Admission to Graduate Studies
Admission to Graduate Studies, which permits enrollment in classes, is not equivalent to admission for a particular graduate degree or certificate.
Application Procedures for Degree- or Certificate-Seeking Students - Individuals interested in pursuing a graduate degree or certificate at the University of Central Missouri can contact the Graduate and International Student Services office for an application and program information. Domestic students may apply for admission here. International students may apply for admission here. All application materials should be received by the Graduate and International Student Services office at least three weeks prior to the beginning of the semester in which the student wishes to register.
All degree-seeking applicants must:
- Submit an application for admission to the Graduate and International Student Services office;
- Submit official transcripts of all undergraduate/graduate coursework;
- Include a $30 non-refundable application fee; international students should remit $75.
When all materials are received, the Graduate and International Student Services office will conduct an initial evaluation. Applicant files meeting the requirements for admission to Graduate Studies will be forwarded to the department, as designated by the student, for consideration and recommendation. The department, after examining the credentials, will make an admission decision regarding acceptance into the program. After a review of the student’s credentials, the staff of the department may determine that the student should fulfill certain departmental requirements or prerequisites for the degree before beginning program requirements. These requirements will be specified by the department at the time of acceptance into the program. The department will notify the student of action taken and admission status. If admitted, a departmental advisor will be assigned and will assist the student in formulating a program of study leading to the attainment of the student’s objectives in pursuing graduate work. Students who are admitted must enroll in program coursework within 12 months or reapply for admission to the program.
Admission Denied - If admission is denied into a specific program, the student may ask the Graduate and International Student Services office to have his/her credentials forwarded to another department. To make this request the student should submit an Application for Change of Major form to the Graduate and International Student Services office. If no request is made, the student will be classified as a Non-Degree Student.
Application Procedures for Graduate Non-Degree Students - An individual with a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution who is not seeking a graduate degree may enroll in graduate courses and receive credit as a non-degree student. Applicants for non-degree status must submit an application for admission, the official transcript showing the earned undergraduate degree, and pay the application fee.
A student wishing to change from non-degree status to a degree program must file a new application for admission and adhere to all requirements specified for degree-seeking students. International students with an F-1 student visa are not eligible to enroll as non-degree status.
Credits earned while in non-degree status are not applicable to a degree program. If a non-degree student is later accepted into a degree or certificate program, the department advisor will determine if credit earned while in non-degree status may be applied to the proposed degree/certificate program.
Application Procedures for Graduate Non-Degree Students - Special Enrollment - Students with an undergraduate degree who wish to enroll for graduate credit in special programs or short courses for one semester without submitting a transcript of previous academic work may be admitted as non-degree student-special enrollment status.
Enrollment is predicated upon assurance of the student’s eligibility for regular graduate admission. The decision for special enrollment is made in the Graduate and International Student Services office. For further information, please contact the GISS office.
Credit Earned While Classified as a Non-Degree Student - Credit earned while a student is classified as non-degree special enrollment cannot be applied to a graduate degree program until the student’s classification is changed. After a student applies for admission as a degree-seeking student and is accepted by a department into a specific graduate program, the department graduate advisor will determine whether credit earned while a non-degree student-Special Enrollment is applicable to the student’s proposed program.
Application Procedure for a Non-degree Visiting Student - An individual in good standing as a graduate student at another regionally accredited graduate school may present a Certificate of Acceptance of Credit by his/her home institution and enroll as a non-degree visiting student without submitting complete official transcripts of previous college records. Such a certificate allows enrollment for only one semester. Students in cooperative doctoral programs may have continued enrollment.
A non-degree visiting student may at any time apply through the regular procedures to be admitted as a degree-seeking or non-degree student. Credits earned as a non-degree visiting student will not necessarily apply to a degree program. After acceptance into a program, the department advisor will determine whether credit earned while a non-degree visiting student is applicable to the proposed program.
Non-Degree and Visiting Students - Federal Financial Aid - In accordance with federal regulations, non-degree and visiting students are not eligible to receive federal financial aid. To be eligible, a student must be fully admitted to a regular graduate degree or teaching certification program.
Admission of a Transfer Graduate Student - A transfer graduate student is one who has completed graduate credit at another institution within the preceding eight years. Transfer students with less than a cumulative graduate GPA of 3.00 may be admitted as non-degree students and will not be eligible to become a degree-seeking student until a minimum of nine semester hours of graduate credit with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 has been achieved at UCM. A transfer student should follow the same admission procedures as indicated above.
Prerequisite Degrees - An applicant for admission to a graduate certificate or master’s degree program must have a bachelor’s degree. An applicant for admission to an Education Specialist degree program must have a master’s degree. Prerequisite degrees must be earned from an institution accredited by a regional accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education such as:
- Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Higher Education
- Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
- North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Higher Learning Commission
- North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement, Board of Trustees
- New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc., Commission on Institutions of Higher Education
- New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc., Commission on Technical and Career Institutes
- Southwestern Association of Colleges and Schools, Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges
- Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities
Readmission to Graduate Studies - Students who do not enroll in graduate courses within one year of admission must reapply for admission. Graduate students who were not enrolled the previous semester must contact the Graduate and International Student Services office either in person or by phone (660-543-4621) to update records before enrollment can be completed.
Graduate Credit Enrollment of a UCM Last Semester Senior
Graduating UCM seniors may arrange, in their final semester of undergraduate study, to take courses for graduate credit as long as their total course load does not exceed 16 credit hours. To be considered, the student must have an undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 2.50. To do so, students must submit an application for admission to the Graduate and International Student Services (GISS) office, complete a Petition for Dual Enrollment, and apply for undergraduate graduation. The petition for dual enrollment verifies the student is enrolled in all remaining undergraduate degree requirements. Upon approval from the GISS office, the student will be enrolled in the requested graduate courses. If a student enrolls in graduate credit courses during the last semester of the baccalaureate degree, the student must complete the baccalaureate degree that semester. If the baccalaureate degree is not obtained during that semester, the graduate courses taken will revert to undergraduate credit.
A 4000-level course taken as undergraduate credit may not be applied or repeated as graduate credit. A 4000-level course taken for graduate credit will have different course requirements. Graduate-level courses cannot be applied to the undergraduate degree or certificate programs.
NOTE: For the purpose of qualifying for federal financial aid the student will be classified as undergraduate at the senior level. Students receiving financial aid should be aware that only those classes taken for undergraduate credit can be included when determining the student’s enrollment status (full-time, half-time, etc.) to qualify for federal and state financial aid. A student may not receive financial aid to pay for graduate credit hours unless the student is fully admitted by both the Graduate and International Student Services (GISS) Office and the academic department of the graduate degree program.