5: Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

General Information | Programs and Degrees Offered | Admission Information
Financial Assistance | Graduate Academic Regulations
Requirements for Specific Graduate Degrees | Departments and Programs | Faculty

Graduate Academic Regulations

Course Enrollment and Final Registration   On the days announced for advising and arranging course programs, the student should check the Office of the Registrarís on-line site for current information: www.virginia.edu/~regist. Next, the student should confer with the authorized representatives (either the chair or the graduate advisor) of the studentís major department to select a recommended course of study from the session; this recommended program should then be submitted in person to the dean for approval. To be enrolled as a graduate student it is necessary that at least half of the course load be in graduate-level courses.

Registration is not complete until all fees have been paid or satisfactory arrangements have been made with the bursar. A studentís registration record and consequently the fee determination will become fixed eight weeks after the first day of classes. Changes in a studentís registration record after the final day for dropping a course can be made only with the approval of the dean.

Every graduate student, resident or non-resident, must be registered in the Graduate School during the semester in which he or she is an applicant for a degree. Non-resident degree applicants should register at the beginning of the second semester, as ordinarily registration will not be accepted later in the session. See section on readmission after voluntary withdrawal.

Attendance   Students are expected to attend classes throughout the session with the exception of University holidays. When necessary, excuses for absence from class are arranged between the student and the instructor of the course in question. Routine excuses for illness are not furnished by the Department of Student Health either to the student or to the instructor. On request of the dean, the Department of Student Health will evaluate the effect of any illness upon a studentís attendance and academic performance. Failure by students to attend lectures and other prescribed exercises in the courses for which they are registered may subject them to penalties for non-attendance.

Attendance Upon Examinations   Written examinations are an essential part of the work of most courses in the Graduate School, and attendance at them is required of every student. Absence from examination will not be excused except for sickness on the day of examination attested by a physicianís certificate or for other cause which the graduate faculty by special action may approve. An unexcused absence is counted as a failure.

Grades   The standing of a graduate student in each course is indicated by one of the following grades: A+, A, A-; B+, B, B-; C+, C, C-; D+, D, D-; F. B- is the lowest satisfactory grade for graduate credit, and students with a grade point average below 3.0 for an academic year will be considered as not making satisfactory progress toward a degree.

Failure to achieve at least a grade of B- in all graduate courses will invalidate candidacy for the degree in the current session. For certain courses in which the department does not require a final examination, permission can be granted to grade those courses on an S/U (satisfactory/unsatisfactory) basis. A report of IN (incomplete) on a graduate course is changed by the registrar to a failing grade if the course is not completed by the end of the next semester (including the summer session). Unsatisfactory performance during any semester may be considered sufficient reason for enforced withdrawal from the University.

Application For A Degree   Any graduate student who wishes to become a candidate for a degree must file the degree application with the dean on a form available at the Graduate School Office. All graduate degree applications must be submitted not later than October 1 if the degree is to be conferred in January, February 1 if the degree is to be conferred in May, or July 1 if the degree is to be conferred in August.

The degree application must include a program of work arranged in accordance with the degree requirements outlined in the following pages, and must state the title of the thesis or dissertation. A transcript of the applicantís previous academic record, attesting the content of his or her baccalaureate degree, must also be on file in the Graduate School Office.

Graduate degrees are not conferred merely upon the basis of the number of courses passed, or the length of time spent in resident or non-resident work, but primarily upon the basis of the quality and scope of the candidateís knowledge and the ability in the chosen field of study. The applicantís graduate record should be better than a minimal passing average to be accepted as a candidate, and the department responsible for the studentís graduate program must qualify him or her for candidacy. The degree application, approved by the candidateís advisory professor and the chair of the department, is submitted to the dean.

Candidates who do not receive a degree in the semester for which their application has been approved must renew their application in proper form at the beginning of the semester in which candidacy for the degree is desired. Candidates who find that they will not be able to receive their degree in the semester for which their application was approved must remove their name from the degree list by a specified date in the semester.

Voluntary Withdrawal   A graduate student may not voluntarily withdraw from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences later than one week immediately preceding the beginning of course examinations. An official application to withdraw must be obtained from the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Scienceí and must be approved in writing by the dean, with a statement of the reason for the withdrawal. A student under 18 years of age must have parental approval of such withdrawal. The student must report to the Office of the Dean of Students for an exit interview. All student identification cards are to be deposited with the Dean of Students at the time of withdrawal. The official withdrawal form will be forwarded to the university registrar, who notifies all other administrative offices of the withdrawal action.

A student who withdraws from the University for reason of ill health must notify the Department of Student Health, and subsequent medical clearance from the Department of Student Health is among the requirements for readmission of all students. To apply for readmission to the University, the student must submit an application to the academic deanís office at least 60 days before the next University scheduled class registration.

Failure to comply with the above regulations will subject the student to suspension from the University by the Vice President for Student Affairs.

Readmission After Voluntary Withdrawal   Readmission to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences is not automatic; after absence of a semester or longer, a former student must apply for readmission to the Graduate School. This statement does not apply to graduate students pursuing graduate work in summer only.

Enforced Withdrawal   The student may be required to withdraw from the University if the academic advisor, the responsible departmental members and the Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences determine that the student is making unsatisfactory progress toward a degree (See Grades, Voluntary Withdrawal, and University General Regulations).

Continue to: Requirements for Specific Graduate Degrees
Return to: Chapter 5 Index