

Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (MAIS) students are permitted to use up to 12 semester hours towards earning a graduate certificate from their primary or secondary program. In the case of a 15 semester hour graduate certificate, 3 additional credits would be needed. In the case of an 18 semester graduate certificate, 6 additional credits would be needed. The specific additional courses required to earn the graduate certificate would be determined by the relevant program director/coordinator with the student.

Approved by Graduate Council, April 20, 2015 and March 12, 2018

Advising for students pursuing a graduate certificate (outside of their home program) and a master’s degree:

Each student pursuing a graduate certificate (GC) and master’s degree (MA/MS) will be assigned a faculty advisor from their home MA/MS program. The student or the student’s home advisor will consult with the program offering the certificate in regards to specific curriculum requirements.

Approved and updated by Graduate Council, October 22, 2018

Policy for graduate program alumni who wish to return to EMU to pursue additional studies

Admission criteria: If an EMU graduate program alumnus has graduated within the last four years and wishes to pursue an additional degree or certificate from within the same field of study, they only need to submit a one page letter of intent to the admissions staff of the program they wish to enroll in, noting the program they are interested in and why, and how they intend to use the new knowledge and skills in their current workplace or new context if they are considering a career shift. If it has been longer than four years or the applicant wishes to pursue studies in a new field, the applicant needs to submit an updated CV, one new letter of recommendation from someone they have been working with since graduation, and a 2-3 page essay explaining why they are interested in the program, their goals for the program, and how they hope to use the knowledge and skills gained. In both cases a recommendation from the program they graduated from must be obtained. Upon receiving the required documents, the admissions committee for the program they wish to pursue will review the request for admission and provide the alumnus with an official admission decision.

Graduate certificate transfer credits

If within the same field of study, the graduate program will accept 6 credits from the alumnus’s master's degree program, as long as those courses have been taken within the last five years. If an alumnus has taken some of the required courses for the graduate certificate, those credits will be accepted in and the requirements waived. If a student has taken more than 6 credits of required courses for the graduate certificate, the course requirements can be waived, but the alumnus will be asked to pick additional classes that supplement their skill set. If the alumnus has completed a graduate certificate and is coming back to do a full master's program, transfer credits will be considered under the program’s normal transfer credit policy as well as the requirements for the master's degree/certificate outlined above. The same is true when an alumnus is pursuing a new field of study.

Approved by Graduate Council, November 2, 2015

Student Services

Please see the graduate student handbook for details concerning student services. 

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