Graduate Courses, Credits and Curriculum

Semester Credit Hour: The unit of academic work is the semester credit hour defined as one 50-minute lecture period (or at least two periods of laboratory or field work) per week throughout one fifteen week semester.  Summer sessions are shorter in duration; however, the contact hours each week are increased proportionately.  Online or blended courses will have the same learning outcomes as those delivered in traditional classroom instruction.  Because learning in online and blended courses may not be quantified in terms of class meeting time, emphasis is placed upon evidence of student learning. 

Minimum credit hours for Degree/Certificate: The following minimum graduate credit hours are required for each type of graduate program.  Individual programs may require a higher number of credit hours to fulfill disciplinary accreditation requirements.

    • Certificate programs: 12 credit hours of graded course work beyond the  bachelor’s degree
    • Masters programs: 30 credit hours beyond bachelor’s degree
      • 24 credit hours of graded course work and 6 credit hours for thesis, or
      • 27 credit hours of graded course work and 3 credit hours for project, or
      • 30 credit hours of graded course work
    • Doctoral programs: 72 credit hours beyond bachelor’s degree
      • 36 credit hours of graded course work
      • 12 credit hours of dissertation research 
Comprehensive Assessments: Graduate programs may require students to successfully complete a comprehensive assessment.  The assessment may include a comprehensive examination (written and/or oral), a research project, thesis, dissertation, capstone course, portfolio, internship, field experience and/or equivalent.  For details, students are referred to program/department handbooks.