Basic Regulations Governing Graduate Programs
All graduate students will be governed by the regulations and requirements specified in the Graduate Studies Bulletin in effect at the time of first graduate program matriculation at Hofstra. Refer to the major area for specific requirements.
- Students who wish to study for graduate degrees, certificates or diplomas should apply to the Office of Graduate Admission for acceptance in their major programs before commencing graduate study. Until they have been accepted in their major area, they have no assurance that any credits they receive will apply toward their degree. Nonmatriculated students must make application for acceptance in their major area before they have completed 12 semester hours at the University unless they have written approval from the Office of the Provost or the appropriate graduate program director to continue their studies on a nonmatriculated basis.
- Grading in graduate courses includes the categories A, B, C, D, F and P/F. Alphabetical grades are further divided into plus and minus levels (see Grades). No credit will be allowed toward graduate degrees for D grades. Graduate students may repeat courses in which they receive D grades.
- Graduate students may repeat a course with the approval of their graduate program director or academic adviser. Students also are encouraged to consult with the faculty member who will be teaching the course that they intend to repeat. A faculty member may give preference to first-time takers of the course when enrollment reaches its limit. Students may not repeat a course for credit towards the GPA if that course was a prerequisite for a course that has already been taken. Prior to registering for a repeated course, a graduate student must submit the Graduate Repeat Course Request Form, signed by the graduate program director or academic adviser, and by the chair of the department or program, to the Office of Academic Records. Graduate students may repeat a course only once to receive credit toward their GPA. In addition, students may repeat no more than two courses to receive credit toward their GPA. However, the total number of courses that a graduate student may repeat to fulfill or complete the requirements for a degree will be determined by the graduate program director or academic adviser. Both the grade for the initial course and the grade for the repeated course will be included in the calculation of the GPA. Both grades will appear on the transcript. Credit toward the degree will be awarded only once for this course. Repeating a course more than once may impact a student’s financial aid. Please consult with the Office of Student Financial Services.
- An Incomplete grade will be given at the discretion of the instructor in a graduate course and only under unusual circumstances. Incomplete work must be completed and submitted to the instructor for a grade by the end of one calendar year from the close of the semester or session in which the course was taken.
- Students who wish to withdraw from a course must secure the appropriate forms at the Student Financial Services and Registrar Suite located in Memorial Hall or online and return the completed form to the Office by the last day of classes prior to the start of the designated final examination period. The student may withdraw without the approval or agreement of the instructor. If a student withdraws after the first 1/4 of the course a grade of W will appear on the transcript.
- All credits applied toward the master’s degree must be earned within the period of five years starting from the date of completion of the first course applicable to the degree. Exceptions will be made for any period of intervening military service.
- As a condition for graduation, the master’s candidate must successfully complete a comprehensive examination, thesis, or other summative/capstone project that is a substantive equivalent in the major area of study. The comprehensive examination grade must be reported by the major department to the Office of Academic Records no later than December 1, May 1, or August 1 in the semester in which the degree will be granted. No advanced degree will be conferred upon a candidate who fails this examination more than once. A request for a review of a comprehensive examination must be made no later than three (3) weeks into the subsequent fall or spring semester following the comprehensive examination. The examination is typically offered twice during the year, in October and March. (Exception: Psychology, see Degree Requirements for each program .) Exact dates are determined at the beginning of each semester. It is the student’s responsibility to be aware of the time and place of the examination.
- No graduate credit will be granted for courses numbered below 200 in the Hofstra system.
- Graduate students, with the permission of their graduate adviser, chairperson of the department in which the course is offered, and course instructor, may take up to two 2000-level courses (not to exceed 8 s.h.). 2000- level courses are graduate courses offered in conjunction with 100-level courses, for which graduate students are expected to fulfill substantially enhanced requirements. No student, however may enroll in a 2000-level course if he/she received undergraduate credit for the equivalent undergraduate course.
- No credit will be allowed for courses taken at another school while enrolled in a degree program at Hofstra unless they are relevant to the student’s program of study and are approved in advance on an official form available online and in the Office of Academic Records.
- Courses numbered 251 and 252 should be devoted to independent readings under the direction of a faculty member assigned to the graduate student applying for such credits. A maximum of six semester hours of credit may be earned toward a graduate degree in 251 and 252 courses.
- A graduate student who has not completed the work in courses 301 and 302 must maintain matriculation each subsequent semester until the requirements of the course have been completed. This will require paying a matriculation fee if the student is not enrolled in one or more regular credit courses. Students who are enrolled solely in non-credit bearing course work will be registered as Maintaining Matriculation by the Registrar and will be charged the published Maintaining Matriculation fee.
- Whenever matriculated graduate students wish to transfer candidacy from one major area to another, they must initiate their request on an official form, which is available at the Office of Academic Records.
- A. It is the responsibility of all graduate students to monitor their academic progress. A full-time or part-time graduate student will be placed on academic probation at the end of any fall or spring semester in which his/her cumulative grade point average falls below 3.0. For master’s, doctoral, and other graduate programs in which academic performance standards are set either by accrediting bodies or by the programs themselves, those standards will take precedence over this university probation policy. In addition, graduate students who are enrolled in student teaching or an internship/externship must abide by the field experience policies established in their respective graduate programs. Those policies supersede the university probation policy stated here.
B. All students placed on academic probation will be sent a letter by the Office of Academic Records informing them of their probationary status by the third week of January following the fall semester and by the third week of June following the spring semester. A copy of this letter also will be sent by the Office of Academic Records to the student’s program director or adviser. This letter will serve as formal notification by the University that graduate students on academic probation must raise their GPA to 3.0 or higher by the end of the subsequent spring or fall semester to avoid the possibility of dismissal. Graduate students who do not raise their GPA to 3.0 or higher within these stipulated limits may be dropped officially from their program of study. (See Policy for Dismissal and Appeal of Dismissal from a Graduate/Post-Graduate Program.)
C. While on academic probation, a student must receive the approval of his/her program director or adviser to register for further course work. Therefore, all students on probationary status are required to meet with their program director or adviser. The program director or adviser will make a record of this meeting and will place it in the student’s department file. In addition, a student on academic probation will have a hold placed on his/her subsequent course registration by the Office of Academic Records. This hold will be removed, and the probationary status will be cleared, once the student raises his/her GPA to 3.0 or higher.
D. Students who have accumulated 25 percent or more of total attempted semester hours in INCs, which have stood longer than the time allowed for completion, and Ws may be placed on probation after due consideration by the program director and the department chairperson. A graduate student with especially serious academic deficiencies is subject to immediate dismissal when such deficiencies make it apparent that the student’s continuation in the program will not result in his or her successful completion of the program. Dismissed students may petition for readmission no sooner than one full year following the dismissal. However, they may be readmitted only under special circumstances and after a careful review of their case by either the program director, chairperson or dean and the faculty of their major area.
- Graduate students clearly guilty of gross and unambiguous violations of academic honesty (e.g., cheating on exams or graded projects, quoting a substantial portion of a source verbatim without citation) shall be suspended or dismissed. Graduate students clearly guilty of other forms of academic dishonesty (particularly those concerning a more sophisticated understanding of the use of sources and development of an authorial voice) shall be subject to a range of penalties, including rewriting the assignment, failure of the assignment or of the course, or suspension/dismissal from the University. For further details concerning violations of academic honesty within graduate study as well as procedures for handling such violations and for reviewing and appealing charges of academic dishonesty, see Faculty Policy Series 11G.
- Students studying for master’s degrees must complete at least 24 semester hours of their course work (not including elementary school student teaching) in-residence at Hofstra.
Master’s Essay or Thesis
For specific thesis subject approval and completion requirements, see individual programs for details. Once the thesis is signed by the appropriate departmental faculty member(s), the manuscript must be submitted to the Axinn Library electronically. Electronic submission is easy and convenient. Complete instructions are available on the Axinn Library website. The thesis must be submitted no later than the last day of classes of the semester or summer session when the degree is expected to be conferred. (For exceptions, see individual programs for details.)
Part-time students should arrange to take not more than three semester hours of course work in addition to 301 or 302 in each of the semesters during which they are writing their essays. All subjects must be approved by the chairperson of the department in which the work is to be done.
Basic Regulations Governing Doctoral Programs
- An acceptable baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution is required for admission to courses in a doctoral program unless extraordinary circumstances prevail.
- In addition to other screening procedures, some form of broad area and/or aptitude examination, such as the MAT or GRE, is required for admission as a matriculated doctoral student.
- Adequate evidence of students’ ability to do quality doctoral work must be obtained, at a point in their studies to be determined by each program, before they are accepted as doctoral candidates.
- A nonrefundable tuition deposit of $250 may be required of all accepted doctoral students. When registering for the semester for which the student has been admitted, the deposit will be credited toward tuition.
Doctoral candidates offering transfer credits must complete a minimum of half the total course work required for the doctorate at Hofstra. If the candidate holds a master’s degree from Hofstra, the completion of 54 semester hours (credits earned toward a master’s degree may be included) of course work is required for the doctorate in-residence. In other cases, a minimum of 45 semester hours must be completed at Hofstra.
- The minimum residence requirement is defined as 30 semester hours within a period of two consecutive years (which may include three summers).
- A residence plan of study specifying the activities and alternative means of using the residency time allotment must be submitted by the candidate and approved by the adviser and the department chairperson prior to the start of formal residency. The department chairperson and adviser may stipulate the terms of the plan in granting approval.
- At least half of the course work required for the doctorate must be taken at Hofstra during the 10-year period preceding the conferral of the degree.
- The above restrictions also set a limit of 10 years from admission as a matriculated doctoral student to the completion of all degree requirements.
- After the student has been accepted as a doctoral candidate, all credit applied toward the doctoral degree must be earned within a period of five years preceding the granting of the degree.
- Re-application for admission may be required of students who do not begin course work in the semester for which they have been admitted.
- PhD candidates must generally satisfy two tool requirements: examinations in two foreign languages, or one in a foreign language and one in a tool subject such as statistics or computer problems, as determined by the department. The exception to the above is in the doctoral programs in psychology where a foreign language is not required. A candidate may satisfy the statistics requirement either by passing a competency examination or by successfully completing course work as determined by the department recommending the degree. Such course work is subject to the same time limitation set for courses noted above. Courses taken to prepare for such examinations may not be part of the number of credits required for the degree.
- EdD candidates will be required to satisfy only the tool requirement in statistics.
All doctoral candidates must take a doctoral comprehensive examination.
- Doctoral candidates must write a dissertation under the guidance of a sponsoring committee consisting of three full-time faculty members holding an earned doctorate.
- The dissertation must then be defended orally before a committee, of a minimum of five faculty members.
- The sponsoring committee will be part of the defense committee.
- Course work may not be substituted for the dissertation.
- All work on the dissertation, including data analysis, is to be done by the student under the advisement of her/his committee. If another person is consulted for help, the student must obtain permission. Not obtaining permission for outside help with the research is cause for dismissal from the program.
- Once the dissertation is successfully defended and signed by the appropriate departmental faculty member(s), the manuscript must be submitted to the Axinn Library electronically. Complete instructions are available on the Axinn Library website. Contact the major department for specific information.
Academic Leaves/Withdrawals, and Maintaining Matriculation Policy
Hofstra University requires that graduate students in the fall and spring semesters register for courses, maintain matriculation, or take a leave of absence. Students who fail to take one of these steps will be automatically withdrawn from the University. Hofstra University requires graduate students to submit official notification of intent to take an academic leave or withdrawal from the University. An academic leave is an official notification to the University, by a student who has completed at least one semester, that the student is temporarily stopping attendance at Hofstra for a minimum of one full fall or spring semester. A withdrawal indicates that the student has permanently stopped attending the University. When a student withdraws, registration for future semesters will be contingent upon reapplication to the University under admission standards at that time. This request may be made in writing or by completing the online form in Hofstra Online. To access the form, log in to the portal at My.Hofstra.edu, click on the primary navigation icon in the upper left screen and select “Student Services.” If submitted in writing, the request must be signed and dated. An academic leave typically may not exceed three consecutive fall and spring semesters.
After submitting this request, graduate students must contact the Office of Graduate Admission in order to process and finalize their request. International students must contact the Office of International Student Affairs for further guidance on immigration policy and regulations. Please note that academic leave and withdrawal requests are not final until students confer with the appropriate office.
Students who withdraw officially or unofficially from one or more courses after the first week of the term, or equivalent for courses shorter than 15 weeks, will be liable for all or part of the tuition and fees associated with those courses.
Maintaining matriculation is to be used by students in academic pursuits that do not include registration for classes. Students maintaining matriculation are considered “registered” at the University. Examples of academic pursuits include, but are not limited to, work on a thesis and completion of course work where a grade of incomplete was received. Students who are enrolled solely in non-credit bearing course work will be registered as Maintaining Matriculation by the Registrar and will be charged the published Maintaining Matriculation fee.
Application for Graduation
Candidates for graduation must file an application for graduation in the Office of Academic Records no later than October 1 for December graduates and March 1 for May graduates. August candidates must file by June 15 for Summer Session I, July 16 for Summer Session II, and August 15 for Summer Session III. There is a fee for late filing. See Tuition and Fees.
All requirements applicable toward a degree, certificate or diploma must be completed and on record in the Office of Academic Records by the end of the first week of June for May degrees, the end of the first week of January for December degrees, and the end of the first week of September for August degrees.
A degree can only be awarded to a student who has maintained a satisfactory record of conduct and has paid all University fees.
Classroom Code of Conduct for Students
Classroom Code of Conduct for Students (Faculty Policy Series #50).
Credit by Examination
Graduate students with a strong background in a particular field may attempt to earn course credit toward their degree by taking a special examination at Hofstra or through various outside organizations. In general, only matriculated Hofstra students are eligible for Hofstra University credit by examination. They must obtain prior approval from the Credit by Examination Coordinator (located in the HCLAS Dean’s Office), the academic chairperson of the department in which the course is given, the graduate program director and the appropriate academic dean. Credits that may be earned are restricted by the following conditions:
- No more than three semester hours earned under this program may be applied toward the master’s degree; no more than six semester hours earned under this program may be applied toward the doctorate.
- A grade of at least B- in the examination is necessary for graduate credit to be granted. A grade of C- or better is necessary for undergraduate courses needed to make up deficiencies. No Pass grade is acceptable except for mandatory P/F courses.
- Credit for an introductory course in a department may not be earned in this program once an advanced course in that department has been completed.
- Students are not permitted to apply for credit by examination for a course in which they have previously enrolled at Hofstra on a credit or noncredit basis unless they receive permission of the appropriate academic chairperson and the appropriate academic dean.
- Credits earned do not count in the determination of a student’s full- or part-time status.
- Credits earned under this program may be considered credits taken in residence at Hofstra.
- In the Zarb School of Business, matriculated graduate students may use credit by examination only to fulfill 201-level courses. A grade of B- or better is necessary for satisfactory completion of a credit by examination; the grade will be used to calculate academic standing. Students may take as many 201-level courses on a credit by examination basis as they feel appropriate. Students may obtain further details and application forms from the HCLAS Dean’s Office.
- There is a fee for taking these examinations.
- Graduate students in the School of Education should contact Hofstra’s Office of Educational Support Services for information regarding the use of CLEP Examinations within their programs. These standardized tests are not given at Hofstra.
Cumulative Grade Point Average
The grade point average is the index of academic performance used to determine whether the student will be permitted to continue at the University and/or graduate.
The alphabetical grades, including plus (+) and minus (-), have the following grade point values:
||0.0 (Only one F grade in any one course will be included in the cumulative GPA.)
To determine cumulative GPA, multiply the number of semester hours of each grade earned by the grade-point value for that grade. Then total the products and divide by the total number of Hofstra University semester hours attempted. Once calculated, the GPA is truncated to two decimal places. The GPA is not rounded in any manner.
Degree With Distinction
The University will confer the graduate degree with distinction on students who have attained a minimum grade point average of 3.75 with at least 80 percent of the credits for the degree earned at Hofstra.
Exclusion From the University
When students make application for entrance to Hofstra University, they understand and agree that the University reserves the right to exclude any student at any time for conduct or academic standing regarded by the University as undesirable, without assigning any further reason. It is understood and agreed that the University, or any of its officers or faculty, shall not be liable in any way for such exclusion.
To ensure the protection of each individual’s rights, procedures for appeal are provided by the University to assure the student fair treatment in cases of disciplinary action.
Final Semester Registration
Students who have been granted permission to complete final semester requirements will be registered as Maintaining Matriculation by the Registrar and will be charged the published Maintaining Matriculation fee. This applies equally to students who are completing their work for the master’s essay although not currently enrolled for the 301/302 courses. This fee also applies to each fall or spring semester of study taken by a student at another institution, either within the United States or elsewhere.
Grade Appeal Policy
Hofstra University’s course grade appeal policy, including appeal timelines, may be found under Faculty Policy Series #42.
Individual grade appeal policies for the following schools/colleges within Hofstra University may be found at:
Hofstra uses an alphabetical system of grades, including plus (+) and minus (-), to describe the quality of the student’s work. Final grades are reported to the Office of Academic Records and can be accessed online.
||Not creditable for a graduate degree at Hofstra. However, the course credit is counted as credits earned, and the D grade is included in determining the cumulative GPA.
Pass/Fail option is available only to students taking courses outside their degree, certificate, diploma, or major requirements. The Pass/Fail option must be exercised within the first five weeks of the course. For all graduate programs requiring up to 40 semester hours, the Pass/Fail option may be exercised only once, for a maximum of three semester hours. For those programs requiring more than 40 semester hours, the option may be exercised no more than twice, for a maximum of six semester hours. These limits are exclusive of any courses taught only on a Pass/Fail basis. School of Business graduate courses may not be taken on a P/F basis, except for the non-credit bearing workshops that are only offered on a P/F basis. Except for the Law School, a grade of P is equivalent to a B- or better.
||Incomplete. When requested by the student, the instructor may grant, at her/his discretion, a grade of Incomplete (‘I’). An ‘I’ grade should be given only when unforeseen circumstances prevent the student from completing course work on time. As part of the normal final-grade process, the instructor must submit an ‘I’ grade online to the Office of Academic Records/Registrar with a default grade, the grade the student will receive if the missing work is not completed. The default final grade must be a letter grade or a permanent Incomplete (‘INC’); a UW is not an acceptable default grade. In unusual circumstances, the faculty member may submit an ‘I’ grade without prior discussion with the student. The instructor will decide the time frame in which the student will complete the required course work. However, the deadline may not exceed one calendar year from the close of the semester or session in which the course was taken. A student will not be allowed to attend the regular class meetings at the next offering of the course. The instructor will inform the student of the completion requirements and terms.
The instructor is required to submit a grade for the student within 30 days after the student has submitted work to fulfill the terms specified. If the instructor cannot oversee the completion of the incomplete work with the student, the instructor will arrange for oversight within the department with the Dean’s permission. If the incomplete work is not completed by the deadline, the ‘I’ grade will convert to the default grade previously submitted by the instructor.
||Permanent Incomplete (graduate only).
||If a student withdraws from a course during the first 1/4 of the course, there shall be no record of this on the transcript. The student has withdrawn from the course (without credit) and so notified the Office of the Registrar in writing or online by the last day of classes prior to the start of the designated final examination period. Students who withdraw officially or unofficially from one or more courses after the first week of the semester, or equivalent for courses shorter than 15 weeks, will be liable for all or part of the tuition and fees associated with those courses. Please refer to Refund Policy.
||The UW may be assigned only if the student stopped attending prior to the official withdrawal deadline, and, in the judgment of the faculty member, on the last date of attendance, the student either had the potential to pass the course or there was insufficient graded work to allow for such an evaluation. Note: The UW is always the appropriate grade for the student who is registered for the course but has never attended.
||Credit (indicates the satisfactory completion of the essay or problem).
||Student’s grade has not been submitted by the instructor.
||Progress (used chiefly to report on 301, 602, and 604, the first semester’s work on the graduate essay or doctoral dissertation).
Policy for Dismissal and Appeal of Dismissal From a Graduate/Post-Graduate Program
(not applicable to Law School)
(for Dismissal due to Academic Dishonesty, consult FPS 11G.)
The director of a graduate program shall notify a student of his/her dismissal from that program in writing (certified return receipt requested) within 7 days following the decision to dismiss. The notification shall state the reasons for the dismissal and shall be as explicit as possible. The letter shall indicate the appeal procedures specified below. A copy of the letter shall be sent to the chairperson, the appropriate dean, the provost and the Office of Academic Records. If the student is an international student, a copy of the letter shall be sent to the director of the Office of International Student Affairs.
The student is given 15 days after receiving notification of dismissal to decide whether or not to appeal the dismissal. During that time, the student is permitted to continue course work in progress. If a student chooses not to appeal, 15 days after receiving notification of dismissal the student will no longer be permitted to continue course work in progress, to sit in on classes, or to register for additional classes.
If dismissal occurs during the semester and the student appeals the decision, the student shall be permitted to continue course work already in progress unless extenuating circumstances have been determined. Grades shall be withheld until the appeal process has been completed. Unless the appeal is successful, no grade or credit will be awarded.
However, if a student is registered for a course that involves an outside internship (including but not limited to field experience, practicum, and student teaching), the student may not continue the course during the appeal process unless extenuating circumstances have been determined.
If dismissal occurs at the completion of a semester and the student appeals the decision, the student may not register for or sit in on any courses unless extenuating circumstances have been determined.
The first appeal is at the program level. The student may appeal this decision in writing to the graduate program director within 15 days from the date of receipt of the letter of dismissal. The letter of appeal shall include the grounds for appealing the dismissal. If no letter is forthcoming, the right of the student to further appeal is waived.
An ad hoc committee of program faculty and the department chairperson shall be constituted and chaired by the graduate program director. The graduate program director shall inform the student in writing (certified return receipt requested) of the date, time and location of the program ad hoc committee meeting. The student must inform the graduate program director if he/she chooses to appear before the committee. The student may be accompanied by one adviser of his/her choosing. Under no condition shall the adviser address the committee.
The graduate program director shall inform the student in writing (certified return receipt requested) of the decision of the Committee within 15 days from the date of the receipt of the appeal letter. (A copy of the letter shall be sent to the chairperson, the appropriate dean, the provost and the Office of Academic Records.) The student may appeal this decision in writing.
The second appeal is at the dean’s level. The student may appeal in writing to the dean within 15 days of the receipt of the graduate program director’s decision. If no letter is forthcoming, the right of the student to further appeal is waived.
The dean shall conduct a full review of the appeal, which may include independent research and/or discussion with the program’s Ad Hoc Committee. The dean shall inform the student in writing (certified return receipt requested) of his/her decision within 15 days from the date of receipt of the appeal letter. (A copy of the letter shall be sent to the graduate program director, the chairperson, the provost and the Office of Academic Records.) The student may appeal this decision in writing.
The final appeal is at the provost’s level. The student may appeal in writing to the provost within 15 days of the receipt of the dean’s decision.
The provost shall inform the student in writing (certified return receipt requested) of his/her decision within 15 days from the date of the receipt of the appeal letter. The provost’s decision is final. (A copy of the letter shall be sent to the graduate program director, the chairperson, the appropriate dean and the Office of Academic Records. If the student is an international student, a copy of the letter shall be sent to the director of the Multicultural & International Student Programs Office.)
Portal and Email Accounts
All Hofstra students receive an online portal account. Students can use the Hofstra portal account to access various University computer services, such as to connect to the wireless network, access e-mail, print documents and store files on the Hofstra network. Faculty and school administration regularly communicate important information to students via their Hofstra email account. Therefore, students are responsible for accessing their Hofstra e-mail accounts on a regular basis to check for important communications.
Use of the Hofstra Network and e-mail account and all other Hofstra computing facilities is subject to Hofstra University’s Computer Networks Acceptable Use Policy, copies of which are available at the University’s computer labs and electronically on the Web (hofstra.edu/StudentServ/CC/SCS/SCS_policy.cfm).
Semester Attendance Confirmation
At the beginning of each semester, students are expected to log in to their Hofstra portal account to confirm semester attendance. Failure to confirm attendance within the first three (3) weeks of class during a fall or spring semester may result in the inability to access certain areas on the portal (e.g., Blackboard ). For terms that are of shorter duration (e.g., January, summer sessions) the corresponding deadlines are available online.