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Probation & Termination Policies for Graduate Students

Probation

In addition to dismissal for failure to meet the usual examination and grade requirements, departments and graduate-degree-granting area programs have the right to place on probation — and, after at least 30 days of probation, to dismiss from the program — any graduate student who is deemed to be making insufficient academic progress or whose work is not of the quality required. The faculty adviser or academic program chair must inform the Graduate School as soon as the student has been notified and the probationary period has begun.

The dismissal may occur at any time during a student's work toward a graduate degree.

See Extension and Appeals of “Satisfactory Progress” Infractions for complete information about the probation-termination-appeal process.

Termination

Failure to meet the usual examination and grade requirements entitles departments/programs to place the graduate student on probation for a duration of time. Probation must last a minimum of 30 days. Any graduate student who is deemed to be making insufficient academic progress or whose work is not of adequate quality as determined by the department/program may be dismissed. The faculty adviser or academic program chair must inform the Graduate School as soon as the student is notified and the probationary period begins. Probation and dismissal may occur at any time during a student's work toward a graduate degree.

When a department/program determines that a student is not making satisfactory progress, the Director of Graduate Studies in the program and/or faculty adviser will recommend a face-to-face meeting between the student and the faculty adviser. If, after this meeting, the department/program and the student can agree on a plan to remedy the situation, the faculty adviser (or DGS) and the student will jointly sign a document enumerating steps to take. If, on the other hand, the department/program and the student disagree on issues of progress, the DGS or chair may send the student a letter placing the student on probation.

The letter placing a student on probation must include an explicit statement of what must be accomplished and by what date in order for the student to be removed from probation and returned to good standing in the department/program. If the student does not comply with the conditions of probation, a letter (signed by the DGS) will be sent to the student with notification of dismissal from the degree program. Termination letters must inform the student of the right to appeal, first, to the department/program, and second, to the Graduate Faculty Senate. A copy of a termination letter must be sent to the graduate dean at the same time it is sent to the student.

Students have the right to appeal dismissal from their degree programs. As long as a student is in an appeal process, the student should maintain enrollment and continue working on degree program requirements. A student's first appeal of dismissal must be made to the department/program. If the student does not appeal, the Graduate School will send the student an official notice of dismissal from the program.

Students should notify their DGS in writing that they are appealing dismissal. A copy of the appeal letter addressed to the DGS should be sent to the graduate dean. Departments and programs organize their own appeals processes. If the department/program does not reverse its decision, the DGS will notify the Graduate School that the student has gone through the probationary period and the appeal process and has been dismissed.