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Graduate student policies and processes

Here at the College of Education and Human Development, we want to provide all of our students with transparent and accessible policies and processes. We want you to feel empowered and protected by our policies. The University of Minnesota maintains a comprehensive policy library. Additionally, your academic department will have policies and processes represented in your handbook.

This list is for college-level policies and processes pertaining to graduate education. Policies and processes are established by the CEHD Curriculum Council. Please feel free to contact us at any time with questions or concerns.

Transfer Credits Process
(GRD AND DMS)

Pre-Spring 2013 Students:

GRD students send paper Graduate Degree Plan (GDP) to GSSP.

DMS students provide an official transcript and a completed Academic Policy Petition to the adviser. The adviser signs the petition and sends it to the college. The college fills out a “Request for Record Change” form and sends all forms to Office of Admissions for processing.

Post-Spring 2013 Students (GRD and DMS)

GRD and DMS students add transfer courses to GPAS, and, if needed, the official transcript is sent to GSSP. This can also be done by exception paperwork.

GRAD 999 Registration Policy

Policy Approval Date: November 2013; revised April 2015
Implementation date: For new, entering graduate students beginning fall 2014 and later.
Update: Include DMS (departmental masters: M.Ed., additional licensure, and post-baccalaureate certificate) students fall 2015; update language for PeopleSoft upgrade.

GRAD 999 is a zero-credit, zero-tuition registration option intended for graduate students (MEd, MA, MS, MSW, PhD, EdD, post-baccalaureate certificate, additional licensure) to maintain the continuous enrollment registration requirement while completing their degree. MA, MS, PhD, and EdD students are eligible to register for GRAD 999 when they have completed all coursework and (if applicable) thesis credit requirements. MSW, M.Ed, additional licensure, and post-baccalaureate certificate students are eligible to register for GRAD 999 at any point during their program.

While students can register for GRAD 999 to maintain their active student status, they cannot use GRAD 999 to meet any other requirements of the University or external agencies. Students who must maintain full-time status to, e.g., hold an assistantship, defer loans, and/or receive financial aid cannot use GRAD 999 to meet registration requirements.

International students are strongly encouraged to confer with the International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) office if they are considering GRAD 999 registration.

Graduate programs are strongly encouraged to monitor their students’ GRAD 999 registrations via the University’s reporting system. GRAD 999 information is updated each semester after the close of the registration period. If a student exceeds the established GRAD 999 restrictions, the program may restrict enrollment by using the N999 student group. Students who have the N999 student group added to their record and try to register for GRAD 999 will receive the following message "Class NOT added. All requirements not met."

All CEHD graduate students (MEd, MA, MS, MSW, PhD, EdD, additional licensure, postbaccalaureate certificate) are limited to two registration terms of GRAD 999. Programs may have more restrictive requirements for GRAD 999 enrollment, which have precedence over this policy.

Leave of absence (LOA)

University of Minnesota Policy
Leave of Absence and Reinstatement from a Leave: Graduate Students

CEHD Policy
It is important to note the following from the LOA policy: “Students granted a leave of absence may not use University facilities or services available only to registered students.”

Leave of absence requests must be filed in the Dean’s Office no later than the tenth day of either fall or spring semester. This aligns with the academic calendar deadline for students to add a class without college approval, or cancel classes without receiving a “W” grade. After this deadline only requests from students who have experienced an emergency or unforeseen circumstances will be considered. Examples of an emergency would be an unexpected medical emergency or illness, death in the family, victim of natural disaster, or unexpected loss of employment. Not being able to pay for a class or tuition for a semester is not an emergency nor is it an unavoidable circumstance.

A student leave of absence should begin on either a fall or spring semester. Reinstatement from leave can occur fall, spring, or summer semesters.

Per university policy, an approved leave of absence may not exceed two academic years. The two year limit is cumulative. A student can take multiple leaves of absence, but the total leave time can not exceed two academic years.

Some reasons to take a leave of absence include the following:

  • Physical or mental health concerns
  • Family obligations
  • Financial concerns
  • Military service
  • Academics (sequenced courses not offered for upcoming term, reconsidering major, academic struggles or lack of direction, etc.)
  • Career opportunities

CEHD Procedure to request a LOA

  • Adviser and graduate student discuss LOA; advisor approves and signs LOA form (link above). NOTE: The adviser and graduate student must address the student’s funding (assistantship, fellowship, scholarship) situation on the LOA form, if applicable. For example, if an assistantship was committed to a student who is requesting an LOA, then a decision must be made in writing about whether or not that assistantship will still be available to the student upon return from the LOA.
  • DGS approves and signs LOA form.
  • DGS/GPC sends form to Michael DallaValle, Coordinator of Graduate Education, 104 Burton (cehdgrad@umn.edu) for approval and processing. ILP/M.Ed students should have their teacher education adviser/faculty adviser and DGS sign the LOA form before sending to 104 Burton. Professional Studies M.Ed students should have their faculty adviser and DGS sign the LOA form before sending to 104 Burton.
  • Michael DallaValle will email the student, ‘cc’ing the adviser(s), DGS Assistant, and DGS, with notification of the LOA approval.
  • Students must file a Leave of Absence Reinstatement Request Form at least two months prior to the term/year they wish to return from their college-approved LOA. If a student does not file the Leave of Absence Reinstatement Request Form, then the student may be deactivated.

Note: LOAs for international students may have additional consequences and paperwork. Please contact International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) at (612) 626-7100 or isss@tc.umn.edu for more information and help.

CEHD Procedure to request a LOA reinstatement
A graduate student, in consultation with his/her adviser, may request to return early from an LOA by following the steps below:

  1. Fill out Form UM 1759 LOA Reinstatement Request: Graduate Students.
  2. Student, Adviser, and DGS sign the form.
  3. The term(s) and year(s) of an approved leave of absence will not be counted toward time to degree. Before submitting the approved reinstatement request to the college, the PLC should check the student’s time to degree milestone to make sure the end date for the student’s program in GPAS is accurate. Contact gssp@umn.edu to request a review of the time to degree and to make any necessary updates.
  4. Send the form to Michael DallaValle, Coordinator of Graduate Education, 104 Burton (cehdgrad@umn.edu). Michael will process the form and remove the LOA from PeopleSoft so that the student can register. Note: Students with a college-approved leave of absence are eligible for reinstatement if they notify their college via the appropriate reinstatement form prior to the term in which they intend to enroll, they enroll no later than the term immediately following the expired leave (excluding summer), and they return to the same major and degree objective.

Email access and LOA status

Students on an LOA are considered “not enrolled” (not active status) and therefore will lose their email account access unless they log-in at least once every 90 days. Please refer students to 1-HELP (612-301-4357 or help@umn.edu) if they have lost their email account access to have it reopened or for other email questions/help.

M.ED. progress procedures

CEHD policy

Time extension for masters and doctoral students

CEHD policy

Time extensions must be filed in the CEHD dean’s office at least two weeks before the first day of the semester in which the extension is requested to begin.

Student rating of teacher policy

Policy on the use of open-ended comments from the students' rating of teaching (SRT) forms

All open-ended comments on the Students’ Rating of Teaching (SRT) Forms will be available to the instructor’s supervisor and/or department chair. The policy is motivated by the following principles:

  1. Teaching Excellence requires feedback but taking action steps towards that excellence requires appropriate oversight and supervision by at least one other colleague – the most appropriate being the chair of the department.
  2. Fairness requires an opportunity for the chair and instructor to collaboratively discuss and discern when certain comments are prejudicial and without merit. We expect department chairs to not be prejudiced by such comments.
  3. Support faculty via college and/or department mentoring and other campus teaching and learning resources will be provided if mutually agreed upon areas of growth are identified.

Approved by Governance Council on December 18, 2013

Readmissions

All readmissions (GRD and DMS) are processed by the Office of Graduate Admissions.

  1. Student downloads express readmission form from the Office of Graduate Admissions website.
  2. The signed readmission form is submitted to program for DGS signature.
  3. Application is submitted to the Office of Graduate Admissions (either mailed or e-mailed to gsquest@umn.edu).
  4. If a fee is required, student will be contacted by Office of Graduate Admissions staff.

Graduate Examination Committee Composition

University policy

Appointments to Graduate Examination Committees: Twin Cities, Rochester

CEHD policy

Appointments to Graduate Examination Committees

CEHD procedures

External committee members (defined as individuals external to the University) may be appointed and must be approved through the following procedures:

  • DGS approves external committee member.
  • DGS/GPC emails Michael DallaValle, Coordinator of Graduate Education, (mdallava@umn.edu) with name of student, student’s University email address, and external committee member to recommend approval (recommendation email less than 100 words).
  • After approval, the GPC emails Mark Brannan (brann006@umn.edu) in CEHD HR Payroll for new Employee ID for external committee member (if Employee ID not already assigned). Mark will need the external committee member’s full name (first, middle, last), home address, date of birth, and gender.

A professor emeritus may be appointed as advisors and/or committee members and must be approved through the following procedures:

  • DGS approves professor emeritus to serve as advisor/committee member.
  • GPC emails Michael DallaValle, Coordinator of Graduate Education, (mdallava@umn.edu) with name of student, student’s University email address, and professor emeritus to recommend approval (recommendation email less than 100 words).
  • The professor emeritus must have an adjunct appointment in order to serve as an advisor or committee member. Please contact the unit’s assigned HR Generalist for more information on faculty appointments.

All other exceptions to graduate examining committees must be approved through the following procedures:

  • DGS approves exception.
  • DGS/GPC emails Michael DallaValle, Coordinator of Graduate Education, (mdallava@umn.edu) with name and reason for recommending approval of exception (recommendation email less than 100 words).

Graduate Examination Emergency Committee Substitution Procedure

Master of Education (M.Ed.)/Certificate program graduation process

M.Ed. students who started their degree in spring 2013 or later: Please follow the degree completion steps outlined on the graduate school website.

M.Ed. students who started their degree prior to spring 2013: Please follow the degree completion steps outlined below.

All students must apply for graduation for their degree to be officially awarded and posted to their graduate transcript. Degrees are conferred once every month on the last business day. However, the degree is posted to your official University of Minnesota transcript a couple of weeks after this date. In order to qualify for the last business day conferment date, the completion of the online Application for Degree form through MyU must be submitted within the designated time frame for your intended graduation month. If the online form is submitted after the first day of the intended month of graduation, then the conferment date will roll over to the next month.

Refer to the M.Ed. Graduation Checklist and Timeline [PDF] for instructions on how to complete each component and important fall 2016 deadlines.

Final degree clearance depends on the following:

  • Transfer credits (if applicable) must be posted to transcript. Contact your adviser about transferring credits.
  • The submission of the signed Graduate Degree Plan (GDP) to your program adviser.
    Note: All M.Ed. GDPs are “Plan C.” M.Ed. students only need to have their faculty adviser sign the GDP form. Initial licensure students in the Curriculum and Instruction department (C&I) should have their C&I department adviser sign the form. The DGS and College signatures are not required.
  • The completion of the Application for Degree form through MyU within the designated time frame for your intended graduation month.
  • Completion of all program requirements.
  • The posting of final grades to the academic record. (Courses may be in progress at the time you apply for your degree.)

Important: If you have a critical deadline (for example: pay or lane change awarded with conferment of degree) please carefully review the timeline below and plan accordingly. Conferment of your degree before the end of the term in any month may affect eligibility benefits (assistantships, visa requirements, student loans, housing, etc.)

Graduate Program Review, Approval, and Degree Clearance

GRD students (MA, MS, MSW, PhD, EdD) that matriculated before Spring 2013 use the paper graduate degree plan (GDP) to plan for coursework and receive approval from their faculty adviser, GPC, and the Dean’s Office. Students that matriculated in Spring 2013 and after use GPAS.

DMS students (M.Ed. and post-bacc certificate) that matriculated before Spring 2013 use the paper GDP for degree clearance. Students who matriculated Spring 2013 or later will use GPAS.

Degree Clearance

  • All Pre-Spring 2013 M.Ed. and certificates are cleared by the Dean’s Office.
  • All Post-Spring 2013 M.Ed. and certificates are cleared by GSSP.
  • All PhD and MA degrees are cleared by GSSP, no matter the start date.

Degree Clearance Procedure for Pre-Spring 2013 M.Ed. and Certificate

  1. Advisor, department, or student will scan/e-mail approved GDP directly to CEHD Graduate Student Operations (cehdgrad@umn.edu) or, alternatively, it can be delivered directly to the Dean’s Office in 104 Burton Hall and submitted to Michael DallaValle’s mailbox.
  2. When a GDP is received, an application under review e-mail will be sent to the student and copied to APLUS. The e-mail reminds the student to submit graduation application through my Portal no later than the first of the month, if the student has not done so already.
  3. When MyU Portal application and GDP are received, a formal review of the student’s transcript in relation to the approved curriculum listed on the GDP occurs.
  4. When the student meets all requirement for degree conferment, Graduate Student Operations will clear the student, and a Conferment of degree e-mail will be sent to the student and copied to APLUS.
  5. Student’s degree clearance paperwork will be scanned to Perceptive Content (formerly ImageNow).

Degree Clearance Procedure for Post-Spring 2013 M.Ed., Certificate, MA, and PhD

  1. Office of the Registrar (OTR) sends the Graduate Program Coordinators (GPC) addendum report to DMS and GRD programs around the third business day of the month.
    • Program staff can also use the Degree Applicants report in Reporting Center, as well.
    • Reports will be used to identify students that the college clears (pre-2013 M.Ed. and post-bacc cert) and review GPAS students for exceptions.
  2. Academic Support Resources (ASR) sends out templated communication to GPAS students who applied to graduate that month.
    • Provides confirmation that the file is being reviewed.
    • Advises student to contact their program if they have specific questions.
  3. Program staff submits exception worksheets for each GPAS student that needs one.
    • Deadline: Exception worksheets e-mailed individually to gssp@umn.edu no later than the 15th of each month.
  4. ASR processes exceptions worksheets. This takes approximately five business days.
  5. OTR (through GSSP) sends follow-up report with students that still need an exception worksheet or if grades are missing.
    • Deadline: Outstanding students report e-mailed to programs no later than the 25th of each month.
  6. Deadline for all subsequent grades and exception requests is the last working day of the month.
  7. As students clear, GSSP sends out templated “congratulations” e-mails via a daily batch process.

Graduation Application Steps

Certificates and M.Ed.—Spring 2013 and later

  1. Submit GPAS planner. This should be done, at least, one month prior to degree completion.
  2. Submit application for degree through MyU portal by the first day of anticipated month of graduation.

Note: Not all M.Ed. students are required to complete and submit a GPAS.

Certificates and M.Ed—Pre-Spring 2013

  1. Complete Graduate Degree Plan (GDP), at least, one month prior to anticipated graduation date.
  2. Download graduation packet.
  3. Submit application for degree through MyU Portal by the first day of anticipated month of graduation.

Note: Specialist Certificates (SC) will have additional steps.

Steps for MA Students

Steps for PhD Students