Master's Degree Admission Requirements

Regular Admission

The following information is found in the graduate bulletin.

To be considered for admission as a “regular” graduate student the applicant must have received a bachelor’s degree from an accredited or approved college or university with an undergraduate major in, or prerequisites for, the planned graduate field of study, where applicable. The applicant must have a cumulative undergraduate grade-point average of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale, calculated on all work attempted
in which letter grades were awarded. Verification in the form of an official transcript is required. All master’s degree programs require an acceptable GRE, GMAT, or MAT score. In addition, some programs have additional admission criteria; please refer to the departmental listings for all these specific requirements.

Irregular Admission

Applicants who have not submitted all application documents may sometimes be admitted as “irregular.” Students in this category will not be admitted to a degree program until they have met all admission requirements. Students may not enroll in more than 9 hours of coursework while in irregular status. Students admitted as irregular are not eligible for financial aid or graduate assistantships.

Probationary Admission

Applicants failing to meet one or more of the requirements for regular admission may be considered for probationary admission under conditions specified at the time of admission by the appropriate department and approved by the Dean of the Graduate School. Students admitted as probationary are eligible for financial aid.

Students admitted on a probationary basis remain in this category for 9 semester hours of work. The grade-point average for these 9 semester hours must be 3.0 or higher, unless different conditions were specified at the time of admission. After completion of the probationary period, students may be reclassified as “regular” students, with the approval of the Dean of the Graduate School and the department concerned.

Transient Admission

Graduate students currently enrolled in good standing at another college or university may register at Valdosta State University.

Non-Degree Admission

Students who hold an undergraduate degree and wish to take graduate or undergraduate courses for add-on certification or personal enrichment without pursuing an advanced degree may be admitted as “non-degree.” Students who maintain a cumulative average of “B” or higher in graduate courses taken may later be granted entry to a degree program upon proper application to the Graduate School. A maximum
of 9 semester hours may be considered by the appropriate department involved for transfer into a degree-granting program. Students admitted as non-degree are not eligible for financial aid or graduate assistantships.

ENROLLMENT BY UNDERGRADUATES

A student with senior standing at Valdosta State University, with an overall academic grade-point average of 3.0 or better, may register for graduate courses during the final two semesters of undergraduate work under the following conditions:

1. No more than a total of 9 semester hours may be taken for graduate credit, and not more than 6 semester hours of graduate work may be taken in a given semester.

2. A student registering for one or more graduate courses is limited to the normal graduate academic course load of 12 semester hours per semester.

3. Permission for a student to take graduate courses under this provision is granted only by the Dean of the Graduate School upon recommendation of the student’s advisor.

4. Permission must be obtained for each semester in which the student desires to take graduate courses.

ACADEMIC STANDARDS AND REGULATIONS

Grading System

The semester hour is the basic unit of work, in which each course offered has credit value in terms of a certain number of semester hours normally conforming to the number of contact class hours per week. For example, courses meeting three hours a week carry three hours credit. A typical exception occurs in laboratory work, in which two or three hours of class contact time would have a one-credit-hour value.

Grades and quality points represent the instructor's final estimate of the student's performance in a course. All grades assigned remain on the student's permanent record and transcript. The following letters denote grades which are included in the computation of the grade-point average.

A = Excellent: 4 quality points per hour

B = Good: 3 quality points per hour

C = Satisfactory: 2 quality points per hour

D = Passing: 1 quality point per hour

F = Failure: 0 quality points per hour

WF= Withdrew failing: 0 quality points

Students may calculate their graduate grade-point average by dividing the number of graduate semester credit hours taken into the total number of quality points earned.

The following letters denote cases in which the grade is not included in the computation of the grade point average:

I = Incomplete

IP = In progress (course scheduled for more than one semester)

K = Credit by examination

NR = Not reported by instructor or course ending date is after the scheduled end of the semester

S = Satisfactory

U = Unsatisfactory

V = Audit

W = Withdrew without penalty

For graduation, the cumulative graduate grade-point average must be 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale. Throughout their program, students' performance must be acceptable on a continuing basis. Students must at all times maintain an overall grade-point average of not less than 2.5. No grade below C will be credited toward a graduate degree. Any student acquiring any combination of two grades D, F, WF, or U will be dismissed from the Graduate School.

All grades received for graduate courses taken at Valdosta State University, after the student is admitted to the Graduate School, will be used in the calculation of the graduate cumulative grade-point average. Courses may be re-taken, if desired or required, but all graduate grades received will affect this average.

Cumulative grade-point averages are calculated at the close of every semester in which course work is taken. This calculation appears on the permanent record card of each student. It also appears on each grade slip sent to the student. A student may review this grade record and grade-point average by requesting an unofficial transcript from the Registrar's Office or by viewing their transcript on the Web at http://www.valdosta.edu/it/eas/sis/. Students should log in and follow prompts to "Student Services & Financial Aid" in order to view transcripts.  Matters requiring interpretation of a graduate record should normally be referred to the student's advisor or the Graduate School. Undergraduate grades will not be calculated as part of the graduate student's semester or cumulative average.

A grade of I indicates that a student was doing satisfactory work, but for non-academic reasons beyond his or her control, was unable to meet full requirements of the course. If an I is not satisfactorily removed within one calendar year, it will be changed to the grade F.

A grade of IP indicates that credit has not been given in courses that require a continuation of work beyond the semester for which the students signed up for the course. The use of the symbol is approved for dissertation and thesis hours and project courses. It cannot be substituted for an I.

Students dropping a course within the time limit noted in the University Calendar, while performing satisfactorily, will receive a grade of W (withdrawal from a course, having completed work to that point satisfactorily); otherwise they will be given a grade of WF (withdrawal, having not done satisfactory work). The computation of the overall grade-point average treats WF and F grades identically; grades of W do not affect the computation.

Graduate students who have just cause to appeal the assignment of a grade must first discuss the problem with their professor. Further appeals are then directed, in order, to their professor's Department Head, Dean, Vice President of Academic Affairs, and President of the University.