Time Extension Policy
It is a requirement of the Graduate School that master’s and specialist students complete their degrees within six consecutive calendar years from the first semester of enrollment in the program and doctoral students complete the degree within seven consecutive calendar years from the date of admission in the program. Requests to extend these time requirements must be reviewed and approved by the Graduate Dean, following these procedures:
- The student’s major advisor will fill out a “Request for Time Extension” form (available on the web-site of the Graduate School) and submit this to the Graduate School.
- For both master’s and doctoral students, the central consideration in determining whether more time can be allowed is whether the student’s knowledge of the subject matter is current at the time of graduation. Therefore, as part of the request for time extension, the major advisor will be asked to explain how this will be ensured:
- For the master’s degree, the student’s knowledge of any course work over six years old at the time of graduation must be recertified. Please see “Recertification of Student’s Knowledge of Course Content,” below.
- For the doctoral degree, recertification of the student’s knowledge of course work is not necessary, but the major advisor must explain how the currency of the student’s knowledge of the field will be assessed prior to graduation.
Recertification of Student’s Knowledge of Course Content: The major advisor must specify how recertification of the student’s knowledge of course content will occur. By recertification, we mean that the student’s knowledge of the subject matter included in the course is determined to be current at the time of graduation. There are several ways this may be demonstrated. Examples include: The student is teaching the subject matter in a separate context; the student will be examined by the current instructor of the course to determine his/her currency of knowledge; the student will be examined on the subject matter during his/her final oral defense of the thesis or during the comprehensive exam. It is not acceptable to say that the content of the course has not changed in the time since the student was enrolled, as it is the student’s knowledge that is most critical. The course content does not speak to this issue.