Graduate Degree Programs
At UW-Stevens Point you may select among accredited programs leading to these graduate degrees:
Master of Arts in Communication
Master of Music Education
Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders with specialization in speech-language pathology
Master of Science in Education-General
Master of Science in Education-Elementary Education
Master of Science in Community & Organizational Leadership
Master of Science in Natural Resources
Master of Science in Nutritional Sciences
Master of Science in Teaching with specialization in biology, English, reading certification in English, or history.
Clinical Doctorate in Audiology (Au.D.) with UW-Madison
In addition, you may take part in programs offered through UW-Stevens Point’s cooperative arrangement with UW-Oshkosh that lead to the:
Master of Business Administration
You may also take part in programs offered through UW-Stevens Point’s cooperative arrangements with UW-Superior that lead to the:
Master of Science in Education-Educational Administration or Specialist in Education-Educational Administration.
Responsibility and Policy
The graduate faculty, through the Graduate Council and Faculty Senate, establish general requirements for graduate degrees. Each department offering a graduate program establishes discipline specific degree requirements.
Graduate Study policies intend to:
- facilitate orderly progress of graduate students through their degree programs;
- meet expectations of accrediting agencies, other graduate schools, and the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents;
- provide a common university standard and encourage the development of quality programs.
As a graduate student, it is your responsibility to become aware of and abide by graduate study policies. Every effort will be made by graduate study personnel, coordinators, and advisers to aid you as you progress through your graduate career at UW-Stevens Point.
Graduate Study: Faculty and Structure
Graduate Faculty. Members of the graduate faculty have all earned terminal degrees (or equivalent), hold the rank of assistant professor or higher, and have successful teaching experience or continuing evidence of scholarly achievement and professional activity in their disciplines. They are nominated by their departments and are approved by the UW-Stevens Point Graduate Council. Graduate faculty status allows individuals to regularly teach graduate courses, be actively involved in graduate affairs, and chair graduate students’ committees. Graduate faculty members have a (G) following their individual listings that appear at www.uwsp.edu/acadaff/Catalog%20PDF/ UWSP_Faculty_Staff_current.pdf. Please check with your department for names of graduate faculty who are eligible to chair graduate students’ committees.
Graduate Council. The Graduate Council is a standing committee of the Faculty Senate. As the representative body of the graduate faculty, the Graduate Council has the authority to recommend and determine policies related to the graduate programs of the university (subject to review by the Faculty Senate).
Departmental Graduate Committees/Coordinators. Most of the larger departments offering graduate degrees have graduate committees and/or a graduate coordinator to deal with policy matters related specifically to their graduate degree programs. These committees/ coordinators handle general departmental concerns, and they should not be confused with your personal graduate committee and your graduate adviser. Departmental graduate committees/ coordinators serve ALL of the graduate students in the department. Your graduate adviser and your graduate committee serve YOU.
UW-Stevens Point does not have a dedicated office for handling graduate student issues and administration. When you have questions about a specific degree program, go to the department graduate committee or coordinator first. You will find that these coordinators or committees are a valuable resource of information.
Freedoms and Responsibilities. The university assumes that graduate students have intellectual maturity and a sense of commitment to the academic community. The freedoms and responsibilities listed below are general guidelines for your relationship to the university.
As a graduate student you are FREE:
- to express yourself freely in the classroom and take reasoned exception to the data and views presented in any course.
- from prejudiced or capricious academic evaluation.
- from disclosure of views or beliefs presented to an instructor during graduate study, except with your consent.
- to organize and join associations to promote your common interests.
- to examine and discuss questions of interest both publicly and privately.
- exercise the rights you enjoy as citizens (the freedom of speech, peaceful assembly, and rights of petition) without interference from the university.
As a graduate student you have the RESPONSIBILITY:
- to help maintain the atmosphere of free inquiry and free expression inherent in the academic community.
- to respect the right of other members of the community to express themselves freely.
- to observe scrupulous standards of intellectual honesty.
Graduate Study Academic Ethics. Only work that is solely yours may be submitted to a professor in the form of an examination paper, weekly coursework, term paper, class project, research project, or thesis, unless the instructor specifically authorizes group work. This expectation applies to all work submitted.
Cheating and plagiarism are prohibited. Plagiarism is the process of stealing or passing off as your own someone else’s words or ideas, or presenting as your own an idea or product obtained from an existing source. To avoid any appearance of plagiarism or accidental plagiarism, it is important that you learn correct citation procedures for your discipline and your classes. The plea of ignorance regarding citation procedures or of carelessness in citation is no defense against allegations of plagiarism.
You may not:
- purchase papers from commercial sources.
- use a single paper to meet the requirements of more than one course unless the professors of the courses approve.
- submit a paper or project completed by someone else.
If you engage in academic misconduct will be subject to UW System disciplinary procedures.
Research Misconduct Policy
Standards of Conduct. As a researcher, you are expected to retain appropriate documentation for your research and adhere to accepted ethical standards appropriate to your academic discipline.
Definition of Research Misconduct. Misconduct is intentional falsification of data, plagiarism, or other practices that deviate from common research practice within the academic community for proposing, conducting, or reporting research. Honest error and differences in interpretation of data are not considered misconduct. Misconduct is prohibited at UW-Stevens Point and may be cause for discipline or dismissal.
Reporting Research Misconduct. Research collaborators, colleagues, and anyone who has reason to believe that research misconduct has occurred are responsible for reporting the misconduct. Retaliation because of good faith reporting of misconduct is prohibited. However, individuals found to have brought allegations of a frivolous and/or malicious nature are subject to the same range of disciplinary action as those who are found guilty of this policy.
Research Misconduct Procedures for Culminating Experiences:
- Report allegations in writing to the dean of the appropriate college. The accused and the dean of his/her college will be informed in writing within 10 days of the allegation: (1) that he/she is being investigated, (2) exactly what the allegations are, and (3) the identity of the accuser.
- The dean of the college will undertake a prompt and discreet inquiry. All matters pertaining to the investigation and evidence supplied will be kept in strict confidence. An inquiry consists of information gathering and preliminary fact-finding to determine whether an allegation or apparent instance of misconduct warrants an investigation. The initial inquiry will be completed within 60 days from the time allegations were made to the dean.
- If the inquiry concludes that the allegation of misconduct is unsubstantiated, and an investigation is not warranted, the reasons and supporting documentation for this conclusion will be reported to the chancellor, who will be responsible for reviewing the conclusion of the inquiry. If the chancellor concurs in the conclusion that an investigation is not warranted, his/her determination, and all other supporting documentation from the inquiry will be recorded and the record maintained confidentially for a period of three years after the termination of the inquiry.
- If the preliminary inquiry finds reasonable cause to believe allegations are not frivolous or misguided, the matter will be referred to an ad hoc committee appointed by the dean for formal investigation. The accused will be given a copy of the report of the dean’s inquiry. The committee members will be knowledgeable about the researcher’s area of inquiry, but will not be involved with the research in question or in competition with the accused. It may be necessary or advisable in certain situations to invite researchers from other institutions to participate. The investigation must be initiated within 30 days of completion of the inquiry. If the research has been supported by extramural funds, federal agencies require notification that a formal investigation is underway.
- The ad hoc committee will determine whether misconduct has taken place and assess its extent and consequences.
- If the ad hoc committee finds the charges to be true, regular governance procedures will be followed by the dean of the college in consultation with the associate vice chancellor in determining the proper course of action. Recommendations may range from reprimand to dismissal depending upon the seriousness of the misconduct. The investigation should ordinarily be completed within 120 days of its initiation.
- A copy of the ad hoc committee’s preliminary report will be provided to the individual being investigated. The dean shall give the individual an opportunity to discuss the matter with the ad hoc committee and himself/ herself before any action is taken under D2 of this policy. The individual may reply in writing to the committee. These replies will be attached to the committee’s report.
- Appropriate agencies and journals will be notified by the dean of the college of the ad hoc committee’s findings if the committee finds that misconduct is substantiated.
- If the misconduct is not substantiated, extensive efforts will be made to restore the reputation of the accused.
Academic Misconduct Procedures for Graduate Coursework:
As a graduate student, if you plagiarize or engage in academic misconduct within any aspect of your graduate coursework, you will be subject to academic misconduct sanctions as outlined in UWS 14.
Research Using Human Subjects. All graduate student research using humans as subjects, whether funded or not, must be approved by the university’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) to ensure compliance with the state of Wisconsin Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Guidelines on Research Involving Human Beings (45 CFR 46), and UW System principles concerning research on human beings as subjects.
Copyrights and Patents. Any copyrights you obtain as a graduate student on your original works (theses, educational products, research papers) belong to you except when they are subject to prior agreements between the university and extramural sponsors. You have complete ownership and control of any patents that result from inventions you make as a graduate student at UW-Stevens Point. However, you must honor any contractual rights of extramural sponsors if you develop an invention while being financially supported through a grant or contract. To ensure such sponsor rights, you should sign a patent agreement with the external agency at the beginning of your assistantship. Contact the associate vice chancellor for Academic Affairs if you have any questions regarding inventions or patents.
Admission to Graduate Study
There are three admission categories designed to meet your graduate needs.
Graduate Regular: If you wish to pursue a master’s degree at UW-Stevens Point, you will need to be formally admitted to the university as a graduate regular student. Submit to the Admissions Office (or apply online) a completed graduate study application form, the nonrefundable application fee ($56 domestic applicants; $125 foreign applicants), and official transcripts from each college you have attended (both undergraduate and graduate). The transcript from the college from which you graduated must certify that you have received your baccalaureate degree. Upon receipt of your completed application file, the Admissions Office will forward your application materials to the coordinator of your intended graduate program. You may then be asked to submit additional application materials to the graduate program coordinator of your intended program.
Graduate Special: If you wish to take graduate courses but do not wish to pursue a master’s degree at UW-Stevens Point, you may register as a student with graduate special status. To attend UW-Stevens Point as a student with graduate special status, you must hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. You do not need to complete a formal application process. You will be granted graduate special status when you register for classes.
As a graduate special student you can enroll in graduate-level courses and receive graduate credit for teacher certification requirements or for personal enrichment. A maximum of 9 credits can apply toward a master’s degree provided they are approved by your adviser and fit within the seven-year time period. If you decide to pursue a master’s degree, it is in your best interest to change your status to graduate regular as soon as possible.
Graduate Guest: If you wish to apply credits taken at UW-Stevens Point toward a graduate degree at another institution, you are neither evaluated nor formally admitted to UW-Stevens Point, but are permitted to enroll in specific courses with the approval of your graduate adviser at the other institution. This procedure assures that credits taken at UW-Stevens Point will transfer properly to another institution.
Admission Status and Your Specific Degree Program
Successful admission to Graduate Study requires admission to a specific degree program. Most graduate programs require additional application criteria such as letters of reference, personal interviews, standardized test scores, verification of certification, etc. You should contact the graduate coordinator in your discipline for these additional requirements. The Admissions Office forwards your graduate study application file to the graduate coordinator of your designated program area for final consideration for admission to that particular program.
Admission to Candidacy
Admission to a specific degree program does not automatically make you a candidate for a master’s degree. You must meet residency and evaluation requirements before you are a degree candidate. The formal admission to candidacy process varies from one program to another, but generally you must:
- earn at least 9 credits in residence at UW-Stevens Point.
- remove any academic deficiencies and/or complete all subject matter prerequisites.
- maintain at least a 3.00 (B) grade point average.
- select a graduate adviser (and a graduate committee if required by your discipline).
- complete and get approval for your Program of Study.
When you first enter your graduate program, you will probably be assisted by a departmental graduate adviser who counsels all incoming graduate students. In some of our graduate programs this person continues to advise all students in the program until the degree is nearly completed. In other programs, you will need your own personal adviser who may also be known as your “major professor.” This individual plays a key role in guiding you through your graduate career. Your graduate adviser should act as a personal adviser, mentor, advocate, constructive critic, and friend. Your graduate adviser is the person who should “go to bat” for you when you encounter problems with your program plan, courses, and/or research.
Selecting a Graduate Committee
Your graduate adviser may be required to use other graduate faculty to make final decisions about the acceptability of your program plan and the quality of your thesis, if you choose to write one. Therefore, give careful consideration to your choice of these critical advisers who will form your graduate committee. The graduate coordinator or your graduate adviser normally assists in this process.
The graduate committee consists of at least three graduate faculty members including your graduate adviser. Try to ask a person from outside your major discipline area to serve on your committee. A nongraduate faculty member who possesses expertise particularly relevant to your field of study may be appointed as a special extra member.
Your graduate adviser and/or the graduate committee is responsible for supervising your Program of Study and should:
- guide you in an appropriate selection of courses and experiences to ensure that you are aware of all relevant material necessary for a complete understanding of your chosen field of study. This not only includes concentration of coursework in your major area of interest, but also selecting courses to bridge the gaps you may have in your previous educational experiences. This may require you to take some undergraduate courses to make up for deficiencies.
- determine whether you have accumulated and demonstrated sufficient ability to engage in the analytic process of problem solving. A graduate degree entails more than just taking additional courses within a major. You will be expected to demonstrate your ability to synthesize the new knowledge you have gained in your graduate courses and apply this knowledge to solve contemporary problems.
- make certain that if you elect to write a thesis it is consistent with the degree, confronts the interdisciplinary relationships of your subject area, and focuses on problem-solving methodology.
Your graduate committee members, including your graduate adviser, will be listed on your Program of Study form. They must sign this form indicating their approval of your graduate program plan. If you desire a change in the composition of your committee, it is your responsibility to explain to the current committee members why the change is desirable or necessary. If the change is acceptable to the outgoing and incoming professors, you should then notify the graduate coordinator for your department, school, or college to complete the transfer of committee members.
Program of Study
You and your graduate adviser jointly develop a Program of Study that is primarily a listing of courses and other experiences that will be required for your degree. It is personally designed for you, taking into account previous academic strengths and weaknesses as well as your career goals. This plan is outlined on the Program of Study form that, once approved, becomes a contract-like agreement between you and the university. It is important that this agreement be made before you have accumulated 15 credits, since it is intended to be a realistic plan and defines all requirements necessary to complete your degree.
The Program of Study may include courses, both graduate and undergraduate, that are designed to add to your expertise or to correct deficiencies. These are in addition to the minimum of 30 graduate credits required of master’s degree candidates. The Program of Study also lists when courses are to be taken, the tentative title and completion date of the thesis or product, tentative dates for final examination and graduation, etc.
You may make minor changes in your approved Program of Study with the approval of your graduate adviser in consultation with the graduate committee members. Major changes such as course substitutions, changing of committee members, changing from thesis to nonthesis, etc. require formal concurrence of you, your major professor, your graduate committee, and the graduate coordinator of your department, school, or college.
General Requirements for Master’s Degrees and Clinical Doctorate Degree
- Have a maximum of 9 credits completed at the time of admission.
- Complete a minimum of 30 credits in graduate courses (Communication, 30 cr + 1 credit colloquium), (Communication Sciences and Disorders, 37 cr + 21 cr practicum).
- Take at least 15 credits in courses numbered 700 and above.
- Have an approved Program of Study on file with your adviser and the graduate coordinator of your department, school, or college before you complete 15 credit hours toward the degree.
- Maintain a minimum overall grade point average (GPA) of 3.00.
- Apply no more than 6 credits total in special topics courses and independent study courses toward your master’s degree.
- Successfully complete a culminating experience.
All credits accepted toward a degree, including transfer credits, must be earned within a seven-year period. The time period starts with the beginning of the term in which the first course approved for your Program of Study was taken. For example: You are accepted into a UW-Stevens Point graduate program in fall 2007. Part of your approved plan of study for your master’s degree includes a course taken in spring 2005. Thus, your seven-year time period to complete the degree starts with the beginning of the spring 2005 semester, NOT the semester in which you were accepted into your graduate program. Requirements for All Master of Science in Teaching (MST) Degrees
In addition to the general requirements of all master’s degrees, the MST degree has the following requirements:
- Be eligible for teacher certification in your area of specialization (biology, English, history) in Wisconsin or another state.
- Complete a minimum of 30 graduate credits distributed among:
- Group I: Major area of specialization, 18-24 credits. These courses provide additional depth in your teaching field and increase familiarity with new knowledge, problems, and trends.
- Group II: Professional education, 6-9 credits. These courses enhance your understanding of education and improve performance in the art of teaching.
- Group III: Liberal studies, 0-6 credits. These courses are taken outside the content area of your specialization and broaden your knowledge and outlook.
- Complete, at minimum, the equivalent of a major in your area of specialization at the completion of the graduate program.
- Have a minimum grade point average of 3.00 in your area of specialization at the time of graduation.