Student Services

Step-by-Step Graduation, Masters

Step-by-Step Toward Graduation - Masters

Each step toward graduation must be approved and recorded in the College of Education Graduate Studies Office.

Master of Arts, M.A. (thesis or non-thesis option) 
Master of Education, M.Ed. (non-thesis only)

All forms submitted in support of graduation will require an approval of the advisor and the Program Director of Graduate Studies.  Completed forms are to be submitted to the Student Services Graduate Studies Office, room 1204 Benjamin Building for review and approval of the Associate Dean of the College of Education.

Master's Degree Steps

Continuous registration is required each fall and Spring semester. Summer registration is required if you are advising with your adviser or using University facilities. if you are advising with your adviser or using University facilities, or graduating in August). Newly admitted students must register in the semester of admission in order to validate the admission offer

Registration is required in the semester of graduation, including one of the summer sessions if graduating in August.

[Hide]Master's Program Plan

Consult with your advisor to develop your program of study using the Master's Approved Program Form (MAPF) 
The Master’s Approved Program Form (MAPF) is used to list the course requirements for the master’s degree program. It is advisable to obtain all course requirements early in the program.  The MAPF should include all coursework (previous, current and future coursework) that will be accepted and required in the program. The completed and signed MAPF is required to be submitted in the semester of graduation to the College of Education

[Hide]Comprehensive Examination

Some master’s programs (thesis and non-thesis) in the College of Education require a comprehensive examination or a comparable product at the discretion of the program.  Programs determine the requirement of the comprehensive examination and also determine what constitutes a comprehensive examination. Comprehensive examinations are developed and administered by the student's Program. Students should check directly with their Program Graduate Coordinator for applications, processes, and deadlines.

[Hide]Human Subjects Approval

At the University, all research that involves the use of human subjects requires review and approval by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) prior to the initiation of the research. Researchers should review the IRB web page for regulations and application forms.  All researchers are required to complete CITI Training as a condition of IRB approval.  Be sure to click on “Registration and CITI Linking Guidance” on the IRB web page.

[Hide]Research Course

Consult with your advisor regarding the Program’s research course requirement(s).   Some Programs require EDMS 645, Quantitative Research Methods I, while others require an approved substitute.  If you believe that you have taken an equivalent course previously, outside of the University of Maryland, consult with your advisor to see if he or she is willing to support a request for an equivalency review by the EDMS Program.

[Hide]Satisfactory Progress

Graduate students admitted to the Graduate School, College of Education, must make satisfactory progress in meeting programmatic requirements, must demonstrate the ability to succeed in his or her course of studies or research, and must attain performance minima. Please check with your Program to obtain satisfactory progress requirements. Please note that your Program requirements and deadlines may exceed those established by the Graduate School and/or College of Education.

Foundational Competencies Policy/College of Education Technical Standards
All graduate students who are in an approved program leading to initial teacher certification, or advanced certification, in professional preparation programs are expected to demonstrate that they are prepared to work with children and youth in educational settings. This preparation results from the combination of successful completion of university coursework and field/internship experiences and the demonstration of important human characteristics and dispositions that all educators should possess.  For a complete description of the policy and standards click on the link above.

[Hide]Transfer Credit

Request the transfer or inclusion of any course work that you may have taken from:

    • an outside institution (6 credit limit)
    • the Advanced Special Student Status (12 credit limit)
    • another department on campus (if you changed your admission from one department to another)

Complete and submit the Transfer or Inclusion of Credit form. Criteria for the transfer of credits is listed on the form.

Transfer coursework beyond 5-years of the degree program at the University of Maryland may not be used.

[Hide]Semester of Graduation

File the required forms by the published deadlines in Important Dates. Please keep in mind that all forms must be advisor and program approved prior to submission to the Graduate Student Services Office in Education, so allow extra time to meet the deadlines.

 Master of Arts (non-thesis) program must reflect a minimum of 30 credit hours (departments may require more). Of the 30 credit hours, 18 credit hours must be at the 600 level or above, including EDMS 645, a College approved substitute (or equivalency form on file).

The Master of Education program must reflect a minimum of 30 credit hours (Programs may require more). Of the 30 credit hours, 15 credit hours must be at the 600 level or above, including EDMS 645, or a Program approved substitute (or equivalency form on file).

Courses numbered at the 300-level may not be listed or used toward the graduate program. Courses numbered at the 400-level must be approved for graduate credit and appear in the Graduate Catalog in order to be listed or used toward the graduate program.

[Hide]Seminar Paper or Thesis

Non-thesis degree option 
If you seeking the Master of Arts non-thesis option degree or the Master of Education degree, one seminar or research paper is required as determined by your advisor.  The seminar paper title page (only) must be filed in the College of Education, Graduate Studies Office by published deadline for the semester in which you intend to graduate. Check with the professor directing the seminar paper for their deadline on the draft. The title page of the seminar paper must be submitted in a specific format, which includes signature lines for the professor directing the seminar paper and the advisor

Thesis degree option

Nomination of Thesis or Dissertation Committee 
Request the appointment of the thesis defense committee by filing Nomination of Thesis Committee Form.  Be sure to include a copy of your Institutional Review Board (IRB) Approval letter approving your human subjects research.

The Graduate School formally approves and appoints the committee to which the student defends the final thesis or dissertation. This form must be submitted by the deadline in the semester in which the student intends to graduate, or six weeks prior to the final oral defense, whichever is sooner to the College Graduate Studies Office. An oral defense may not be held without the formal approval of the committee by the Graduate School. Committee construction must meet the Graduate School criteria.  Committee construction criteria are listed on the form.  All members of the committee must be in physical attendance at the oral defense.  If one member of the committee finds it necessary to attend from a remote site,special permission for remote participationmust be requested of the Graduate School.

The members of the Thesis Examining Committee should receive the thesis at least seven working days before the scheduled defense. Should the Thesis Examining Committee deem it reasonable and appropriate, it may require submission of the thesis more than ten working days in advance of the defense.

Note: Refer to the Graduate Catalog for Graduate School requirements applicable to all master’s degrees.

  • Thesis Defense Forms
    Based on the approval of the Nomination of the Thesis Committee, the following forms will be generated and provided to your advisor or Program Graduate Coordinator for your defense meeting.

  • Interim Report Form
    Filed with the College of Education, Graduate Studies Office immediately following your defense, documenting the outcome of the defense meeting.

  • Report of the Examining Committee Form
    Signed by members of the committee and held by the Chairperson until the revisions to the thesis are satisfactorily made.  The Report Form is due on the same deadline as the thesis, filed with the College of Education, Graduate Studies Office and is submitted by the Program, not the student..

  • Electronic and Thesis Publication Form
    This form is due on the same deadline as the thesis, filed with the College of Education, Graduate Studies Office.

The College of Education will request graduates to file an Exit Survey in the semester of graduation.  Graduates will receive, by e-mail, instructions, and passwords in order to file the survey on-line. This survey information is used to determine how education programs can be improved. Your participation in the survey is important to the College as it enables us to evaluate our strengths and weaknesses. More importantly, this survey gives you the opportunity to assess your professional competence and to evaluate the University of Maryland's performance in preparing this important endeavor. 

[Hide]International Students

If you are a graduating international student and are on an F-1 Visa, you must comply with Sevis Regulations that are monitored by the International Student and Scholar Services Office on campus. As part of the regulations, you must file the F-1 Exit Plan Form before you complete your program requirements. This form will require your advisor's signature

[Hide]Additional Requirements
  • Satisfy any provisional admission conditions or conditions of enrolllment.

  • Be sure there is an official transcript of all undergraduate degree course work taken elsewhere on record in the Graduate School, Room 2123 Lee Building (email or phone (301) 405-3644)..

  • Be sure that you are admitted under the degree option that you intend to earn.  If you need to change your degree objective please file the Degree Change Form.  

  • Stay within the 5-year time-frame awarded to complete degree requirements. If you go beyond the 5-year time frame be sure to submit the Request for Time Extension the semester prior to your time-out date. If courses taken are beyond the allowed 5-year time-frame a request for revalidation of the coursework must be included with the extension request.  Revalidation of coursework is requested by filing the Transfer or Inclusion of Credit for Master's Degrees Form.  The forms require signature approval of your advisor and Program Director of Graduate Studies (DGS).

  • Complete all coursework and any requirements of the Program to which you are admitted.