College Catalog: 2010-2011

Masters Programs Policies and Procedures

Graduate Education Standards and Procedures Manual (PDF)

Admissions

Matriculation
To be considered for admission as a fully-matriculated student, an applicant must provide all of the following:

  1. A completed application for admission including the fee;
  2. Minimum 3.00 cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) earned in baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution or demonstrated exceptional professional experience as determined in writing by the Dean of the respective academic unit determining admission;
  3. Official transcripts from all institutions previously attended. (Baccalaureate degree required);
  4. Official copies of scores earned on the GRE, GMAT, TOEFL as required;
  5. Two letters of reference attesting to personal and professional qualifications (individual  programs may require more than two letters of reference.); and
  6. A personal statement (as described by the individual program requirements).

Non-Matriculation
Acceptance as a graduate non-degree student does not guarantee future admission to a degree program. To be considered for admission as a non-matriculated student (General Non-Degree or a Professional Non-Degree), an applicant must provide all of the following:

  1. A completed application for admission including the fee; and
  2. Official transcripts from all institutions previously attended. (Baccalaureate degree required from an accredited institution).Non-Degree Graduate Students: A student may enroll in a maximum of two (2) courses as a Non-Degree Graduate student in a single Graduate Program before being required to matriculate within that program.

Transfer Credit

If a syllabus indicates that a graduate course taken elsewhere is equivalent to one given in a program at Ramapo College, application for transfer credits may be submitted.  The criteria for acceptance are different for each program; therefore, students must discuss transfer of credits with the Program Director.  Only two (2) graduate courses may be considered for transfer into a Ramapo College graduate program provided the courses are from another accredited institution of higher education.

Students who transfer from a non-degree program to a degree program must fulfill the degree requirements in place at the time of matriculation into the degree program.


Prior Learning Experience

Prior learning experience may be substituted for up to two (2) courses (not to exceed 8 credits) in the graduate program. Criteria for acceptance of prior learning experiences include:

  1. The experience must be relevant to the programs learning goals;
  2. The experience must be comparable to graduate-level coursework;
  3. The experience must have taken place after the awarding of the bachelor’s degree and before enrollment in the graduate program; and
  4. The student must document and apply for credit for the learning experience;

The Program Director or designee will review and evaluate applications for prior learning credit and recommend the number of credits to be awarded.  The Dean will make final approval.


Academic Standing

Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.00 to remain in good academic standing.  Only graduate courses taken at Ramapo College will be used in the GPA calculation.  Students whose cumulative GPA falls below 3.00 at the end of any term will be placed on ‘academic probation’.  The probationary status must be removed by the time the student completes nine (9) additional credits/hours.  Students whose cumulative GPA falls below 3.00 for two consecutive semesters will be placed on ‘academic dismissal’ and will not be allowed to enroll in subsequent terms.


Graduation Requirements

Admission to a Graduate Program does not mean acceptance to candidacy for the Master’s Degree.  In order to be eligible for graduation, the student must have:

  1. Attained “matriculation” status.
  2. Completed all the degree requirements with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.
  3. Filed a completed degree plan, transcript and graduation application.

Grading Policy

Course work is evaluated using the following grading scale:

Grade

A

A-

B+

B

B-

C+

C

F

U

Grade Points per Credit

4.0

3.7

3.3

3.0

2.7

2.3

2.0

0.0

N/A

Credit toward Program Requirements

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

No

IP  In Progress
This grade is assigned in Thesis courses such as Thesis Research, when course requirements are not completed at the end of the term. In-Progress (IP) grades must be resolved within four (4) semesters (spring/fall). Students must then register for a Thesis Continuation course (0 credits, 2 billing hours). IP grades not resolved after four semesters will be converted to a U grade.

I   Incomplete         No credit awarded
An incomplete grade may be given in exceptional circumstances when approved by the instructor and when requested by a student who has satisfactorily completed two-thirds of the course requirements.  The grade must be resolved by the date established in the academic calendar.  If the work is not completed, the grade changes to an “F”.

U
Given when a Thesis course is not completed after four semesters.

W  Withdrawal       No credit awarded
Given in exceptional circumstances with permission of the instructor and after a Withdrawal Form has been submitted to the appropriate Master’s Program Directors, for withdrawal from a course.  Students requesting a withdrawal due to medical reasons should refer to Ramapo College’s medical withdrawal policy.

The following points are emphasized:

  1. No undergraduate courses (100-400 level) will be used in calculating the GPA.
  2. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 is required to be in good standing.
  3. Any student whose cumulative GPA falls below 3.0 at the end of any term will be placed on academic probation.  The probationary status must be removed by the time he/she completes (3) additional courses.  Students can not progress to the thesis or final project while on academic probation.  If the GPA is not raised to a 3.0 or higher by the time three (3) additional courses are taken, or by the time the student progresses to the thesis or final project, the student is subject to academic dismissal.
  4. Grades of ‘C’ or below will be handled on a program by program basis.  However, courses in which a grade of C- or lower is earned will not be counted as satisfying degree requirements.

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Course Load Limitations

Full-time students in good academic standing may enroll for (9) credit hours.  Permission to exceed this limit must be secured from the Program Director.  Students on academic probation should consider reducing their credit hour load until such status is removed.

Non-degree students may only take up to (9) credits before being admitted to a program.


Independent Study

Up to four (4) credits of independent study work may be applied towards graduation requirements.


Grading Appeals

The faculty of the College establishes course requirements and performance standards.  Faculty evaluation of students’ academic performance is a qualitative judgment and is expressed through the submission of final course grades to the Registrar at the close of each semester.

In those instances where a student wishes to appeal a course grade, the student must comply with the following procedures:

The timeframe for filing grade appeals will be set by the individual graduate programs, but in no case shall it exceed 60 days from the date the grade is posted.  The student must bring his/her appeal to the attention of the faculty member first. Both should make good faith efforts to share viewpoints and mediate differences of opinion.

If it is mutually agreed that a grade readjustment is warranted, the faculty member forwards a Change of Grade Request, including explanatory reasons, to the Dean of the academic unit which sponsored the course.

If a student and faculty member cannot reach a mutual agreement and a student wishes to pursue a grade appeal, the student must present a written appeal, including pertinent course materials or course work, to the Director of the graduate program which sponsored the course in question.

The Director will confer with the student and faculty member, jointly or independently, as he/she sees fit, review pertinent documents and course materials, and confer with other faculty or administrative staff members as appropriate.

If it is mutually agreed that a grade change is warranted, the Director will forward a faculty-endorsed Change of Grade Request with explanatory reasons, to the Dean who supervises the program. You have the Dean of the unit that sponsors the courses consulted first, then the Dean who supervises the program.  This could be two different deans.

If the Director renders an opinion which does not support the student’s grade appeal, the student may petition for a review by the Dean who supervises the program.  The petition would be initiated by the submission of a written statement by the student that explains his/her position and includes any evidence the student has that contradicts the Director’s decision or contains information that had heretofore been unavailable.  The Dean’s Office will reject any request for review that does not offer clear evidence that the Program Director made a factual mistake, violated school policy, or otherwise acted outside the purview of the Director of the program.

The Dean will consider only those grade appeals which have previously received full deliberative discussion at the faculty and Program Director level.

After conferring with the student, Program Director, and faculty member and reviewing the pertinent documentation, the Dean may take one of the two following actions:

(a) approve or decline the student’s grade appeal; or

(b) request that the Graduate Council review the appeal and render a recommendation to the Dean who, in turn, will advise the student, the professor, and the Program Director of his/her final decision.

In both step (a) and (b), the decision of the Dean is final.


Appeals of Academic Standing

The faculty of the College establishes course requirements and performance standards.  Faculty evaluation of students’ academic performance is a qualitative judgment and is expressed through the submission of final course grades to the Registrar at the close of each semester.

In those instances where a student wishes to appeal an Academic Standing, the student should comply with the following procedures:

The timeframe for filing an Academic Standing appeal will be set by the individual graduate programs, but in no case shall it exceed 60 days from the date the Academic Standing is posted.  The student must bring his/her appeal to the attention of the Program Director.  Both should make good faith efforts to share viewpoints and mediate differences of opinion.

If it is mutually agreed that an Academic Standing appeal is warranted, the Program Director submits a letter fully explaining the situation to the Dean of the academic unit which sponsors the program along with all the documentation submitted by the student.

If a student and the Program Director cannot reach a mutual agreement and a student wishes to pursue an Academic Standing appeal, the student must present a written appeal, including pertinent information, to the Dean of the School which sponsors the graduate program.

The Dean will consider only those Academic Standing appeals which have previously received full deliberative discussion at the Program Director level.

After conferring with the student and/or the Program Director, and reviewing the pertinent documentation, the Dean may take one of the two following actions:

(a) approve or decline the student’s Academic Standing appeal.  The Dean will inform the student in writing and the decision will be documented in the student’s record; or

(b) request that the Graduate Council review the appeal and render a recommendation to the Dean who, in turn, will advise the student and the program Director of his/her final decision.

In both step (a) and (b), the decision of the Dean is final.


Leaves of Absence

Refer to Ramapo College’s Withdrawal/Leave of Absence website:
http://www.ramapo.edu/registrar/schedule/ ]


Academic Integrity

Refer to Ramapo College’s Academic Integrity Policy website:
[ http://www.ramapo.edu/catalog-2010-2011/academic-policies/ ]
for additional information.


Health Requirements

Refer to Ramapo College’s Immunization Requirements website:
http://www.ramapo.edu/health/immunization-info/ ]

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Students With Disabilities

Refer to Ramapo College’s Office of Specialized Services (OSS) website:
[ http://www.ramapo.edu/oss/ ]


Student Code of Conduct

Refer to Ramapo College’s Student Life Handbook – pg 65. Handbook can be found on the Student Life website:
[ http://www.ramapo.edu/reslife/guid ]


Governance

Ramapo College Graduate Council
The Graduate Council shall (1) formulate standards and regulations affecting Graduate curricula and work leading to a graduate degree and (2) institute standards and regulations as delegated by the faculty. The Graduate Council shall serve and act on behalf of the faculty and students in the Graduate Programs. Members of the Graduate Council include the Deans of the Schools and of the Library, the Vice Provost for Curriculum and Assessment, the Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management, the Registrar, Graduate Program Directors, and representatives from ARC and the Faculty Assembly. The Graduate Council shall meet monthly during the academic year.  Special meetings can be arranged.

The Graduate Council shall perform the following duties:

  • Review and recommend minimum standards for graduate student admission.
  • Review and recommend basic requirements for graduate degrees.
  • Review and recommend new and revised graduate degree programs.
  • Recommend policy on financial support for graduate students.
  • Develop strategies for increasing financial support for graduate students and graduate programs.

Graduate Advisory Committee
The Graduate Advisory Committee shall be composed of the Graduate Council plus the Provost; and representatives from the offices of: Financial Aid, Bursar, Public Relations; a graduate student; and two representatives from the community at large.  This group will meet once a semester.  Some of the functions of the Advisory Committee will include:

  • Identifying potential new graduate programs.
  • Advising on financial support for graduate students and programs.
  • Developing strategies for communication with stakeholders.
  • Aiding in the identification and acquisition of resources.

Graduate Council Curriculum Sub-Committee
The Graduate Council Curriculum Sub-Committee will be composed of the graduate Program Directors.  The sub-committee members shall appoint one of its members as the committee chair.  This sub-committee will review and approve graduate courses and other curricular issues for recommendation to ARC for formal approval.

Parliamentary Procedure
Roberts Rules of Order, Newly Revised, shall govern the conduct of all meetings.


Faculty

Teaching in the Graduate Program
The faculty approved to teach in the graduate programs must meet the following criteria:

  1. Formal professional training.  The nominee must have attained the highest degree commonly awarded in the field.  If the nominee lacks the terminal degree, there should be evidence of high productivity or exceptional achievement;
  2. Teaching/Professional experience.  The faculty should have college-level teaching and professional experience commensurate with the program;
  3. Scholarly activities and research.  The faculty shall have a combination of publications and/or other scholarly activities.  Scholarly activities may include reading and presentation of papers, writing of reviews and reports, consulting services, creative products, and participation in professional or extramural (grant) support;
  4. Part-time and adjunct faculty shall possess the same qualifications as full-time faculty;
  5. All faculty teaching in the graduate program must be appointed by the Dean of the school in which the program resides and must have permission of the Dean of the school in which their primary convening group resides.

Teaching Load in the Graduate Program
The following metrics apply to graduate courses:

  1. Graduate courses are normally worth three credit hours;
  2. Normally, the minimum enrollment for a graduate course is seven (7) students;
  3. Maximum course enrollment is set by the Dean;
  4. Faculty are paid ½ the teaching load for a graduate course when team teaching with another faculty member up to an enrollment of 14 students. Both faculty members are paid a full teaching load when teaching a graduate course with 15 or more students enrolled.