College of Graduate Studies
Jerry R. McMurtry, Dean (104 Morrill Hall; 208-885-6243).
The College of Graduate Studies was formally organized in 1925 (then designated as the Graduate School) but the university has awarded advanced degrees since 1897. The College of Graduate Studies encompasses all graduate programs of the university but does not supervise programs in the College of Law. This coverage of all regular disciplines and professional fields provides a wide variety of academic programs. Enrollments are large enough to make possible the vital interchange of ideas among students and between students and faculty that is necessary for graduate programs and yet enrollments are sufficiently small to permit close faculty-student relationships. Interdepartmental cooperation is an important factor on the Idaho campuses. The University is the chief research center for the state and as such operates active graduate programs in most areas providing a broad research base upon which graduate programs have been built.
The Graduate Council is the representative body of and is empowered to act for the Graduate Faculty. It is responsible to and reports to the Graduate Faculty, which retains the authority to review actions of the council. Its function is to promote graduate instruction and research, to formulate policies and long-range plans for the graduate programs, and to review and act on student appeals and petitions that involve exceptions to accepted regulations and procedures of the College of Graduate Studies.
The Graduate Council is constituted of one member elected by and from the constituent graduate faculty of each of the colleges that offer programs leading to graduate degrees (except the J.D. degree), four members of the Graduate Faculty appointed by the president of the university, two graduate students, the dean of the College of Graduate Studies, who serves as chair, and the assistant or associate dean of the College of Graduate Studies, who serves as vice chair.
Undergraduate Enrollment in the College of Graduate Studies
A senior (90 or more credits) who has a cumulative grade-point average of 3.00 or higher may register for courses at the 500-level. Graduate courses taken as an undergraduate student will automatically be recorded on the undergraduate transcript. Students desiring to have graduate level courses taken as an undergraduate placed on a graduate transcript must follow the policies on reserving courses for the graduate transcript. If the credit reservation form is approved, a separate graduate transcript will be created for the student. Capable students who are in their senior year can thus begin limited graduate work at an earlier date than would otherwise be possible.
Reserving Undergraduate Courses for the Graduate Transcript
Students desiring to move courses from their undergraduate transcript to a graduate transcript may do so by filing the Credit Reservation Form with the College of Graduate Studies. Courses from the undergraduate record may be moved to a graduate transcript if they meet the following criteria 1) the student has a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or greater; 2) the course is at the 400 level or higher; 3) the grade in the course is A or B; 4) the course was not used to meet the requirements for the undergraduate degree. No more than 12 credits of undergraduate work can be moved to the graduate transcript under this policy.
Students are responsible to initiate the course reservation process as soon as they know they wish to move a course to the graduate level and prior to receiving their baccalaureate degree. No courses will be moved to the graduate transcript once the baccalaureate degree has been conferred. Undergraduate courses completed at another institution are not eligible to be reserved. Courses will not be reserved until final grades for the term have been posted. Students who have courses placed on a graduate transcript and later wish to be admitted to the College of Graduate Studies for work toward an advanced degree must apply for admission to the College of Graduate Studies following the usual procedures. All courses placed on the graduate transcript, regardless of course level, will be assessed graduate fees.
General Graduate Regulations
The regulations described in this section are the minimum standards established by the faculty of the College of Graduate Studies. Graduate programs may establish additional regulations, including additional residence requirements, above the minimums set by the College of Graduate Studies.
The student is responsible for complying with all rules, procedures, and time limits as established by the graduate faculty.
Appointment of Major Professor and Committee for All Degree Seeking Graduate Students
All major professors must be member of the UI Graduate Faculty and have an appointment in the program in which the student is enrolled. It is the students’ responsibility to identify and select their major professor.
Co-major Professors are allowed in certain circumstances and must have earned a degree equal to or higher than the degree being sought by the student. Co-major professors must be approved by the dean of the College of Graduate Studies. Circumstances where a co-major professor is appropriate are as follows:
• Senior faculty member mentoring a junior or new faculty member
• Non-teaching research faculty with recognized research or creative activities necessary for the completion of the students’ dissertation or thesis
• UI faculty employed via a cooperative agreement with state or federal agencies
• Emeritus faculty with expertise in the students’ field of study
• When interdisciplinary research is being conducted
All master's degree seeking graduate students are required to formally appoint a major professor by using the Appointment of Major Professor form within the first year following enrollment in the program. (For the M.F.A. program, within three semesters of registration, the student and the departmental administrator or graduate coordinator nominates the major professor.) For non-thesis master’s and specialist students are strongly encouraged to select or be assigned a major professor no later than the end of the first semester and it is required by the end of the first year. It is important to note that the Interdisciplinary Studies master's degree requires at least four members on a student's committee, whether the student is thesis or non-thesis. A committee will consist of at least one member from each of the two principal disciplines involved in the student's program, one from a supporting discipline, and one member recommended to or appointed by the College of Graduate Studies.
Doctoral students are required to select a major professor no later than the end of the third semester in the program.
The committee, if required, is recommended by the major professor and the student and approved by the graduate program's administrator and the dean of the College of Graduate Studies. At least one-half of the members of the committee must be members of the UI Graduate Faculty. A faculty member may not serve on a committee for a student who is seeking a degree higher than the faculty member has attained. (For the M.F.A. program, the committee consists at least of the major professor, a second faculty member from the major field and a member from a discipline outside the major department's discipline(s).)
Periodically, a qualified person with a particular expertise is requested to serve on a student’s committee on a one-time appointment. The person must have written approval from the dean of the College of Graduate Studies in advance of the individual’s committee participation. Should the person be recommended for multiple committees, he/she would need to be approved as an adjunct or affiliate faculty member and, therefore, would then be considered an associated faculty member of the program. It is the intent of the Graduate Council that this privilege be used sparingly and only when the situation indicates its necessity.
Removal of Faculty from a Committee
A faculty member can be removed as a major professor or a committee member if it is determined that continued membership is not in the best interest of the graduate program's or the student's. Such a request would be initiated by the student and advanced only if the remaining committee supports such request. The determination of action will be made through deliberation between the program’s dean and the dean of the College of Graduate Studies. This policy is not designed to question or remove a faculty’s inherent right to minority opinion regarding research or academic standards.
A faculty member who has separated from the university, other than those with emeriti status, must be replaced as the major professor or a committee member on all of his or her student committees.
Exceptions to the above policy must be approved in advance of committee participation and in writing by the dean of the College of Graduate Studies. Reasons for considering an exception could include, but are not limited to: the anticipated completion date of the student; if the student is better served without committee disruption; if the separated faculty member becomes adjunct faculty; or if there are intellectual property issues to be considered.
If such an examination is required, it is conducted according to the program's procedures and is a prerequisite to the preparation of a study plan. A report of this examination is not submitted to the College of Graduate Studies.
Graduate Reviews for the M.F.A
Graduate reviews are conducted by department graduate faculty members. The initial graduate review is conducted in the first semester of registration and serves to assess the background of the student in both major and supporting fields and to provide in part the basis for the preparation of the student's study plan. The remaining reviews are used to assess growth and the ability to complete the program.
Preparation and Submission of Study Plan
Early in the student's academic career, the student prepares in conference with the major professor (and committee, if required by department) a study plan outlining all course work to be completed to fulfill the requirements for the degree. Normally, the study plan will include some work to be taken outside of the major department. The study plan is submitted for the approval by the student's major professor, the program administrator, and the dean of the College of Graduate Studies. Any subsequent changes in the study plan must receive the same approvals.
All degree seeking graduate students must have a study plan on file with the College of Graduate Studies. Study plans cannot be processed without an assigned major professor. All masters and specialist degree seeking students are required to file a study plan with the College of Graduate Studies by the end of the first year of attendance. (For the M.F.A. program, students must prepare a study plan within two semesters of registration (or two summer sessions for those attending in the summer only.) Doctoral degree seeking students are required to file a study plan with the College of Graduate Studies by the end of the third semester in the program.
Prior to beginning any research projects, approval must be granted by one or more of the following groups, if it applies to the research that is being conducted: the Institutional Review Board (IRB) for research involving human subjects; the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) for research using vertebrate animals; the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) for research using any biological agents or recombinant DNA; the Idaho Research Foundation for research that has the possibility of patent or license outputs; the University Research Office for research involving agents or federal controls on the development, use and distribution of technology; or the Office of Sponsored Programs for activities funded through external grants and contracts. Should the research methodology or source of funding change, the appropriate group must be notified.
Students and major professors are advised that the right of petition exists to waive or modify some university regulations. University academic petitions (see Academic Appeals Process) request waiver or modification of university regulations. College of Graduate Studies petitions request waiver or modification of regulations in this section. Favorable action can be expected only when circumstances and the presentation clearly justify an exception. Precedents are not set by previous actions and may not form the basis of a petition; rather the situation concerning the student involved is given consideration on an individual basis. An appeal of the decision made by the College of Graduate Studies petitions committee can be requested through Graduate Council. Further appeals may be made to the Provost's Office.
Once a College of Graduate Studies petition is submitted, the Dean or Associate Dean may act on or, in certain cases, will appoint a committee to hear the petition. The committee will consist of current Graduate Council members, when possible. The committee will review materials specifically related to the petition from both the student and College of Graduate Studies. The student's presence is not required and additional information may be requested by the committee. The committee's recommendation of action is then forwarded to the Graduate Council for review. Graduate Council will decide to support or reject the committee's recommendation and render a decision on the petition. Graduate Council may request a hearing to review all of the information related to the petition. The final decision of the Graduate Council may be appealed to the Provost. (See Faculty Staff Handbook 2500)
A fee is charged for each petition submitted to the Academic Petitions Committee or College of Graduate Studies.
Registration and Enrollment Requirements
Graduate students engaged in ANY activity requiring faculty or staff time and consultation, or the use of any UI facilities must register for the number of credits appropriate to the degree of activity involved during the semester of activity. Such activity includes, but is not limited to: writing, defending, or submitting a thesis or dissertation; research; working on or completion of a non-thesis requirement; or taking a preliminary examination. A student who was appropriately registered during a previous term and did not complete all the requirements by the end of that term but does so before the official opening date of the new term, is awarded the degree at the end of the following term without further registration.
Annual Enrollment Policy
Annual enrollment is required for all degree seeking graduate students. Annual enrollment is defined as registering for at least one credit at the 500 or higher level every 12 months. Professional development courses do not satisfy the annual enrollment requirement.
If annual enrollment is not maintained and the absence has been five or fewer terms, a request for reenrollment in the program is required prior to any future registration by completing the Request for Reenrollment form available on the College of Graduate Studies website. The reenrollment decision is made at the program level with final approval through the College of Graduate Studies and should be requested well in advance of the requested semester of return.
If annual enrollment is not maintained and the absence has been for more than five terms, a request for readmission to the program is processed through the Graduate Admissions Office as well as reenrollment through the College of Graduate Studies. The readmission decision is made at the program level and forwarded to the Graduate Admissions Office. The reenrollment decision is made at the program level and forwarded to the College of Graduate Studies.
A student may request approval of a planned leave if the anticipated absence will be longer than one year but for no more than five terms. Approval must be given in advance of the time of absence by completing the Approval of Planned Leave form with signatures from the major professor, program administrator, and the dean of the College of Graduate Studies.
A reenrollment fee is charged each time a reenrollment application or readmission form is processed. Any appeals to this policy are to be made to the dean of the College of Graduate Studies.
Change of Program
A student is admitted for work in a specified program and may not change without approval of the new program's administrator. Such procedure is formalized by a Change of Curriculum form signed by the chair of the program the student is leaving and the chair of the program in which the student wishes to enroll. The form must be approved by the dean of the College of Graduate Studies before it is forwarded to the Registrar's Office.
Credit Requirements for Full Time Students
A student is considered full time academically when registered for 9 or more credits. See also specific credit guidelines under "Student Financial Aid Services."
Regular Semester or Summer Session
The credit limit for a graduate student is 16 credits per semester or summer session (excluding courses taken for audit). With approval from the Associate Dean and a Change of Registration form, a student may enroll in up to 22 credits in the fall and spring semesters and 18 credits in the summer session.
Credits earned in University of Idaho correspondence courses are applied to a graduate program only with the prior written approval of the dean of the College of Graduate Studies. Subject to approval by the appropriate program's administrator, correspondence credits from other institutions that are accepted for graduate credit by that institution may be accepted toward degree requirements. Grades earned in correspondence courses are not calculated into the student's GPA.
Probation, Disqualification, and Reinstatement
Graduate students remain in good standing if the semester GPA and the cumulative GPA are 3.00 or higher. A graduate student is placed on academic probation after any semester or summer session in which a GPA of less than 3.00 is earned in courses placed on the graduate transcript, regardless of the student's cumulative GPA. Students on academic probation who attain a semester GPA of 3.00 or higher during the next or subsequent semester or summer session after being placed on probation, but whose cumulative GPA is still below a 3.00, will remain on academic probation until the cumulative GPA is a 3.00 or higher.
The student will be disqualified if a semester GPA of less than 3.00 (regardless of cumulative GPA) is earned on courses placed on the graduate transcript during the second, consecutive semester or summer session in which regular grades of A, B, C, D, or F are received.
If a graduate student who is on probation receives an Incomplete during a semester, the revert grade listed for the Incomplete will be used to calculate the GPA for that semester. If the calculated semester GPA is 3.00 or higher, the student will be allowed to register for a current or future semester. If the calculated semester GPA is less than a 3.00 GPA, the student will be disqualified and will not be allowed to register for current or future semesters or sessions. If the student has registered pending receipt of the revert grade, the student will be disenrolled. Once the work is completed and a final grade is given, the GPA will be automatically recalculated.
A graduate student may be reinstated after disqualification under the following conditions: the student may not enroll as a graduate student for at least one semester (fall or spring), must get the positive recommendation of his or her program's administrator, and must get College of Graduate Studies permission. Reinstatement is granted for a specific semester only. The student must receive at least a 3.00 GPA the first semester back in the College of Graduate Studies. If a student does not register for that semester, he or she must again seek College of Graduate Studies permission for reinstatement. A student will remain on probation as long as the cumulative GPA is below a 3.00.
In order to be eligible for graduation, a candidate for an advanced degree must have a cumulative GPA, based on all grades on his or her graduate transcript, of at least 3.00 (A = 4.00) and at least a 3.0 overall GPA across all courses listed on the approved study plan. The relevant GPA is calculated as stated in regulation E. Courses in which grades of D or F are received may not be counted toward the satisfaction of degree requirements; however, those grades are included in the GPA.
Courses that are needed to provide background for the student's program may be taken for audit or under the pass/fail option, unless the program advises otherwise. See rules for the pass/fail option under regulation B-11. When deficiency courses are taken for regular credit the resulting grade will be included in the computation of the GPA.
There is no College of Graduate Studies foreign language requirement for a graduate degree; however some programs require a language examination or special course work.
The pertinent requirements for graduate degrees are those contained in the most recent UI catalog issue that was in effect at the time of, or subsequent to, the candidate's admission into a specific graduate program as a degree seeking student. A catalog issue is valid for a maximum of seven years from its effective date. The effective date of a catalog issue is the first Monday following spring graduation.
Application for Advanced Degree
The Application for Advanced Degree is submitted electronically by the student to the College of Graduate Studies, via VandalWeb, according to the deadline outlined in the academic calendar. In order for a student to apply for an advanced degree, a study plan must be posted by the Registrar's Office. Graduation applications are term specific. To change a graduation semester the current application must be canceled and the student must reapply for a subsequent term by the deadline.
Non-thesis Requirement (Non-thesis Master’s and Specialist Degrees)
This exit requirement (an examination, presentation, portfolio, recital, project, or any requirement other than a thesis) is completed by non-thesis master’s and specialist students after the completion of most or all of the degree requirements. The program establishes the format and time frame and reports the results of the non-thesis requirement to the College of Graduate Studies using the Non-Thesis Report form. The exit requirement, if failed, may with the program's approval be repeated once. The interval before the second attempt may not be less than three months or longer than one year. No more than 2 credits may be used for completing the exit requirement may be used toward the degree. If a student fails the exit requirement twice, or the program does not allow the student to repeat the exit requirement after the first failure, or the student does not retake the exit requirement within a year, the student is automatically moved to unclassified enrollment status and is no longer in the degree program.
Final Defense (Master's thesis, Ph.D., Ed.D ., and D.A.T. Degrees)
The final defense must be completed three weeks prior to the last day of the term in which the student plans to graduate. Before the final defense, the "Request to Proceed with Final Defense" form (see www.uidaho.edu/cogs/forms) must be submitted to the College of Graduate Studies. Ph.D., Ed.D., and D.A.T. students are required to submit the form at least 10 working days prior to the defense. Thesis students must have the form submitted at least one day prior to the defense. The defense is usually oral but part may be written. The candidate is required to defend his or her work and show a satisfactory knowledge of the program and supporting fields. A majority vote of the committee is necessary for a candidate to pass this defense. The defense, if failed, may with the programs approval be repeated once. The interval before the second attempt may not be less than three months or longer than one year.
Following a successful defense of his or her thesis, the candidate must submit the final electronic version into ETD/Proquest and the final signed bond paper copy to the College of Graduate Studies within six months; otherwise, the candidate must defend the thesis again and may be required to revise it or write an entirely new one. If a student fails the final defense twice, or the program does not allow the student to repeat the defense after the first failure, or the student does not repeat the defense within a year, the student is automatically moved to unclassified enrollment status and is no longer in the degree program.
Theses and Dissertations
Definition of a Dissertation
A dissertation documents a student’s original research which significantly advances knowledge in a discipline. A dissertation provides evidence of leadership in scholarship and demonstrates a student’s ability to think critically and independently. A dissertation is publicly defended by the student, and is evaluated by the dissertation committee. A dissertation is made publicly accessible per the College of Graduate Studies guidelines.
Independent Work and Collaboration in Dissertation
A dissertation can be the outcome of independent or collaborative research. If submitting collaborative work through multi-authored articles in the dissertation, the student must demonstrate primary responsibility and authorship of the dissertation, and include a clear statement of the student’s specific contribution to the collaborative work. This contribution statement must be approved by the dissertation committee and included in the front matter of the final product. The contribution statement should clearly and specifically articulate the attributions of any co-authors included in the dissertation articles.
The expectation is that the student played a significant role in most, if not all aspects of the dissertation, demonstrating contributions to critical components of the project as appropriate for their field of study (e.g. project design, data generation and collection, analysis, etc.)
Defense of Dissertation
To be awarded a Ph.D. or an Ed.D. a student must have a public presentation and defense of their work, and they must pass the defense. The specifics of the defense process will be determined by their home department(s).
Thesis and Non-Thesis Statements
University of Idaho students pursuing a Master’s degree will follow a Thesis or Non-Thesis Track that parallels expectations in their specific field. In this pursuit for further knowledge and experience, students should be independently driven in their research focus while still working with the committee to frame their professional approach. This may be done through research proposals, project outlines, competency exam, presentations, performances or other suitable projects determined by the student with approval by the committee
It is the student’s responsibility to form strong interconnections between their research focus and their final presentation(s) of this work in order to fulfill degree requirements within each degree program.
Definition of a Thesis
A thesis communicates a student’s original research results and is a published record of their research. The thesis is prepared and publicly defended by the student to be evaluated by the major professor and committee. The thesis demonstrates a student’s ability to think critically and independently about a topic approved by their major professor.
Independent Work and Collaboration in Thesis
Please see discussion of Independent Work and Collaboration in Dissertation (see above). As stated for a dissertation, thesis students must also provide a contribution statement that clarifies the significant role and contribution in the research process.
Defense of Thesis
To be awarded an MFA (terminal), MS or MA, a student must complete a public presentation and defense of their work, and they must pass the defense. The specifics of the defense process are established by the major professor and committee within the guidelines of COGS.
Definition of a Non-Thesis
To be awarded an MFA (terminal), MS or MA and for specific specialist and professional degrees, a final examination, portfolio, recital, performance, project, and/or presentation significant to a program’s requirements is completed by non-thesis master’s students. Each degree program has established expectations for fulfillment of the degree.
Satisfactory Academic Progress and Performance
Enrollment in the College of Graduate Studies allows students to continue graduate study and research through the University of Idaho only as long as they maintain satisfactory academic standing and are maintaining satisfactory progress and performance toward completion of their graduate degree program. See section L – Academic Standing, Probation, Disqualification, and Reinstatement
Satisfactory academic standing is defined under the rules of probation and disqualification and provisional admission and may or may not have an effect on the use of this policy.
Programs are encouraged to have a written policy distributed to all students that states the standards for satisfactory progress and performance. Examples of the program's requirements that may be used to measure progress or performance toward the degree are, but not limited to, the timely completion of: required course work, filing of appropriate paperwork, failure to complete the annual review process, the program's qualifying, preliminary or other examinations; attendance at seminars or other professional activities; or using acceptable safety or security standards in performance of duties.
The annual review process is initiated by the student and completed by the major professor using the Annual Evaluation and Performance Report http://www.uidaho.edu/cogs/forms provided by the College of Graduate Studies. If a major professor has not been appointed, the program's administrator will conduct the review. When completed, the reviewer will recommend that the student continue in the program, receive a warning, or be dismissed from the program.
- Warning. Should a warning be given, the student must be informed in writing of the concern, the current program policy, the length of the warning period, and expectations that must be met to be removed from a warning status. The Associate Dean of the College of Graduate Studies is notified of this action. An appeal of a recommendation for a warning may be made to the Dean of the College of Graduate Studies.
- Dismissal. If Dismissal is recommended it may or may not be preceded by a warning period. If dismissal is recommended, the program's administrator forwards the recommendation and documentation to the Associate Dean of the College of Graduate Studies. The Dean of the College of Graduate Studies will review the recommendation for dismissal and, if appropriate, will convene a committee of graduate faculty to review the dismissal recommendation. The student, the major professor, and the program's administrator will be allowed to appear before the committee. The committee will make a recommendation for action to the Dean of the College of Graduate Studies who will make the final decision. Dismissal is from the student’s degree, program and from the College of Graduate Studies.
- Appeals. Students may appeal the Dean’s decision directly to the Graduate Council. No action will appear on the transcript unless recommended by Graduate Council.
Assistantships are open to domestic and international students who are regularly enrolled students in the College of Graduate Studies.
Students in the provisional enrollment category or in the unclassified enrollment category are NOT eligible to receive assistantships.
An inquiry for a position or award should be addressed to the administrator of the graduate program in which the applicant plans to enroll for graduate study. Appointments include a work requirement of up to 20 clock hours per week. Assistants are considered students. Assistants who provide primary teaching responsibilities, grading assignments, assisting with the delivery of instruction through technology, and providing other assistance related to instruction under the active supervision of a member of the university faculty are teaching assistants. Assistants who provide support of research, scholarship, or creative activity are research assistants. (See FSH 1565 H-2 for full definitions.) Those appointed to assistantships supported by the university are advised that the appointments are tenable only in the program of the major field of study, except where prior written exceptions are made. Annual leave, sick leave, and health insurance benefits are not available for graduate assistants.
Continuation of any assistantship after the first semester is contingent upon satisfactory academic performance, satisfactory teaching and/or laboratory performance, progress toward your degree, and abiding by the program and University’s policies and procedures. UI policies are available online in the Faculty-Staff Handbook.
Assistants are required to sign a Terms of Employment form and a Patent and Copyright Agreement for University of Idaho Employees. All assistants are required to have personal health insurance coverage or enrollment in the Student Health Insurance Program. Salaries for assistantships vary depending upon the graduate program, length of graduate service and whether they are for an academic year or for 12 months. Contact program for current salary levels.
All new teaching and/or research assistants are required to attend the TA/RA Institute prior to the beginning of the semester in which they are first offered an assistantship. New TA/RA's are also required to complete a course through BbLearn. All new international TA's are required to register for INTR 508.
In addition, nonresident tuition will be waived for persons holding full appointments and a pro rata portion of nonresident tuition will be waived for persons holding partial appointments. However, each person who holds a full appointment as an assistant is required to pay the uniform student fees and tuition charged to registered full time students, regardless of the number of credits for which the student is registered. Persons accepting part-time assistantships will be required to pay the uniform student fees and tuition based on the number of credit hours for which the person is registered.
Students on an assistantship cannot use a staff or staff spouse fee waiver or senior scholar waiver.
Research fellowships are awarded by various colleges. Research conducted on fellowships may or may not be used for dissertation purposes. Credit enrollment and stipends vary according to the particular fellowship. Fees and tuition are charged, but in some cases may be remitted, depending on the type of fellowship and the availability of funds. Inquiries should be addressed to the program administrator in which the applicant plans to enroll.