To earn a degree, each student must meet the minimum course requirements as specified by the department. A student's degree requirements, including sequence requirements, are those stated in the catalog in the term in which she/he is admitted to Mills. Master's degree candidates must take a minimum of 12 course credits at the 200 level toward the total required for the degree. For these students, some advanced upper-division work (100 level) may be accepted by the department. Candidates for the credential enroll in courses at the 300 level; doctoral degree candidates enroll in courses at the 400 level. Post-baccalaureate certificate students enroll in courses at the undergraduate level.
All graduate students should consult the departmental or program listing for information regarding appropriate course levels and complete degree requirements.
Thesis/Dissertation and Comprehensive Examinations
The bibliographical format of the thesis must be approved by the reference librarian. Certain programs of study require a thesis or formal paper in conjunction with a performance or compilation of an artistic work. Students must enroll in the appropriate thesis class by their last semester of regular enrollment. Students may take up to three additional years to complete their thesis, but must maintain “In Progress” status during this period (see In Progress Status). Thesis guidelines are available from the academic department.
A nonrefundable $45 Thesis Binding Fee will be charged to the student's account.
Doctoral candidates are required to complete 20 credits toward the EdD as well as the dissertation. Upon completing 20 credits, students who need additional time to complete the dissertation must petition for "Dissertation In Progress" status (see In Progress Status).
Dissertation in-progress status (dissertation only) for doctoral students signifies that you have completed the required 20 credits toward the doctoral degree and have successfully completed the proposal hearing for the dissertation. Students will remain on in-progress status every semester after completion of course work until completion of the dissertation. The maximum time allowable to complete the EdD, including the time for "In Progress" status is eight years. Extensions may be granted, under exceptional circumstances, with permission from the dean of the School of Education. The fee for registering for in-progress status is $625 per semester.
Courses Outside Degree Field
A graduate degree at Mills, with the exception of the MBA and MPP, and the accelerated degree programs, requires full-time enrollment for a minimum of four semesters. The MBA and MPP require full-time enrollment for a minimum of two semesters. Degree candidates must be enrolled in course work leading to the degree, or enrolled as a continuing candidate “In Progress” in the semester in which the degree is awarded.
Part-time graduate study is considered on a case-by-case basis and must be approved in writing by the department. Students who are in attendance part time in any semester must enroll for five or more semesters before completing the degree with the exception of the MBA and MPP. If part-time study is approved, all policies and stipulations must be followed. Note: The MFA program in studio art and teacher credential programs do not permit part-time studies. No exceptions will be made.
A student may not receive a degree in a semester in which she/he is officially on a leave of absence.
The maximum period of time allowable to complete programs on the master's level, with the exception of the M.A. in Education, is five years; for the doctoral level, three years following completion of course work and the qualifying exam, generally eight years total. The Master's in Education with Emphasis in Teaching (MEET) Program allows for eight years maximum for the completion of the degree. Students in this program complete their credential course work first and then have up to five years in which to teach and gain experience before returning to complete the master’s degree.
Concurrent enrollment in two graduate programs at Mills is possible only under some circumstances. A student interested in this option must apply to and be accepted into each of the graduate programs. Concurrent enrollment requires the consent of both graduate departments. It is the responsibility of the student to work with academic advisors in each program to develop an academic plan that allows for completion of the degrees. That academic plan should identify core courses that must be taken for completion of the degree in each program. The number of unduplicated courses in each field shall be determined by the departments. Rules concerning maximum course loads must be followed. Thus, completion of two programs will require longer than the time allowed for the completion of one program.
Students who have attended another college or university as graduate students and have not applied the work done there to an advanced degree may have, with department approval, up to 6 semester units transferred toward a master’s degree at Mills. Up to 6 semester course credits of course work done at another college or university toward a master’s degree may be used toward the doctoral degree at Mills. An official transcript of such credits must be submitted at the time of admission. Transcripts are reviewed by the student’s department, which then authorizes the M Center to place the credits on the student’s record.
Transfer Credit Equivalents
Transfer Credit and Cross-Registration for Graduate Programs
Departmental approval of all graduate transfer credit and graduate cross-registration credit is required.
The Studio Art graduate program does not accept either transfer credit or cross-registration credit. The Dance graduate program only in rare cases accepts transfer credit and it accepts up to 2.0 semester course cross-registration credits. The graduate programs in Music, Book Art, Creative Writing, and Public Policy accept up to 2.0 semester course credits either as transfer credit or as cross-registration credit. The ICS, MBA and the joint MPP/MBA programs accept up to 3.0 semester course credits either as transfer credit or as cross-registration credit. The MA programs in Education accept up to 2.0 semester course credits either as transfer credit or as cross-registration credit; the EdD program accepts up to 6.0 semester course credits either as transfer credit or cross-registration credit. The Pre-Med Post Bac program accepts up to 5.0 semester course credits or up to 2 of the scicence courses with labs as transfer credit.
In Progress Status
Students must submit a Petition for Candidacy to the M Center the semester before their anticipated semester of graduation.
Master's Degree Students
Students who are “In-Progress” may not register for courses nor take a leave of absence.
Students have a maximum of three years to complete the thesis or the comprehensive exam. Students who do not complete the thesis or comprehensive exam within the required time will become “Candidacy Lapsed” and must apply for readmission through Graduate Admission. The IP reinstatement fee is $700.
Master's degree students with In-Progress status are not considered enrolled students at Mills and are reported as such to the National Student Clearinghouse.
International MEET students
Doctoral Degree Students
The fee for "In Progress" status for doctoral students is $625 per semester (subject to change without notice).
Doctoral candidates are required to complete 20 credits toward the EdD as well as the dissertation. Upon completing 20 credits, students who need additional time to complete the dissertation must petition for "Dissertation In Progress" status.
Dissertation in-progress status (dissertation only) for doctoral students signifies that you have completed the required 20 credits toward the doctoral degree and that you have successfully completed the proposal hearing for the dissertation. Students will remain on in-progress status every semester after completion of coursework until completion of the dissertation. The maximum time allowable to complete the EdD, including the time for "In Progress" status is eight years.
Students who do not complete the dissertation within the required time will become “Candidacy Lapsed” and must apply for readmission through Graduate Admission. The IP reinstatement fee is $700.
Students must submit a Petition for Candidacy to the M Center the semester before their anticipated semester of graduation.
Students that are “In-Progress” are considered enrolled half-time and reported as such to the National Student Clearinghouse.
Continued Practical Training
Candidates for the master's in education with an emphasis in teaching (MEET) are allowed up to five years between the completion of the credential component of the program and readmission to the master's component of the program.
During this period of non-enrollment, international students must apply for “In Progress” status and are registered in a Continued Practical Training course (0 credit, "P/NP"). This course, used by the College to confirm that the training is continuing, requires a “Pass” (“P”) each semester in order for the student to remain in the program. The fee for "In Progress" status for International MEET students is $500 (subject to change). For more information, contact the international student advisor in the Division of Student Life.
Special Non-Degree Student Status
Students taking courses for credit can be considered non-matriculated for up to two terms; at that time, students must apply for formal admission to a specific program. Contact the Office of Graduate Admission for additional information.
Leave of Absence
Students in good standing may take a leave of absence from the College for a maximum of four semesters. A student wishing to take a leave of absence should contact Academic Records to complete the required paperwork. Enrolled students who wish to apply for a leave of absence or a withdrawal effective for the term in which they are currently enrolled must file the petition by the last day of instruction for the semester.
Students should contact the M Center to learn the financial ramifications of taking a leave of absence. (See Tuition and Fees Adjustment Policy and Return of Federal, State, and Institutional Financial Aid.)
Students who wish to take college work elsewhere while on leave from Mills are advised to discuss this with their department, as limited transfer credit is available to graduate students. Upon completion of the courses, the student should request official transcripts to be mailed to Academic Records. These transcripts must be received by the end of the student's first semester of return to Mills.
Students who wish to extend a leave of absence or return early from a leave of absence must contact the M Center.
If, after two years, the student does not return to Mills, a formal withdrawal must be filed with the M Center or the student will be considered as withdrawn without notifying the College (see Withdrawal).
International Students must contact the International Student Advising staff at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn about how a leave of absence will affect their F-1 student status.
Leaves of absence are generally not granted in the Studio Art Program. In addition, students who have filed for “In Progress” status are not permitted to take a leave of absence.
Students who fail to register for courses without petitioning for a leave of absence or withdrawal are considered to have terminated their enrollment without notifying the College. A $150 processing fee will be charged to all students who are reinstated.
Students who initially enrolled in the master's in education with an emphasis in teaching (MEET) may leave the College for up to five years after completing their credential and then return to the College to complete the master's portion of their program in one additional year. MEET students must contact the Education Department about their plans to return and complete an Education-Returning MEET Application. There is no fee for students returning within five years. MEET students who do not return within five years and who then wish to complete the master's portion of the program must apply for readmission through the Office of Graduate Admission, pay the $50 readmission fee, and will be required to complete the full two years for the master’s degree.
Students who have completed the formal course work for the master's degree may need additional time to complete their thesis or comprehensive exams. These students may petition for "In Progress" (IP) status. Master's degree students must have already enrolled in the specific thesis course in their department (usually numbered 250) prior to the beginning of the “In Progress” period. Students file for "In Progress" status by submitting the Request for "In Progress" form to the M Center. The fee for "In Progress" status for master's degree candidates is $500 (subject to change).