May 26, 2019  
2019-2020 Florida Tech Catalog 
    
2019-2020 Florida Tech Catalog

Graduate Academic Information


Academic Policies

Academic policies for graduate students are published on the Florida Tech website (www.fit.edu), under graduate programs. All graduate students are advised to review graduate policy early in their graduate careers and to refer to the website or the Office of Graduate Programs on the Melbourne campus if in doubt about any aspect of graduate policy.

Admission Policies for All Students

Admission to graduate study is granted to qualified applicants. Successful applicants for the master’s degree will have received a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, or its equivalent internationally, in a program that provides suitable preparation in the applicant’s chosen field. Admission to doctoral study is granted to a limited number of applicants.

Successful applicants to doctoral study will normally have received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree, but admission with only a bachelor’s degree is possible for superior students. The academic record of the applicant must indicate probable success in the desired program. As a general rule, an undergraduate cumulative GPA of at least 3.0, or a minimum GPA of 3.0 in the last 60 semester credit hours of coursework is required, and for doctoral programs a cumulative graduate GPA of at least 3.2 on a 4.0 scale in all coursework applied to the most recent graduate degree earned is required for admission.

Individual academic units may have higher minimum standards. Only in unusual cases, in which clear and substantive evidence justifies such action, will students be admitted who do not meet this standard. For those cases in which the student has acceptable undergraduate achievement but has course deficiencies, the major academic unit will specify the criteria that must be met to remove the deficiencies.

Education Center Application

Application for admission to an education center can be submitted online. The application must be accompanied by payment of the nonrefundable application fee.

One officially certified copy of all undergraduate and graduate (if applicable) transcripts must be sent directly from the student’s institution to Graduate Admissions, Online Learning and Off-campus Programs, 150 W. University Blvd., Melbourne, Florida 32901. One additional certified copy of all transcripts may be requested for site use.

Transcripts from foreign universities must be accompanied by a certified English translation.

Florida Tech Online Application

Applicants for master’s degree programs may request their applications for the upcoming term from www.floridatechonline.com. Students must complete the application and provide all required documents to be considered for full admission or to request financial aid. Only fully admitted students are eligible for federal financial aid. Applicants may enroll in up to two consecutive 8-week terms before being fully admitted. The steps below are required.

Transcripts: Provide official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended. Transcripts will be requested on the student’s behalf as part of application process.

Recommendations: For the M.B.A. degree, potential applicants are requested to submit recommendations from individuals who can attest to previous academic and professional performance and potential for success in graduate study. See the instructions on the online application for submission of recommendation letters.

Résumé: A résumé is requested of all applicants for graduate admission and should detail all past professional and educational experiences including such information as publications and memberships in professional organizations. Nontraditional educational experiences, teaching and relevant employment should be included.

Statement of Intention: A brief Microsoft® Word® document (no longer than one page) explaining the applicant’s reasons for pursuing an M.B.A., what gains are expected from the program, factors that may positively impact study in the program and any special circumstances that should be considered during the application review. The document should answer the following:

  • Why enrollment in an M.B.A. program?
  • Why enrollment in Florida Tech?
  • How do applicant’s academic and professional history relate to the intended program of study?
Transient Students

A transient student is defined as any student in another accredited university pursuing a master’s degree. A transient student may seek admission to a degree program through the normal admission process. If a transient student subsequently decides to pursue either an undergraduate or graduate degree at Florida Tech and is accepted into the degree program, a maximum of 12 semester credit hours earned as a transient student may be applied toward the degree, provided the coursework is academically appropriate. Transient students are required to:

  • Complete the online application form.
  • Provide a copy of transcripts from the university that granted the bachelor’s degree.
  • Provide a copy of transcripts from current graduate program.
  • Pay the nonrefundable application fee.
  • Provide proof of English language proficiency if English is not the student’s home language.
  • Provide a copy of passport or naturalization papers if the student is not a U.S. citizen.

All transient students must have met all prerequisite requirements and may be registered for no more than two consecutive 8-week terms. Once the Florida Tech courses have been completed, the student may request a transcript to be sent to his/her home academic institution from Florida Tech after grades are posted. This is not an automatic process. Students must request the transcript to be sent.

Transient students are required to be in good standing at their home academic institution. No more than 12 semester credit hours of graduate courses taken as a transient student may be transferred to an academic degree program at Florida Tech.

Melbourne Campus Application

Applications are available online at www.fit.edu/grad. Applications should be submitted according to the following guidelines:

  Fall Semester Spring Semester
Assistantships for master’s and doctoral students January 15 July 1
Behavior Analysis
  M.S. ( ABA, OBM) applicants February 15 *
  Ph.D. applicants January 15 *
Biological Sciences applicants March 15 October 1
Clinical Psychology applicants January 1 *
Industrial/Organizational Psychology applicants January 15 *
International and all doctoral applicants (excl. Psychology) June 8 October 14
Domestic master’s applicants-All application materials received by 4 weeks before term 4 weeks before term

*Program admits once a year for the fall semester.

Applications received after the program-designated deadline will be considered, but late applicants may be at a disadvantage in terms of being admitted and/or receiving scholarships, fellowships and assistantships. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure the graduate admissions office receives all materials required for evaluation of the application before the deadline. Late applications may not be evaluated for the entrance term requested.

Application Fee: A nonrefundable application fee must accompany any application. The amount required is shown on the application.

Transcripts: An official certified transcript must be sent to the Office of Graduate Admissions by the registrar of each college or university attended.

The admission materials information at the top of each graduate degree program outlines the application materials described in the paragraphs below. Applicants should note especially the GRE/GMAT recommendations.

Recommendations: Individuals who can attest to previous academic and professional performance and to potential for success in graduate study should mail letters of recommendation directly to the graduate admissions office. At least one letter of recommendation, if required, should be from a full-time faculty member, especially if the applicant is applying to a doctoral program; if a master’s thesis was carried out, a letter from the thesis advisor is normally required.

Résumé: The résumé should detail all past professional and educational experiences, including such information as publications and memberships in professional organizations. Nontraditional educational experiences, teaching and relevant employment should also be discussed.

Statement of Objectives: This statement of approximately 300 words should include a discussion of intended graduate study, professional career goals, and past and proposed activities in the field of study.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE): Official scores not more than five years old may be required. The computer-based test (CBT) is now the standard form for the General Test and may be taken year-round at designated sites around the country. International students may still have an opportunity to take the paper-based test at selected sites.

For a listing of the sites, check the GRE Information and Registration Bulletin available in the graduate admissions office and online. The official test results are mailed within four to six weeks of the examination date. The unofficial test results for the CBT are available immediately after the test. The official results of the CBT are mailed within 10-15 days of the examination date.

Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT): Although not required, the GMAT is strongly recommended for most Nathan M. Bisk College of Business applicants; for details see the section on admission requirements for the M.B.A. degree program under the Nathan M. Bisk College of Business. Substitution of GRE scores for the GMAT is allowed.

TOEFL Scores: Any student whose home language is not English may be accepted for any degree program but will be subject to limitations on registration for academic courses until certain English language requirements are met. Florida Tech  Online students must provide proof of English language proficiency before attending courses. For details see “English and Languages” in the School of Arts and Communication.

Assistantship Application: Each assistantship applicant must submit a completed assistantship application, three letters of reference and a statement of objectives. The priority deadline for all assistantship applications is January 15. Applications received after the program-designated deadline will be considered, but late applicants may be at a disadvantage in terms of being admitted and/or receiving scholarships, fellowships and assistantships. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that the graduate admissions office receives all materials required for evaluation of the application before the deadline. All English language proficiency requirements apply.

Reapplication: Admission to most graduate programs is valid for two years from the semester of acceptance, but for the Psy.D. program and all biological sciences graduate programs, admission is only valid for the semester of acceptance. Individuals wishing to begin or resume graduate work after a two-year lapse are required to reapply for admission. Individuals who leave Florida Tech and attend another university without first having received written permission must reapply for admission and submit grade transcripts regardless of the length of time since last attending Florida Tech. See “Readmission Policy” under General Academic Information (all students) .

Other Forms: The Acceptance Confirmation Reply and Medical History forms should be completed and returned, and the tuition deposit submitted after formal admission to the university has been confirmed.

Check-In on Melbourne Campus

New students should complete Panther Pass in order to register for classes. Students may come to the graduate admissions office in Harris Commons during regular university business hours if they need to meet with an admissions counselor. This office is open during all breaks, except holidays. Refer to the appropriate academic calendar for reporting dates.

Florida Tech policy states that international students are required to attend for one full semester when entering the United States on a Florida Tech-provided I-20 form. Florida Tech will not release an international student to another educational institution until the student completes one semester at Florida Tech.

Registration Prior to Admission

Under certain circumstances, applicants can avoid delaying their education by registering for courses, for one semester only (two 8-week terms for Florida Tech Online students), while their applications are processed, provided they are citizens or permanent residents of the United States.

Students who register before admission are not eligible to receive federal student financial aid until they are admitted to the university. Such registration requires a preliminary review of written documentation from the degree-granting institution (not necessarily official) showing previous academic courses taken, grades received and degrees awarded. The academic unit head, or his or her designee, should carry out the review. Permission to register pending formal acceptance requires a decision that there is a high probability of eventual acceptance into the program applied for and registration before acceptance is in the best interest of both the academic unit and the student.

In the event applicants are denied admission while enrolled in graduate courses, they will be given the option of either withdrawing with full tuition refund or completing the courses underway. If the applicant completes one or more graduate courses before being denied admission or completes a course for any other reason, he or she will not be given the option of withdrawing or receiving a tuition refund after completing the course.

Master’s Degree Policies

Classification of Students

Assignment to one of the following classifications is made at the time of admission.

Regular Student: A student who has earned a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in all coursework applied to the most recent undergraduate degree earned, or a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in the final 60 semester credit hours of coursework applied to the most recent undergraduate degree earned. Individual academic units may have higher minimum standards.

Provisional Student: A student who does not meet the above criteria and has no more than six deficiency courses can be classified as a provisional student.

Special Student: Special student classifications exist at both the undergraduate and graduate levels and are used for students who, for various reasons, are not enrolled in degree-seeking programs. Specific instances include:

  • a student taking coursework for credit to apply at another institution;
  • a student taking courses to fill specific professional or vocational needs; or
  • a prospective graduate student with generally acceptable undergraduate achievements but with subject matter deficiencies (usually as a result of changing fields) that, in the judgment of the academic unit, preclude immediate acceptance into the degree program.

In the last-mentioned case, the student will normally have the option of pursuing an undergraduate degree in the desired discipline or making up the deficiencies while enrolled as a special student. The student will then be considered for admission to the appropriate graduate degree program once sufficient additional work has been done to form an adequate basis for a decision by the academic unit.

The customary classification of special students will be as undergraduate students, regardless of the existence of previous bachelor’s degrees. A student may, however, be classified as a special graduate student. In such a case, designation and continuation of graduate student status will be at the discretion of the cognizant academic unit, or the director of graduate programs in the case of students who are not seeking eventual admission to a graduate degree program.

Course Requirements

A candidate for the master’s degree must successfully complete at least 30 semester credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree as specified on the approved program plan. A candidate for the specialist degree must successfully complete at least 30 semester credit hours beyond the master’s degree as specified on the approved program plan.

Course requirements are stated in each master’s degree program description. Students who meet certain requirements may be eligible to participate in accelerated Fast Track master’s programs that entail completing both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in five years by maintaining higher overall and program GPAs and who are willing and able to carry increased course loads. High-achieving students are strongly recommended to discuss this option with their advisors. Accelerated programs are not available in all majors or colleges.

The stated minimum credit hours can include any or all of the following, subject to academic unit approval and specific restrictions stated in graduate policy:

  • Up to 12 semester hours of credit transferred from a regionally accredited institution or, in some cases, from a foreign university; or, in the case of a partner institution in a dual-degree program with Florida Tech, up to half of the total minimum credit hours.
  • Up to six semester hours of credit for 3000- and 4000-level undergraduate courses taken while enrolled in a graduate program at Florida Tech provided that graduate-level rigor is documented. Only 4000-level courses will be considered if the courses are in the student’s major field of study.
  • Up to one-half of the credit (nonthesis or nondesign project formal coursework) applied to the first degree may be used to satisfy the requirements of the second or subsequent degree. At least one-half of the coursework leading to any master’s degree granted by Florida Tech must have been taken at Florida Tech but never applied to any other degree.
  • Credit previously used to meet the requirements of another master’s degree at Florida Tech may be used to meet up to half of the credits required for the later degree.
  • Credit in excess of the seven-year statute of limitations if a waiver is in effect, in accordance with the statute of limitations as defined in this catalog.

Academic credit applied toward the requirements of a bachelor’s degree, at Florida Tech or elsewhere, may not be used in any graduate program at Florida Tech, regardless of the level of the course. An exception to this policy is granted only for students during their senior year when earning at least a B grade, and who have been admitted into an approved accelerated or fast track master’s program, to apply up to six 5000-level (graduate) credit hours to both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

Master’s students may receive written authorization to take an undergraduate course (generally at the 4000 level) and apply it to their master’s degree requirements (Graduate Policy 1.9). Once an undergraduate course is approved for use in the master’s degree and moved to the graduate transcript, no reversal is permitted.

Program Plan

Each master’s-level graduate student is required to have an approved program plan on file no later than one month before nine credit hours of graduate courses have been completed.

Only one program plan per degree can be in effect for a student at any given time. Because of the importance of the program plan in establishing a new program GPA following a change of major, no request to change majors will be processed unless accompanied by an approved new program plan. This requirement applies whether or not a degree was earned in the first major.

Graduate students receive a degree program plan/flow chart showing the most commonly accepted sequence of courses for their degree program as soon as admission is complete. Students should contact their academic program chair or advisor if they have not received a degree program plan/flow chart.

Thesis

Master’s theses are required in some programs and are optional in most others. The credit hours assigned to the thesis vary according to the program. A student cannot initially register for thesis unless his or her GPA is at least 3.0. Subsequent to the initial registration, the student must continue to register for at least three hours of thesis each academic term, including summer, until the thesis is defended and accepted by the graduate programs office. An interruption in thesis registration requires written approval in advance and is permissible only if the student is making no use of university facilities or personnel.

A grade of S (Satisfactory) or U (Unsatisfactory) is assigned at the end of each academic term, with zero credit hours earned. The candidate should contact the graduate programs office early in the thesis preparation process for guidance regarding style and format requirements. A Thesis Manual and Style Guide is available online and at the university bookstore.

After all research has been completed, the written thesis is distributed to committee members at least two weeks before the thesis defense is held. If the thesis defense is successful, a P grade is assigned corresponding to the required number of thesis credit hours. A minimum number of printed copies (as required by the academic unit) of the approved thesis must be received and accepted by the graduate programs office before the degree can be awarded.

Design Project

All requirements listed for theses in the preceding section apply equally to design projects.

Final Program Examination

A final program examination is required of all thesis students (in this case called a “defense”) and all master’s nonthesis students with the exception of the programs in which individual student mastery has been documented within an approved capstone course as defined in graduate policy “Graduate Capstone Course.” Examinations are administered by a committee as described in the graduate policy “Examination Committees” and are normally scheduled in two-hour blocks to allow adequate time for the committee to examine each student individually. A decision that a student has passed any examination requires the unanimous consent of the committee. 

An examination candidate must have a grade point average (both program and overall, if different) of 3.0 or higher at the time of the examination to be permitted to schedule any final program examination. A candidate must be enrolled during the term the examination is taken or retaken in the case of a failed examination. An exception is made for a nonthesis student if a separate examination fee is paid.

All oral examinations must be included in the weekly schedule of examinations published by the graduate programs office. Scheduling an oral examination is the responsibility of the candidate and his or her committee. Notification to the graduate programs office too late for inclusion in the weekly schedule will normally result in postponement of the examination. Nonthesis oral examinations are open only to members of the graduate faculty. The thesis defense may be partitioned into two components: an optional “open” component open to anyone, and a mandatory “closed” component open only to members of the graduate faculty. If an academic unit requires a candidate’s final program examination to include an open component, this must be stated as a degree requirement in the university catalog entry for that master’s degree program.

For written examinations, application must be made by the student to the academic unit at least one month in advance of the desired examination date. Examination dates will normally be announced each term by academic units requiring written examinations. 

Transfer Credit

If the courses constitute a logical part of the student’s master’s program, a maximum of 12 semester hours of transfer credit from regionally accredited institutions may be accepted, with the approval of the head of the appropriate academic unit and the director of graduate programs under the following conditions:

  • The courses must have been taken for graduate credit and must not have been applied previously to any undergraduate degree.
  • They must have been graded courses, and grades of at least B or equivalent must have been earned in each course.

Graduate Study at Other Institutions

A currently enrolled student may take a limited number of courses at other institutions for transfer to a Florida Tech graduate degree program. The restrictions on graduate transfer credit listed above apply. Prior approval is mandatory. The student must complete and submit the designated form with all required signatures and a written justification. A copy of the other institution’s published course description(s) must be attached. The student must arrange for an official transcript to be sent by the other institution directly to the Florida Tech registrar’s office.

Doctoral Degree Requirements

Requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.) and Doctor of Aviation (Av.D.) degrees include the general requirements listed here and specific program-by-program requirements and variations as presented in later sections. In addition to the Ph.D./D.B.A./Av.D. degrees, the university also offers the Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) degree, described under College of Psychology and Liberal Arts in the Degree Programs  section.

The Ph.D./D.B.A./Av.D. degrees are awarded on the basis of clear evidence that the recipient possesses knowledge of a broad field of learning and mastery of a particular area of concentration within that field. The work leading to the degree consists of advanced studies and research that represents a significant contribution to knowledge in the subject area. Each student must complete an approved program of study, pass a comprehensive examination, complete an original research program, and prepare and defend a dissertation on that research.

Credit Hour Requirements

Although the Ph.D./D.B.A./Av.D. are awarded primarily on the basis of original scholarly accomplishment rather than the accumulation of a specified number of credit hours, minimum standards are enforced regarding the number of credit hours that must be successfully completed by all Ph.D./D.B.A./Av.D. students, subject to the limitations delineated in graduate policy.

Graduate Policy 2.2.2 lists minimum requirements for total credit hours, coursework (formal and informal) credit hours, dissertation credit hours and supervised research credit hours.

Credit earned for courses taken in fulfillment of the requirements for a master’s degree, either at Florida Tech or elsewhere, may be used in meeting some of the minimum requirement for coursework, subject to the restrictions stated above and provided the courses are directly applicable to the field of the doctoral degree. A student should expect to take a significant amount of coursework at a more advanced level, even if graduate degrees in more than one field have been earned.

Doctoral students may receive written authorization to take an undergraduate course (generally at the 4000 level) and apply it to their doctoral degree requirements (Graduate Policy 2.2.2). Once an undergraduate course is approved for use in the doctoral degree and moved to the graduate transcript, no reversal is permitted.

Doctoral Committee

At least 90 days before the comprehensive examination, the student must select a major advisor with the concurrence of the individual selected and the student’s academic unit head. The major advisor serves as both research supervisor and chair of the doctoral committee and need not be the same person who served as academic advisor while the student was taking courses.

At least 60 days before the comprehensive examination, the major advisor nominates a doctoral committee for approval by the student’s academic unit head and the director of graduate programs. The committee consists of at least four Florida Tech graduate faculty members, including the major advisor. One member must be a full-time graduate faculty member from an academic unit that is administratively different from the student’s and major advisor’s. At least three members, including the major advisor, must be approved for doctoral-level advising.

This committee serves in an advisory capacity throughout the remainder of the doctoral program and is responsible for formally evaluating the candidate’s progress by conducting the comprehensive examination, reviewing and approving the dissertation proposal, conducting the dissertation defense and approving the dissertation.

Comprehensive Examination

After the completion of all formal coursework (as determined by the academic unit) included in the doctoral program of study, the student is required to take a comprehensive examination administered by the doctoral committee established for the student. The examination covers the student’s major area of emphasis in depth but may also include other areas considered appropriate by the doctoral committee. The examination may be written, oral or both, according to the requirements of each doctoral program. To pass, the student must have the unanimous approval of the committee. A student who does not pass the examination may, at the option of a majority of the committee, be allowed one opportunity to retake the examination after a suitable period of study. The examination must be passed at least one calendar year before the degree is awarded. Scheduling the examination to meet this requirement is the responsibility of the candidate and his or her committee. A candidate must be enrolled at the time the examination is taken. Otherwise, a separate examination fee must be paid.

Dissertation Proposal

Subsequent to successful completion of the comprehensive examination, a dissertation proposal must be submitted to the doctoral committee, who ascertains if the subject of the dissertation is of doctoral quality and that completion of the dissertation is feasible.

Degree Candidacy

An overall grade point average of 3.2 is required for admission to candidacy. After a student has passed the comprehensive examination and has had the dissertation proposal approved by the doctoral committee, the student will be admitted to candidacy for the doctoral degree by submitting the required form for approval and forwarding it to the registrar.

Residency Requirement

The residency requirement consists of the performance of research under the direct supervision of Florida Tech faculty for at least one calendar year; and enrollment in a Florida Tech graduate program for a minimum of two years from the time of original registration.

A doctoral student who has been admitted to candidacy must normally register each academic term thereafter for at least three credit hours of dissertation throughout the remainder of his or her program. In some cases, registration for fewer credit hours is permitted in the final semester of registration. See the online graduate policies for details. After admission to doctoral candidacy, an interruption in registration is permissible only if the student is not making any use of university facilities or personnel, and with written approval by the academic unit head and the director of graduate programs.

The student’s dissertation performance is evaluated in each term of registration, and grades of S (Satisfactory) or U (Unsatisfactory) are assigned. These grades do not affect the student’s grade point average. S grades corresponding to the required number of dissertation credit hours are replaced by grades of P (Pass) upon successful completion of the dissertation.

Dissertation Preparation and Defense

The dissertation must demonstrate critical judgment, intellectual synthesis, creativity and skills in written communication. The general format must follow the guidelines established by the academic unit and the office of graduate programs. Copies of the dissertation must be submitted to the doctoral committee at least one month before the proposed date of the dissertation defense. The office of graduate programs must receive written notification of the defense at least two weeks before its scheduled date. The candidate and his or her committee chair are responsible for scheduling the examination and notifying the graduate programs office.

The doctoral committee administers the dissertation defense. The defense may be partitioned into two components: an optional “open” component open to anyone, and a mandatory “closed” component open only to members of the graduate faculty. If an academic unit requires a candidate’s defense to include an open component, this must be stated as a degree requirement in the university catalog entry for that Ph.D. program. Requirements for the degree are not completed until the dissertation is accepted by the graduate programs office. A completed UMI Publishing Agreement form and Survey of Earned Doctorates form (both available online and from the graduate programs office) and an additional title page and abstract must accompany the required dissertation copies.

Academic Unit Requirements

The requirements specified above comprise the minimum requirements for doctoral degrees at Florida Tech. Academic units may specify additional requirements for their doctoral degrees as defined by Florida Tech graduate policy.

Grading System

Graduate work is evaluated by letter grades, with only grades of A, B, C and P being credited toward graduate degrees. Grades of D, F and U are failing grades in graduate courses. Failed courses must be repeated at the earliest opportunity, if they are required courses. An elective course in which a D or F is received must be repeated, unless the academic unit approves an additional course to be taken in its place. When P/F (Pass/Fail) grading is used, the total credit hours earned increases without having any effect on the GPA if a grade of P is earned, whereas no credit hours are earned and the GPA is adversely affected in the case of a grade of F, just as with any other F. P/F grading is used for certain courses and for master’s theses, design projects, doctoral dissertations and doctoral research projects. The program GPA is based on the student’s program plan and includes all courses shown on the program plan as applying toward the degree, both graduate numbered and undergraduate numbered.

In cases where the degree-related GPA referred to above does not include all graduate courses taken at Florida Tech, an overall GPA is also calculated and reported. Graduate courses used to compute the overall GPA, but not the program GPA, include courses taken as deficiencies, courses unrelated to the student’s degree program, courses taken before a change of major and courses taken in satisfaction of the requirements of a previously earned graduate degree. Courses related to the degree program that are taken in excess of degree requirements are normally included in the program plan. It is not possible to delete a course from the GPA once the course has been taken, although an exception is made if the statute of limitations is exceeded, at which time it is dropped from the program plan and from both the program and overall GPAs on written request. Courses are not otherwise dropped from the overall GPA except by special action of the Graduate Council following a change of major. If no degree was earned in the first major and the courses are clearly not applicable to the new major, the council can approve deletion from the overall GPA.

Grades of S and U are used as progress grades in thesis, dissertation, design project, research and internship, and as final grades in some zero-credit seminar courses. They are similar to grades of P and F except that they carry no credit, and S grades (when used as progress grades) may be replaced at any later time by credit-carrying grades of P. U grades remain on the transcript permanently, but like grades of S, they do not affect the GPA.

The basic requirement for receiving any master’s degree is a GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale where A = 4, B = 3, C = 2, D = 1, F = 0. Both the overall GPA and the applicable program GPA must be 3.0 or greater for a master’s degree to be awarded.

For a doctoral student, a 3.2 program GPA represents minimal satisfactory academic performance and is required for admission to candidacy and for graduation. In addition, an overall GPA of at least 3.0 is required, based on all courses taken as a graduate student at Florida Tech.

Statute of Limitations

Master’s Degree

A seven-year statute of limitations is in effect on all work applied toward a master’s degree at Florida Tech. All coursework and thesis research, including thesis/design project acceptance or final program examination, must be completed within a total elapsed time span of not more than seven years. The student’s department head may approve a waiver of the statute of limitations for up to six semester credit hours of coursework taken either at Florida Tech or elsewhere, subject to the following conditions:

  • Any course so approved must have been completed within the previous 10 years, and with a grade of at least B.
  • Only those courses where course content has not changed significantly in the intervening years may be approved.
  • The student must provide evidence of current mastery of the course content.

The department head must notify the registrar in writing of the action.

In the case of a waiver request that does not conform to these requirements, or a request involving more than six semester credit hours, the dean of the appropriate college or school may either deny the request outright or approve it based on accompanying proof of currency by written examination endorsed by Florida Tech faculty with a recommendation for a favorable decision by the academic unit head. In no case will a waiver request be considered if the original course grade was less than a B.

All waivers will be valid for a period of seven years from the date they were granted.

Courses over the time limit for which the limit has not been waived will not be included in GPA calculations subject to the following conditions:

  • The request be made in writing by the student
  • Notification of the department head and director of graduate programs of the request indicated by affixing their signatures prior to forwarding the student’s request to the registrar.

Education Center Full Course Load and Time Limits

The normal course load for a part-time education center student is two courses per semester, each requiring one class attendance each week. This allows completion of a degree program in less than two years; less if transfer credits are accepted. Although a degree program may be extended beyond two years, the cumulative work including transfer credits may not span an elapsed time of more than seven years.

Doctor of Philosophy, Doctor of Business Administration and Doctor of Aviation (Ph.D./D.B.A./Av.D.) Degrees

The statute of limitations for students pursuing a Ph.D./D.B.A./Av.D. degree is five years from the end of the academic semester during which the comprehensive examination is successfully completed. If this period should expire before completion of the degree and if the student wishes to continue enrollment in the program, a new doctoral committee must be formed and the comprehensive examination must be readministered. This new examination should reflect developments of importance in the area of study occurring since the first examination, as well as areas of general importance.

Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) Degree

A student who has not completed the requirements for the degree within seven years of initial enrollment will no longer be considered a candidate for the degree. Appeals for reinstatement of candidacy status must be directed to the Graduate Council.

Probation and Dismissal

Master’s Students

Master’s students must continue to demonstrate academic proficiency in coursework and must show reasonable progress toward the 3.0 GPA required for graduation.

Master’s students whose cumulative GPA falls below 3.0 are no longer considered to be in academic good standing. Students are returned to good standing by earning a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.

Students no longer in academic good standing who fail to meet the required minimum term GPA of 3.0 will have their academic standing progress sequentially through warning, probation and dismissal as outlined below. Students’ transcripts will be annotated at the end of each term. Students and their academic unit will be informed about the student’s academic standing in writing at the end of any term when the cumulative GPA is below 3.0.

Academic Warning: When the student began the term in academic good standing but did not maintain the minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA required.

Academic Probation: When the student began the term in academic warning but did not achieve the minimum 3.0 term GPA required.

Academic Dismissal: When the student began the term on probation but did not achieve the minimum 3.0 term GPA required. Dismissal will also result any time a graduate student earns a term or cumulative GPA less than 2.0, or two or more grades of U in courses taken as a graduate student.

In addition, any of the following conditions will result in immediate academic dismissal:

  • A term or overall GPA below 2.0 at any time.
  • Two or more grades of U in any courses taken as a graduate student.
  • Judgment by the Graduate Council that the student is not making satisfactory academic progress, or that the academic efforts of other students are hampered by his or her presence.
Appeals for Reinstatement

Academic dismissals may be appealed for educationally sound reasons in writing and as instructed in the dismissal letter. Appellants must present relevant information. The academic unit head writes a recommendation to reinstate or deny reinstatement and forwards the appeal and recommendation to the dean of the appellant’s college for a decision. Appellants will not be permitted to register for or attend classes until after a favorable decision about the appeal has been made.

Appeals from Reinstatement Denials

A denial of the request for reinstatement will usually be considered final. Students who have additional, different or new circumstances may contact their academic unit head. A re-appeal will only be considered on the basis of new information not previously submitted by the student. The student will not be permitted to register for or attend class until a final decision on any re-appeal has been reached.

Reinstatements

Reinstated students will be so notified in writing and will be placed on probation. Their transcripts will be so annotated. Failure to meet reinstatement conditions will result in another dismissal.

Appeals from Second and Subsequent Dismissals

Appeals for reinstatement from a second or subsequent dismissal may only be submitted on the approval of the student’s academic advisor and the academic unit head. If not approved, the student has the right to appeal after one calendar year from the end of the last full semester attended.

Doctoral Students

The basic standard for successful performance at the doctoral level is a minimum 3.2 program GPA and an overall minimum GPA of 3.0. The program GPA for a doctoral student includes all courses shown on the program of study as applying toward the doctoral degree, both graduate numbered and undergraduate numbered. The overall GPA is based on all coursework taken at Florida Tech while enrolled as a graduate student. A program GPA less than 3.2 after 15 or more credit hours will result in probation; if the program GPA of 3.2 is not attained after completing the probationary semester, the dean of the graduate school will consider dismissal of the student. An overall GPA below 3.0 or two failing grades (D, F or U) at any stage of the doctoral program will result in the student’s dismissal. If a student fails to maintain satisfactory progress in coursework and/or research, as determined by the graduate faculty of the student’s major academic unit, academic dismissal may be recommended regardless of the GPA. In such cases, concurrence of the appropriate college dean and dean of the graduate school are required. A dismissed student has the right to appeal the dismissal by submitting a written request for reinstatement as instructed in the dismissal letter, stating the basis for the appeal. A letter of appeal should be submitted to the director of graduate programs. Appellants will not be permitted to register for or attend classes until a favorable decision about the appeal has been made.

Dismissal for Misconduct

Student conduct that violates the legal or ethical standards of the university may result in mandatory withdrawal from all classes and denial of permission to register in future terms for either a definite or indefinite period of time. Examples of academic misconduct that could result in these actions include cheating, plagiarism, knowingly furnishing false information to the university, or forging, altering or misusing university documents or academic credentials. Examples of research misconduct include fabrication, falsification, plagiarism, misappropriation of ideas of others or failure to comply with legal requirements governing research. A dismissed student has the right to appeal the dismissal by submitting a written request for reinstatement as instructed in the dismissal letter.


 


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