Academic Catalog

Academic Policies

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Upon admission to a graduate studies program, the student assumes responsibility for knowing program requirements and following established procedures. Conversely, the student has the right to expect that all program requirements will be made clear and that all course requirements, including grading criteria and procedures, will be made known. The student has the right to instruction that encourages the free and open discussion of ideas and which respects reasonable student needs and aspirations. It is the student’s responsibility to contribute to classroom decorum and an atmosphere that encourages maximum learning. Further, each student is entitled to academic advisement but must initiate the advisement process by scheduling appointments with either the graduate program coordinator in the case of degree admission, or with the dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning in the case of nondegree admission status.


Each student is assigned a faculty advisor upon admission to a graduate program. It is the student’s responsibility to initiate contact with that advisor to develop an initial program of study and to meet with him/her prior to each registration period. It is the responsibility of the advisor to provide academic counseling in light of program requirements and the student’s personal and professional goals.

Academic Standing

Graduate degree students are required to maintain a 3.0 grade-point average. A student who fails to meet the scholarship standards may be dismissed from a graduate degree program. If a student falls below a 3.0 average, he/she will be placed on probation. Failure to raise the grade-point average to a minimum of 3.0 during the next semester in which the student is enrolled will result in dismissal from graduate studies at Millersville University. (Summer is considered a semester.)

Graduate students who earn two grades of C+, C or C-, or any combination thereof, will receive an academic warning, regardless of GPA. Earning a third grade of C+, C or C- will result in academic dismissal, regardless of GPA. This includes any courses which have been repeated and replaced with a higher grade. A C+, C or C- grade earned at Millersville University may not be made up at another institution of higher learning for the same course.

A graduate student earning an F grade in any course will be dismissed from graduate study at Millersville University. An F grade earned at Millersville University may not be made up at another institution of higher learning for the same course.

Individual departments may have scholarship requirements beyond this minimum level; students should consult their advisor and the Academic Programs section of the catalog.

Academic Dismissal and Appeal

Students may appeal dismissal to the Graduate Academic Appeals Committee (GAAC). Students who have been dismissed and believe specific, unusual circumstances affected their academic performance may request a review by writing a letter of appeal to the GAAC. For the appeal to be considered before the next semester, it must be received by the committee by the date specified in the notice of dismissal. Information and forms regarding graduate appeals may be found at or by calling 717-871-4723. After GAAC’s decision, if an appellant believes the appeal process was not administered as prescribed herein, the appellant may pursue an appeal of the process, but not the academic decision, in writing, to the dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning. Such an appeal must be made within 10 business days from the date of the decision letter from the chairperson of the GAAC. The appellant is advised to provide as much written documentation as possible, describing why the process was not administered as prescribed herein, and any supporting materials. The decision of the dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning regarding the process appeal is final and not subject to further review.

Any student who is dismissed from the University for poor academic performance may apply to be readmitted to their academic program one calendar year from the date of the dismissal, provided it is their first dismissal. A student may only appeal for reinstatement one time.  Upon the second dismissal the student may not appeal and is no longer eligible for admission to any Millersville University graduate program.

Graduate Grading Policies

Regular Graduate Courses

Graduate-level courses are those regular courses taught at the 500, 600, 700 and 800 levels. Undergraduate courses (100-400 level) may not be counted for credit in a graduate degree program.

Each instructor establishes his or her own grading policy and states it clearly and in writing at the beginning of the course. Appropriate learning outcomes and measurement systems are built into each course structure to evaluate each graduate student’s achievement. Instructors in dual-numbered courses (courses that have cross-listed undergraduate and graduate sections) will clearly differentiate the undergraduate assignments, grading systems and other relevant instructional methods in writing at the beginning of the semester.

The grade-point average (GPA) is a comprehensive evaluation of a student’s academic standing. The letter grades used in graduate-level courses and their associated grade-point values are as follows: A (4.0), A- (3.7), B+ (3.3), B (3.0), B- (2.7), C+ (2.3), C (2.0), C- (1.7) and F (0.0). In addition, grades of H (Honors), P (Pass), W (Withdrawal), I (Incomplete) and AU (Audit) may also be used. Grades of H, P, W, I and AU are not used in computing the grade-point average. Grade-point average will be rounded to two places.

University policy accepts a C as minimum earned credit. Individual departments may have scholarship requirements beyond this minimum level; students should consult their advisor.

The semester GPA is the number of grade points earned in Millersville courses in a semester divided by the number of credits in the semester for which grades calculated in the GPA were earned. Grade points for each course are calculated by multiplying the grade-point value by the number of credits for the course.

The cumulative GPA (CGPA) is the total number of grade points earned in Millersville courses divided by the number of Millersville GPA credits. Credits from audited courses, subsequently repeated courses and transfer credits are not included in the CGPA.

Incomplete Grades

A student, upon consultation with the instructor, may receive a grade of Incomplete. The student has the responsibility to complete the appropriate work as outlined by the instructor by the end of the following regular term. In the case of research reports and theses, the grade of Incomplete must be resolved within one calendar year. If a change of grade is not made by the instructor to indicate completion of requirements in the appropriate time span, the grade will be changed to an F.  Under extenuating circumstances, the student may petition the dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning, with the recommendation of the instructor, for an extension of time to complete the course or research requirements.

Dissertations, Theses, Research Reports/Projects and Practicum Courses

These are evaluated on the basis of H (Honors), P (Pass), F (Fail) or I (Incomplete).

Graduate Records Policies

Change of Curriculum or Degree Status

Students wishing to change admission status or curriculum must initiate the process by completing the appropriate forms available at or in the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning, Lyle Hall. Additional admission requirements may apply to these changes; further, curriculum and degree status changes must be approved by both the dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning and the student’s department(s).

For post-baccalaureate certification students, a new application must be submitted for students to be reevaluated in a new area of certification.

Change of Name and Address

It is the responsibility of each student to provide accurate and current information for all University records. Address changes may be completed by students online through their MAX account, or by sending notice to the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning. Students must submit official documentation (copy of marriage license, divorce decree, etc.) to the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning for a name change to be made.


A student or graduate wishing to obtain an official copy of her/his academic record must request a transcript using the online Credentials Service accessible through the Millersville website or complete the form available in the registrar’s office, Lyle Hall. Forms are also available on the Millersville University website, Student Forms Center. If the requester wishes to obtain an official copy for a third party, the requested transcript must be sent directly to the designated third party or requested in a signed, sealed envelope. There is a $10 fee per transcript when ordered directly from the University’s registrar’s office.


Students who plan to graduate at the end of any semester must make application for graduation by the deadline published. A $30 graduation fee is charged. A student who applies for graduation but does not complete degree requirements by the anticipated date may be required to reapply in the semester when he/she does expect to graduate. Students are billed by the bursar for the graduation fee. Additional details and appropriate forms are available on the Millersville commencement web page at

Common Policy for Comprehensive Exams

Comprehensive exams are a common method for assessing students’ mastery of core learning objectives in graduate programs. At Millersville, graduate programs have the option of using graduate comprehensive examinations, so students should be aware of their own graduate program’s policy and timeline. Several graduate programs use the comprehensive exam as a means to advance to degree candidacy early in their program, while others use the exam as a culminating evaluation at the end of the program.

For those programs that require an exam as a method of comprehensive evaluation, the following guidelines have been developed by the Graduate Curriculum and Program Review Committee.

Registration and Administration

Comprehensive exams are generally administered on or about the 12th week of the fall and spring terms (November and March) and in the third summer session (July-August). Some programs may not offer their comprehensive exam all three times a year, so it is important to check with the program coordinator. Registration is generally required six weeks prior to the test date; students should check with individual programs for forms and specific dates.


A committee and/or faculty member from the appropriate program will grade comprehensive exams on a pass/fail (P/F) basis. There is also the opportunity for a grade of passing with honors (H) to be awarded.

Failure and Reattempts

If a student fails a comprehensive exam, or any part thereof, they must retake the exam, or the sections they failed, per their graduate program’s policy. If a student fails to successfully pass the exam a second time, a third attempt may be permitted upon approval of the program coordinator and/or department graduate committee. Prior to the third attempt, the student should examine, with the assistance of an advisor or coordinator, their preparation for the exam and any measures that could be taken to improve performance. The third attempt at a comprehensive exam is considered final, and failure to pass will result in dismissal from the graduate program.