UAB Graduate Catalog

Policies and Procedures

Graduate School policies and procedures are developed to ensure that high standards for graduate study are maintained at UAB. These policies and procedures are the joint responsibility of the Graduate Council and the Graduate School Dean. The Graduate Council, through consultation with the dean, is responsible for developing academic requirements and describing these requirements through appropriate policies. The dean, through consultation with the Graduate Council or the Advisory Committee of the Graduate Council, is responsible for developing procedures that effectively enforce academic requirements and implement policies.

The Graduate Council, through its Advisory Committee, will review academic requirements, policies, procedures, and Graduate School activities annually and recommend appropriate changes. Changes in academic requirements and related policies will require a majority vote of the Graduate Council. A change in composition or responsibility of the Graduate Council will require a two-thirds majority vote of the Graduate Council.

The following policy statements have been approved by the Graduate Council. Individual programs may set more restrictive standards.

PREAMBLE

SECTION 1 - APPLICATION TO UAB GRADUATE PROGRAMS

Policy 1: General Statement
Policy 2: Categories of Graduate Student
Policy 3: Degree-Seeking Students
Policy 4: Nondegree-Seeking Students
Policy 5: Completed Application Package

SECTION 2 - ADMISSION STANDARDS

Policy 1: General Statement
Policy 2: Master's Degree Programs
Policy 3: Doctoral Degree Programs
Policy 4: Admission on with Contigencies
Policy 5: Readmission
Policy 6: Admission of Students Previously Dismissed
Policy 7: Faculty

SECTION 3 - GENERAL ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS

Policy 1: Graduate Credit
Policy 2: Undergraduates Seeking Enrollment
Policy 3: Course Numbering System
Policy 4: Time Limitations
Policy 5: Registration
Policy 6: Adding/Changing Courses
Policy 7: Withdrawal From Courses
Policy 8: Credit By Examination
Policy 9: Audits
Policy 10: Leave of Academic Absence

SECTION 4 - GRADING SYSTEM

Policy 1: Letter Grades
Policy 2: Grades in Pass/Not Pass Courses
Policy 3: Temporary Grade Notations

SECTION 5 - CUMULATIVE CREDITS AND GRADE POINT AVERAGE

Policy 1: Semester Hours Earned
Policy 2: Semester Hours Attempted
Policy 3: Quality Points
Policy 4: Grade Point Average
Policy 5: Repeated Courses

SECTION 6 - ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE

Policy 1: Good Academic Standing
Policy 2: Satisfactory Progress
Policy 3: Conditional Dismissal

SECTION 7 - CONDUCT AND APPEAL

Policy 1: Academic Conduct
Policy 2: Non-Academic Conduct
Policy 3: Grievance Policy
Policy 4: Graduate School Appeals Board (GSAB)
Policy 5: UAB Student Records Policy

SECTION 8 - REQUIREMENTS FOR UAB EMPLOYEES

Policy 1: UAB Employees who Enroll in a Ph.D. program
Policy 2: Compliance with Institutional and Graduate School Policies for Student Compensation

SECTION 9 - REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MASTER'S DEGREE

Policy 1: Faculty Advisor
Policy 2: Graduate Study Committee
Policy 3: Plan I or Plan II
Policy 4: Transfer of Credit
Policy 5: Additional Program Requirements
Policy 6: Admission Into Degree Candidacy
Policy 7: Application for Degree
Policy 8: Thesis
Policy 9: Thesis Defense
Policy 10: Recommendation for Degree
Policy 11: Award of Degree

SECTION 10 - REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DOCTORAL DEGREE

Policy 1: General Statement
Policy 2: Faculty Advisor
Policy 3: Graduate Study Committee
Policy 4: Transfer of Credit
Policy 5: Minimum Course Credit Requirements in Ph.D. Programs
Policy 6: Residence Requirement
Policy 7: Foreign Language or Other Special Tool of Research
Policy 8: Comprehensive Examination
Policy 9: Admission Into Degree Candidacy
Policy 10: Application for Degree
Policy 11: Dissertation
Policy 12: Dissertation Defense
Policy 13: Recommendation for Degree
Policy 14: Award of Degree

SECTION 11 - GRADUATE FACULTY

Policy 1: Membership
Policy 2: Qualifications for Appointment
Policy 3: Types of Appointment
Policy 4: Procedures for Appointment
Policy 5: Continuation of Appointment

SECTION 12 - PROGRAM DIRECTORS

Policy 1: Appointment
Policy 2: Authority

SECTION 13 - GRADUATE COUNCIL

Policy 1: Membership
Policy 2: Chair for Meetings
Policy 3: Meetings
Policy 4: Purpose of Meetings

SECTION 14 - ADVISORY COMMITTEE OF THE GRADUATE COUNCIL

Policy 1: Purpose
Policy 2: Membership
Policy 3: Term of Membership
Policy 4: Election of Membership
Policy 5: Chair
Policy 6: Minutes of Meetings
Policy 7: Meetings
Policy 8: New Program Review
Policy 9: Parliamentary Authority
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GRADUATE SCHOOL POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

PREAMBLE

Graduate School policies and procedures are developed to ensure that high standards for graduate study are maintained at UAB. These policies and procedures are the joint responsibility of the Graduate Council and the Graduate School Dean. The Graduate Council, through consultation with the dean, is responsible for developing academic requirements and describing these requirements through appropriate policies. The dean, through consultation with the Graduate Council or the Advisory Committee of the Graduate Council, is responsible for developing procedures that effectively enforce academic requirements and implement policies.
The Graduate Council, through its Advisory Committee, will review academic requirements, policies, procedures, and Graduate School activities annually and recommend appropriate changes. Changes in academic requirements and related policies will require a majority vote of the Graduate Council. A change in composition or responsibility of the Graduate Council will require a two-thirds majority vote of the Graduate Council.
The following policy statements have been approved by the Graduate Council. Individual programs may set more restrictive standards.

SECTION 1 - APPLICATION TO UAB GRADUATE PROGRAMS

Policy 1: General Statement

The Graduate School welcomes applications from all qualified individuals who wish to pursue graduate study at UAB.

Policy 2: Categories of Graduate Student:

Two broad categories of graduate students are recognized: degree-seeking and non-degree-seeking graduate students.

Policy 3: Degree-Seeking Students

Degree-seeking graduate students are those accepted into a specific graduate program to work toward a specific advanced degree. In addition to the completed online application, the application procedure includes the submission of official transcripts, standardized test scores, and letters of recommendation. Each application is reviewed by the faculty of the graduate program to which the applicant has applied, who then make an admissions recommendation to the Graduate School Dean or a representative of the Graduate Dean. Specific application requirements can vary by department/program. All programs have a checklist located at (http://www.uab.edu/graduate/graduate-catalog-frontdoor-local-menu/23-students/catalog/68-graduate-program-directory) which includes departmental contact information, specific application requirements, deadlines, etc.

Policy 4: Nondegree-Seeking Students

The nondegree category serves students who do not wish to pursue a graduate degree at UAB as well as those who wish to begin graduate study before being admitted to a degree program. Not all graduate courses are open to nondegree-seeking graduate students. Although there is no limit to the number of credit hoursthat may be earned as a nondegree-seeking student, should a student later wish to pursue an advanced degree at UAB, the credit earned while in nondegree-seeking status is not automatically accepted toward the degree. A request for transfer of nondegree-seeking credits will not be considered until the student has completed at least 9 semester hours of graduate credit in the current UAB program and is in good academic standing. In no case can more than 12 semester hours earned as a nondegree graduate student be applied toward an advanced degree at UAB. 

Because of U.S. Immigration requirements, international applicants (i.e., those who are neither U.S. citizens nor permanent residents) cannot normally be considered for the nondegree category unless already residing in the United States. Immigration laws should be consulted to determine eligibility of international students. 

Unless otherwise stated, the policies in this section apply to both degree-seeking and nondegree-seeking graduate students. Information on applications for admissions can be found on the Graduate School Web site (http://www.uab.edu/graduate/current-students/prospective-students)

Policy 5: Completed Application Package

The complete application package includes
(1) the completed online application,
(2) the appropriate processing fee (paid online with a credit/debit card or by mail with a check or money order),
(3) official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended (the applicant must arrange for these to be sent directly from the issuing institution to the Graduate School Office),
(4) official copies of the applicant's scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test (GRE scores less than 5 years old must also be sent directly from the testing agency to the Graduate School.) Some UAB graduate programs require, or are willing to accept, other recognized national tests. Specific program requirements are outlined in the program sections of the catalog.,
(5) three letters of recommendation, preferably submitted online or on the Graduate School Evaluation Form and then mailed directly to the graduate department/program by the person who writes the letter. (For some programs the required number is less.),
(6) (for international applicants only) an affidavit of financial support, and
(7) (for international applicants from non-English-speaking countries only) official copies of the applicant's scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and the Test of Written English (TWE), or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

Application packages, in general, will not be considered until the package is complete. All documents must be received by the Graduate School Office by the deadline as indicated on the program-specific admissions checklist: http://www.uab.edu/graduate/graduate-catalog-frontdoor-local-menu/23-students/catalog/68-graduate-program-directory.

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SECTION 2 - ADMISSION STANDARDS

Policy 1: General Statement

Admission is competitive, and based on an estimation of the ability of the applicant to complete the degree program successfully and on the appropriateness of the program to the applicant's academic or career goals.

Application Review Process

Our admission process has two levels of review. The Graduate School sets general admission requirements, and each graduate program specifies its particular requirements. In general, the Graduate School welcomes applications from students who have earned a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited academic institution, who have good letters of recommendation, and who have scored well on a recognized standardized test (usually the Graduate Record Examination General Test). Each application is evaluated by the program faculty on the basis of all information available about the applicant. Most of our graduate programs can accommodate only a limited number of students. Admission is usually competitive, and we may not be able to offer admission even to some well-qualified applicants. Admission requirements for individual programs varies by discipline. Normally, successful applicants have usually earned at least a B average in undergraduate coursework. Since it is difficult for us to generalize across the wide range of our graduate programs, students may contact the program to which you are applying to confirm the test score and GPA requirements or expectations. If space is available, some programs may allow contingent admission to applicants who fall short of the standards normally expected.

Applicants for admission will not be processed until all credentials required by the Graduate School have been received. All programs have a checklist located at (http://www.uab.edu/graduate/graduate-catalog-frontdoor-local-menu/23-students/catalog/68-graduate-program-directory) which includes departmental contact, specific application requirements, deadlines, etc. Applications and materials submitted are held for one year; if an admission decision is not made within that time, the records will be destroyed. The applicant is responsible for making sure that all application packet components are received by the Graduate School. The Graduate School assumes no obligation to inform applicants about erroneous or missing credentials. All application materials become the property of the university and may not be released to any other individual or the applicant.

Policy 2: Master's Degree Programs

Although each graduate program sets its own minimum standards for admission, the Graduate School has established general guidelines for admission to master's degree programs. These guidelines are as follows:
(1) a B average (computed overall, or alternatively computed over the last 60 semester hours of earned credit) in undergraduate work,
(2) evidence of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited university or college in the United States (Degrees from foreign universities and colleges are acceptable, if equivalent to a four-year baccalaureate degree from a U.S. institution. Determination of equivalence is made by the Graduate School at the time of application.),
(3) an acceptable score on the Graduate Record Examination General Test (some programs require or accept scores from other standardized tests), and
(4) previous academic work appropriate to the academic area to which an application is being made.

Note: Faculty who review applications from prospective students are encouraged to consider all components of each student’s application for their program.

Policy 3: Doctoral Degree Programs

Although each graduate program sets its own minimum standards for admission, the Graduate School has established general guidelines for admission to doctoral degree programs. These guidelines are as follows:
(1) a B average (computed overall, or alternatively computed over the last 60 semester hours of earned credit) in undergraduate or subsequent graduate work,
(2) evidence of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited university or college in the United States (Degrees from foreign universities and colleges are acceptable, if equivalent to a four-year baccalaureate degree from a U.S. institution. Determination of equivalence is made by the Graduate School at the time of application.),
(3) an acceptable score on the Graduate Record Examination General Test (some programs require or accept scores from other standardized tests), and
(4) previous academic work appropriate to the academic area to which an application is being made.
Also, note that some programs require a master's degree before admission to the doctoral program. Because of guidelines set by external accreditation authorities, the requirements for application and admission to certain graduate programs may differ from the above, particularly with regard to the standardized test required. These variations are detailed in the specific sections for each graduate program in the catalog.

Note: Faculty who review applications from prospective students are encouraged to consider all components of each student’s application for their program.

Policy 4: Admission with Contingencies

Students lacking a limited number of specific qualifications may be admitted to graduate programs contingent on completion of those qualifications within a specified period of time. Students are informed of specific requirements for continued enrollment and the time allowed for completion at the time of admission. Failure to meet the requirements during the stipulated time may result in dismissal.

Policy 5: Readmission

The records of students, who have not registered for courses for one year or more, will be removed from the UAB computerized registration system. Such students must apply for readmission before they may register again. Degree-seeking students who (1) were admitted to a UAB Graduate Degree-Seeking Program within the last five years, and (2) have not registered for courses for one academic year (3 semesters) or more BUT have registered for and successfully passed at least one graduate course at UAB after being admitted to a UAB Graduate Degree-Seeking Program, and (3) have not attended any other university or college in the interim, and (4) wish to return to the graduate program to which he or she was earlier admitted, must fill out the Application for Readmission to Graduate Degree Program form and pay the appropriate fee. These readmitted students must meet the degree requirements operative at the time of readmission. Students who wish to return to the nondegree category after an absence of one or more years must submit a new nondegree online application, together with the required processing fee and transcript confirming the undergraduate degree. These forms can be obtained online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms.

Policy 6: Admission of Students Previously Dismissed

When any individual applies to a graduate program, a major part of the admissions decision involves an estimate, based on the applicant's academic history, of whether the applicant can perform satisfactorily at the graduate level. To be r-admitted, applicants, who have previously been dismissed from the Graduate School based on unsatisfactory academic performance must present convincing evidence to the faculty and the Graduate School Dean that a substantial improvement has occurred so that it is probable that the applicant can now perform at the required level in graduate work.

Policy 7: Faculty

To maintain university accountability, UAB faculty and staff who wish to take occasional graduate courses must register for these courses after admission to the Graduate School on the nondegree-seeking status. Admission of a UAB faculty member as a degree-seeking graduate student requires the concurrence of the applicant's department chair and dean(s), as well as the approvals required for other applicants to the same program. For more information regarding Educational Assistance, visit the UAB Human Resources Web page at http://www.uab.edu/humanresources/home/benefits 
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SECTION 3 - GENERAL ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS

Unless otherwise stated, the policies in this section apply to both degree-seeking and nondegree-seeking graduate students.

Policy 1: Graduate Credit

For purposes of academic accounting, credits expressed in "semester hours" are assigned to each course. The guideline for lecture courses is that one semester hour of credit is awarded for 13-15 contact hours. Laboratory credit is assigned on the basis of one semester hour of credit for approximately 30 hours of work in the laboratory.

Policy 2: Undergraduates Seeking Enrollment

UAB undergraduate students may be allowed to enroll in a graduate course with the approval of their advisor, the course instructor, their undergraduate program director, and the graduate program director. The Undergraduate Student Request for Enrollment in Graduate Level Coursework form can be obtained onlie (http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms). Credits earned by undergraduate students may be applied to either an undergraduate degree or a graduate degree, but not both.
If the student is subsequently admitted to the Graduate School, use of this credit toward a graduate degree requires the approval of the graduate program director and the Graduate School Dean. 

Policy 3: Course Numbering System

The scholastic level of UAB courses is indicated by the century number. Courses numbered 500 and above are graduate and postbaccalaureate courses. Courses numbered 500-599 are available to upper-level undergraduate and beginning graduate students. Courses numbered 600 and above are for graduate students. Those numbered 600-699 are intended primarily for students at the master's level, with 698 reserved for nonthesis research and 699 reserved for thesis research. Courses assigned numbers 700-799 are primarily for students at the doctoral level, except in the School of Education where the numbers from 700-729 are reserved for courses leading to the degree of Educational Specialist (Ed.S.). The number 798 is reserved for nondissertation research and 799 for dissertation research. Seminars, practica, individual studies and projects, internships, and residencies will generally carry numbers in the upper range of these centuries.

Policy 4: Time Limitations

Graduate students are generally expected to complete all degree requirements with 5 years of matriculation for master’s students and 7 years of matriculation for doctoral students. One extension of this time limit can be requested when mitigating circumstances preclude completion of requirements within 5 years (masters) or 7 years (doctoral). The request for an extension should include a plan and timeline for completion. Such requests require the approval of the student’s dissertation committee and graduate program director and must be presented in writing to the Dean of the Graduate School for consideration and approval. All such requests must be accompanied by a written and signed Completion Plan. Instructions for preparing a Completion Plan may be downloaded from the Graduate School website at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/current-students/online-forms. Courses taken more than 5 years (masters) or 7 years (doctoral) before graduation may not be applied toward a degree without the approval of the graduate program director and Graduate Dean.

Policy 5: Registration

Students must register for all work to be taken for graduate credit.

(1) Full-time enrollment for an academic year (fall, spring and summer) is required for students on fellowships and assistantships, and is defined as:

a. at least 9 semester hours in the fall and spring semesters, and

b. registration for credit hours in the summer at a minimum level

established by the academic unit (school, college, department or graduate program). Students should consult with their program director before registering for summer credit hours.

(2) Students enrolled in programs that traditionally only offer course work and research opportunities during fall and spring semesters are considered to be full-time even if they do not enroll during the summer terms.

(3) Certain funding sources (e.g., training grants, individual grants and fellowships) may have additional enrollment requirements that must also be satisfied. In addition, student loan recipients must satisfy certain minimal enrollment requirements to defer repayment. Students should consult with their funding source or the Financial Aid Office to determine these requirements as they apply to their specific situation.

(4) To be classified as “half-time”, a graduate student must register for at least 5 graduate credit hours of work each semester. If you are a degree-seeking student, you must be enrolled at least “half-time” to receive financial aid.

The UAB class schedule can be found on the BlazerNET website located at http://www.uab.edu/home/redirects/. The class schedule lists the courses and other work to be offered and gives full details on prerequisites, registration dates, and procedures

Policy 6: Adding/Changing Courses

Adding or changing courses after registration is possible each semester until the date specified on BlazerNET. Procedures are also specified.

Policy 7: Withdrawal From Courses

Graduate students are expected to complete courses for which they have registered, unless unusual circumstances require withdrawal. The procedures for withdrawal are specified on BlazerNET. Mere cessation of class attendance does not constitute withdrawal, either academically or for tuition charges. If you must withdraw from a class or classes after the Add-Drop period, the withdrawal request must be made no later than the posted date for all withdrawals. Check the Academic Calendar, https://www.uab.edu/students/academics/academic-calendar, for the appropriate semester to verify the last date for withdrawal. If a student follows the procedures to withdraw in BlazerNET, then a grade of “W” will be entered on the transcript.

Policy 8: Credit By Examination

Students may not earn "credit by examination" at the graduate level.

Policy 9: Audits

Graduate students may audit courses available for graduate credit with the permission of the instructor and payment of appropriate fees; this approval must be secured before registration. Courses taken for audit credit are not counted toward the hours required for full-time status. Provided the instructor’s requirements are met, the course will appear on the transcript with the notation AU. The request to audit form can be obtained online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms.

Policy 10: Leave of Academic Absence

A graduate student may request a leave of academic absence. The request for a leave of academic absence may not exceed one (1) academic year. The Request for Leave of Academic Absence form can be found at the Graduate School Web site (http://www.uab.edu/graduate/images/acrobat/forms/leaveofabsence.pdf). The request must be approved by the student's graduate program director and Graduate School Dean. Before a student can return from an approved leave of academic absence, the graduate program director must submit to the Graduate School a request to allow the student to re-enroll in courses. 

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SECTION 4 - GRADING SYSTEM

Policy 1: Letter Grades

The grade of A is used to indicate superior performance, B for adequate performance, and C for performance only minimally adequate for a graduate student. In most programs, a grade of C is a failing grade. Any graduate student completing a course at the 500 level or above with a performance below the C level will receive a grade of F, since the Graduate School does not use the grade of D.

Policy 2: Grades in Pass/Not Pass Courses

With the approval of the graduate program director, a course may be designated as a "pass/not pass course." The grade of P (passing) signifies satisfactory work. The grade of NP (not passing) indicates unsatisfactory work, without a penalty being assessed with respect to the grade point average (GPS). Research courses with course numbers 698, 699, 798, and 799 are considered pass/not pass courses.

Policy 3: Temporary Grade Notations

Temporary notations used by the Graduate School are N for "no grade reported", and I for "incomplete" coursework.
If there is a special circumstance in which an instructor does not submit a grade at the end of a term, a temporary grade of N will be recorded. If no permanent grade has been reported by the end of the following semester, an F will automatically be entered in the student's academic record.
The temporary notation of I may be reported at the discretion of the instructor to indicate that the student has performed satisfactorily in the course but, due to unforeseen circumstances, has been unable to finish all course requirements. An I is never given to enable a student to raise a deficient grade. This notation should not be used unless there is reasonable certainty that the requirements will be completed during the following semester, because at the end of that semester the I automatically changes to an F if the I has not been replaced with a letter grade. In highly unusual circumstances, the student may request an extension of the time to complete the requirements. This request must be submitted in writing in advance of the time when the grade automatically changes to an F since the approval of the instructor, graduate program director, and Graduate School Dean are all required.
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SECTION 5 - CUMULATIVE CREDITS AND GRADE POINT AVERAGE

Policy 1: Semester Hours Earned

The student's "semester hours earned" are increased by (1) earning a grade of C or better in a course for which the student was registered on a regular ("letter grade") basis or (2) obtaining a P grade in a course taken on a pass/not pass basis.

Policy 2: Semester Hours Attempted

The student's "semester hours attempted" are increased by receiving a grade of A, B, C, or F in a course for which the student was registered on a regular basis.

Policy 3: Quality Points

Four quality points are awarded for each semester hour in which an A is earned, three quality points are awarded for each semester hour in which a B is earned, and two quality points are awarded for each semester hour in which a C is earned. No quality points are added for other grades.

Policy 4: Grade Point Average

The grade point average is determined by dividing the total quality points awarded by the semester hours attempted.

Policy 5: Repeated Courses

Graduate students are allowed to repeat courses for graduate credit only with the permission of the graduate advisor and graduate program director. All courses taken and all grades earned are permanently recorded on the student's transcript. The first time a student repeats a course he or she receives the grade earned for the second attempt. If a course is taken three or more times, all grades after the first are counted. The Graduate School Records Office must be notified of the first repeat after the grade has been earned because the calculation using the repeat grade is not automatic. Some graduate programs may not allow the Repeated Course policy. Check with your advisor to make sure your program has a repeat policy. Check with your advisor to make sure your program has a repeat policy. Note: Many graduate programs also base retention decisions on programmatic guidelines and not on grade point average.
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SECTION 6 - ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE

Policy 1: Good Academic Standing

For a student to maintain good academic standing in the Graduate School, a grade point average of at least 3.0 (B average) and overall satisfactory performance on pass/not pass courses are required. Satisfactory performance on pass/not pass courses is defined as earning at least as many hours of P grades as hours of NP grades.

Policy 2: Satisfactory Progress

Each graduate program should establish standards for satisfactory progress toward the degree. Students who do not meet these standards may be dismissed from the specific graduate program.

Policy 3: Conditional Dismissal

A degree-seeking or nondegree-seeking graduate student, who has been in good academic standing, but who, at the end of any semester, fails to meet the criteria to continue in good academic standing will be placed on probation. Such a student must re-establish good academic standing within the next two semesters of graduate study undertaken. Students who do not accomplish this level of performance may be dismissed from the UAB Graduate School.
The rules stated above govern university probation and dismissal, administered by the Graduate School. Individual graduate programs may establish and administer program probation and dismissal governed by stricter requirements. In general, a student's retention in a specific graduate program is contingent on the faculty's belief that the student is likely to complete the program successfully. If the faculty ceases to hold this belief, the student may be dismissed from the program.
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SECTION 7 - CONDUCT AND APPEAL

Policy 1: Academic Conduct

The University of Alabama at Birmingham expects all members of its academic community to function according to the highest ethical and professional standards. Students, faculty, and administration of the institution must be involved to ensure this quality of academic conduct.
Academic misconduct undermines the purpose of education. Such behavior is a serious violation of the trust that must exist among faculty and students for a university to nurture intellectual growth and development. Academic misconduct can generally be defined as all acts of dishonesty in an academic or related matter. Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to the following categories of behavior:
ABETTING: helping another student commit an act of academic dishonesty. Allowing someone to copy your quiz answers, or use your work as their own are examples of abetting.
CHEATING: use or attempted use of unauthorized materials, information, study aids, the answers of others, or computer-related information.
PLAGIARISM: claiming as your own the ideas, words, data, computer programs, creative compositions, artwork, etc., done by someone else. Examples include improper citation of referenced works, use of commercially available scholarly papers, failure to cite sources, copying other's ideas.
FABRICATION: presenting as genuine falsified data, citations, or quotations.
MISREPRESENTATION: falsification, alteration or misstatement of the contents of documents, academic work or other materials related to academic matters, including representing work substantially done for one class as work done for another without receiving prior approval from the instructor. Misrepresentation also includes misrepresenting schedules, prerequisites, transcripts, or other academic records.

A student who commits an act of academic misconduct within the context of meeting course requirements will be given the grade of F in the course or on the assignment at the discretion of the department or program in which the misconduct occurred.  Academic misconduct can occur in other contexts as well, such as when taking comprehensive examinations, performing research, preparing manuscripts or generally during the performance of other activities related to the process of satisfying degree requirements.  Under Graduate School policy the program in which the student is enrolled may choose to expel the student from the university on the first offense. If, as determined by the records of the Graduate School or the department or program, the act of academic misconduct is a second offense, the student will be expelled from the university. The transcript of a student expelled for committing academic misconduct will bear the statement “Expelled for Academic Misconduct.” Withdrawal from a course while a possible violation of the Academic Honor Code is under review will not preclude the assignment of a course grade that appropriately reflects the student's performance prior to withdrawal if the violation is substantiated.

Procedure for Reporting a Suspected Violation

When a faculty member or another student sees cause to charge a student with academic misconduct, within 7 days of noting the incident that individual will communicate the charge to the department chair or program director of the department or program in which the accused student is enrolled. The department chair or program director to whom the charge is presented will notify the student of the charge and provide the student with an opportunity to respond. If the student can respond in a way that, in the opinion of the program director and the department chair, either dispels the charge or provides the opportunity to resolve the issue informally, an informal resolution can be prescribed. If the student cannot refute the charge effectively, the department chair or program director will expeditiously notify the student of the administrative action to be taken.  The notice shall also inform the student of the right to appeal and the steps involved in that process.  Copies of any such communication will be provided to the Academic Dean of the school in which the student is enrolled. 

If the school or department in which the student is enrolled has its own honor code, then the procedures of that honor code must be followed, including any prescribed appeals process.  For dual degree students whose academic misconduct occurs in one of their two schools, the honor code of the school in which the infraction occurred should prevail.

However, if no local honor code exists, the following procedure must be followed.

Right to Appeal and Formation of and Honor Council

If a student is the subject of an administrative action as the result of an academic misconduct violation and wishes to contest that administrative action, he / she may appeal in writing to the dean of the school in which the student is enrolled. The dean will then convene an Honor Council consisting of five students and three faculty members from various departments within the school. All of the students chosen to serve must be in good academic standing.

The Honor Council shall elect a chairperson from among the eight members. The Chair may be either a student or faculty member. The duties of the Chair include convening the Honor Council, presiding over hearings and communicating with the administration of their school on behalf of the Honor Council.  In all matters, the members of the Honor Council are instructed to treat the information put forward to them with the strictest confidence. Breaches of confidentiality are themselves violations of the Student Honor Code and will be treated as such.

Initial Procedures

After being informed of the charges and the failure to reach an informal resolution, the Academic Dean may also attempt to informally resolve the impasse between the student and the faculty member(s). In the event this attempt is unsuccessful, the Academic Dean shall refer the allegation(s) to the Honor Council. The Academic Dean will provide the Honor Council with a statement of the allegation(s) against the accused student, a description of the evidence and supporting documents (if available).  The Honor Council shall convene to review the charge and all evidence supporting it. After review, the Council may either dismiss the allegation(s) on the grounds that insufficient substantiating evidence exists, or support the charges, also based on the evidence. The Honor Council shall provide notice of the specific charge or of the dismissal of the alleged violation to the accused student by certified mail, return receipt requested, or by hand delivery, and to the Academic Dean. If substantiated, the statement of the charge shall include a brief summary of the alleged violation and the evidence presented in support of the charge, in enough detail as to allow the accused the opportunity to rebut the charge, and shall provide notification to the accused student of his/her right to a hearing. The accused student must respond to the charge within five days, unless excused by the Honor Council. In his/her written response to the Honor Council, the accused student must admit or deny the charge and must formally request or waive his/her right to a hearing before the Honor Council.

Once notice of the specific charge has been provided to the accused student and to the Academic Dean, the Honor Council shall decide on a time for the hearing and any preliminary deadline(s) for the submission of supporting documents and the names of proposed witnesses.  Granting a request from the accused, or from the School, to reschedule the hearing is within the discretion of the Honor Council, but shall not be unreasonably denied.  The Honor Council shall provide written notice to the accused student of the time and place for the hearing, and if witnesses are to be called in his/her defense, ask the student to provide their names along with a statement describing the testimony of each witness.  The Honor Council shall review any documentary evidence provided by the student in advance of the hearing. 

The Hearing

The process shall generally include the following:  (1) call to order by the Chair; (2) introduction of those present; (3) statement of the Charge and possible penalties if the charge is proven; (4) statement of the evidence and testimony in support of the charge, and questioning of witnesses; (5) statement of evidence and testimony in opposition to the charge (rebuttal), and questioning of witnesses; (6) closing statement. All questioning of witnesses shall be by the Honor Council unless the Honor Council shall decide otherwise.

A hearing before the Honor Council shall not be bound by formal rules of evidence or judicial rules of procedure. The Honor Council may hear any testimony or receive any supporting evidence that it deems to be pertinent to the charge.  Both the accused and a representative of the School may be present throughout the hearing. The accused student shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to be heard, to question witnesses indirectly through the Honor Council, to rebut adverse evidence, and to make a brief closing statement. Members of the Honor Council may ask any questions at any time during the hearing and may elect to disallow or to curtail testimony that the Honor Council determines to be unnecessarily redundant or not relevant to the issue(s) being heard. Throughout the hearing, all persons present shall conduct themselves in an orderly manner.

The accused may be accompanied at the hearing by an advisor of his/her choosing, however, the advisor may not participate in the hearing. The Honor Council shall be responsible for the conduct of the hearing at all times and shall keep a record of the proceedings in a format it chooses. Hearings before the Honor Council are confidential proceedings and only those persons determined by the Honor Council to have a need to be present shall be included. Except for the accused (and an advisor if invited by the accused) and the representative of the School, all other witnesses shall be excluded from the hearing room, except when testifying. No more than one witness shall be called to testify at a time. The School or the Honor Council may elect to invite UAB Security to be present at an Honor Council hearing.

As soon as practicable following the conclusion of the hearing, the Honor Council shall meet in private session to consider all of the evidence presented, and shall decide on one of two outcomes. The decision of the Honor Council shall be that the charge is either (1) proven by a preponderance of the evidence or (2) not proven by a preponderance of the evidence.  A vote of six of the eight members shall be required for the charge against the accused to be proven.  Following the vote, the Honor Council shall record the vote and shall provide a brief narrative statement explaining the rationale for their finding(s).  The written decision and rationale of the Honor Council shall be transmitted to the Academic Dean, by internal communication, upon the conclusion of the Honor Council's deliberations.  The Honor Council shall notify the accused of the outcome by certified mail, return receipt requested, or by hand delivery.  A decision of the Honor Council in favor of the accused student shall conclude the case.

Penalties for Violation of the Honor Code

Generally, a first violation of the Honor Code shall result in the assignment of a failing grade in the assignment or in the course in which the violation occurred, at the discretion of the instructor. A notation on the student’s permanent academic record may also be made to indicate that a reduced or failing grade was assigned because of an Academic Misconduct violation (e.g., "F, Academic Misconduct violation, June 15, 2006"), on the judgment of the Honor Council. A second violation of the Honor Code shall result in expulsion from the University. No student may graduate until pending allegations of an Academic misconduct violation have been resolved. No student expelled from the Graduate School because of an academic misconduct violation shall be eligible for readmission.

If at the end of the appeals process performed at the school level, the accused student wishes to appeal to the Graduate School Appeals Board, he/she must follow the procedure outlined in this Handbook.  Upon receipt of the appeal from the student, the Graduate Dean will request from the Academic Dean of the school in which the student is enrolled all appropriate documentation accumulated to that point.  The Graduate Dean will then be responsible for maintaining records of all additional proceedings.

Policy 2: Non-Academic Conduct

The university is a community of scholars and learners; therefore, all participants are expected to maintain conduct that (1) facilitates the institution’s pursuit of its educational objectives, (2) exhibits a regard for the rights of other members of the academic community, and (3) contributes to the maintenance of a healthy learning environment. Through appropriate due process procedures, conduct action will be taken in response to behavior that violates these principles. The office of Non-Academic Student Conduct supports the mission of the university by protecting the rights of all members of the university community and by promoting civility, integrity, responsibility, openness, mutual respect and justice by enforcing community standards. A more detailed description of nonacademic misconduct can be found in the student handbook, Direction. It is the student’s responsibility to be fully aware of the policies and procedures described in Direction. The Office of Student Life and the Vice Provost for Student and Faculty Success have the responsibility for coordinating policies and procedures regarding students’ nonacademic misconduct.

Policy 3: Grievance Policy

Although rare, disagreements can arise that may affect a student's progress towards the completion of the degree. The parties involved in such a dispute should make a good faith effort to discuss and resolve the disagreement. The following guidelines may be helpful.

Step 1. Identify the problem; clearly define what happened and what you perceive is needed to resolve the issue.

Step 2. Approach the other person or group involved with the dispute one‐on‐one. Set up a mutually agreeable time to talk; listen and ask to be listened to; use "I" statements when speaking; avoid assigning blame or leveling accusations.

Step 3. If these steps do not culminate in a resolution, the parties involved with the dispute should agree to approach an impartial third party, a mediator, who will respect confidentiality and with whom the situation can be discussed. The Program Director will suggest such a third party if asked. The mediator may be able to help the parties involved reach a resolution.

Step 4. If no resolution is found then you may submit the disagreement to the Graduate Program for arbitration. Please follow these procedures:

a. Each party in the dispute should submit a written description of the disagreement to the Program Director and the department Chair. Please include a description of the actions taken to resolve the dispute to date and the name of the mediator who was involved.

b. The Graduate Program Director will review the written documents. The Program Director, in consultation with the Program Advisory Committee, will make a determination as to whether or not the disagreement is Program‐related and thus appropriate for arbitration at the Program level.

c. If the dispute is found to be Program‐related, the Graduate Program Director, together with the Graduate Program Committee, will act as an arbitrator. If the dispute involves the Program Director, Associate Director or any member of the Program Committee, then that individual will be excused from the deliberations. The Committee may request additional information from the parties involved. The Program Director and the Admissions and Advisory Committee will meet to discuss the problem within 14 calendar days following receipt of the written document or following the receipt of any additional materials. In the event that a quorum of the Committee is not available within this time period, the Committee will meet as soon thereafter as a quorum can be gathered. The Committee may also ask the parties in the dispute to appear before the committee to provide additional information.

d. The result of the Committee's deliberations will be communicated in writing to the parties involved in the dispute within seven (7) calendar days after the meeting.

Step 5. To department Chair for final review of arbitration before proceeding to Appeals Board.

If a party involved in the dispute is not satisfied with the outcome of the arbitration process, an appeal may be submitted to the Graduate School Appeals Board. Please see the Graduate Student Handbook, Graduate School Appeals Board for specific information about the appeals process.

Policy 4: Graduate School Appeals Board (GSAB)

A. Purpose:

The purpose of the GSAB is to review appeals brought by graduate students of decisions made by university representatives concerning

1. retention in graduate programs,
2. charges of academic misconduct or dishonesty,
3. selected other issues related to graduate education as deemed appropriate to forward to the GSAB by the Graduate Dean, the provost, or other university officials.

B. Limitations:

The GSAB will not review

1. appeals of course grades,
2. appeals of a dismissal based on lack of adequate progress toward meeting degree requirements,  
3. appeals for which the student has not previously fully used all other applicable appeal or review processes,
4. appeals filed more than 30 calendar days from the date of a prior review or 30 calendar days from the date of receiving notification of an action or decision,
5. misconduct in research which falls under the Policy Concerning the Maintenance of High Ethical Standards in Research and Scholarly Activities.
6. grievances brought against the faculty of a specific program. Program faculty report to the chairpersons and deans in the schools in which they hold their primary appointments. Accordingly, it is the responsibility of those chairpersons and deans to adjudicate at the school level any appeals brought by graduate students against their faculty. Decisions made at the school level in such cases will not be reviewed by the Graduate School Appeals Board.
7. grievances or appeals brought forth by masters (Plan II) students in professional/practice-based programs. These will be adjudicated exclusively within the school in which the program is housed. Any questions related to whether a program is considered professional/practice-based should be referred to the program’s director.

C. Composition:

The GSAB will consist of five members of the graduate faculty and three graduate students in good standing, all broadly representative of the graduate programs in the university. The GSAB will be chaired by a designee of the Graduate Dean. Members of the committee will be appointed on an ad hoc basis as needed by the Graduate Dean. The Graduate School will provide support personnel for the board to record proceedings of hearings.

D. Meetings:

The GSAB will meet as soon as possible after assembly by the Graduate Dean to adjudicate a pending appeal.  A quorum for a meeting will be at least five persons: three graduate faculty members and at least two graduate student members. Any member of the GSAB may disqualify himself or herself. After notification of the Board composition, the student bringing the appeal may disqualify one faculty and one student member of the board. If the disqualification of board members results in absence of a quorum, the process will be suspended until the Graduate Dean can appoint additional members.

E. Notification:

The chair of the GSAB will notify the student bringing the appeal and the student’s program director of the decision reached by the GSAB in the initial review of the appeal—specifically, whether an appeal will be heard. If a hearing is to be held, the chair will notify the student and student’s program director of the date, time, and place for the hearing. The chair of the GSAB is responsible for notifying the Dean of the Graduate School of the findings and recommendations reached by the GSAB after the hearing. The Dean of the Graduate School will notify the student and student’s program director of his or her action.

F. Authority:

The GSAB may recommend affirming or reversing the decision being appealed and making such recommendations for further actions as seem appropriate. In the course of any hearing, the GSAB is authorized to request additional evidence from, or the appearance of, any student, faculty or staff member, or other employee of the university, or other individual as a witness. The GSAB shall have final authority in procedural matters. The GSAB will forward recommendations to the Dean of the Graduate School along with a record of the hearing proceedings. The Dean will make a final independent decision, taking into account the findings and recommendations of the GSAB and the records of the hearing. The Dean will inform the relevant parties and the GSAB of the decision in writing within 14 calendar days of receiving the GSAB recommendation.

Procedures

A.  Filing an appeal:

Before a request for an appeal is accepted by the GSAB, the normal channels for resolving disputes must have been followed. First, the student should consult with his or her advisor to resolve the issue at that level. If the issue is not then resolved, the student should seek out the program director or department chair to request a resolution. If the program director and department chair have not been able to resolve the appeal or the action still needs to be pursued, it is then appropriate to pursue the issue with the academic college or school dean. At that point either the Honor Code of the school in which the student is enrolled should be invoked, or if no school based Honor Code exists, the Honor Council procedure described previously should be followed. If the concern has not been resolved to the satisfaction of the student at any one of these levels, an appeal to the GSAB may then be pursued.

All requests for appeals to be considered by the GSAB must be submitted to the Dean of the Graduate School, in writing, on the approved form (available in the Graduate School office and online) along with supporting documents and any other pertinent evidence. The written appeal must specify the grounds for the appeal. It is the responsibility of the student making the appeal to demonstrate to the GSAB that grounds for the appeal exist.

The Dean of the Graduate School will notify those individuals whose decisions are being appealed and will request relevant information. Information and evidence will be transmitted to The Graduate School Dean and to all members of the GSAB. Any additional evidence brought to the hearing is subject to acceptance or rejection by the GSAB. All information submitted becomes part of the permanent record of the GSAB hearing record maintained by the Graduate School.

B. Initial review of appeals:

The GSAB will be convened by the chair to conduct an initial review of the appeal to determine whether the appeal is subject to dismissal or if further action by the GSAB is warranted. Appeals that fail to set forth grounds for a full review by the GSAB shall be dismissed.

The GSAB will consider appeals when

1.    all other levels of appeal have been exhausted. 
2.    the student can show grounds that he or she was previously denied a fair hearing.
3.    the decision being appealed is not supported by substantial evidence.
4.    the sanction being imposed is beyond the authority of the personnel involved.
5.    the sanction or action is unduly severe or disproportionately harsh in comparison to similar cases.

When the GSAB determines that a graduate student should be afforded a hearing on an appeal, the chair of the GSAB shall give written notice to all parties involved in the appeal, allowing no less than one week of preparation time before the hearing.

C.    Hearings:

 All hearings by the GSAB shall be subject to the following requirements:

1.    Any additional materials requested by the GSAB at the time of the initial review to be considered at the hearing shall be made available to all parties prior to the hearing.
2.    Parties to the appeal have the right to be present and hear all arguments and oral statements made to the GSAB committee.
3.    Parties to the appeal shall make arguments, present oral statements and written documents, and  question witnesses with regard to any issues of fact relevant to the grounds for appeal.
4.    Hearings shall not be adversarial in nature and shall be conducted in a manner conducive to ascertaining the facts of the case upon appeal.
5.    The GSAB may establish time limitations for presentations before the board.
6.    Hearings shall be closed to the public.
7.    GSAB members may address questions to any person giving testimony before the board.
8.    In hearings involving more than one student, a single hearing may be scheduled for each.
9.    It shall be the responsibility of the GSAB chair, together with the recording secretary, to see that the integrity of the record is maintained.
10.  The chair shall preside and rule on matters of procedure and evidence.
11.  The chair shall have the right to dismiss anyone from the hearing should his or her conduct become disorderly.

D. Findings, decisions and recommendations of the GSAB:

Upon completion of hearings, the GSAB shall meet in closed session for deliberations. A simple majority vote of the GSAB is required to substantiate all findings and recommendations. In determining its findings and recommendations, the board shall concern itself only with whether reasonable people, acting on the available evidence, could have made the same decision or taken the same action as the one being appealed.

The GSAB shall prepare written findings addressing all issues presented in the appeal and shall make a recommendation that indicates whether the appealed decision or sanction should be affirmed, set aside, or modified. The GSAB may also make recommendations, if appropriate, for further actions by university authorities.

The Dean of the Graduate School has 14 calendar days to act upon the findings and recommendations of the GSAB. If no action is taken within the 14 days, except when extenuating circumstances justifying a delay are involved, the findings and recommendations of the GSAB will be final. Further appeal is not available within the university.

The application for a hearing before the GSAB is available in the Graduate School office, Lister Hill Library, Suite G03, and at the Graduate School’s Web site (http://www.uab.edu/graduate/images/acrobat/forms/acadappeal.pdf).  

Policy 5: UAB Student Records Policy

Federal law guarantees students certain rights with respect to their educational records. It is the student's responsibility to become familiar with the university's stated policies on these rights (i.e., Student Records Policy).
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SECTION 8 - REQUIREMENTS FOR UAB EMPLOYEES

Policy 1: UAB Employees who Enroll in a Ph.D. program

UAB employees who enroll in a Ph.D. program and continue to work full time:

A.  Cannot also be a full time student*
B.  Cannot enroll for more than 18 credit hours per academic year (fall, spring & summer)*
C.  Are not eligible to be supported on a training grant as they are not full time students
D.  Cannot be simultaneously supported by a UAB Graduate Assistantship
E.  Thesis or dissertation work may not be initiated until the student enrolls in a program (i.e., data generated by the employee/student prior to enrollment that has been submitted for publication or published cannot be included in a thesis or dissertation)
F.  Must meet the same set of program requirements as all other students
G. The dissertation committee is responsible for assuring that these stipulations are met
H. The mentor/employer must acknowledge in writing his/her agreement for the employee to be a part time student while continuing to be a full time UAB employee.  Written acknowledgments must be submitted to the program director and the Graduate School.*
I.   The Program Director and committee must agree in writing to a protracted course of study*

*Stipulations A, B, H and I do not apply to employees of companies which support their employees as full time students in a UAB Ph.D. program

Policy 2: Compliance with Institutional and Graduate School Policies for Student Compensation

UAB employees who wish to become full time graduate students and continue to work part time cannot work more than 10 hours per week outside their commitment to meet the requirements of their predoctoral program. 
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SECTION 9 - REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MASTER'S DEGREE

Policy 1: Faculty Advisor

Immediately after a degree-seeking student enters the UAB Graduate School, a member of the faculty of the graduate program to which the student has been admitted should be assigned to serve as the student's advisor. This assignment may be a temporary arrangement. The student and the advisor should confer about courses and any special work to be taken on the basis of the student's previous experience and the requirements of the graduate program.

Policy 2: Graduate Study Committee

As soon as possible, a specific plan of study should be developed. Traditionally, graduate study is highly flexible and individualized, and a graduate study committee is appointed, chaired by the student's advisor, to guide the student toward the degree. (Some graduate programs, particularly where flexibility in the course of study is limited by accreditation and other external constraints, do not always use a graduate study committee for Plan II students.) When used, the committee should consist of at least three Graduate Faculty members, one of whom should be from outside the student's graduate specialization and each of whom should be able to contribute some relevant insight and expertise to guide the student. Recommendations for graduate study committee membership are submitted by the advisor and the student to the graduate program director, who subsequently submits these recommendations to the Graduate School Dean. Committee members must have credentials equal to or exceeding that of the degree that the student is pursuing and must have been approved by the Graduate School Dean for Graduate Faculty status.  Graduate faculty appointees and instructions for requesting new appointments are available at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/gradfaclist.  New Graduate Faculty appointments should be requested by the department and approved by the Graduate School Dean prior to being listed on the recommendation form to serve as a member of a student’s committee.Graduate Faculty status definitions are available at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/gradfaclist/definitions-of-graduate-faculty-categories.  

Changes to a student’s committee must also be submitted on the appropriate form available at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms.  

Policy 3: Plan I or Plan II

The Graduate School recognizes two principal paths, known as Plan I and Plan II, that lead to the master's degree. One or the other of these plans may be appropriate in particular circumstances, and in some programs a choice is available.

Plan I requires the completion, in good academic standing, of at least 24 semester hours of appropriate graduate work and 6 semester hours of thesis research, with the presentation of an acceptable thesis embodying the results of original research work.

Plan II may not require research and does not require a formal thesis, but a minimum of 30 semester hours of appropriate graduate work must be completed in good academic standing. Although thesis research is not required as part of a Plan II course of study, the student is often expected to gain insight into the techniques of problem posing and problem solving and to use these insights to prepare a written report. A plan of study/course curriculum outline is required for all Plan II master’s students when submitting the application for degree (before graduation).

Where both Plan I and Plan II are available within the same graduate program, an early and meaningful choice should be made by the student, in close consultation with the advisor. A change in choice of plans requires the approval of the program director and the Graduate School Dean.

Policy 4: Transfer of Credit

Previously earned graduate credit that has not been applied toward another degree (either at UAB or elsewhere) is eligible for transfer into the student's current degree program. Ordinarily no more than 12 semester hours of transfer credit can be applied to a degree program. Acceptance of more than 12 hours will require approval by the program director, department chair, and Graduate School Dean. All credit transfer requests must be initiated by the student and require the approval of the graduate program director and the Graduate School Dean. Transfer of Credit forms are available online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms.  An application for transfer of credit will not be considered until the student has completed at least 9 semester hours of graduate credit in their current UAB program and is in good academic standing. Once transfer credit has been accepted, it will be included in the calculation of the grade point average in the student's current UAB program.

Graduate credit earned with a grade of B or above while a graduate student in another regionally accredited graduate school may be considered for transfer. In programs offered jointly by UAB and other universities, all graduate credits earned in the program at a cooperating university are eligible for transfer to UAB. If a student earns credit in one UAB graduate program and is later admitted to another program, unused credits from the previous program, if applicable, are eligible for consideration for transfer into the current program

Policy 5: Additional Program Requirements

In consultation with the faculty, the director of each graduate program will specify any additional requirements, such as a reading knowledge of a foreign language or a working knowledge of statistics, which are considered essential to mastery of the academic discipline. Such requirements become conditions for the completion of the degree. The program may also adopt a system of examinations that the student must pass at various points in the program.

Policy 6: Admission Into Degree Candidacy (Plan I Only)

Admission to candidacy is a formal step recommended by the student’s graduate study committee and approved by the graduate program director and the Graduate School Dean, acknowledging that the student has been performing well and is likely to complete the degree. For Plan I students, admission should occur when the student has obtained an adequate background (although not all coursework needs to be complete) and has provided the committee with an acceptable proposal for thesis research. Students must be in good academic standing to be eligible for admission to candidacy, and admission must take place no later than one semester before the expected graduation. Before being admitted to candidacy, students must complete a Research Compliance Verification form and attach photocopies of the appropriate assurance letters and/or forms. Students must be admitted to candidacy before they can register for thesis research hours (i.e., 699). Forms are available online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms.  

IRB and IACUC Approval
If the research involves human or animal subjects, approval from the IRB or IACUC must be documented before admission to candidacy can be approved and IRB/IACUC approvals must be kept current until the research is completed. For ways in which students can be added to a protocol, refer to the Tip Sheet for Students Involved in Research Involving Human or Animal Subjects located on pages 54 and 55 of the Graduate Student  Handbook. The IACUC form must display the appropriate research protocol number. 

Policy 7: Application for Degree

Each candidate for a master’s degree must signify the intention to complete the requirements by a particular graduation date by submitting a completed Application for Degree Form. Because this form is used to document completion of requirements, order the diploma, and to include the student’s information in the commencement program, the form must be received in the Graduate School Office by the posted deadline. However, because each graduate program may have an earlier deadline, the student should check with his or her program office for those deadlines as well.  A plan of study/course curriculum outline is required for all Plan II master’s students when submitting the application for degree (before graduation). See deadline dates, http://www.uab.edu/graduate/deadline-dates. Students must be registered during the semester in which degree requirements are completed.  If degree candidates are covered by the student health insurance policy, hold an assistantship, or have student loans, it may be necessary to register for a prescribed minimum number of credit hours to retain these benefits. See the section of this Handbook on Course Enrollment (p. 6) and check with the appropriate office if retention of these benefits is a concern. Forms are available online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms

Policy 8: Thesis 

The thesis required under Plan I should present the results of the candidate’s original research and the interpretation of those results. The document should also demonstrate the candidate’s acquaintance with the literature of the field and the proper selection and execution of research methodology.

Signatures of committee members and program directors on the approval form indicate their assurance that they have examined the document and have found that it is of professional quality from all standpoints, including writing quality, technical correctness, and professional competency, and that the document conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly presentation. The Graduate School is responsible for ensuring that the final version of the thesis meets the physical standards required of a permanent, published document and for adherence to the requirements stated in the UAB Format Manual (available online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/images/acrobat/forms/theses/FormatManual.pdf).  

The final approved version of the thesis must be submitted as a single PDF for final review no later than 2 weeks (10 business days) following the public defense.  Master’s students must submit the Approval Form, signed by each committee member and the program director. The UAB Publication Agreement form is submitted online. Additional information concerning completing the final steps of the publication process is available online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/submitting-your-thesis-or-dissertation-to-the-graduate-school.

If in the opinion of more than one member of the thesis committee, the student has failed the thesis defense, there is no consensus to pass. The chair of the committee shall advise the student that the thesis fails to meet the requirements of the program. The chair shall notify the student in writing about the reason(s) for failure. If the student resubmits or submits a new thesis for consideration by his/her graduate program at least two members of the new examining committee shall be drawn from the original committee. If the modified or new thesis fails to meet the requirements of the program, the student shall be dismissed from the graduate program. 

In the event that only one of the three committee members dissent, that individual must submit a letter in which he/she outlines the reasons for their dissent to the student’s advisor.  The advisor and student may then prepare a rebuttal statement that is submitted, along with the letter of dissent, to the advisory or executive committee of the program for review.  The advisory committee can then decide to accept or reject the rebuttal statement.  If the rebuttal is accepted, the student is passed on his/her thesis defense.  If the rebuttal is rejected, the advisory committee can recommend to the student or advisor potential steps necessary to remediate the thesis and potentially also the work therein, or the committee can recommend that the student be dismissed from the program.

Policy 9: Thesis Defense

Under Plan I, the final examination should take the form of a presentation and public defense of the thesis, followed by an examination of the candidate’s comprehensive knowledge of the field. The time, date, and location of this examination is reported to the Graduate School via the online Request for Thesis or Dissertation Approval forms (submitted at least 10 days before the public defense). The meeting must be appropriately announced on campus, must be open to all interested parties, and must take place before the posted semester Thesis or Dissertation defense deadline. Plan I candidates must be registered during the semester in which degree requirements are completed.  If degree candidates are covered by the student health insurance policy, hold an assistantship, or have student loans, it may be necessary to maintain at least half time registration status of 5 credit hours to retain these benefits. Check with the appropriate office if this is a concern.

When Plan II is followed, the final examination should take the form of a comprehensive survey of the candidate’s activities in the graduate program. (A Plan II final examination is not required in some graduate programs.)

Policy 10: Recommendation for Degree

The candidate will be recommended for the master’s degree to the Graduate School Dean by the graduate study committee or by the student’s advisor and the graduate program director. This recommendation must be received by the published submission dates. Deadline dates are available at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/deadline-dates. The recommendation will be based on evaluation of all work performed, the final examination, and the thesis if Plan I was followed. The recommendation will automatically be nullified if (1) the remaining courses needed for the degree are not passed, (2) the candidate fails to maintain good academic standing, (3) the candidate fails to remove all temporary grades from his/her transcript, or (4) the Plan I candidate fails to complete the thesis.

Policy 11: Award of Degree

Upon approval by the Graduate School Dean and payment of any outstanding financial obligations to the university, the President confers students' degrees by authority of the Board of Trustees. 
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SECTION 10 - REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DOCTORAL DEGREE

Policy 1: General Statement

The doctoral degree is granted in recognition of (1) scholarly proficiency and (2) distinctive achievement in a specific field of an academic discipline. The first component is demonstrated by successful completion of advanced coursework (of both a didactic and an unstructured nature) and by adequate performance on the comprehensive examination. Traditionally, the student demonstrates the second component by independently performing original research. In certain doctoral programs, performing a major project may be acceptable even though it may not consist of traditional research. However, in all programs, with the exception of DPT and DNP, a dissertation presenting the results of the student’s independent study is required.

The Graduate School also recognizes professional doctorates awarded in preparation for the autonomous practice of a profession. Professional doctorates are accredited programs of study usually designed to prepare students for the delivery of clinical services or to assume specific types of administrative responsibilities. Students in professional doctorate programs must demonstrate competence in clinical practice and/or scholarship but are not required to conduct and defend original independent research. In lieu of a dissertation, students in programs designated as professional doctorate programs are required to demonstrate that they are capable of evaluating existing research, applying it to their professional practice, and expanding the body of knowledge on which their professional practice is based. This requirement is often met by the design and completion of a research or scholarly project submitted in writing and presented formally before the faculty in the program. 

Policy 2: Faculty Advisor

Immediately after a degree-seeking student enters the UAB Graduate School, a member of the faculty of the graduate program to which the student has been admitted should be assigned to serve as the student’s advisor. This initial assignment may be a temporary arrangement. The student and the advisor should confer about the initial courses and any special work to be taken on the basis of the student’s previous experience and the requirements of the graduate program.

Policy 3: Graduate Study Committee

As soon as possible, a graduate study committee should be formed to guide the student in a program of courses, seminars, and independent study designed to meet the student’s needs and to satisfy program and Graduate School requirements. This committee should consist of at least five graduate faculty members, one or two of whom should be from outside the student’s graduate specialization and each of whom should be able to contribute some relevant insight and expertise to guide the student. In all cases, at least three of the committee must be comprised of UAB Graduate Faculty members.  Committee members who are not already UAB Graduate Faculty, must be granted Ad Hoc Graduate Faculty status. Recommendations for graduate study committee composition are submitted by the advisor and the student to the program director, who subsequently submits these recommendations to the Graduate School Dean. Committee members must have credentials equal to or exceeding that of the degree that the student is pursuing and must have been approved by the Graduate School Dean for Graduate Faculty status.  Graduate faculty appointments and instructions for requesting new appointments are available at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/gradfaclist. New Graduate Faculty appointments should be requested by the department and approved by the Graduate School Dean prior to any faculty member being recommended for placement on a student’s committee.Graduate Faculty status definitions are available at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/gradfaclist/definitions-of-graduate-faculty-categories. Changes to a student’s committee must also be submitted on the appropriate form located at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms.

Policy 4: Transfer of Credit

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Policy 5: Minimum Course credit requirements in Ph.D. programs

The Graduate School has minimum course credit requirements for students in doctoral programs.   Program requirements for course work may exceed the Graduate School minimums.  Graduate School minimum requirements are as follows:

(1) If entering with a baccalaureate degree:

a.    Completion of 48 credit hours of course work prior to candidacy
b.    Up to 16 credits of the 48 can be as non-dissertation research credits
c.    Up to 10 credits can be as lab rotation, seminar, or directed study credits
d.    Doctoral students must satisfy one of the following:

Must complete at least two semesters in candidacy and accumulate at least 24 semester credit hours in 799 dissertation research.

OR

Must complete at least two semesters as a student in candidacy and have accumulated at least 12 semester credit hours in 799 dissertation research, AND, either during or before candidacy, 12 semester credit hours in other appropriate research-based coursework, which has been approved by the graduate student’s program. Courses which have been previously applied toward meeting the requirements of another degree are not eligible to satisfy the research credit requirement. The student’s graduate department or program should provide a course planning curriculum worksheet detailing the courses taken which are intended to be used toward meeting degree requirements along with the student’s application for degree.

(2) If entering with a previous Masters degree appropriate to the doctoral degree field (Also applies to previously earned M.S., D.V.M., D.M.D., D.D.S., etc.):

a.    Completion of 27 credit hours of course work prior to candidacy
b.    Up to 6 credits of the 27 can be as non-dissertation research credits
c.    Up to 6 credits can be as lab rotation, seminar, or directed study credits
d.    Doctoral students must satisfy one of the following:

Must complete at least two semesters in candidacy and accumulate at least 24 semester credit hours in 799 dissertation research.

OR

Must complete at least two semesters as a student in candidacy and have accumulated at least 12 semester credit hours in 799 dissertation research, AND, either during or before candidacy, 12 semester credit hours in other appropriate research-based coursework, which has been approved by the graduate student’s program. Courses which have been previously applied toward meeting the requirements of another degree are not eligible to satisfy the research credit requirement. The student’s graduate department/program should provide a course planning curriculum worksheet detailing the courses taken which are intended to be used toward meeting degree requirements along with the student’s application for degree.

Up to 12 credits of course work that have not been applied toward meeting the requirements for an earned degree taken at UAB or other institutions may be used to satisfy these course credit requirements upon approval of the graduate program director and the Graduate School Dean.

Policy 6: Residence Requirement

The usual minimal period in which the doctoral degree can be earned is three academic years of full-time study, or longer if the student has periods of part-time enrollment. The nature of doctoral study requires close contact between the student and the faculty of the graduate program, and the individual investigation or other special work leading to the dissertation must be performed directly under the guidance and supervision of a full member of the UAB graduate faculty. Therefore, doctoral students should be in residence (enrolled) for three full semesters each year, including summers, during a three year period or collectively a minimum of nine semesters if the student has to take a leave of absence or stop out during the course of their doctoral education.

Policy 7: Foreign Language or Other Special Tool of Research

In consultation with the faculty, the director of each graduate program will specify any additional requirements, such as a reading knowledge of a foreign language or a working knowledge of statistics, that are considered essential to mastery of the academic discipline. Such requirements become conditions for the completion of the degree.

Policy 8: Comprehensive Examination

The scholarly proficiency of a doctoral student in the chosen field of study must be evaluated by comprehensive examination. The conduct of these examinations is the responsibility of the graduate program in which the student is enrolled and may consist of either individual examinations in several appropriate areas or a single combined examination. When both written and oral examinations are given, the written examination should precede the oral so that there is an opportunity for the student to clarify any misunderstanding of the written examination questions. Comprehensive exams should be administered no later than the end of the third year of the student's program.

Policy 9: Admission Into Degree Candidacy

When the student has passed the comprehensive examination, satisfied any program requirements for foreign language proficiency or mastered special research tools, and presented to the graduate study committee an acceptable proposal for dissertation research or special study, the committee will recommend to the Graduate School Dean that the student be admitted to degree candidacy. A student must be in good academic standing to be admitted to candidacy. Admission to candidacy must take place at least two semesters before the expected completion of the doctoral program. Students must be admitted to candidacy before they can register for dissertation research hours (i.e., 799).

Admission to candidacy is an important step forward in the student’s pursuit of the doctoral degree. By approving admission to candidacy, the graduate student’s committee indicates its confidence that the student is capable of completing the proposed research project and the doctoral program. 

IRB and IACUC Approval
If the research involves human or animal subjects, approval from IRB or IACUC must be documented before admission to candidacy can be approved and IRB/IACUC approvals must be kept current until the research is completed. For ways in which students can be added to a protocol, refer to the Tip Sheet for Students Involved in Research Involving Human or Animal Subjects located on pages 54 and 55 of this Handbook. The IACUC form must display the appropriate research protocol number. 

Policy 10: Application for Degree

Each candidate for a doctoral degree must signify his/her intention to complete the degree requirements to meet a particular graduation date by submitting a completed Application for Degree Form. Because this form is used to check requirements, order the diploma, and include the student’s information in the commencement program, it must be received in the Graduate School Office by the posted deadline. However, because each graduate program may have an earlier deadline, the student should check with his or her program office for those deadlines as well.  The deadline dates can be accessed on the Graduate School website at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/deadline-dates. Students must be registered during the semester in which degree requirements are completed.  If degree candidates are covered by the student health insurance policy, hold assistantships, or have student loans, it may be necessary to maintain at least half time registration status of 5 credit hours to retain these benefits.  Forms are available online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/online-forms.

Policy 11: Dissertation

The results of the candidate’s individual inquiry must be presented in a written dissertation comprising a genuine contribution to knowledge in the particular academic field. The document should also demonstrate the candidate’s acquaintance with the literature of the field and the proper selection and execution of research methodology.

Signatures of committee members and program directors on approval forms indicate their assurance that they have examined the document and have found that it is of professional quality from all standpoints, including writing quality, technical correctness, and professional competency, and that the document conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly presentation. The Graduate School is responsible for ensuring that the final version of the dissertation meets the physical standards required of a permanent, published document and for adherence to the requirements stated in the UAB Format Manual (available online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/images/acrobat/forms/theses/FormatManual.pdf

Policy 12: Dissertation Defense

The dissertation defense should take the form of a presentation and defense of the dissertation work, which may include an examination of the candidate’s comprehensive knowledge of the field. The time, date, and location of this examination is reported to the Graduate School via the online Request for Thesis or Dissertation Approval forms (submitted at least 10 days before the public defense). The meeting must be open to all interested parties, publicized on the UAB campus, and must take place before the posted semester thesis and dissertation defense deadline. Candidates must be registered during the semester in which the final examination is taken.

If in the opinion of one or two of the five members of the dissertation committee, the student has failed the dissertation defense, there is no consensus to pass. The chair of the committee shall advise the student that the dissertation fails to meet the requirements of the program. The chair shall notify the student in writing about the reason(s) for failure. If the student resubmits or submits a revised dissertation for consideration by his/her graduate program at least three members of the new examining committee shall be drawn from the original committee. If the revised dissertation fails to meet the requirements of the program, the student shall be dismissed from the graduate program. 

In the event that only one of the five committee members dissent, that individual must submit a letter in which he/she outlines the reasons for their dissent to the student’s advisor. The advisor and student may then prepare a rebuttal statement that is submitted, along with the letter of dissent, to the advisory or executive committee of the program for review. The advisory committee can then decide to accept or reject the rebuttal statement.  If the rebuttal is accepted, the student is passed on his/her dissertation defense. If the rebuttal is rejected, the advisory committee can recommend to the student or advisor potential steps necessary to remediate the dissertation and potentially also the work therein, or the committee can recommend that the student be dismissed from the program.

Policy 13: Recommendation for Degree

The candidate will be recommended for the doctoral degree to the Graduate School Dean by the graduate study committee and the graduate program director. This recommendation, in the form of a signed approval form, must be received no later than the submission dates published on the Graduate School website. Candidates must be in good academic standing to graduate, with no temporary grades for courses required for the degree on their transcripts, or any outstanding balance on their student account.

Policy 14: Award of Degree

Upon approval by the Graduate School Dean and payment of any outstanding financial obligations to the university, the President confers students’ degrees by authority of the Board of Trustees. Doctoral students are generally expected to complete all degree requirements within 7 years of matriculation.
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SECTION 11 - GRADUATE FACULTY

Policy 1: Membership

Graduate Faculty membership may be granted by the Graduate Dean to faculty members who demonstrate a high level of competence in teaching and scholarship. Graduate faculty membership is required (1) of all individuals teaching courses for graduate credit and (2) of members of graduate study committees.

Policy 2: Qualifications for Appointment

To qualify for graduate faculty status, a faculty member must hold a terminal degree, usually the earned doctorate, in the teaching discipline or a related discipline. In some instances, graduate faculty status may be awarded to faculty members who have demonstrated exceptional scholarly or creative activity or professional expertise, but who may not possess the required academic credentials. Faculty members responsible for the direction of doctoral research must be experienced in independent scholarship. Members of the graduate faculty should demonstrate, by their involvement in institutional activities, their commitment to the academic community and the institution, as well as to their students and their academic disciplines.

Policy 3: Types of Appointment

Regular graduate faculty status is an extension of an individual's academic appointment at UAB. Regular graduate faculty membership is reserved for UAB faculty members who are regularly involved in graduate student training. This includes teaching courses at the graduate level, serving on graduate student committees, serving as graduate student advisors, or chairing thesis and dissertation committees. Adjunct graduate faculty status is granted as an extension of an individual's adjunct appointment in a UAB department. Usually, adjunct faculty members are individuals whose primary work or practice is elsewhere, but who maintain a UAB faculty appointment. Ad hoc status is granted to individuals who serve occasionally on graduate student committees or teach occasional graduate level courses. They do not serve as graduate student advisors and cannot chair thesis and dissertation committees. It is not required that these individuals hold UAB faculty appointments. Ad hoc status is granted for a specific period.

Policy 4: Procedures for Appointment

The process of appointment to the graduate faculty is initiated by a letter of nomination submitted to the Graduate Dean by a responsible administrative officer, usually a department chair. The letter should be sufficiently detailed to permit the Graduate Dean to assess the qualifications of the candidate and should state (1) the nature of the appointment requested, (2) evidence of the candidate's qualifications to conduct graduate education, and (3) the contributions expected from the candidate as a member of the graduate faculty. A current copy of the candidate's curriculum vitae should be attached. If indicators of competence other than the terminal degree in the discipline are used as the basis for appointment, these must be justified.

Policy 5: Continuation of Appointment

Graduate faculty membership is a functional and not an honorary appointment. Continuation of appointment to the graduate faculty should be the result of positive evidence of contributions to graduate education at UAB. Regular evaluation of the contribution of a graduate faculty member to graduate education is the responsibility of program directors and department chairs. When a responsible administrative officer notes no evidence of contribution to graduate education, that officer should recommend discontinuation of the graduate faculty appointment. The Chair of the department where primary appointment is held by a faculty member will provide the Dean of the Graduate School a Memorandum every three years indicating whether they are or are not recommending to the Dean of the Graduate School reconfirmation of each of their faculty holding Graduate Faculty status.  The Graduate School will provide annually to each department chair lists of faculty that hold Graduate Faculty status.  The current graduate catalog should reflect the status of the graduate faculty at the time of revision. 

A member of the graduate faculty may appeal the decision to discontinue the appointment to the Graduate Dean who will appoint a committee of three graduate program directors to review the evidence and make a recommendation. The decision of the Graduate Dean will be final.

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SECTION 12 - PROGRAM DIRECTORS

Policy 1: Appointment

A Graduate Program Director is a faculty member appointed to oversee the administrative aspects of a graduate program. The appointment of a director of a graduate program shall be made by the chair of the department in which the graduate program resides. In the case of interdisciplinary programs that cross departmental and/or school lines, the participating departments shall agree to a written procedure for appointing a program director.
Departments and schools may assign additional responsibilities and authority. In general, however, the graduate program director is expected to do the following:
  • Provide leadership to the program faculty to develop and maintain a high quality curriculum and educational environment for students in the program
  • Serve as a liaison between the Graduate School and the program
  • Convene an admissions committee and manage the review of applications for admission to the program
  • Make recommendations to the Graduate School to accept or deny admission to applicants
  • Specify contingencies to be met before full admission.
  • Oversee advising of graduate students and monitor student progress against a meaningful timeline as defined by program faculty
  • Review and approve admission to candidacy
  • Review and recommend transfer of credit
  • Review and approve requests for leaves of absence
  • Review and approve curriculum changes
  • Oversee and approve material for the catalog
  • Prepare graduate faculty nominations for appropriate approval
  • Review and recommend the appointment of thesis and dissertation committees
  • Oversee periodic review of graduate faculty appointments
  • Oversee comprehensive exams and thesis/dissertation defenses.
  • Review and approve applications for graduation
  • Represent the program in the Graduate Council
  • Prepare internal fellowship/assistantship applications
  • Appoint students to fellowships and assistantships and monitor in accordance with the Guidelines for Assistants/Fellows.

Policy 2: Authority

The authority of a director of a graduate program shall be defined by the faculty participating in that program.
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SECTION 13 - GRADUATE COUNCIL

Policy 1: Membership

The Graduate Council of UAB shall be constituted as follows:
1. the director, or designated representative, of each graduate program in the Graduate School;
2. the Graduate School Dean, Associate Deans and Senior Graduate School Staff. The term "program" used above is to signify each approved graduate degree offering, without regard to the UAB unit responsible for its implementation.

Policy 2: Chair for Meetings

The Graduate School Dean shall serve as the Chair of the Graduate Council.

Policy 3: Meetings

The Graduate Council shall meet as required, but at least once each academic year. Additional meetings may be called by the Graduate Dean. A minimum of fourteen (14) calendar days notice to all members is required for each meeting.

Policy 4: Purpose of Meetings

The purpose of Graduate Council meetings shall be to review with program directors and program administrative assistants information about applications and admissions, enrollments, new policies and procedures, and to highlight any significant accomplishments achieved by graduate students or program faculty during the previous year.
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SECTION 14 - ADVISORY COMMITTEE OF THE GRADUATE COUNCIL

Policy 1: Purpose

The Advisory Committee (ADCOM) of the Graduate Council shall be responsible for (a) advising the Graduate School dean with regard to administrative oversight of graduate education and UAB graduate programs, (b) reviewing existing policies and procedures for efficacy and appropriateness, (c) proposing new policies and procedures as needed, and (d) reviewing and approving NISPs and full graduate program proposals for new programs.

Policy 2: Membership

The ADCOM shall be composed of twelve (12) members: one from each of the schools and three from the College of Arts and Sciences. The membership from each school shall be appointed by the Dean of that school. Each member of the Advisory Committee must be a member of the Graduate Council.

Policy 3: Term of Membership

ADCOM members shall be elected for a term of three calendar years and may serve no more than two consecutive terms. To assure continuity, members’ terms are staggered.

Policy 4: Election of Membership

The appointment of representatives to fill expiring terms shall be conducted during the Fall Term of each year.

Policy 5: Chair

The Graduate School Dean shall preside at all meetings and provide leadership for the ADCOM appropriate to ensure that the ADCOM functions in an effective manner.

Policy 6: Minutes of Meetings

A member of the staff of the Graduate School shall be appointed by the Graduate School Dean to record minutes of each meeting and be responsible for posting these minutes to the appropriate section of the Graduate School web site.

Policy 7: Meetings

The ADCOM shall meet as required, but at least once each term. Meetings may be called by a majority of the membership, or the dean of the Graduate School. A minimum of seven (7) calendar days notice to all ADCOM members is required for each meeting. A quorum shall consist of the presence of at least seven (7) members of the ADCOM.

Policy 8: New Program Review

The ADCOM is charged with review and evaluation of proposed graduate programs (NISPs and Full Proposals). Any proposed NISP or Full Graduate Program proposal must be presented to the ADCOM for review and approval prior to submission to the Provost, the ACGD, and ACHE before submission for approval by the University of Alabama System Board of Trustees. The committee members shall evaluate the relationship of the proposed program to the mission of university, the need for the program, and all aspects of program quality, including the participating faculty, curriculum, admissions and degree requirements, facilities and resources, program administration, and plans for program evaluation. A majority vote of the ADCOM is required for approval.

Policy 9: Parliamentary Authority

The rules contained in Robert's Rules of Order (Revised) shall govern ADCOM in all cases in which they are applicable.
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