Graduate Studies

Policies and Procedures

In this section, you will find information about policies and procedures which apply only to graduate students. You may also visit the Graduate Studies Section of the University Catalog to read other academic policies applicable to graduate students. Please visit the University Catalog to reference additional policies that apply to all University students.

  • Candidates must be enrolled in the University during the quarter in which they graduate. Students must submit a graduation application through Bronco Direct by the appropriate deadline. Please visit the Registrar’s website for deadline dates and instructions on how to apply for graduation and pay for graduation fees online. The application is valid only for the quarter for which it is submitted. Students failing to submit their application by the appropriate deadline may be required to graduate in a future quarter.
  • Questions about the degree progress report should be directed to the student's Transfer and Graduation Advisor (TGA).

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE VISIT THE REGISTRAR’S WEBSITE.

 Master's students can go through the Graduation checklist to determine eligibility for graduation.

 

  Eligibility for Graduate Student Participation in 2020 Commencement Ceremonies    

  • Summer 2019 and Fall 2019  graduates are eligible to participate in commencement. 
  • Enrolled students who will complete all requirements for their degree by the end of Spring 2020:
    • Students must apply for graduation online by March 15, 2020. Students may apply at the One-Stop in the Registrar’s Office after this date, but their name will not appear in the program.
    • The Registrar’s Office will verify that the students have completed the GWT requirement.
    • Visit Commencement website for more information.

 Graduate students may decide to meet the degree requirements listed in the Cal Poly Pomona university catalog (1) at the time they take their first course as a conditional or unconditional student in that degree program; (2) at the time they graduate. Graduate students who are not in attendance for more than two consecutive quarters, do not have an approved leave of absence form on file and have more than 9 units left to take are considered to have broken enrollment status and must apply for readmission to return and continue their studies. Returning students must meet with a Graduate Program Coordinator and file a new Master’s contract with their department. Returning students may elect to meet the degree requirements listed in the Cal Poly Pomona university catalog (1) at the time they take their first course after returning; or (2) at the time they graduate. 

Returning Cal Poly Pomona graduate students who have satisfied the GWT requirement, and have no more than 9 quarter units left to take, must meet with a Graduate Program Coordinator and file: 

  1. A graduate academic petition to be allowed to complete requirements on the curriculum being followed when last enrolled;
  2. A plan to validate any outdated coursework;
  3. A new Master’s contract. 

If these three items are approved, the student shall meet the degree requirements listed in the Cal Poly Pomona university catalog at the time when last enrolled. 

Whenever a student changes graduate objectives, while this action is not considered a break in enrollment status, the student may elect to meet the degree requirements listed in the Cal Poly Pomona university catalog (1) at the time the objective was changed; or (2) at the time of graduation. 

 The requirements for graduation depend upon the master’s degree program undertaken and upon the major field. The following requirements apply to all master’s degrees offered by the university 

  1. The program for the one-year master’s degree must consist of not fewer than 45 units in courses numbered 300 (400 for Engineering and Business Administration) and above, with a minimum of 24 units of 500 and 600-level courses completed at the university consistent with departmental requirements. Work unacceptable for graduate credit in the institution where it was taken is not acceptable for graduate credit at this university. 300-level coursework may only be used with permission of the department.
  2. A total limit of 13 transfer and/or extension and/or units petitioned for graduate credit may be included on a master’s contract.
  3. For lower division coursework (100-200 level at this university), no graduate credit will be given.
  4. All 600-699 courses are open only to graduate students classified as unconditional.
  5. At least 32 units of upper-division and graduate-level offerings must be completed in residence at this university.
  6. Two-year master's degrees have higher unit requirements than specified above. See detailed information in the appropriate sections of the University Catalog.
  7. A minimum of 3.0 (B) average must be earned in all graduate work taken at this university while in post-baccalaureate standing and in degree programs. No course with a grade lower than "C" (2.0) may apply toward the fulfillment of degree requirements. Once a graduate study contract has been established, courses may only be moved to or from the contract by means of a properly approved graduate petition. Contract courses with a grade of "F" must be repeated with a passing grade.
  8. A course may not be used for credit toward both a baccalaureate and a master's degree.
  9. A thesis, project, or a comprehensive examination is required in all programs.
  10. A favorable vote of the department, school, or center faculty is required before the degree may be conferred.
  11. A graduate student who expects to receive a degree at the end of any quarter must apply online for graduation through Bronco Direct prior to the deadline listed in the academic calendar. The student must be enrolled in the university the quarter he/she graduates. Degree requirements are outlined in departmental sections of the Catalog. Students seeking a master's degree will be held responsible for meeting requirements applicable to the program of their choice and for fulfilling general master's degree requirements.
  12. The Graduate Writing Test must be fulfilled before Advancement to Candidacy. Important information about specific exemptions from the test is available from the     Test Center.
  13. The graduate degree of not fewer than 45 units shall be completed within 7 years from the time the first course (including transfer courses) which applies to the degree requirements is started. This time limit, at the option of the university, may be extended for students who pass a comprehensive examination in the entire subject field or who validate the outdated coursework by examination.  Please click on Procedures for recertifying expired courses for more information.
  14. A Report of Culminating Experience must be submitted to the Graduate Studies Office during the quarter of graduation. This report certifies that a graduate student has successfully completed all components of the Culminating Experience for the designated degree as specified in the Catalog.

At the time students are admitted to a Master's program, they should arrange to meet with the graduate coordinator to prepare an official program (graduate contract). If they are admitted as unconditional graduate students, they should accomplish this step as soon as possible. A graduate contract must be prepared and submitted for approval to the Graduate Studies Office no later than the end of the second quarter of attendance, or prior to the completion of 13 units.

When the program has been approved by the Graduate Studies analyst, a copy is sent to the graduate coordinator who has approved it. A copy is retained by the Graduate Studies analyst. The original contract is sent to the Evaluations Office and is used as the official record of the student’s progress toward the degree.

 

Recertification of Expired Coursework

  Title V Policy 

Title V, 40510, states,   “A minimum of thirty-semester units of approved graduate work completed within a maximum time to be established by each campus. Such maximum time shall be no more than seven years nor less than five years for each particular program. An extension of the time beyond the limit may be granted by appropriate campus authority if warranted by individual circumstances and if the outdated work is validated by examination, in the relevant additional course or subject field of work or such other demonstration of competence as may be prescribed. ” 

Cal Poly Pomona, 2017-2018 Catalog 

The graduate degree program of not fewer than 30 units shall be completed within 7 years from the time the first course (including transfer courses) which applies to the degree requirements, is started. This time limit, at the option of the university, may be extended for students who pass a comprehensive examination in the entire subject field or who validate the outdated coursework by examination. The plan for validation of outdated coursework must be negotiated in consultation with the graduate coordinator and approved by the College Dean and the Associate Vice President for Academic Programs. Documentation of the approved plan must be placed in the student's permanent file. Under no circumstances will the time limit be extended beyond 9 years. A maximum of nine (9) units may be recertified. Only Cal Poly Pomona coursework is eligible for recertification.

 An extension of the time beyond the limit of seven years may be granted by the Director of Graduate Studies if warranted by individual circumstances and if the outdated work is validated by examination, in the relevant course or subject field of work or such other demonstration of competence as may be prescribed, such as directly relevant work experience. Under no circumstances will the time limit be extended beyond 9 years.  A maximum of nine (9) units may be recertified. Only Cal Poly Pomona coursework is eligible for recertification.

Prior to recertification, each Dean will approve policies consistent with Title 5 (40510) and the Cal Poly Pomona University Policy concerning the method(s) of recertifying courses. Validation must be accomplished with approval from the student's graduate coordinator, department chair, College Dean, and the Director of Graduate Studies. The student's committee and/or graduate coordinator must determine the appropriate means to recertify the student's coursework.

  1. Students will consult with his/her graduate coordinator or graduate committee to determine a plan and the feasibility to recertify expired coursework. 
  2. The Graduate Coordinator will send a Memo via the College Dean to the Director of Graduate Studies, with the following information: 
    • The student must explain the circumstances as to why he/she was not able to finish the program within the time limit. 
    • A list the outdated coursework (include course title, units, quarter/year it was taken) 
    • An explanation of how the department will recertify outdated coursework and indication of time frame to complete the coursework. Department must document how the recertification will align to the course learning outcomes. 
  3. If the request is approved by the Director of Graduate Studies, the department will then take necessary steps to validate outdated coursework for student.
  4. After student’s coursework is validated, the graduate coordinator will submit a memo, via the College Dean’s approval, stating:
    • The results from the re-certification for an oral or written exam with a detailed list of the courses being recertified and a brief (one or two sentences) summary of the basis for the recertification. The details must include course title, units, and term /year it was originally taken. Whether the recertification was done via work experience, oral or written exam, please include a table briefly explaining how each one of the course learning outcomes for each class was met. Please see the example in this table.
    • A specific statement of the time limit to complete the program.
  5. The memo will be reviewed by the Director of Graduate Studies for final approval.  A notification will then be sent to the graduate coordinator and student with final results and any necessary follow-up.