Graduate School Policies and Regulations
Table of contents
- 1. DEGREES OFFERED AND PROGRAM APPROVAL PROCEDURES
- 1.1. Doctoral Programs
- 1.1.1 Approval of Department to Offer Program Leading to a Doctoral Degree
- 1.1.2 Doctoral Programs Approved
- 1.2 Master of Fine Arts
- 1.3 Master of Science and Master of Arts Programs
- 1.3.1 Master of Science Programs
- 1.3.2 Master of Arts Programs
- 1.3.3 M.A. in Teaching
- 18.104.22.168 Modern Languages and Classics
- 22.214.171.124 Education
- 1.3.4 Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
- 1.3.5 Master of Science in Teaching
- 1.4 Non-Thesis Professional Master’s Degrees
- 1.4.1 Master of Education
- 1.4.2 Master of Professional Studies
- 1.4.3 Master of Business Administration
- 1.4.4 Master of Engineering
- 1.4.5 Master of Music
- 1.4.6 Professional Science Master (PSM)
- 1.4.7 Professional Master’s Degree Programs
- 1.5 Certificate of Advanced Study
- 1.6 Education Specialist (Ed.S.)
- 1.7 Graduate Certificate Programs
- 1.7.1 Certificate Programs Approved
- 1.8 Dual Degrees
- 1.8.1 Consecutive Degrees
- 1.8.2 Concurrent Degrees
- 1.8.3 Integrated Dual Degrees
- 1.9 Nonterminal Master’s, Ed.S. or CAS Degree
- 1.10 Concentrations and Specializations
- 1.1. Doctoral Programs
- 2 ADMISSIONS
- 2.1 General Policy
- 2.1.1 Credentials Required
- 2.1.2 Graduate Admissions Examinations
- 126.96.36.199 Graduate Record Examination
- 188.8.131.52 Alternative Entrance Examinations
- 2.1.3 Application Procedure
- 184.108.40.206 Transcripts
- 2.1.4 Deadline for Application
- 2.1.5 Deadline for Enrollment
- 2.1.6 Readmission to the Graduate School
- 2.2 Specific Program Requirements – Master of Education
- 2.3 Committee to Consider Application
- 2.4 Classification of Admissions
- 2.4.1 Regular Admission
- 2.4.2 Provisional Admission
- 2.4.3 Conditional Admission
- 2.4.4 Tentative Admission
- 2.4.5 Non-Degree Admission
- 2.4.6 Visiting Graduate Student Admission
- 2.5 International Student Application
- 2.1 General Policy
- 3. REGISTRATION
- 3.1 Staff Member Registration
- 3.2 Limitations of Registration
- 3.2.1 Credit Load for GA’s
- 3.2.2 Summer Session
- 3.2.3 Doctoral Students
- 3.3 Registration for Graduate-Level Courses by Undergraduate Students
- 3.3.1 Courses Taken for Undergraduate Degree Credit
- 3.3.2 Courses Taken for Graduate Degree Credit
- 3.3.3 Four + One Master’s degrees
- 3.3.4 Four + Two Master’s Programs
- 3.4 Summer Session and Continuing Education
- 3.5 Adding/Dropping Courses
- 3.6 International Student Registration
- 3.7 Full-time/Part-time Student Status
- 3.8 Enrollment Restrictions
- 3.8.1 Graduate Assistants
- 3.8.2 Fellowships and Scholarships
- 3.8.3 Continuous Enrollment
- 3.9 On-Leave Registration
- 3.9.1 Full-time Students
- 3.9.2 Part-time Students
- 4 GENERAL REQUIREMENTS
- 4.1 Residence Requirement
- 4.1.1 Master’s Degrees and Certificate of Advanced Study
- 4.1.2 Doctoral Programs
- 4.2 Tuition Requirement
- 4.3 Time Limit for Completion of Requirements (See also Section 4.6.)
- 4.3.1 Master’s Degrees and Certificate of Advanced Study
- 4.3.2 Doctor of Philosophy and Doctor of Education
- 4.4 Admission to Candidacy
- 4.5 Course Credit
- 4.5.1 Work Taken (at the University of Maine) Prior to Graduate Degree Admissions
- 4.5.2 Transfer Credit (Work Taken at Other Institutions Including Other Campuses of the University of Maine System Prior to Admission)
- 4.5.3 Extramural Registration (work taken at other institutions after graduate degree enrollment at The University of Maine)
- 4.6 Revalidation of Course Credit
- 4.7 Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) Training
- 4.1 Residence Requirement
- 5. APPLICATION FOR DEGREE
- 6. REQUESTS FOR EXCEPTIONS TO REGULATIONS
- 7. GRADUATE LEVEL COURSES
- 7.1 Approval of Courses
- 7.2 Designation of Courses for Graduate Credit
- 7.2.1 Course Numbering
- 7.2.2 Criteria for Approval
- 7.3 Master List of Courses
- 7.4 Courses Not on Approved List
- 7.4.1 Experimental Courses
- 7.5 Continuing Education Courses and Interactive Television (ITV) Courses
- 8 PROGRAM OF STUDY
- 9 EXAMINATIONS
- 10 THESIS REQUIREMENT
- 10.1 Nature of Thesis
- 10.1.1 Project/Thesis/Dissertation Credits
- 10.1.2 Conversion of Thesis to Non-Thesis Degree
- 10.1.3 Master’s
- 10.1.4 Doctoral Dissertation
- 10.1.5 Publication of Research Results Prior to Acceptance of Thesis or Dissertation
- 10.1.6 Guidelines for Using Publications(s) as Thesis or Dissertation
- 10.2 Approvals Related to Thesis
- 10.2.1 Thesis Subject
- 10.2.2 Completed Thesis
- 10.2.3 Human Subjects Approval
- 10.2.4 Animal Subjects Approval
- 10.3 Form and Preparation of Thesis
- 10.3.1 General
- 10.3.2 Format
- 10.3.3 Number of Copies
- 10.3.4 Biography
- 10.3.5 Date of Presentation
- 10.3.6 Minimum Time between Comprehensive Examination, Dissertation Proposal Defense, and Dissertation Defense
- 10.1 Nature of Thesis
- 11 FOREIGN LANGUAGE REQUIREMENT
- 12 ACADEMIC COMMITTEES
- 13 GRADES AND REPORTS
- 14 ACADEMIC APPEALS PROCEDURE
- 15 FINANCIAL AID
- 15.1 Definition of Terms
- 15.1.1 Graduate Assistant
- 15.1.2 Graduate Fellow
- 15.1.3 Graduate Trainee
- 15.2 Assistantships
- 15.2.1 Appointment of Graduate Students
- 15.2.2 Rate of Compensation
- 15.2.3 Waiver of Tuition in Summer
- 15.2.4 Insurance
- 15.2.5 Additional Employment
- 15.3 Student Aid
- 15.3.1 Assistantships and Fellowships
- 15.3.2 Tuition Waivers and Scholarships
- 15.3.3 Supplementation of Stipends Paid to Trainees or Fellows
- 15.4 Loans
- 15.1 Definition of Terms
- 16 TUITION
- 17 GRADUATE SCHOOL CATALOG
1. DEGREES OFFERED AND PROGRAM APPROVAL PROCEDURES
A department anticipating the development of a new program of study leading to a degree already approved for the department will normally clear with all administrative personnel concerned with such matters, will petition the Graduate Board in accordance with established procedures and will provide a statement of how the new program is to be supported academically. This statement will normally be a brief outline of the course of study involved in the program.
The procedure for approval of new programs is outlined in New Program Proposal Procedures and Deadlines and may be obtained from the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost’s office.
New graduate program Intents to Plan Proposals sent to the Graduate School for Graduate Board review and approval will include a signature line for the Unit Head, the College Dean, the Dean of the Graduate School, and for programs to be offered through distance education or under the auspices of Continuing Education, from the Associate Provost for the Division of Lifelong Learning. The approval sheet should also include signature lines for the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost and the President. Intents and Proposals must be made available to the entire unit faculty and approved by the unit governance structure. Proposals will be accompanied by a signed memo from the Graduate Coordinator summarizing the internal review and approval procedure followed by the unit.
1.1. Doctoral Programs
The doctoral degree is given primarily for high attainment in some special field of scholarship and for demonstrated ability for independent research in a subdivision of this field, not merely for courses completed or time spent in study. The doctoral student’s program committee is responsible for developing a course of study and dissertation research to assure this attainment.
1.1.1 Approval of Department to Offer Program Leading to a Doctoral Degree
A request for approval to a doctoral degree program should be supported by appropriate evidence which should include:
- Number and level of advanced courses offered in the department and in related fields;
- Training of staff members;
- Research activity of staff members;
- Publications of staff members;
- Facilities for original investigation, including Library;
- Present graduate training program;
- Additional graduate work proposed. (Refer to New Program Proposal Procedures and Deadlines.)
After consultation with the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost, and College Dean, the Dean of the Graduate School shall present the request to the Graduate Board for its advice and recommendation.
The Curriculum Committee of the Graduate Board has the specific responsibility of studying all proposals for new and modified graduate courses and degree programs, and recommending action to the Graduate Board. The Graduate Board shall hold a meeting for discussion of the request which any interested members of the Graduate Faculty may attend.
If the reaction of the Graduate Board to the request is favorable, at least two (2) competent individuals from outside the University, selected from a list suggested by the department will be invited to conduct a survey and to report their findings.
The Dean of the Graduate School shall submit to the Graduate Board the comments of the visiting authorities. If favorable action is recommended by the external reviewers, the matter shall be brought before the Graduate Board for its approval or disapproval. The recommendations of the Graduate Board shall be referred to the President and Board of Trustees for final action.
1.1.2 Doctoral Programs Approved
- Anthropology and Environmental Policy 5/12/10
- Aquaculture and Aquatic Resources (formerly Marine Bio-Resources) 7/22/91
- Biochemistry & Molecular Biology 7/9/90
- Biological Sciences 7/22/85
- Biomedical Science 1/23/06
- Biomedical Engineering 1/15/14
- Chemical Engineering 11/20/62
- Chemistry 11/7/57 (Inorganic Chemistry included 2/24/66)
- Civil Engineering 11/21/67
- Computer Engineering 1/25/99
- Computer Science 1/25/99
- Communication 12/2/13
- Curriculum and Instruction (never activated)
- Earth and Climate Sciences 1/25/88, 12/20/2012
- Ecology & Environmental Science 9/20/93
- Education 6/1/66
- Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering 1/94
- Food & Nutrition Sciences
- Forest Resources 4/10/70
- History: American 5/20/59
- (Great Britain and the Commonwealth
- and Canadian-American Studies included 2/13/68)
- Interdisciplinary Ph.D. 11/29/68
- Engineering in the Natural Sciences
- Materials Science and Engineering
- Ocean Engineering and Marine Technology 2/24/2005
- Marine Biology 1/98
- Mechanical Engineering 7/01
- Microbiology 7/9/90
- Oceanography 11/21/67
- Physics 6/1/66
- Plant Science 4/15/64
- Psychology: Experimental and General 4/17/61
- (Clinical Psychology included 10/21/65)
- Spatial Information Science & Engineering 1/23/89
- Wildlife Ecology 4/84
- Zoology 4/15/64
1.2 Master of Fine Arts
A degree of Master of Fine Arts may be awarded for the completion of a planned and duly approved program of study. This program shall consist of a minimum of sixty (60) hours of work, including a research thesis and/or thesis exhibition, beyond the requirements for admission.
1.3 Master of Science and Master of Arts Programs
1.3.1 Master of Science Programs
A degree of Master of Science may be awarded for the completion of a planned and duly approved program of study. This program shall consist of a minimum of thirty (30) hours of work, including a thesis, beyond the requirements for admission.
The Graduate Faculty recognizes that for some candidates, in some departments, certain other requirements may be deemed of greater educative value than a thesis. Waiving of the thesis requirement will be recognized as an exception within the M.S. degree program, requiring approval of the Dean of the Graduate School.
Master of Science programs are approved in the following subject matter fields:
- Accounting (Suspended)
- Animal Sciences
- Aquaculture and Aquatic Resources (formerly Marine Bio-Resources)
- Biomedical Engineering
- Botany & Plant Pathology
- Chemical Engineering
- Civil Engineering
- Computer Engineering
- Computer Science
- Data Science and Engineering
- Earth and Climate Sciences
- Ecology & Environmental Sciences
- Electrical Engineering
- Financial Economics
- Food Science & Human Nutrition
- Forest Resources
- Human Development
- Information Systems
- Marine Biology
- Marine Policy
- Mechanical Engineering
- Plant, Soil, & Environmental Sciences
- Quaternary & Climate Studies
- Resource Economics & Policy
- Spatial Information Science & Engineering
- Spatial Informatics
- Wildlife Ecology
1.3.2 Master of Arts Programs
A degree of Master of Arts may be awarded for the completion of a planned and duly approved program of study. This program shall consist of a minimum of thirty (30) hours of work, which may include a thesis and/or such other requirements as approved by the Graduate Board, beyond the requirements for admission.
Master of Arts programs are approved in the following subject matter fields:
- Communication Sciences & Disorders
- Global Policy
- Theatre (suspended)
Master of Arts programs including requirements other than a thesis are approved in the following subject matter fields:
- Anthropology & Environmental Policy
- Communication Sciences and Disorders
- Financial Economics
- Intermedia Arts
1.3.3 M.A. in Teaching
220.127.116.11 Modern Languages and Classics
The M.A.T. in French and Spanish are available for students who presently teach the French and Spanish languages at the elementary or secondary levels. The German program is currently suspended.
The M.A.T. in Elementary Education [Suspended] and M.A.T. in Secondary Education are available for students without education degrees who are seeking teaching certification.
1.3.4 Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
The Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies offers an opportunity for interdisciplinary graduate work to mature students who wish to study on a part-time basis. The program provides an alternative approach to traditional specialized graduate programs limited to a single discipline or profession by offering an interdisciplinary education at the graduate level.
Each student’s program includes:
- Several interdisciplinary core seminars;
- More traditional graduate courses selected to meet individual student goals; and
- An independent project developed directly out of the student’s course work and research. A minimum of thirty (30) credits is required, and at least fifteen (15) hours must be in 500 and/or 600 level courses.
1.3.5 Master of Science in Teaching
This is a content-rich, inquiry-based graduate program for secondary science and mathematics teachers.
1.4 Non-Thesis Professional Master’s Degrees
Non-thesis Master’s degrees may be awarded for the completion of a planned and duly approved program of study. This program shall consist of a minimum of thirty (30) hours of work beyond the requirements for admission.
1.4.1 Master of Education
The programs which lead to the degree of Master of Education are intended to expand the preparation of the teacher and also are for those experienced teachers who wish to prepare themselves for such specialized areas of school service and administration, supervision, or guidance. Eligibility for admission is based upon completion of an approved teacher-education program appropriate to the graduate program requested. Some programs may have additional requirements such as evidence of successful teaching experience, higher than minimum quality of undergraduate work, a personal interview and recommendations for the specific program involved.
Students in these degree programs are required to complete thirty-three (33) hours of work including two (2) graduate seminars. The seminars are in lieu of a thesis, graduate paper, or oral examination.
1.4.2 Master of Professional Studies
This program is designed to provide professional training in a number of disciplines. A requirement for the M.P.S. is thirty (30) hours of course work of which at least fifteen (15) hours are to be selected from courses numbered 500 or above. The completion of a minimum of three hours of independent study is also required. A comprehensive written and/or oral examination will be required of each student at the completion of the graduate program. The program of study may be pursued on a part-time basis. The degree is presently offered in Animal Sciences, Biochemistry, and Microbiology.
1.4.3 Master of Business Administration
The MBA program at the University of Maine emphasizes experiential, hands-on learning, teamwork, critical thinking and leadership while still delivering a core set of knowledge in the traditional business disciplines. Our MBA program produces graduates with practical business skills and a global perspective, but more importantly, produces business leaders who can think strategically and critically, who can adapt to change and foster change, who can inspire and lead, and who can create and convey a vision.
Core goals of the MBA program include:
- Our graduates will be able to recognize and define business problems, be aware of their cross-functional implications, and address these problems using the appropriate technique or approach.
- Our graduates will be able to manage real-world business situations in uncertain environments, making decisions under information and resource constraints.
- Our graduates will exhibit effective oral and written communication skills.
- Our graduates will conduct themselves in a responsible and ethical manner.
- Our graduates will be able to work effectively with others in the presence of individual and cultural differences.
The Maine Business School MBA combines course work with experiential learning. The major components are an opening residency week, a core set of classes emphasizing required business skills and knowledge as well as integrated thinking, a consulting/internship requirement, and a required international field experience. Students may pursue a general MBA and choose their electives from a broad array of courses, or choose instead to pursue a defined track and take a more specific set of electives in that area.
The MBA program consists of 42 credits: 33 credits of classroom-based courses, and 9 experiential credits. There are 6 required courses covering the basic disciplines, and 5 elective courses. The experiential courses are an opening residency week, an internship or consulting project experience, and an international, project-oriented field experience.
1.4.4 Master of Engineering
The Master of Engineering degree (with program designation) is only offered in Engineering Physics. All other engineering disciplines offer a non-thesis M.S. degree. A minimum of thirty (30) semester hours of graduate courses is required for the M.E. degree. All other regulations relevant to the Master of Arts or Master of Science degree programs apply also to the Master of Engineering program.
1.4.5 Master of Music
This program offers two different masters degrees, one in Music Education and one in Performance. A conducting concentration is available within the Music Education degree. The individualized curriculum possibilities are designed to meet student interest, needs, and requirements within a flexible framework. The program provides opportunities to pursue a balance of academic and professionally – oriented courses.
1.4.6 Professional Science Master (PSM)
A Professional Science Master’s degree (PSM) provides an avenue for highly qualified students from a variety of backgrounds to receive advanced training directly relevant to current or intended knowledge and skills their professional careers by taking appropriate graduate courses in more than one discipline. The 30 (minimum) credit, non-thesis, graduate degree is achieved through the creation of a curriculum combining a strong core from a science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) discipline and “plus” elements (e.g. business, communications, law, technical writing, other sciences and social sciences), with a focus on team projects and supervised workplace experience, and participation from strong external advisors. The PSM program appeals to the professional who does not wish to complete the typical single discipline graduate degree, and is interested in an applied workplace experience rather than a research thesis. The PSM is particularly intended for individuals engaged in, or planning, a career outside academia.
- PSM in Bioinformatics
- PSM in Engineering and Business/Structures Engineering Mechanics
- PSM in Engineering and Business /Aerospace Engineering
- PSM in Engineering and Business /Computer Engineering 12/20/12
- PSM in Engineering and Business /Wireless Engineering 12/20/12
- PSM in Engineering and Business /Electrical Engineering 12/20/12
- PSM in Engineering and Business /Electrical Engineering 12/2/21
- PSM in Engineering and Business /Surveying Engineering
- PSM in Marine Sciences 5/6/14
1.4.7 Professional Master’s Degree Programs:
- Master of Forestry
- Master of Social Work
- Master of Wildlife Conservation
1.5 Certificate of Advanced Study
The certificate is awarded to students who complete in a satisfactory manner a planned program of at least thirty (30) hours of work beyond the master’s degree. The minimum basis for admission to the program is the possession of a master’s degree in the area or subject involved. Students who wish to pursue a year of study beyond the master’s degree in a new area or subject are expected to apply for admission to a second master’s degree program. At present, this program is open to those who hold master’s degrees in Nursing. Other departments, if they choose to apply, may gain approval for such a program in the future. Only work taken after the completion of a master’s degree may be used for credit toward the Certificate of Advanced Study.
1.6 Education Specialist (Ed.S.)
The Ed.S. is awarded to students who complete in a satisfactory manner a planned program of at least thirty (30) hours of work beyond the master’s degree. The minimum basis for admission to the program is the possession of a master’s degree in an area of education. Only work taken after the completion of a master’s degree may be used for credit toward the Ed.S.
1.7 Graduate Certificate Programs
- The University of Maine offers selected certificate programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
- A certificate at either level is not a degree; rather, it is a focused collection of courses proposed by the faculty and formally recommended either by the Undergraduate Program and Curriculum Committee (UPCC) or by the Graduate Board and approved by the Dean of the Graduate School, respectively. The didactic material encompassed within a certificate program may represent a more practice-oriented subset of an existing discipline.
- The University awards certificates upon the student’s satisfactory completion of the approved program of coursework. The certificate affords the student a record of coherent academic accomplishment in a given discipline or set of related disciplines.
- The student’s official transcript shall contain not only the listing of courses taken in the certificate program, but will also indicate successful completion of the program.
Procedures for Initiating Certificate Programs
The University of Maine Faculty creates proposals for new certificate programs following guidelines adopted by the UPCC [for programs consisting of undergraduate-level courses] or by the Graduate School [for programs consisting mainly of graduate-level courses). All proposals must be made available to the entire unit faculty and approved by the unit governance structure. Proposals will be accompanied by a signed memo from the Graduate Coordinator summarizing the internal review and approval procedure followed by the unit. Proposals will have endorsements from the heads of the units offering the coursework comprising the program, from the College Dean(s) for faculty participating in the certificate, and for programs to be offered through distance education or under the auspices of Continuing Education, from the of the Associate Provost of the Division of Lifelong Learning. The approval sheet should also include signature lines for the Provost and the President. The Associate Provost for Academic Affairs receives all proposals for new undergraduate certificate programs and refers them to the UPCC for review and recommendation. The Dean of the Graduate School receives all proposals for new graduate certificate programs and refers them to the Graduate Board for review and recommendation. The Associate Provosts shall transmit the Graduate Board/UPCC and their own recommendations concerning newly approved certificate programs to the Provost, who in turn will submit a recommendation to the President for final approval.
Guidelines for the Development of Graduate Certificate Programs
- The proposal must demonstrate that a need exists for the proposed new certificate program. This provision may be defined in terms of either external markets (i.e., external demand for the skills associated with such a certificate) or internal academic needs (i.e., the needs of a critical mass of students in a given discipline).
- The program proposal will address the likely impact of the graduate certificate program on any related degree program.
- Proposals for certificate programs that contain no new courses, no new faculty lines, and no additional costs to the University will be given expedited review in the approval process. The Graduate Board or its designee shall consider all graduate certificate program proposals for merit.
- Those proposals meeting the criteria set forth by the Graduate School are then recommended to the Dean of the Graduate School for approval.
- The Graduate School will administer graduate certificate programs with the participation of the appropriate graduate program(s). Each graduate certificate program must have a coordinator who is a Full member of the Graduate Faculty. Typically the coordinator will serve as the advisor to students in the certificate program and will also be responsible for program review and evaluation.
- For consideration by the Graduate School, proposals for new graduate certificate programs must contain the following information:
- a statement of the educational objectives of the program;
- a statement of the proposed course sequence associated with the certificate, including titles and course descriptions both for existing courses and any new courses that may be developed;
- a statement of how the proposed course sequences associated with the certificate will meet the stated educational objectives;
- a statement of the need for the proposed program and the basis for such a need, supported by either externally or internally derived data; and
- the names of at least 2 Graduate Faculty members associated with or contributing to the certificate program, either by teaching one or more of the courses associated with the program or participating in the design of the course sequence. All faculty teaching in the certificate program must hold Graduate Faculty appointments in the academic unit through which the course is offered.
- Graduate certificate programs may be at the post-baccalaureate, the post-master or the post-doctoral level.
- Programs may be either free-standing or a concentration within an existing degree program.
- Programs may be adopted for an initial period of no more than five years. If the program is approved for a period of less than five years, it expires at the end of the period unless a program review specifically recommends its continuation (which may be for an indefinite period or for an additional fixed period). Any certificate program extending beyond five years must be reviewed prior to continuation to determine that the program is meeting its stated objectives.
- An appropriate number of credit hours must comprise the certificate program and may not be less than 9 or more than 18 credits. The majority of course work for the certificate must be at least at the 500-level. Courses below 400-level cannot be used for credit in graduate certificate programs.
- The certificate proposal will address the possibility of program delivery using distance education technology.
- The proposal will address the timeframe in which the certificate program can be completed.
Student Eligibility and Admission Criteria
- An earned baccalaureate degree or its equivalent from an accredited college or university is required for admission to a graduate certificate program.
- Students who are currently enrolled in the Graduate School and who wish to pursue an approved graduate certificate program simultaneously must inform the Graduate School and the certificate coordinator of their intention to apply for admission to the certificate program before one-half of the required credits are completed.
- A maximum of 40% of the credit hours towards any certificate program may be accepted as transfer credit.
- A maximum of one course in which a grade of “C’ was earned may be applied towards the requirements for a graduate certificate. Acceptance of a course towards a certificate does not guarantee acceptance of the same course towards a graduate degree.
- Each unit offering a graduate certificate shall establish the minimum grade point average, minimum TOEFL score, requirements for standardized test scores, whether or not certificate courses may be counted towards a related master’s degree program, and other similar criteria.
- Greater flexibility than that found in graduate degree admission requirements is intentionally built into graduate certificate programs so that the needs of the target student population may be met, if it is appropriate to do so.
- As such, a graduate certificate is not viewed as a guaranteed means of entry into a graduate degree program.
- The student will be required to complete the certificate program within the time limit specified for the program; if no time limit is specified, it shall be the same as that for completion of the master’s degree.
- The proposal will address the fiscal arrangements for the program.
- A certificate graduate student may enroll on either a part-time or a full-time basis, as determined by the certificate program coordinator.
- Certificate students enrolled on a full-time basis will have access to many of the same campus services as other full-time graduate students.
- Certificate students may also be considered for merit-based financial aid by the department or program, as well as for need-based financial aid by the Student Financial Aid Office, but at a reduced priority compared to degree-seeking students.
- The proposal will address the likelihood that students enrolled in a graduate certificate program will have their tuition paid by employers or another third party.
1.7.1 Certificate Programs Approved
- Information Systems 2/1/01
- Health Care Administration 2/1/01 (sunset)
- Advanced Engineered Wood Composites 10/4/01
- Geographic Information Systems 10/4/01
- Food Science and Nutrition 10/18/07
- Student Development in Higher Education 11/15/07 (sunset)
- Journalism Training for International Scholars 12/20/07 (sunset)
- Education Data Specialist 3/18/2010
- Classroom Technology Integrationist 10/20/2011
- Innovation Engineering 1/26/2012
- Innovative Communication Design 1/26/2012
- Nursing Education 1/26/2012
- Educational Technology Coordinator 2/23/2012 [Suspended]
- Early Childhood Teacher 2/23/2012
- Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (formerly Response to Intervention for Behavior) 3/22/2012
- Digital Curation 5/1/2012
- Interprofessional Graduate Certificate in Gerontology 12/20/2012
- Interdisciplinary Disability Studies 1/24/2013
- Teacher-Consultant in Writing 12/19/2013
- Aerospace Engineering 2/20/2014
- Autism Spectrum Disorders 5/6/2014
- Alternative Teacher Certification 4/29/2016
- English as a Second Language 4/29/2016
- Instructional Design 4/29/2016
- Surveying Engineering 5/4/18
- High Leverage Practices to Promote Inclusion 5/4/18
- Food Technology 4/5/19
- Human Nutrition 4/5/19
- Maine Arts and Humanities in Medicine 4/23/20
- Computational Thinking for Educators 4/23/20
- Library and Media Specialist 4/23/20
- Composite Materials and Structures 4/23/20
- Business Analytics 6/4/20
- Computing for Educators 6/8/20
- Try on Leadership 6/8/20
- Data Science and Engineering 8/3/20
- One Health and the Environment 2/28/21
- Engineering Management 4/5/21
- Special Education Leadership Administration 4/5/21
- Electrical Engineering Technology 9/22/21
- Engineering Applications of Artificial Intelligence 1/20/22
1.8 Dual Degrees
The University of Maine Graduate School allows students to pursue two graduate degrees under the circumstances detailed below. In all cases, dual degrees should be interpreted to include separate majors within the same degree (e.g. Master of Science), a combination of two different degrees, or a combination of a graduate degree and certificate of advanced study. In all cases, students will receive separate diplomas or certificates.
1.8.1 Consecutive Degrees
Enrollment in consecutive dual degrees refers to matriculation in a second graduate degree program at the University of Maine after completion of the requirements for a first graduate degree earned at the University of Maine. A student may apply up to 9 credits earned in a graduate degree program at the University of Maine toward a master’s degree or a Certificate of Advanced Study with approval of the student’s graduate advisory committee and/or graduate program coordinator in the second graduate program. Thesis or research credits from the first program may not be counted toward the requirements of the second program. Additional policies on transfer credit in graduate certificate programs and doctoral programs are included elsewhere in the Policies and Regulations of the Graduate School.
1.8.2 Concurrent Degrees
Enrollment in concurrent dual degrees occurs when a student is matriculated in two graduate degree programs simultaneously. A student may not be enrolled in more than two graduate programs simultaneously.
In general, a student may pursue concurrent degrees only with approval of the appropriate graduate program coordinator(s) and the Dean of the Graduate School. The student must apply and be admitted to both programs. With approval of the student’s graduate advisory committee(s) and/or the graduate program coordinator(s), a student may apply up to 9 University of Maine credits earned in one master’s degree toward the requirements for a second master’s degree or Certificate of Advanced Study. Transfer policy for doctoral degrees is covered elsewhere in the Policies and Regulations of the Graduate School. Generally, students must complete separate theses if required by both programs. Completion of the degree requirements for the two programs need not be at the same time.
If a student’s tuition is funded by one or more units, it is up to the funding unit to decide if tuition may cover courses taken solely for completion of the second program.
1.8.3 Integrated Dual Degrees
Some units have formalized concurrent dual degrees between programs which create an integrated program linking the two disciplines, while continuing to award separate degrees. Generally, these dual degree programs follow the rules outlined in Dual Degrees above. However, if the formalized dual degree program features further integration, such as a single admissions process, submission of a single thesis, a single advisory committee composed of members from both programs, or more than 9 credits of common courses, the program, including proposed programs of study, must be approved by the Dean of the Graduate School and the Graduate Board of the University of Maine.
- Marine Policy and Marine Biology or Oceanography
- Global Policy and Economics or Resource Economics & Policy 11/21/13
- Business Administration and Global Policy 12/28/15
- Business Administration and Information Systems 6/20/16
1.9 Nonterminal Master’s, Ed.S. or CAS Degree
Many University of Maine doctoral students complete most or all of the requirements for the program’s cognate master’s degree in the course of their doctoral study. To recognize this achievement, a nonterminal master’s degree may be awarded if the student satisfies the following criteria:
- Student remains in good standing in the doctoral program.
- Student has completed at least 30 hours of graduate-level credit (exclusive of thesis credits) and has been admitted to doctoral candidacy or has met all the degree requirements for the cognate master’s degree.
- Student has no outstanding conditions on their admission and no outstanding financial balance owed to the University of Maine.
Some graduate programs may place additional requirements on the student such as admission to doctoral candidacy, while certain programs may decline to award a nonterminal master’s degree.
In University of Maine doctoral programs where students already possess a master’s degree and either the Ed.S. or CAS is an available degree (i.e. education and nursing, respectively), students may earn the Ed.S. or CAS upon meeting the same requirements described above.
Process: Upon satisfaction of the criteria for awarding a nonterminal master’s degree, the graduate program coordinator sends an approved program of study to the Graduate School. The Graduate School will create a master’s degree record in addition to the student’s doctoral record and award the master’s degree in the next scheduled graduation term.
1.10 Concentrations and Specializations
Within graduate degree programs
concentrations and specializations may be available. Both concentrations and specializations have
a formal curriculum. A graduate
concentration describes a course of study that is specific to a degree program
while a specialization describes a course of study that is independent of any
single degree program, and may be earned in conjunction with a number of
programs much like an undergraduate minor.
Both concentrations and specializations must be approved by the Dean of
the Graduate School before they become part of the University of Maine academic
inventory. Graduate students may specify
a concentration and/or specialization on their program of study or on a Declaration of Concentration or
Specialization form. When the student receives his/her graduate degree any
declared concentrations or specialization will appear on the academic
2.1 General Policy
In order to be admitted to graduate study an applicant must have received a baccalaureate degree or the equivalent from an accredited college or university of recognized standing and demonstrate by previous scholastic record, entrance examinations, or other evidence, the ability to pursue advanced study and research. The Executive Committee of the Graduate Board (herein referred to as Executive Committee) shall resolve individual admission problems.
2.1.1 Credentials Required
- A complete application calling for biographical and other information concerning the applicant.
- Three (3) letters of recommendation from persons familiar with the applicant’s qualifications. These letters should be academic references, although professional references are acceptable for some professional programs.
- A copy of an official transcript of all previously attempted college level work.
- Scores from standard tests as outlined in Graduate Admissions Examinations, if required by the program as part of the application.
2.1.2 Graduate Admissions Examinations
18.104.22.168 Graduate Record Examination
Applicants (for admission to the Graduate School) in some programs may be required to submit as part of their application, the aptitude and appropriate advanced test scores on the Graduate Record Examination as part of their application, although the Graduate School does not require standardized admissions scores as a general criterion for admission. The advanced test of the Graduate Record Examination will not be required of applicants for admission to Graduate School in those programs where no appropriate advanced test is available. This waiver of the advanced test is at the option of the faculty in these programs. Graduate Record Examination scores will not be required of students entering the Educational Specialist programs in Education or the Certificate of Advanced Study in Nursing. Graduate Record Examination scores will not be required of students entering the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies Program.
22.214.171.124 Alternative Entrance Examinations
For sufficient reasons, departments may require scores from other tests in addition to, or in lieu of, the standard Graduate Record Examination scores. The Graduate Management Admission Test is currently required of applicants for admission to the program leading to the Master of Business Administration. These GMAT scores are considered to be in lieu of the GRE scores. Applicants for admission to non-thesis programs in the College of Education and Human Development and the School of Nursing must submit Graduate Record Examination or Miller Analogies test scores as part of the application for graduate study. However, applicants for admission to a thesis program in the College of Education and Human Development must submit scores from the Graduate Record Examination as part of the application for graduate study.
2.1.3 Application Procedure
All documents relating to an application for admission to graduate programs are to be sent to the Graduate School. Once the official application form is received, all materials relating to the application will be forwarded, upon receipt, to the graduate committee of the institutional unit concerned.
The graduate committee of the institutional unit may, when it feels it has sufficient information, make a recommendation regarding the application. This will be made on forms provided by the Graduate School. Ordinarily, the Graduate School will forward the form for each applicant when the applicant’s file is complete, unless the graduate committee has previously requested otherwise.
Final action taken by the Dean of the Graduate School will be heavily influenced by the recommendations of the institutional unit graduate committee. However, other factors such as adherence to maintenance of minimum quality standards will also be considered in the decision.
If the graduate committee recommends admission, records relating to the application for admission should be retained for use by the institutional unit.
Each unit will determine whether or not it will accept unofficial transcripts for the purpose of the admissions policy, and will communicate this decision to the Graduate School for proper notice to applicants. Any student who is admitted on the basis of an unofficial transcript and desiring to matriculate in a graduate program at the University of Maine must have an official transcript sent to the Graduate School before matriculating.
2.1.4 Deadline for Application
Application for admission and supporting material must be received by the Graduate School six (6) weeks prior to registration date involved in order to be assured of admission prior to registration.
2.1.5 Deadline for Enrollment
An applicant admitted to a graduate program must register in that semester for which he/she has been admitted unless other arrangements, in writing, have been made.
2.1.6 Readmission to the Graduate School
A student previously registered in the Graduate School who has failed to maintain continuous enrollment or who has withdrawn, or a student who failed to matriculate in accordance with paragraph Deadline for Enrollment above, and who wishes to resume studies, must file an Application for Readmission to the Graduate School. This form may be submitted in person or by mail by the regularly published deadlines for the semester or summer session. If the student has attended any other institution during the period when he/she was not registered at The University of Maine, an official transcript of this work must be submitted. An Application for Readmission will carry no preference and will be treated in the same manner as an application for initial admission.
2.2 Specific Program Requirements – Master of Education
Both previous academic record and out-of-school experience will be considered in admitting students for work for this degree. A lower grade point average than that required for students who want to earn a Master of Arts or Master of Science degree may be accepted, given the professional orientation of the program.
2.3 Committee to Consider Application
See Institutional Unit Graduate Committee.
2.4 Classification of Admissions
2.4.1 Regular Admission
Granted to a student who has a record of high scholarship in his/her academic field and about whom there is no question of ability to carry on graduate study.
2.4.2 Provisional Admission
If a student does not have all the prerequisite course work for admission to graduate study in the academic field, or if deficiencies in the application exist, such as lack of entrance examination scores, and/or a letter of recommendation, entrance may be granted on a provisional basis. Prerequisite and elective courses must be made a part of the student’s program of study.
2.4.3 Conditional Admission
Under exceptional circumstances, a student who does not meet the established academic requirements may be admitted on a conditional basis, provided, sufficient favorable evidence is supplied to show that he/she is capable of doing satisfactory graduate work. Letters of recommendation from professors in the student’s academic field will be considered very carefully.
For those admitted on a conditional basis, it shall be stipulated in the admission letter that the student must earn grades of A or B in all courses of his/her first nine (9) hours of graduate degree credit.
A change to regular status may be recommended by the student’s advisory committee after the attainment of nine (9) hours of graduate degree credit with acceptable grades (A or B). Upon the recommendation of the student’s advisory committee, if this requirement is not met, the student may either be continued on condition or be terminated.
2.4.4 Tentative Admission
Students who file applications during the final year of undergraduate work and who are thus unable to supply complete transcripts, will be given tentative classification. Admission on this basis is contingent upon the satisfactory completion of the undergraduate program and receipt by the Graduate School of a supplementary transcript containing certification of the degree.
2.4.5 Non-Degree Admission
Non-degree students are those whose previous background or work does not immediately qualify them for admission to Graduate School or whose interest in advanced study is not related to degree programs. Non-degree status may be granted to students not planning to work for a degree, provided they meet the established entrance requirements. Such students are not required to follow course sequences, but are held to the same work standards as are all other graduate students. Students in this category must make formal application to the Graduate School in order to matriculate into a degree program. The admission must be approved by the intended major department. Work taken as a non-degree student cannot be applied to a degree later unless it fits into an approved program of study and all credits must be completed within the appropriate time limit.
2.4.6 Visiting Graduate Student Admission
A student in good standing in another recognized graduate school who wishes to enroll for a limited number of course credits, and who plans to resume work at the school of original admission, may be admitted as a visiting graduate student. Admission is granted through submission of a Visiting Graduate Student Admission Form signed by the Dean of the Graduate School of the institution in which the student is enrolled.
2.5 International Student Application
All international applicants whose native language is not English, are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) exam and submit scores as part of the application documents. A score of 80 or above on the TOEFL or equivalent score on the internet-based (iBT) TOEFL is required for admission. To be awarded a Teaching Assistantship, applicants must have achieved a 90 or equivalent on the TOEFL. In some circumstances, TOEFL scores may be waived if the applicant has attended an American college or university for at least four years or has previously earned a graduate degree from a U.S. institution of higher education. Applicants with scores below 80 or equivalent iBT score will be required to take English language training.
It is requested
that all foreign transcripts provide information as to the student’s rank in
class whenever possible. IELTS and
Pearson Academic PTE scores that are comparable to the required TOEFL scores
based on concordance tables will also be accepted as meeting the minimum
English proficiency requirement.
Prior to the beginning of each semester, usually during the pre-registration period of the preceding semester, each student is required to consult with his/her advisor, complete a registration form, and obtain the approval of the advisor. The registration material must be sent to the Graduate School for approval. Registration is not complete until all fees have been paid at the Bursar’s Office. Graduate students registering for the first time at the University of Maine must register in person with the Graduate School staff to ensure proper status of their academic record.
The listing of a course as suitable for graduate credit does not mean that any graduate student has a right to use the course for credit toward his/her degree. The course must be included in a planned program of study duly approved by the student’s advisory committee (see Program of Study).
3.1 Staff Member Registration
Members of the University faculty at the instructor level or above may become candidates for advanced degrees from any College or School of The University of Maine other than the University of Maine College or School in which they hold faculty appointment.
Faculty and staff members of the University of Maine System who are employed full-time may register for a maximum of two (2) tuition free courses per semester and during the summer. It is assumed that course prerequisites will be met.
The above implies tacitly that this privilege is not extended to persons employed on a part-time basis or to persons who are on a leave of absence or sabbatical.
3.2 Limitations of Registration
Graduate courses ought to provide adequate opportunity for formal instruction, student preparation, faculty-student interaction, reflection on and summary of course materials by the student, and, when appropriate, laboratory or field experience.
During the fall and spring semesters, course credit is normally based upon one (1) credit hour per lecture contact hour during a 14-15 week semester. During Summer and other sessions not part of the traditional academic year, credit is normally based upon no more than one (1) credit hour per calendar week of instruction. In some instances, intensive courses of shorter duration may be assigned more credit than that which might be based upon the actual instructional period. In such cases, it is expected that course preparation and/or follow-up projects or reports by students consistent with the above general guidelines will be required.
3.2.1 Credit Load for GA’s
Students holding graduate assistantships are normally considered to be employed on a half-time basis and are limited to twelve (12) hours of total credit per semester.
3.2.2 Summer Session
A full-time load in the Summer Session is one (1) credit hour. Students attending a three-week session are limited to three (3) hours of credit. Students who have previously attended the University as graduate students may be permitted to register for a maximum of seven (7) hours, provided their record from the last previous enrollment as a graduate student was B or better. In no case may a student carry more than seven (7) hours of work for graduate credit during the six-week session.
3.2.3 Doctoral Students
All doctoral students registering for dissertation during the academic year shall have credit hours assigned for ___699.
Normally, a full-time doctoral student will register for a minimum of six (6) credits each semester. Such registration may include both course and dissertation credits.
3.3 Registration for Graduate-Level Courses by Undergraduate Students
3.3.1 Courses Taken for Undergraduate Degree Credit
University of Maine undergraduate students with appropriate qualifications and permission of the instructor may take graduate-level (500-599) courses for undergraduate degree credit.
3.3.2 Courses Taken for Graduate Degree Credit
University of Maine undergraduates, who lack not more than nine (9) semester hours toward a bachelor’s degree (counting required and sequence courses), if they meet admission requirements, may register for limited graduate course credit while concurrently completing work for the bachelor’s degree. The degree credit will be transferred to the graduate transcript upon admission to Graduate School, but not the quality points. Students admitted to approved 4+1 programs may register for graduate courses prior to their final semester of undergraduate study.
The student applies in writing to the Dean of the Graduate School to be permitted to take specific courses for graduate credit. The letter must also be signed by the chairperson or graduate coordinator of the program concerned. If the request is approved, the student’s registration material should be brought to the Graduate School so that proper notations may be made authorizing the Office of Student Records to record the courses for graduate credit, once the student receives his/her undergraduate degree.
3.3.3 Four + One Master’s degrees
- The master’s program must have unfilled capacity (seats available in required classes so that the program can be instituted without opening new sections).
- This program is intended for non-thesis masters programs only.
- The sponsoring unit must develop a curriculum that can feasibly be completed in the indicated time frame (15 months following matriculation in master’s program). Proposed four + one programs must be submitted to the Graduate School for review and recommendation by the Executive Committee and the Graduate Board. Approved programs will be transmitted to the Provost for final approval.
- Students would be admitted conditionally during the junior year (those who have completed at least 60 but no more than 100 credit hours applicable towards graduation). Students complete an application for the Four + One program supplied by the academic unit and submit it directly to that unit rather than the Graduate School. To be admitted, students must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher in order to double-count graduate courses towards both their undergraduate and graduate degree programs Higher GPA requirements may be established by individual programs for admission to Four + One programs. The faculty advisor or graduate coordinator must work with the student to create a plan of study that leads to graduation within 15 months after matriculation in the master’s program to double count the credits. The program of study and the provisional admission must be communicated to the Graduate School, and the student must make a formal application through the Graduate School during the senior year for admission to the Master’s program.
- During the senior year, provisionally admitted students would take up to 9 credits of graduate-level courses toward the master’s degree. These courses would also count towards the bachelor’s degree (joint credits), but must be part of the Master’s Program of Study.
- Upon graduation with a bachelor’s degree, and with satisfactory performance (defined as 3.0 cumulative GPA and no grade below “B” in the courses to be double-counted for the master’s degree) in courses taken as an undergraduate, the student may be formally matriculated into the master’s program. Students who meet these requirements must matriculate in their master’s program within 3 months after receiving their bachelor’s degree in order to use the joint credits. Under extraordinary circumstances, a student may petition to delay matriculation up to an additional 12 months. Credits to be used towards both the undergraduate and master’s degree will be transferred in after successful completion of the master’s degree within 15 months of admission.
- Political Science/Global Policy
- Food Science/Food Science 11/21/13
- Economics/Global Policy 11/21/13
- Economics/Economics, Financial Economics, Resource Economics and Policy 11/26/13
- Mathematics/Mathematics 1/23/14
- Psychology/Psychology 3/27/14
- Forestry/Forestry 5/6/14
- Computer Science/Spatial Informatics, Information Systems, and Spatial Information Science and Engineering
- Computer Engineering /Computer Engineering 6/9/16
- Electrical Engineering /Electrical Engineering 6/9/16
- History/History 6/9/16
- Human Development 3/30/17
- International Affairs / Global Policy 5/3/18
- Biomedical Engineering 12/8/20
- Intermedia 5/5/21
3.3.4 Four + Two Master’s Programs
- The master’s program must have unfilled capacity (seats available in required classes so that the program can be instituted without opening new sections).
- This program is intended for thesis master’s programs only.
- The sponsoring unit must develop a curriculum that can feasibly be completed in the indicated time frame (27 months following matriculation in master’s program). Proposed Four + Two programs must be submitted to the Graduate School for review and recommendation by the Executive Committee and the Graduate Board. Approved programs will be transmitted to the Provost for final approval.
- Students would be admitted provisionally during the junior year (those who have completed at least 60 but no more than 100 credit hours applicable towards graduation). Students complete an application for the Four + Two program supplied by the academic unit and submit it directly to that unit rather than the Graduate School. To be admitted, students must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher in order to double-count graduate courses towards both their undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Higher GPA requirements may be established by individual programs for admission to Four + Two programs. The faculty advisor or graduate coordinator must work with the student to create a plan of study that leads to graduation within 27 months after matriculation in the master’s program. The program of study and the provisional admission must be communicated to the Graduate School, and the student must make a formal application through the Graduate School during the senior year for admission to the Master’s program.
- During the senior year, provisionally admitted students would take up to 9 credits of graduate-level courses toward the master’s degree. These courses would also count towards the bachelor’s degree (joint credits), but must be part of the Master’s Program of Study.
- Upon graduation with a bachelor’s degree, and with satisfactory performance (defined as 3.0 cumulative GPA and no grade below “B” in the courses to be double-counted for the master’s degree) in courses taken as an undergraduate, the student may be formally matriculated into the master’s program. Students who meet these requirements must matriculate in their master’s program within 3 months after receiving their bachelor’s degree in order to use the joint credits. Under extraordinary circumstances, a student may petition to delay matriculation up to an additional 12 months.
- Students may successfully complete their program in less than 27 months. However, any student who does not complete the degree within 27 months may not continue to count toward the master’s degree any courses also applied to the bachelor’s degree unless the student’s committee petitions the Graduate School for extension due to extraordinary circumstances and the Graduate School grants the exception. Credits to be used towards both the undergraduate and master’s degree will be transferred in after successful completion of the master’s degree within 27 months of admission.
- If a student starts in a 4+1 program and requests to move to the 4+2 before the end of the 15 month 4+1 period, then in order to apply up to 9 credits of graduate courses taken as a senior to the master’s degree as well as to the undergraduate degree, the student must actually complete a thesis successfully in the 27 month period of the 4+2 program. If a student in the 4+2 option requests to drop back to the 4+1 option, s/he must complete all the requirements for the 4+1 within 15 months of finishing the bachelor’s degree, otherwise the graduate courses taken as a senior may not also be applied to the master’s degree. A student may petition the Graduate School for an extension due to extenuating circumstances.
- Biology, Botany, and Zoology/Botany, Entomology, and Zoology 11/21/13
- Mathematics/Mathematics 1/23/14
- Psychology/Psychology 3/27/14
3.4 Summer Session and Continuing Education
Students in Summer Session or in Continuing Education who present evidence of holding a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent may register for graduate credit on a non-degree basis for 500-level courses and above. Registration for graduate credit and/or 500-600 level courses is limited to students who have been admitted to the Graduate School. Such students are expected to have satisfied all course prerequisites. In case of doubt, the instructor shall be the final authority in judging the qualifications of a student to take a particular course.
3.5 Adding/Dropping Courses
University policy generally rules out adding any course after the first week of classes during the regular semester or after one day in summer session.
Drop actions (without academic penalty) will be accepted on the signature of the student’s advisor during the first five weeks in a regular semester or the equivalent in a summer session; and thereafter, “Drops” will be considered by the Graduate School only after consultation with the advisor.
Note: Advisors and students should review current refund policies available from the Bursar’s Office.
3.6 International Student Registration
No international student will be allowed to register for graduate degree credit unless the student has a current visa valid for study at The University of Maine. Transfer of international students from another educational institution will not be permitted until the student has completed at least one (1) term or semester at the institution from which the student is transferring.
3.7 Full-time/Part-time Student Status
Graduate students admitted as full-time students must maintain full-time continuous enrollment. (See Continuous Enrollment)
Full-time continuous enrollment for a graduate student is defined to be registration for six (6) or more degree hours per semester and/or registration for at least one credit hour in the Summer Session. Part-time enrollment is defined as registration for fewer than six (6) hours per term. Part-time students must register at least once per year to maintain continuous enrollment, but do not have access to library and other campus resources unless registered each term. The Office of Student Aid defines full-time/part-time status for aid eligibility exclusively by credit load per term.
Doctoral students who have been admitted to candidacy and students in their final semester of study may maintain full-time enrollment status by registering for a minimum of one (1) thesis credit during the Fall and Spring semesters.
3.8 Enrollment Restrictions
3.8.1 Graduate Assistants
During the academic year, Graduate assistants must maintain full-time enrollment status by registering for six (6) to twelve (12) credit hours per semester. Doctoral students admitted to candidacy may maintain full-time enrollment status by registering for 1 credit hour of thesis or research per semester.
In the summer (June 1st through August 31st) graduate assistants are required to enroll for at least 1 graduate credit hour.
3.8.2 Fellowships and Scholarships
Recipients of fellowships and scholarships are required to register for a minimum of six (6) credit hours each semester, except as noted in 3.8.1.
3.8.3 Continuous Enrollment
A student who fails to maintain continuous enrollment is considered inactive and must apply for readmission to the Graduate School in order to resume work on a graduate degree. Continuous enrollment means that every graduate student admitted for full-time study is required to register each semester, exclusive of the Summer Session, from the time of the first enrollment in the Graduate School of The University of Maine until completion of all requirements for the graduate degree, including the filing of the thesis or dissertation and the passing of the Final Oral Examination.
A graduate student who has been admitted on a part-time basis is required to enroll and register at least once every twelve (12) months from the time of first registration in the Graduate School until the completion of all requirements for the graduate degree, including the filing of the thesis and the passing of the Oral Examination.
Course work included in a student’s program of study taken at a campus other than UM may satisfy the continuous enrollment requirement provided the student’s UM advisor and the Graduate School have approved the registration in advance and in writing.
All students, both full-time and part-time are required to register in the semester in which the degree requirements are completed.
3.9 On-Leave Registration
If a graduate student in good standing is to be away from the University and out of contact with the University faculty and facilities for a specific period of time, usually not to exceed two (2) successive semesters, the student must request “On-Leave” status. Time spent in on-leave status (for a maximum of one (1) year) is not considered part of the time limit for completion of degree. The student must petition for on-leave status and obtain the approval of his/her advisor and the Dean of the Graduate School. On-leave status will be granted only under extenuating circumstances. This type of enrollment maintains a place for the student as a member of the Graduate School but does not entitle the student to any other University privileges of a regularly enrolled full-time student, or part-time student.
3.9.1 Full-time Students
On leave approval covers two (2) consecutive academic year semesters or any part thereof. An on-leave student returning to the University on or before the termination of the period of the approved leave of absence should register in the usual way. This registration will cancel any remaining leave period. If circumstances require a later leave of absence, the student must petition and proceed again in the same manner as for an initial leave of absence.
3.9.2 Part-time Students
On leave approval covers one (1) twelve-month
period or any single part thereof.
On-leave students returning to the University on or before the
termination of the period of their approved leave of absence should register in
the usual way and by this registration will cancel any remaining leave period.
4. GENERAL REQUIREMENTS
It is the responsibility of the Graduate Student to become familiar with the various requirements of graduate study that will apply to his/her case and to satisfy them in the proper way.
4.1 Residence Requirement
Residence is required to encourage students to establish a close association with the faculty, other graduate students, and the university community. Students under the direction of faculty members are encouraged to engage in independent or collaborative research utilizing the full facilities of the university. Increasing use of technology in education has created new means for delivery of courses, for communication with faculty and other students, and for access to campus resources, including library holdings. Further, the emergence of more professionally-oriented graduate programs that are based on the complementary nature of educational experience and work experience suggest that some graduate students may benefit from a program of study that does not necessarily involve full-time study on campus.
Recognizing the uniqueness of individual graduate programs, the Graduate School sets forth the following minimum requirements for residence which acknowledge other influences such as professional activities that play an important role in the graduate experiences of some doctoral students. Each institutional unit graduate committee bears the responsibility for adopting additional residency requirements that are appropriate for the mission of its own graduate programs.
4.1.1 Master’s Degrees and Certificate of Advanced Study
At least 50% of the course credits applied toward the master’s degree or certificate must be taken through The University of Maine. Course credit taken in an approved University of Maine graduate outreach program and/or from The University of Maine via distance education technology may be used to satisfy this requirement.
4.1.2 Doctoral Programs
The minimum residence requirement for doctoral programs is met by registering for courses or thesis research through The University of Maine for four semesters beyond the baccalaureate degree. Students entering doctoral programs with the master’s degree must register for at least two semesters of course work or research at the University. For the purposes of satisfying residency, the summer session may count as a semester.
4.2 Tuition Requirement
Doctoral students will be charged tuition based on the number of credit hours for which they register. In general, no more than thirty (30) semester hours of transfer credit from a master’s degree will be accepted.
4.3 Time Limit for Completion of Requirements (See also Section 4.6.)
4.3.1 Master’s Degrees and Certificate of Advanced Study
All work for a master’s degree and for a Certificate of Advanced Study must be completed within six (6) years of matriculation.
4.3.2 Doctor of Philosophy and Doctor of Education
All work for a doctoral degree must be completed within four (4) years of admission to candidacy. Students must be admitted to candidacy within four (4) years of registration for the first work presented for satisfaction of degree requirements.
4.4 Admission to Candidacy
Admission to Candidacy applies only to students enrolled in doctoral programs and signifies that the student has completed most degree requirements. Graduate students in doctoral programs will be admitted to candidacy when the Dean of the Graduate School is informed by the Institutional Unit Committee that:
- The student has successfully passed the comprehensive and/or qualifying examination;
- The student has met all other program requirements with the exception of the dissertation, such as language proficiency; and
- The student’s committee has approved a written statement satisfying the program’s requirement for a research proposal.
4.5 Course Credit
4.5.1 Work Taken (at the University of Maine) Prior to Graduate Degree Admissions
Graduate degree credit will be granted routinely only to those students admitted to graduate programs. Up to twelve (12) hours of graduate degree credit may be granted with approval of the student’s advisory committee for work done at the University of Maine as a non-degree (non-matriculated) graduate student prior to first admission to a University of Maine graduate program, if the student was post-baccalaureate at the time of registration. (For exception, see Courses Taken for Graduate Degree Credit). Only those University of Maine graduate non-degree courses approved for degree credit upon admission to a graduate degree program will be calculated into the graduate GPA. If transfer credit is also granted, (up to 6 hours, see Transfer Credit), the transfer credit must be included in the maximum of twelve hours taken prior to admission. Exceptions to this policy may be made for graduate students in approved graduate certificate programs.
In accordance with the limits detailed below, courses taken at other institutions may be accepted toward partial fulfillment of requirements for an advanced degree. Evaluation of performance levels and satisfaction of quality standards shall be based entirely on grades earned in courses taken in the University of Maine System only.
Masters students may transfer no more than six (6) hours of credit for graduate-appropriate work taken beyond the bachelor’s degree at other institutions, subject to approval of the student’s program committee, for appropriate courses completed prior to admission. For students in doctoral or other terminal degree programs, no more than 50% of the credits applied toward the degree may be accepted in transfer, subject to approval of the student’s program committee, for appropriate courses completed prior to admission. Requests for acceptance of additional credits must be filed on a Request for Exception to Regulation.
Credit cannot be transferred for:
- Courses which would not, if taken at The University of Maine, receive graduate credit;
- Courses in which a grade lower than B- was received;
- Courses which are inappropriate for inclusion in the student’s degree program; and
- Courses completed at such a date as to exceed the time limit prescribed for a particular degree program.
A student may arrange to take work at another institution after being admitted as a graduate student at The University of Maine. Such arrangements must, however, be approved by the student’s advisor and by the Dean of the Graduate School prior to registration in the course. (Forms for Extramural Credit, available from the Graduate School, should be used.) The conditions for transfer shall comply with basic transfer policy and may not exceed 50% of the student’s entire program for the degree. Registration for extramural credit will also satisfy the continuous enrollment requirement (see Continuous Enrollment).
4.6 Revalidation of Course Credit
If requirements for an advanced degree or certification are not completed within the time period specified, application for readmission must be made before the student is allowed to continue the work for the degree. Courses which exceed the time limit may be counted only if revalidated by an oral or written examination in the course as currently given, or its equivalent if the course is no longer being offered. This examination should demonstrate the student’s knowledge of current literature and/or practice in the particular field of study. A pass/fail grade is attached. If the application for readmission is approved, the student’s program of study will be revised in view of the work completed and/or revalidated.
4.7 Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) Training
students matriculating into graduate
research masters (thesis) or doctoral programs in summer 2014 or later must
receive one credit of RCR training prior to completing the degree, preferably
prior to commencing the research. At the advisory committee’s or Graduate
Coordinator’s discretion, this credit may be substituted for one of the 6
required thesis/dissertation credits (XXX 699). Students must complete RCR
training before the commencement of the fourth (4th) credit of XXX 699.
The Graduate School will provide a list of acceptable options for fulfilling
the RCR training requirement.
5. APPLICATION FOR DEGREE
All candidates who expect to be awarded a degree or certificate must apply for the degree or certificate and adhere to the deadline dates published by the Office of Student Records. The application process is completed in MaineStreet and general information can be obtained at studentrecords.umaine.edu/graduation.
The final title of the thesis is a part of the application for degree.
5.1 Eligibility for August Doctoral Candidates Participating in May Commencement
August graduates can participate in the May Commencement if the following requirements are met:
- February 1: File for August graduation with the Office of Student Records. Applying for May graduation is reserved ONLY for students completing all requirements
- Submit a Notice of Oral Examination to the Graduate School (two weeks prior to defense)
- Submit a Tentative Dissertation and Tentative Dissertation Acceptance Form with required signatures due in the Graduate School at least 24 hours prior to the defense
- Successfully present and orally defend dissertation by the last Friday in April for participation in May Commencement
- Submit a copy of the Oral Examination and Final Dissertation Acceptance Form demonstrating an affirmative vote of the Committee (Section 1 of the form), indicating that the dissertation was successfully defended.
6. REQUESTS FOR EXCEPTIONS TO REGULATIONS
Students have the privilege of petitioning for exceptions to the regulations of the Graduate Faculty but must submit convincing evidence that the exception is needed and is warranted.
6.1 Procedure for Submission
Requests, after being signed by the advisor or by the Advisory Committee, shall be submitted on forms obtainable from the Graduate School and addressed to the Dean of the Graduate School who may, at his discretion, bring the Exception to Regulation to the Executive Committee for their recommendation.
6.2 Filing and Review
Requests will generally be reviewed prior to registration for action by the Executive Committee at a regular meeting. Requests must, therefore, be filed well in advance of a monthly meeting date if they are to be placed on the agenda.
6.3 Authority to Grant Exceptions
The Dean of the Graduate School has
the authority to grant exceptions to the Graduate Faculty regulations if, in
its judgment, such action is in accord with the educational objectives of the
Graduate School. S/he may delegate this
authority to the Executive Committee.
7. GRADUATE LEVEL COURSES
The Graduate Board has sole authority to determine whether or not any course offered in any institutional unit may be offered for graduate credit. No course may be listed in any publication as carrying graduate credit unless approved by the Graduate Board.
The Graduate Faculty may allow graduate degree credit to one student but not to another for the same course.
7.1 Approval of Courses
The Graduate Board shall recommend approval of new courses. (See Article IV, Section 1.d. of the Constitution.)
7.2 Designation of Courses for Graduate Credit
The listing of a course as suitable for graduate credit does not mean that any graduate student has a right to use the course for credit toward his/her degree. The course must be included in a planned program of study duly approved by the student’s advisory committee.
7.2.1 Course Numbering
Courses numbered 100 to 399 are undergraduate courses. They are open to graduate students but may not be used to satisfy advanced degree course requirements. Courses numbered 400 to 499 are upper-class undergraduate courses which are approved for graduate credit with prior approval of the student’s advisory committee. Courses numbered 500 to 599 are graduate courses open to undergraduate honor students, or those whose advancement in the field will permit their taking a graduate level course among graduate students without disadvantage to themselves. Courses numbered 600 to 699 are exclusively for matriculated graduate students.
7.2.2 Criteria for Approval
Courses which are approved for graduate credit should represent study of an advanced nature. Advanced courses are those following a substantial amount of training in the subject or area. Only advanced courses may be credited in the subject in which the candidate expects to obtain his/her degree. The courses in a doctoral program, beyond the first or master’s level year, should be predominantly in courses primarily for graduate students (500 and 600 level courses).
7.3 Master List of Courses
A master list of courses approved for graduate credit shall be maintained. This list shall include all courses duly approved by the Graduate Board for graduate credit.
The current Graduate Catalog is regarded as the official listing of courses approved for graduate credit. Approval by the Graduate Board is required before any course not appearing in the Graduate Catalog may be listed in any University publication as being offered for graduate credit (degree or non-degree).
7.4 Courses Not on Approved List
Explicit approval of the advisory committee chairperson and the Dean of the Graduate School is required, in advance, if graduate credit is to be allowed for a student for any course not listed in the current graduate catalog.
7.4.1 Experimental Courses
Occasionally, programs offer a course under a special topics designator to determine whether the demand exists to offer the course permanently or to make a new course available immediately prior to formal approval. In programs where this is a common practice, graduate students may have an academic history with several topics courses with the same course designator and number. To limit the proliferation of topics courses, programs may offer a new course once under a unique course number as an experimental course. Experimental Courses will not appear in the graduate catalog but graduate students will receive graduate degree credit for them. Proposals for experimental graduate courses are submitted to the Dean of the Graduate School for approval and submission to the Office of Student Records. In order to be offered more than once under the unique number, the course must go through formal approval by the Graduate Curriculum Committee and Graduate Board.
7.5 Continuing Education Courses and Interactive Television (ITV) Courses
Continuing Education courses and
Interactive Television (ITV) courses shall parallel, in content, regular
University courses acceptable for graduate credit, and meet the same time
requirements and scholastic standards maintained in the latter. In the event no comparable residence courses
are offered, Continuing Education courses and ITV courses must conform to
standards maintained for similar residence courses acceptable for residence
credit. Continuing Education courses and
ITV courses must meet the approval of the Graduate Board as indicated above.
8. PROGRAM OF STUDY
A program of study is planned by the student in consultation with his/her advisor or advisory committee as early as possible. The program shall consist of an outline of courses to be passed and research to be undertaken. Prerequisite and elective courses are a part of the student’s program of study. (See Registration.) By the completion of the first twelve (12) hours of graduate credit or before the third registration, whichever comes first, the student must submit a program of study to the Graduate School or registration will not be approved. When the program has been approved by the student’s advisory committee and the chairperson of the institutional unit graduate committee and has been filed in the Graduate School, it becomes the student’s required curriculum.
A graduate student working toward a master’s degree will be required to present a minimum of twelve (12) hours (exclusive of thesis) of 500 and/or 600 level course work in partial satisfaction of requirements for the degree. The same requirement shall apply to the Certificate of Advanced Study.
8.1 Forms Used
The entire program of study is to be presented on forms available from the Graduate School. Master’s and Certificate of Advanced Study students should use the form entitled “Program of Study for the Master’s or CAS Degree.” Doctoral students should use the form entitled “Program of Study and Research for the Doctoral Degree.” The original copy must be filed in the Graduate School.
8.2 Graduate Student Advisement
All graduate students who are enrolled in degree programs must be assigned an advisor or an advisory committee.
For students in thesis programs, an advisory committee will be appointed as early as possible in the student’s course of study. For students enrolled in non-thesis programs, a single advisor may be appointed in lieu of an advisory committee. This advisor, a member of the Graduate Faculty, shall be appointed by the Dean of the Graduate School on the advice of the chairperson of the institutional unit committee, as early as possible in the student’s course of study.
8.2.1 Advisory Committee
A student’s advisory committee is appointed by the Dean of the Graduate School, on the advice of the chairperson of the institutional unit graduate committee, as early as possible in the student’s course of study. The student’s major advisor or thesis advisor normally chairs the student’s advisory committee. If the student’s research advisor is not a regular full-time graduate faculty member of The University of Maine, a regular full-time graduate faculty member must be named in addition to the research advisor to serve as co-chair of the student’s advisory committee. The advisory committee is composed of a minimum of three (3) members of the graduate faculty. It is highly recommended that one (1) committee member be selected from the graduate faculty of a department other than the student’s intended major. The advisory committee guides the student on course work and the thesis and often serves as the examining committee for the master’s final examination. A separate examining committee may be appointed by the Dean of the Graduate School upon the request of the chairperson of the institutional unit graduate committee. Membership of the committee may be changed to meet the needs of the student. (See Article III, Section 5 of the Constitution.)
8.2.2 Graduate Advising Outside the Home Department
Upon occasion, a faculty member in one unit may be the primary advisor or co-advisor for a graduate student in another unit. In such a case, both units will receive credit for the student as an enrolled, degree-seeking student.
8.3 Changes in Program
The form “Change in Program of Study” is used when the student wishes to substitute other work in place of that prescribed in the official program of study. Changes become official when the Change in Program of Study form is approved by the student’s advisory committee and filed in the Graduate School. It is the student’s responsibility to obtain approval of major changes in his/her course of study at the time such changes are made. Minor changes may be made and the Change in Program of Study form filed in the Graduate School during the semester in which graduation occurs.
8.4 Special Program Forms
Curricula which include appropriate
courses for graduate students who are engaged in, or are preparing for,
educational work in the public school system have been prepared by the Faculty
of the College of Education and Human Development. Copies of these prepared curricula are
available in photocopied form for the use of the student and the advisor and
satisfy the requirements for a program of study for the Master of Education
degree. Similar programs are used for
the Certificate of Advanced Study and the Master of Business Administration and
these also satisfy the requirements.
9.1 Master’s Examinations
All students completing master’s degrees are expected to demonstrate comprehensive knowledge of their subject areas. This may be accomplished by completing an approved course of study, and/or by passing written or oral examinations. All students enrolled in thesis programs are required to pass an oral examination as described in Master’s Oral Examination. Additional examinations may be required by individual programs.
9.1.1 Master’s Oral Examination
Near the end of the course of study for the master’s degree, candidates in thesis programs will be required to pass an oral examination. The oral examination will take place after the thesis has been approved and delivered to the Graduate School. The oral examination may cover the thesis as well as course work. The Graduate School must be informed of the date, time and place of the examination at least two (2) weeks in advance. A form for this purpose is available from the Graduate School.
Oral examinations are open to all members of the Graduate Faculty. Any member of the faculty at the examination has the privilege of questioning the candidate. Only members of the Examining Committee are eligible to vote.
126.96.36.199 Nature of Examination
The examination should be comprehensive in nature, and should be organized around a central theme such as the thesis. A formal presentation of the thesis or paper by the candidate is recommended. The student shall be informed of the nature of the examination by his/her major advisor. The two-hour period is to be considered the maximum and not the minimum time of the examination.
188.8.131.52 The Examining Committee
There shall be a small examining committee of from three (3) to five (5) members present throughout the examination. The student’s advisory committee usually serves as the examining committee but a different examining committee may be selected with the consent of the Dean of the Graduate School. The candidate’s major advisor shall chair the committee. By custom, the senior leadership of the Graduate School are ex officio members of the examining committee. The examining committee shall have the authority to require the candidate to repeat the examination in whole or in part. The committee vote must be unanimous for the candidate to pass the examination.
9.2 Doctoral Examinations
9.2.1 Comprehensive Examinations
Comprehensive examinations, which may be written, oral, or both, will be administered by the department of the student’s major subject and passed to the satisfaction of his/her advisory committee. These examinations may not be taken until the student has completed at least one and one-half (1½) years, or the equivalent, of study beyond the bachelor’s degree. These examinations are given to determine whether the student has made satisfactory progress in his/her study, and is qualified to pursue thesis research profitably and to meet training requirements for the degree.
9.2.2 Final Examinations
After the doctoral thesis has been accepted by the candidate’s advisory committee, the required copy of the thesis shall be presented to the Graduate School. The candidate must then present himself/herself for the final examination to an examining committee of no less than five (5) members appointed by the Dean of the Graduate School or his/her designee upon the recommendation of the chairperson of the institutional unit graduate committee. Other members of the faculty may be invited to attend and participate in the questioning but only members of the committee may vote in determining the outcome.
The committee vote need not be unanimous for a doctoral candidate to pass the final oral examination; however, only one (1) negative vote will be permitted.
If the membership of the examining
committee is not the same as the student’s dissertation committee, the Graduate
School must be notified in advance of the final examination.
10. THESIS REQUIREMENT
A thesis is generally required as part of all programs leading to a Master of Fine Arts, Master of Arts, Master of Science, Doctor of Philosophy, or Doctor of Education. However, some master’s programs do have non-thesis options.
10.1 Nature of Thesis
10.1.1 Project/Thesis/Dissertation Credits
Project/thesis/dissertation credits (XXX699) shall be graded with a P (Pass = satisfactory progress made), I (Incomplete = insufficient progress made but extenuating circumstances exist) or F (Fail – insufficient progress made, no extenuating circumstances). At the beginning of each semester, the student and advisor shall agree on the work that must be accomplished during the semester to merit a P. When a project/thesis/dissertation is accepted, the final semester thesis credits will be graded as ACC (accepted), and I grades will convert to P. P grades automatically earn degree credit. I grades earn degree credit when they are converted to P on successful completion of the project/thesis/dissertation. Students may appeal any grade on project/thesis/dissertation credits through the normal procedures (see Section 13. Grades and Reports).
10.1.2 Conversion of Thesis to Non-Thesis Degree
Some programs permit students to convert from a thesis to a non-thesis option. When this occurs, students may use up to 6 thesis research credits (XXX 699) with a grade of P towards their degree credit requirement if the department concurs.
It is ordinarily expected that the thesis for the Master’s degree shall be a limited piece of original research, with the design of making a contribution to scholarship in the student’s particular field. It should involve training in the investigation of primary resources, the sifting and evaluation of data, the recombining and organizing of material, and the final construction and presentation of the thesis in satisfactory written or other graphic form.
Any department is authorized to submit for approval of the Executive Committee, in the case of a student of proven maturity, intelligence, accuracy, and industry whose objectives and interest are not best furthered by this type of research, a thesis of a different type. This may consist of a digest and analysis of the literature on a topic or problem of major importance in the student’s field; a comprehensive outline and critique of current practices; or a report of a project undertaken and carried on under competent direction.
10.1.4 Doctoral Dissertation
The doctoral thesis must demonstrate the candidate’s mastery of the area of his/her research. It must embody results of an original investigation in his/her principal field of study. It must give evidence of an exhaustive study of a specialized field and must be an authoritative statement of knowledge on the subject or produce a new interpretation by rearrangement or re-analysis of existing data. The work must be a definite contribution to knowledge of sufficient importance to warrant its publication.
10.1.5 Publication of Research Results Prior to Acceptance of Thesis or Dissertation
If work constituting the basis of a student’s thesis or dissertation is to be published and if publication will be prior to the acceptance of the thesis or dissertation, such publication shall be done only with the knowledge of the student’s committee and the mutual consent of the student and the thesis advisor. The work intended for inclusion in the thesis or dissertation normally should have been completed in major part after the program of study, including the research area, and has been defined by the student and his/her committee. The publication should identify the student author or authors, and should indicate that the work published is being done as part of his/her (their) thesis requirements for the master’s or doctoral degree at The University of Maine.
10.1.6 Guidelines for Using Publications(s) as Thesis or Dissertation
- Publications can be used in theses and dissertations with the prior approval of the student’s Graduate Thesis Committee.
- A thesis or dissertation comprised of publications must follow the established formatting for thesis and dissertations, including brief introduction and conclusion and a common bibliography.
- A student who is interested in using publications as his or her thesis or dissertation must discuss this plan in advance with the advisor and Graduate Thesis Committee and secure approval as per item 1. The student’s Graduate Thesis Committee will have an agreement indicating that published, in press, and/or submitted papers may be included in the thesis or dissertation and will establish criteria for the acceptable number of papers, order of authorship, and handling of shared contributions.
- Joint authorship of publications used as part of a thesis or dissertation will be acknowledged in the thesis or dissertation, either in the endnotes or in the Acknowledgments, by prior agreement between the student and the Graduate Thesis Committee.
- It is the student’s responsibility to secure copyright permissions when necessary (e.g., permission from a journal to use a published paper in the thesis or dissertation).
- Programs may choose to develop program-wide guidelines on the use of publications in theses or dissertation.
10.2 Approvals Related to Thesis
10.2.1 Thesis Subject
The subject must be formally submitted to the Graduate School at the time the student submits the program of study. Approval of the thesis subject by the student’s advisory committee is required.
10.2.2 Completed Thesis
An approved electronic copy of the thesis must be submitted to the Graduate School no later than 24 hours before the final examination. It must have been previously approved by a committee which shall be appointed by the Dean of the Graduate School. The thesis shall be read and approved by no fewer than three (3) persons.
The “Tentative Thesis Acceptance Form” signed by the members of the advisory committee signifies that the draft thesis has been read and is in appropriate form for the oral defense. The filing of a completed Tentative Thesis Acceptance Form signifies only that the student’s committee deems the thesis to be in acceptable form for oral defense. A student may expect that revisions, amendments, or additions may be required based upon the oral examination. In rare instances, serious difficulties may be discovered during the oral examination, which result in major revisions in a thesis or dissertation. (Also see Date of Presentation)
10.2.3 Human Subjects Approval
As required by The University of Maine policy, graduate students who plan to perform research that involves the use of human subjects must comply with The University of Maine Policies and Procedures of the Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects (IRB). No research with human subjects shall be conducted until the Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects (IRB) has approved the research protocol. Responsibility for ensuring compliance with The University of Maine Human Subjects Review Policy rests with the student’s thesis advisor. Evidence of IRB approval, if applicable, must be noted on the student’s Final Thesis Acceptance Form. Student violations of the Human Subjects Review Policy will be handled on an individual basis in accordance with existing University of Maine or college/departmental policy. The inclusion in a thesis or dissertation of data involving human subjects which was obtained through procedures which did not receive prior approval by the IRB will ordinarily not be permitted.
10.2.4 Animal Subjects Approval
Graduate students performing research or testing using live vertebrate animals must obtain the approval of the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) before initiating such studies. Responsibility for ensuring compliance with The University of Maine Policies and Procedures for the Humane Care and Use of Animals rests with the student’s thesis advisor. Evidence of IACUC approval, if applicable, must be noted on the student’s Final Thesis Acceptance Form. Student violations of the Policies and Procedures for the Humane Care and Use of Animals will be handled on an individual basis in accordance with existing University of Maine or college/departmental policy. The inclusion in a thesis or dissertation of data involving animal subjects which was obtained through procedures which did not receive prior approval by the IACUC will ordinarily not be permitted.
10.3 Form and Preparation of Thesis
It is expected that each department will guide its own students in the selection of the appropriate manual to be used in order that students will have experience with accepted practice in their own fields. The specific guidelines for thesis and dissertation preparation are available from the Graduate School’s website at umaine.edu/graduate.
CAUTION: Do not consult another thesis for guidance. Thesis requirements change.
The original copy of the thesis shall be submitted electronically in PDF format to the Graduate School.
The thesis must be standard, double-spaced throughout, except for quotations, footnotes, bibliographies, and illustrations, which may be single-spaced. Each page of the thesis shall have a margin of at least one inch on the left, right, top, and bottom. The only matter which may be outside these imaginary margin lines is the page number. With the exception of the Abstract which are not included in the pagination of the thesis, all pages are assigned page numbers. Small Roman numerals are used for the preliminary pages following the title page. The title page is the only page in the thesis on which a number is not typed but is considered page “i.” Beginning with the first page of the text, all pages, including any appendices, are numbered consecutively with Arabic numerals.
The order of presentation of the various parts of a thesis shall be as follows:
- Title Page
- Copyright Notice (optional)
- Dedication (if any)
- Acknowledgments (if any)
- Land Acknowledgment (recommended)
- Table of Contents (see below)
- List of Tables (if any)
- List of Figures (if any)
- Introduction (if any)
- Text of Thesis
- By Chapter or by Section (consult committee)
- Bibliography or References Cited (consult committee)
- Appendix or Appendices (if any)
- Biography of the Author
The Table of Contents shall be a complete listing of all parts or divisions of the thesis that have page numbers including those pages numbered with Roman numerals.
10.3.2.1 Title Page
The arrangement of the title page must follow a specific form. Samples of title pages for the master’s thesis and for the doctoral dissertation may be obtained from the Graduate School.
10.3.2.2 Land Acknowledgement
University of Maine graduate students are expected to include a statement in their final thesis or dissertation which acknowledges that their graduate study has taken place on the ancestral lands of the Wabanaki Tribal Nations. The Graduate School acting through the Graduate Board recommends two nonexclusive options for a tribal land acknowledgement. The first option is to include the statement that was developed by the President’s Council on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and adopted by the University of Maine in the acknowledgements section of the thesis/dissertation:
The University of Maine recognizes that it is located on Marsh Island in the homeland of Penobscot people, where issues of water and territorial rights, and encroachment upon sacred sites, are ongoing. Penobscot homeland is connected to the other Wabanaki Tribal Nations— the Passamaquoddy, Maliseet, and Micmac—through kinship, alliances, and diplomacy. The University also recognizes that the Penobscot Nation and the other Wabanaki Tribal Nations are distinct, sovereign, legal and political entities with their own powers of self-governance and self-determination.UMaine President’s Council on DEI
The second option, which may be especially relevant to graduate students undertaking qualitative research studies is to include a researcher positionality statement in the thesis/dissertation:
Masters and PhD student researchers in the social sciences are often required to explore and explain their positionality, as, in the social world, it is recognized that their ontological and epistemological beliefs influence their research.https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1268044.pdf
The positionality statement could include an acknowledgement of the land:
Articulating your positionality means locating yourself in your familial history, discerning where your knowledge comes from, and addressing the lived experiences that guide your perspective in your life, research, and teaching roles. We all inhabit intersectional identity groups that connote varying levels of power and privilege such as race, socioeconomic class, ability, religion, gender, and sexual orientation.https://intheclass.arts.ubc.ca/renewed-project/discussion-topics-prompts/discussion-prompts-positionality/
Graduate programs supporting option two should provide resources to graduate students electing this option. Development of a researcher positionality statement which acknowledges the land may be used to complement the formal University land acknowledgment statement or may be used as an alternative to this statement.
10.3.3 Number of Copies
The candidate must prepare an electronic copy of the thesis which is held in DigitalCommons through the Fogler Library. Students may be required to provide additional copies to their department, advisor, or agencies contributing to the financial support of the thesis.
The biography shall be written in the third person and should not exceed one hundred fifty (150) words in length. It should give such information as the place and date of birth, education, major and minor fields of study, business or professional experience, exhibits of creative work, scholarly publications, and membership in professional organizations and honorary societies.
10.3.5 Date of Presentation
The thesis should be in the hands of the thesis advisor about one (1) month prior to the anticipated date of the final oral examination, or at some time specified by the department concerned. The thesis, in a form acceptable for examination purposes, must be delivered to the Graduate School no later than 24 hours prior to the final oral examination and must be accompanied by a completed and signed Tentative Thesis Acceptance Form. The thesis shall be submitted electronically in PDF format.
The requirement that the thesis be in a form acceptable for examination means that:
- It represents the finished scholarly product of the candidate’s research, and
- All copies submitted be typed and properly organized, ready for final revisions.
The thesis in its final approved form must be submitted electronically as a PDF to the Graduate School before classes end in the semester or summer session in which the student expects the degree to be awarded. The exact date and time the thesis is due is available in the Graduate School.
Both the Comprehensive Examination and the Dissertation Proposal Defense (where applicable) provide important guidance to doctoral students at the start of their dissertation research. These events should thus occur prior to dissertation research. Therefore, the Graduate School establishes one complete semester (not less than four months) as the minimum time between the completion of these events and the final dissertation defense. Units may establish a longer minimum time at their discretion. Each unit must communicate the established minimum time to the Graduate School if it is greater than one semester.
10.4 ETD Submission
An electronic submission of the thesis through DigitalCommons is required. Information on submission procedures is available on the Graduate School website umaine.edu/graduate.
10.5 Credit Allowed for Thesis
The minimum credit allowed for the master’s thesis is six (6) hours but in no case may it exceed fifteen (15) hours. If more than ten (10) semester hours are allowed, at least two (2) academic years must be spent by the candidate in resident graduate study.
Some programs permit students to
convert from a thesis to a non-thesis option.
When this occurs, students may use up to 6 thesis credits with a grade
of P towards their degree credit requirement if the program concurs. Programs should establish a procedure for
determining how many P grade thesis credits will count in each case.
11. FOREIGN LANGUAGE REQUIREMENT
Beginning on July 1, 1968 each
institutional unit will designate its foreign language requirements, if any,
and will specify the method of testing.
Such requirements must be stated in the catalog description of the institutional
unit. There is no overall Graduate
School language requirement.
12. ACADEMIC COMMITTEES
12.1 Program or Advisory Committees
See Graduate Student Advisement.
12.2 Institutional Unit Graduate Committee
Each institutional unit of the University offering a program leading to an advanced degree shall have a unit graduate committee. The department chairperson shall be an ex officio member of this committee. With this one exception, the size of the committee, the method of selecting members, and the general range of its functions will be determined by the Graduate Faculty of the institutional unit.
The unit graduate committee is
primarily the executive committee of the Graduate Faculty of the institutional
unit. It carries on routine operations
related to graduate work and proposes improvements in such for consideration by
the unit. It coordinates graduate work
in the unit, assists members of the Graduate Faculty and represents the unit in
performing certain specific functions related to operations of the Graduate School
as designated in the Graduate Catalog or in the Policies and Regulations of the
Graduate School. The institutional unit
graduate committee does not replace the graduate faculty member in directing
the work of graduate students.
The work described in the student’s program of study, presented for a graduate degree (exclusive of thesis), must be passed with a minimum grade of C. Excluding grades of I and L, any work submitted in a graduate course that would not carry a grade of C or higher is considered failing and should be assigned a grade of F. A grade of B- (2.67) or higher qualifies automatically for graduate credit. A grade of C or C+ will not carry graduate degree credit unless a student’s advisory committee recommends and the Dean of the Graduate School approves that such credit be allowed. No student will be allowed to apply more than six (6) hours of neither C /C+ grades toward meeting the requirements of a Master ’s degree nor more than twelve (12) hours toward satisfying the requirements for a Ph.D. or Ed.D. Following the first admission to the Graduate School, all courses taken at the University of Maine will be calculated into the student’s graduate GPA. Exceptions for extenuating circumstances must be appealed to the Executive Committee of the Graduate Board and approved by the Dean of the Graduate School.
Courses with identical course designators and titles may not be repeated for graduate credit unless so noted in the course description or by approval of the graduate program coordinator and Dean of the Graduate School.
Once an advanced degree has been awarded, grades in course work taken towards that degree cannot be changed. Incomplete grades, unless made up during the period before the degree is awarded, will remain as I’s on the student’s transcript. Each department offering a course may establish additional criteria for alteration of an incomplete grade. A student may not carry a combination of more than three incomplete or L (L=stopped attending class) grades in all enrolled degree programs without permission of the graduate program coordinator(s) and the Graduate School.
It is presumed that a graduate student, whose preparation for a given course is adequate, will normally be able to earn a minimum grade of B. Whenever a student receives a grade lower than B, his/her advisory committee must make a written report and recommendation to the Dean of the Graduate School.
The reports referred to above are to be made on forms supplied by the Graduate School. Reports shall be presented to the Graduate Faculty, from time to time, on matters relating to academic standards in the various disciplines.
Each graduate student is responsible for submitting to the Graduate School a “Completion of Requirements” form signed by his/her advisor or advisory committee, as appropriate. This form must be submitted no later than four (4) weeks from the end of classes for the semester. A graduate degree is not completed until both of the following conditions are met:
- The necessary signatures are obtained on the Completion of Requirements form indicating that the student has satisfactorily passed a required oral examination, and
- The unit Graduate Coordinator has audited the student’s official record and has signed this form indicating that all requirements for the degree have been fulfilled.
No doctoral candidate shall be allowed to participate in a commencement exercise until he/she has successfully completed all requirements for the degree (including defense of his/her dissertation and filing of the completed final copy of the dissertation with the Graduate School).
The following policy is to govern the awarding of degrees posthumously at The University of Maine.
A posthumous degree may be awarded if:
- At the time of death the student had completed all requirements of their degree program and would have qualified for graduation; or
- At the time of death the student was enrolled in their final semester, was taking the necessary courses to complete their degree requirements, and their instructors and/or advisor can show that the student was likely to complete the coursework satisfactorily.
- A request for a posthumous degree is made to the chair of the student’s department by family, friends, or faculty members who have worked with the student. A death certificate and proof of their relationship to the student must be made available;
- If the above requirements have been met, the request will go to the Associate Dean of the college/Graduate School for approval;
- Provost reviews and makes recommendation to the President;
- President has final approval;
- The approved request is forwarded to the Office of Student Records.
Awarding of Posthumous Degree
- The student’s diploma and transcript will note that the degree was awarded posthumously;
- The student’s name will appear in the commencement program, with note that the degree was awarded posthumously;
- The President, Provost or their designee(s) will hold a private reception with the family and friends of the deceased and present the degree at the reception.
The University of Maine ordinarily awards undergraduate and graduate degrees only to those candidates who have completed all course work and other requirements necessary to earn the degree. However, given the somewhat extended nature of a graduate student’s dissertation preparation, occasions may arise in which a student passes away just prior to completing the final doctoral degree requirements. This policy permits the University of Maine to confer a doctoral degree to a deceased graduate student who has been admitted to candidacy and has completed all work except submission of the final dissertation, and who would likely have finished the remaining degree requirements within a year of the death.
Upon receiving signed approval from
the student’s dissertation committee, the graduate program coordinator and/or
department chair forwards a nomination letter to the Dean of the Graduate
School expressing support for the conferral of the posthumous doctoral degree.
The letter should address how close the student was to completing the
dissertation at the time of his/her death. The nomination packet should also
include the student’s Curriculum Vitae and may also contain letters of support
from other faculty members. The Dean of the Graduate School will confer with
the Executive Committee of the Graduate Board about awarding the degree
posthumously. If the review is favorable, the Dean will forward a
recommendation to the Provost and the President that the doctoral degree be
conferred posthumously. The President will inform the Vice Chancellor for
Academic and Student Affairs of the University’s decision.
Recognizing the highly individualized nature of graduate programs, a student filing an academic appeal is encouraged to request that his/her thesis advisor or other faculty member of his/her choice act as a counselor and/or representative at any level of the appeal process which is as follows:
- The student should discuss the concern with the appropriate faculty member(s).
- If the concern persists, the student should follow the department’s written appeal procedures if they exist, or if not, consult with the graduate program coordinator or chairperson/school director, (or the college dean, if there is no department).
- If the complaint remains unresolved, the student should write to the Dean of the Graduate School outlining the situation, and requesting a review. The Dean of the Graduate School or his/her designee will discuss the situation with the college dean and/or appropriate members of the department or graduate program. The Dean of the Graduate School or his/her designee will then meet with the student and attempt to resolve the problem.
- If this resolution is not satisfactory, the Dean of the Graduate School will refer the appeal to the Executive Committee of the Graduate Board for one final review. After hearing from the student and the faculty member(s) involved, the Executive Committee will render its decision, which shall be considered binding. The decision will be communicated to the student in writing by the Dean of the Graduate School.
Students classified in conditional or non-degree categories of admission are not eligible for award of scholarships, fellowships, or traineeships nor should they ordinarily be recommended for appointment as Graduate Assistants.
A Graduate Assistant is a graduate student who receives compensation (regardless of source) in return for required services in connection with research, instruction or instructional duties (including grading papers, assistance with laboratory sections, etc.), or administrative duties. Graduate Assistants on standard appointments are expected to work 20 hours a week and to perform their duties each week throughout the term of their appointment, unless otherwise arranged with the faculty supervisor. Supervisors are expected to release their assistants for the 10 days around Christmas to New Year’s Day, but may otherwise expect the assistant to perform all assigned duties throughout the term of appointment.
Students and their supervisors should craft a work agreement at the start of the assistantship term. Graduate thesis research (i.e., work specific to the assistant’s project, not necessarily related to the source of funding) may require additional time beyond 20 hours per week; such work should be described in the work agreement and should be reflected by student enrollment for graduate thesis research credits. Either students or faculty may appeal to the Graduate Board Executive Committee if a mutually satisfactory work schedule cannot be achieved. Individuals considering an appeal should contact the Dean or Associate Dean of the Graduate School to discuss their case before submitting a written appeal.
A graduate student who has received an award for which no specific services are required, although the holder may be expected to pursue research or study in connection with an advanced degree.
A graduate student supported by a grant program designed to increase the supply of trained scientific personnel. Funds are granted to the institution to encourage advanced study and research in broad areas of science. Research is required insofar as research is a requirement of the advanced degree program in which the student is enrolled.
Although assistantships are part-time positions, it is expected students are working full-time on the combined primary workload of their assistantship, coursework, and/or thesis or dissertation. Moreover, some funding sources (e.g., federal grants) do not permit outside employment, and similarly, international students must follow federal visa requirements regarding maximum employment hours. For these reasons, the default Graduate School policy is that Graduate Assistants may not normally be employed in any capacity other than their assistantship, inside or outside the University during the academic year. However, individual departments/units may have policies that allow exceptions to this rule, as long as they do not violate the maximum 30 hrs/week (i.e., 10 hrs/wk beyond a half-time assistantship) for any Graduate Assistant, specific grant policies, or federal visa requirements governing student employment during the academic year.
Graduate Assistants should consult their departmental student handbook or Graduate Program Coordinator to find out if there are departmental policies related to outside employment. In the absence of such policies, any requests for additional employment or changes in employment should be discussed first with the student’s faculty advisor and/or assistantship supervisor/project Principal Investigator (PI). If approved by the advisor/supervisor/PI, the request also must be reviewed and approved by the graduate program coordinator and the Graduate School, and must adhere to all University and any other applicable policies (e.g. funding agencies) that are relevant to the additional employment.
The time spent performing the duties of an assistantship should generally not exceed an average of 20 hrs/week during the academic year. However, completion of a thesis requires a significant amount of degree-related work which will extend beyond the 20 hours per week of compensated time in order for the student to make satisfactory progress towards the degree. Students should consult with their advisors regarding an appropriate work schedule.
Graduate assistants are very important members of the University of Maine graduate community, fulfilling a variety of roles that both assist the institution in aspects of its mission and contributes to the training of the students. To help ensure the success of graduate assistants, the Graduate School has established the following policies:
- At the time of appointment, the employing unit will send a letter of appointment to the prospective graduate assistant, with a copy to the Graduate School. The letter of appointment will address the following points:
- Beginning and ending dates of the appointment
- Compensation (stipend and tuition coverage)
- Health insurance premium coverage
- Expected work
- Schedule of work, particularly during university breaks and summer session (see Graduate School Policies and Regulation 15.1)
- At the start of the appointment, the supervisor will meet with the student to review their job description and expectations.
Graduate assistants receive a stipend equal to or exceeding the University’s minimum set level. Graduate assistants also receive a tuition waiver of nine credits in the fall and spring semesters with additional tuition coverage in the summer and health insurance coverage (15.2.3 and 15.2.4). The rate/type of compensation depends upon:
- The program making the appointment;
- The qualifications of the applicant;
- The responsibilities involved; and
- The proportion of time devoted to University work.
The Graduate School will cover tuition for a maximum of 6 credits during the summer session for students who held a Centrally Base-Funded appointment (paid by the Graduate School) in the immediate preceding academic year (during the academic year). Up to three credits will be covered for students who worked only one of the preceding semesters*.
If a student who held a Centrally Base-Funded position is hired/paid a stipend in the summer, the unit paying the stipend will be responsible for covering tuition (not the Graduate School). If the hiring unit is unable to pay tuition for the student, a written request asking the Graduate School to cover summer tuition may be submitted to the Dean of the Graduate School with accompanying justification for consideration.
Summer tuition for Graduate Assistants (other than Centrally Base-Funded), must be budgeted for (and covered by) the same unit paying the student’s stipend in that period. If the assistantship appointment fails to include the cost of summer tuition, a written request asking the Graduate School to pay for tuition may be submitted to the Dean of the Graduate School for consideration. The explanation must include why the cost of summer tuition was not budgeted as part of the student’s assistantship appointment. Summer tuition waivers will only be granted based on substantial written justification and Graduate School budget status. In the case of grant rules that do not allow the principal investigator(s) to include the cost of tuition, they are strongly encouraged to increase the graduate assistant’s stipend proportionally to cover tuition during the summer (in addition to the academic year).
* This tuition waiver has been in effect since June 15, 1970.
All graduate assistants, fellows, and trainees who are appointed the equivalent of half-time and receive at least the University’s minimum stipend level receive 50% of their University of Maine health insurance costs paid by the University.
Graduate Assistants who are U.S. citizens may be appointed for more than half-time (up to thirty (30) hours of service per week) during the academic year as long as the primary assistantship supervisor and student’s advisor concur with the additional work. Graduate students may not be appointed to more than thirty (30) hours per week without permission of the Graduate School. Graduate students attending school on F1 and J1 visas are limited to no more than 20 hours of work per week when classes are in session.
In the summer (June 1st through August 31st) graduate assistants can work as full-time employees. They will be required to enroll for at least 1 credit of thesis or research work.
Nomination forms for fellowships, assistantships, and scholarships are made on forms available from the Graduate School. Nominations are due in the Graduate School in time for consideration at the March meeting of the Executive Committee.
The Graduate School has a number of assistantships and fellowships, which provide a stipend plus tuition. These awards are normally made for a nine-month (academic year) appointment and are available to all students enrolled in thesis programs. Recipients are required to enroll on a full-time basis.
15.3.2 Tuition Waivers and Scholarships
The Graduate School has a number of tuition waivers and scholarships which pay a year or more of full-time tuition costs (18 cr/year). Nominations for waivers and scholarships are considered each spring for the following academic year.
Permission to supplement the stipend of a Graduate Fellow or Graduate Trainee may be granted by the Dean of the Graduate School.
Loan funds are available from several sources. Application for such aid should be made to the Student Financial Aid Office.
Tuition rates for
graduate students are established by the Board of Trustees.
The Graduate School will publish an online graduate catalog at gradcatalog.umaine.edu which will include: members of the Graduate Faculty; pertinent items of information concerning graduate study; and a listing of those courses which are acceptable for graduate credit.