University of Southern Indiana
Graduate Studies Policies

Academic Information and Policies

Selected policies affecting graduate students are excerpted from the USI Bulletin and reproduced below for ease of access. For complete reference to all academic policies affecting graduate students view the USI Bulletin. If further information is needed concerning graduate policies, call 812-465-7015 or .

General Requirements
A master's degree is awarded to a student upon completing an approved graduate curriculum, earning a minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate credit, and conforming to all rules and regulations of the Graduate Studies office. A comprehensive project or thesis may be required in some programs.

The degree requirements of certain programs may exceed those of the Graduate Studies office noted above. The student should contact the appropriate program director for information about specific program requirements.

Academic Year 
The University's academic year includes two semesters and three five-week summer sessions. The academic calendar is published for each term in the Schedule of Classes.

Student Load
A full-time course load for graduate students is eight hours of graduate course work.  A half-time load is four hours to fewer than eight hours of graduate courses. The maximum number of hours in which a graduate student may enroll without permission is 12 hours.  When exceptional situations prevail, a student may request permission to enroll for additional hours. Such permission must have the approval of the advisor, the program director, and the director of Graduate Studies. The full-time course load of any combination of graduate and undergraduate courses during any semester including the combined summer sessions is 12 hours.

A student admitted to graduate study must maintain a grade average of B (3.0) or better in all graduate work. A student whose grade point average drops below a 3.0 will be placed on probation and may be suspended from graduate study.

Probation and Dismissal Policy 
Graduate program GPA (GPGPA)* below 3.0
Upon dropping to a GPGPA below 3.0, a student is placed on academic probation. The director of the student's graduate program is responsible for notifying the student of such action. The University minimum policy states that if a student falls below a cumlative GPA of 3.0 they will have within 6 hours to pull the cumulative GPA up to 3.0.

GPGPA below 2.5
If the GPGPA drops below 2.5, a student shall be academically dismissed.

Appeal Option
A student who is academically dismissed may appeal that dismissal to the appropriate graduate faculty committee within his or her program of study.  The reason for the appeal should be stated clearly in writing.

**Graduate Program GPA:  A cumulative grade point average of all USI graduate courses taken (courses numbered 500 and higher) except specific graduate survey courses numbered "501" in the MBA program.

Residence, Transfer, and Extension Credit 
The Office of Graduate Studies may accept for transfer as many as 12 semester hours of credit earned at other colleges and universities accredited for masters or higher level study by the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools or a comparable regional accrediting association. The total grade average in such study must be B or above and no grade lower than B will be accepted. All transfer work must be approved in advance by the student's graduate advisor and by the director of Graduate Studies.

Within the Graduate Studies office limit noted above, each graduate program determines the number of transfer hours acceptable. The Graduate Studies office will accept no more than those determined acceptable by the respective graduate program. The student must consult the appropriate graduate program director for such information. All transfer hours must be appropriate to the particular program in which the student is enrolled.

Correspondence study will not count toward a graduate degree at this University, and such credit cannot be transferred from another institution.

Interruption of Program 
Any student admitted to a program of graduate study who has not been continuously enrolled and receiving graduate credit each semester of the academic year must apply for readmission in the Graduate Studies office.  The student will be required to follow the regulations in effect at the time of readmission.

Time Limitation and Validation 
In order to count toward a master's degree, course work must be completed within seven years of a student's enrollment in the first course(s) counting for degree credit in the program. For courses that exceed this time limit, students must either validate the previous credit or retake the course(s) to meet degree requirements.  The program director identifies a faculty member who sets validation requirements.

The following grading standards apply to graduate work:


Type of Graduate Work




Above average




Below average


Below average (minimal passing grade for graduate credit)



In computing scholastic averages, the following point ratios are used:
A = 4.0, B+ = 3.5, B = 3.0, C+ = 2.5, C = 2.0.  An average of at least 3.0 is required to remain in good standing.  This is to be considered the minimum graduate program requirement and may be higher in specific programs.

In general, incomplete grades may be given only at the end of a semester or term to those students whose work is passing but who have left unfinished a small amount of work—for instance, a final examination, a paper or a term project—which may be completed without further class attendance, or to students who have unfinished theses or graduate research projects. Course instructors may, at the time the incomplete is given, place a time limit for removal of an incomplete grade.  The instructor must submit to the Registrar's office a statement describing the work to be completed by the student receiving an incomplete grade.  In the event that the instructor from whom a student received an incomplete grade is not on campus, the disposition of a case involving an incomplete grade resides with the appropriate chairperson or dean.

An In Progress (IP) final grade is given in graduate project classes that require enrollment in the same class in successive semesters. An IP grade means the student cannot receive credit for the course under any circumstances without re-enrollment in the course.

A withdrawal (W) is given when a student officially withdraws from a course during the automatic W period (see Withdrawal from the Semester/Term-Academic Year or Withdrawal from the Semester/Term- Summer Sessions) and the W also is given if the student is passing at the time of withdrawal after the automatic W period has ended.  A W means the student cannot receive credit for the course under any circumstances without re-enrollment in the course.


A candidate for graduation should file with the Registrar's office a Formal Application for Graduation and a Diploma Form.  If degree requirements will be completed in a spring or summer term, the forms should be submitted no later than October 1 of the preceding fall term.  If degree requirements will be completed in the fall term, the forms should be submitted no later than March 1 of the preceding spring term.  The application for graduation may be obtained from the student's graduate program director.  The diploma form is submitted online.



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