Regulations Governing Graduation

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The following regulations apply to graduation from all graduate programs.

Acceptable Credits Toward Graduation

Credit earned by correspondence (self-paced) study will not be accepted in fulfilling requirements for a master’s degree. Course work carrying the INS (in-service) prefix may not be applied toward a master’s degree. A graduate student may apply up to six course credits of work taken on an independent study basis toward a master’s degree program.

Transfer of Credit

A maximum of nine course credits of graduate credit may be transferred from other approved colleges or universities. All transfer credit must carry a grade of B minus or higher and be no older than seven years by completion of degree at CSC. Transfer credit with grades of P or S will not be accepted. Acceptance of transfer credit is contingent upon approval of the Graduate Committee and Dean of Graduate Studies. Transfer credit may not be counted toward meeting the minimum residence requirement. If applicable, any approved transfer credit will be converted to CSC’s grading and course credit standards.

Time Limit on Coursework

All requirements for the master’s degrees must be met within a period of seven years from the year the student completes the first graduate course that is to apply toward the degree. Validation of out-of-date credit: course work that has been taken at CSC prior to the specified time limit before completion of the degree is considered to be outdated. At the discretion of the Graduate Committee and/or the Dean of Graduate Studies, a limited amount of outdated course work may be applied to the graduate degree if a grade of B or higher was attained and if one of the following occurs:

  • The equivalent CSC course is successfully repeated OR
  • A written or oral examination and/or an additional assignment covering the subject matter is successfully completed as certified by an appropriate faculty member(s). If an oral examination is given, at least two graduate faculty members must be present. The Dean of Graduate Studies and the Graduate Committee chairperson will appoint the faculty member(s) to administer the examination. Details about the time and place of the examination must be registered with the Graduate Office. Approval to validate credit must be obtained through the Graduate Committee and Dean of Graduate Studies.
  • Other - as determined by Graduate Committee and Dean of Graduate Studies.

Course Level Requirements

At least half of the course credits required for the master’s degree must be taken in classes in which only graduate students may enroll (600-level courses or higher). Master of Business Administration students cannot have more than six credits of 500-level dual-listed courses in their degree program.

Curriculum Patterns

All graduate students seeking the degree of Master of Arts in Education or Master of Education should complete EDCI 631 RESEARCH DESIGN AND DATA ANALYSIS within the first 12 course credits of their program of study . Students seeking the degree of Master of Science in Organizational Management should complete either EDCI 631 RESEARCH DESIGN AND DATA ANALYSIS or CA 615 RESEARCH PROCESS AND PRACTICE within the first 12 course credits of their program of study. All graduate students (including those seeking the Master of Business Administration) must select one of the following plan options:

Plan I - Coursework with Oral Examination or Culminating Experience (MBA)

Plan I does not require a scholarly project or thesis. Students are required to complete the designated coursework in their area of specialization. Students choosing this option are required to pass an oral examination or culminating experience. The oral examination includes questions regarding course work and other materials relevant to the student’s field of study. Approval forms are signed by the student’s committee and presented to the Dean of Graduate Studies after successful completion of the oral examination.  Candidates for the Master of Business Administration degree are required to successfully complete the culminating experience as directed by the Business Academy.

The oral examination must be taken at least four weeks prior to the date of graduation or granting of the degree. Students completing oral examinations after the specified date will not be eligible for graduation until the next graduation or diploma granting date.

Note: Plan III is not available in all departments. Contact the Graduate Studies Office for more information at http://www.csc.edu/graduate/officestaff.csc.

Plan II - Scholarly Project with Oral Examination

Plan II requires a scholarly project pertaining to the field of specialization. Three course credits are awarded for successful completion of the scholarly project. The project is designed in consultation with the student’s graduate committee. The following are general guidelines for preparation and submission of the project and the accompanying oral examination:

After acceptance into graduate study and successful completion of EDCI 631 RESEARCH DESIGN AND DATA ANALYSIS or its equivalent, the student should present a scholarly project proposal under the guidance of the advisor. This presentation is to be made in a formal meeting with the student's graduate committee. The scholarly project must convey conclusions on some subject directly related to the candidate's area of specialization. Although the topic does not necessarily have to be original or to seek new answers, it should attempt to establish a point previously unsupported, or verify existing knowledge. The scholarly project topic should be designed so the student receives training in techniques of scientific inquiry, employing one or more of the commonly accepted tools of educational research.

Students choosing the scholarly project option must register for three credit hours:

  • Registration for the course credits may be made at the beginning of any semester or summer term following the approval of the project topic
  • The student is ultimately responsible for the progress of the project
  • The accepted writing style is APA; however some disciplines may require their particular style
  • When the student and advisor are satisfied with the project, it is to be submitted to the student's committee for review and approval
  • All Plan II students must include an abstract of approximately 150 words in their scholarly project.

After acceptance of the project by the advisor and committee, an oral examination will be scheduled. Copies of the project paper and related materials must be presented to the committee members at least two weeks before the scheduled date of the oral examination. The oral examination will include questions regarding the scholarly project, coursework, and other materials relevant to the student’s field of study. The oral examination must be taken at least four weeks prior to the date of graduation or granting of the degree. Students completing oral examinations after the specified date will not be eligible for graduation until the next graduation or diploma granting date. Approval forms will be signed by the student’s committee and presented to the Dean of Graduate Studies after successful completion of the oral examination. After the candidate has successfully passed the oral examination, he or she will present one final copy of the scholarly project to his or her advisor.

Plan III - Thesis with Oral Examination

Plan III requires a thesis pertaining to the field of specialization. Six course credits are awarded for successful completion of the thesis. The following are general guidelines for preparation and submission of the thesis and accompanying oral examination:

After acceptance into graduate study and successful completion of EDCI 631 RESEARCH DESIGN AND DATA ANALYSIS or its equivalent and at least two-thirds of total number of program credits are completed, the student presents a thesis proposal under the guidance of his or her advisor.

This presentation is to be made in a formal meeting with the student’s graduate committee. The thesis must convey conclusions on a subject directly related to the candidate's area of specialization. Although the topic does not necessarily have to be original or to seek new answers, it should attempt to establish a point previously unsupported or to verify existing knowledge. The thesis topic should be designed so the student receives training in the techniques of scientific inquiry, employing one or more of the commonly accepted tools of educational research.

The student’s committee will carefully scrutinize the work of the student and make recommendations either to accept, accept with modifications, or not accept the proposal. Once accepted by the committee, the proposal and an outline are submitted to the Dean of Graduate Studies for approval. Students choosing the thesis option must register for a total of six course credits. Registration for all six credits or any portion thereof may be made at the beginning of any semester or summer term following approval of the thesis proposal. Written approval from the Institutional Review Board is required if the student will be using a data collection tool that involves human or animal subjects. Students are ultimately responsible for the progress and completion of their thesis. The thesis:

  • Is written under the direct supervision or guidance of the student’s advisor
  • Uses the APA style or a style that is discipline appropriate (the accepted writing style is APA; however, some disciplines may require their particular style)
  • Must include an abstract of 150 words
  • Is submitted to the student’s committee for review and approval when the student and advisor are satisfied with the thesis.

After acceptance of the thesis by the advisor and committee, an oral examination will be scheduled. Copies of the thesis must be presented to the committee members at least two weeks before the scheduled date of the oral examination. The oral examination will include questions regarding the thesis, coursework, and other materials relevant to the student’s field of study. The oral examination must be taken at least four weeks prior to the date of graduation or granting of the degree. Students completing oral examinations after the specified date will not be eligible for graduation until the next graduation or diploma granting date. Approval forms are signed by the committee after successful completion of the thesis and oral examination.

The examining committee members sign a statement verifying the outcome of the oral examination, which is presented to the Dean of Graduate Studies. 

Residence Requirements

At least twelve of the course credits required for advanced degrees must be classified as “residence credit.” Residence credit courses are those courses taught by a member of the CSC graduate faculty.

Oral Examination or Culminating Experience

All candidates for the Master of Education, Master of Arts in Education, and the Master of Science in Organizational Management are required to pass a final oral examination in their area of concentration. Students choosing the thesis or scholarly project option will have questions relating to the thesis or research project paper included in this examination. Candidates for the Master of Business Administration are required to successfully complete the culminating experience as directed by the Business Academy.

The student's graduate committee will conduct the oral examination. If a member of the committee is unavailable and rescheduling is inappropriate, a substitute may be appointed by the Dean of Graduate Studies. With the candidate’s knowledge, the examining committee may invite other individuals to be present at the oral examination.

The oral examination or culminating experience must be completed successfully at least four weeks prior to the date of graduation or granting of the degree. Students completing this step after the specified date will not be eligible for graduation until the next graduation or diploma granting date.

Prior to the oral examination, a portfolio is to be prepared by the student and distributed to all members of the examination committee. The portfolio should include such items of information as professional and educational background, courses completed, and anticipated educational and career goals.

Following successful completion of the oral examination, approval forms are signed by the student’s committee and presented to the Dean of Graduate Studies.

At the discretion of the orals committee, students who do not pass the oral examination or culminating experience requirements may be recommended for remediation. If students do not pass following remediation, they will be dismissed from the graduate program.

Portfolio

All candidates for the Master of Education, Master of Arts in Education, and Master of Science in Organizational Management degrees are required to compile a professional and academic portfolio in their areas of concentration. The portfolio is a purposeful, collaborative, self-reflective collection of the student’s work generated during his or her graduate program. The portfolio includes a personal data sheet featuring professional and educational background information; courses completed, and anticipated educational and career goals. The procedures and content needed for portfolio construction are outlined in materials obtained from the Graduate Office.

Students submit completed portfolios for assessment by their graduate committee prior to the final oral examination. Upon review and acceptance of the student’s portfolio, approval forms are signed by the student’s committee and presented to the Dean of Graduate Studies.