Graduate Studies Policies


Master of Arts (M.A.)
Communicating Arts
Visual Arts 

Master of Science in Education (M.S.E.)
Educational Administration
Guidance and Counseling
Special Education

Specialist in Education (Ed.S.)
Educational Administration

Certification in Professional Education
Individuals seeking UW-Superior approval for certification in professional education through the graduate programs must apply for admission and must also submit a copy of their current professional educator license. No more than nine semester credits earned before being admitted to Graduate Studies may be applied toward graduate level certification programs in professional education.

Admission to a professional educator certification program, either as part of a degree program or separately from a degree program, may be denied or withdrawn if there is evidence that the applicant does not meet the standards, as defined by Chapter PI 34 of the Wisconsin Administrative Code for the Department of Public Instruction regarding conduct which may endanger the health, welfare, safety or education of any pupil.

Certification for educational licensure is subject to change based on licensing requirements of the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. The online catalog maintains the most up-to-date certification requirements.

In 1950, the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents authorized the first of Superior's graduate degrees: a Master of Education Degree in School Administration. Currently Master's Degrees are offered in eight different programs and a Specialist's Degree is offered in Educational Administration.

UW-Superior is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. All Professional Educator programs are accredited by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. The university holds institutional membership in the American Association of Higher Education, the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges and the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools.

Graduate Faculty
The Graduate Faculty is the community of scholars responsible for creating the academic climate for graduate study by teaching graduate courses, stimulating and conducting research, and advising individual graduate students. The Graduate Faculty serves as the legislative body for the graduate programs, acting within the limits of policies of the State of Wisconsin and the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents. Members of the Graduate Faculty are identified in the faculty and staff section of this catalog

Graduate Council
The Graduate Council is a council of the UW-Superior Faculty Senate. The Graduate Council is the policy-making body for graduate studies and acts for the Graduate Faculty in the operation of the graduate programs. The Graduate Council is responsible to the Graduate Faculty, and includes as members one representative with full graduate faculty status from each graduate degree program, a secretary elected from and by the Graduate Faculty, and the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies.


Admission Procedures

  1. Submit a completed application online. Applications may be found at  or
  2. Request official transcripts of all previous undergraduate and graduate work be sent to the Graduate Studies Office directly from all institutions previously attended.
  3. Remit a nonrefundable application fee to the University of Wisconsin-Superior.
  4. Submit other application materials required by specific programs as identified in the following individual program descriptions. 

All application forms and transcripts should be submitted in advance of registration to ensure time for processing. Recommended dates for submission of application materials are April 1 for summer or fall terms and October 15 for the spring term. Students will be admitted under the policies of the current General Catalog. Any student who applies and is admitted but does not attend the university within a one-year period must reapply for admission and must comply with the admission requirements of the then-current university catalog.

Decisions relating to admission are governed by university policy and administered by the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. Admission to a specific graduate program rests with the faculty advisors and departments.

Unconditional Admission
A student admitted unconditionally to a graduate degree program must meet both the requirements of the individual graduate program and the following Graduate Studies requirements: 

  1. The applicant holds a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university.
  2. An undergraduate grade point average of at least 2.75/4.00 or a 2.90/4.00 grade point average in the last half of the undergraduate program. Undergraduate and graduate work from all colleges attended will be considered.  
  3. An undergraduate major or equivalent evidence of suitable background for entering the chosen program.
  4. Evidence of proficiency in written and oral English language skills.
  5. Other application material required by individual programs.

Conditional Admission
An applicant desiring to pursue a degree but not meeting one or more of the requirements for unconditional admission may be granted conditional admission if all of the following are met:

  1. The applicant holds a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university.
  2. The applicant has a grade point average greater than 2.50/4.00. Undergraduate and graduate coursework from all colleges will be considered.
  3. Other probationary components may be required by individual graduate programs.
  4. Conditionally admitted graduate students may be admitted unconditionally when the student, with faculty advisor approval, petitions the Graduate Council with substantial evidence that the student has the potential for doing satisfactory graduate work. Such evidence may include:

a. A grade point average of 3.00/4.00 or better average in the first nine semester hours of graduate work selected by the faculty advisor (work may count toward degree.)

b. Other evidence as deemed important by the faculty advisor.

Any student who has not successfully become eligible for unconditional admission by the completion of nine semester hours of work will be denied enrollment in graduate studies.

Special Graduate Status
Students enrolling as Special Status students are those who do not wish to pursue a degree or certification from the University of Wisconsin-Superior. This status is reserved for people who want to enroll in graduate courses for other reasons, such as continuing education, PDP credits, etc.

A student may be allowed to enroll in graduate courses with this status if: 

  1. The applicant holds a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university as evidenced by an official transcript.
  2. The applicant does not wish to pursue a degree or certification program at this university at this time.
  3. Although the applicant will submit an online application (, applicants for Special Graduate Status are not required to pay an application fee.
  4. Students enrolled as Special Graduate Students are not eligible for financial assistance.

If the student with Special Status decides to pursue a degree or a certification from the University of Wisconsin-Superior, a maximum of nine semester credits taken as a special student may be applied to that degree or certification program. The student will need to fulfill the admission requirements for the particular degree or certification program, pay the application fee, and understand that all other conditions apply.

International Student Admission
Qualified international students are welcome to enroll in graduate degree programs at UW-Superior. To be admitted, the following information must be submitted to the Graduate Studies Office: 

  1. Completed an online Graduate Studies Application for Admission form at Remit the non-refundable application fee.
  2. Submit official copies with literal English translation of academic credentials (grade reports, transcripts or mark sheets) from secondary school (high school) and any postsecondary (college, university, institute) coursework.
  3. A statement or certificate indicating English language proficiency. A score of 550 (paper-based), 213 (computer-based), 81 (internet-based) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is recommended. Specific departments may require higher scores and may also require the Test of Spoken English (TSE). Any deviation from these standards must be approved in advance by the appropriate program coordinator and the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies.
  4. Documentation of sufficient financial support to live and study full time at UW-Superior. Financial verification is required before the university will issue the U. S. government form, Form I-20, necessary to obtain an F-1 student visa or to transfer from another U. S. institution.
  5.  International graduate students may be awarded a partial nonresident tuition waiver. Information regarding nonresident tuition waivers is available online at
  6. All required documents for admission must be on file with the Graduate Studies Office by April 1 for the fall semester, by September 1 for the spring semester, and by February 1 for the summer session.  

Graduate Program Plan of Study
Assignment of an advisor is made by the program coordinator when the student is admitted. The faculty advisor will work with the student to design a Plan of Study and may supervise the thesis, project, or writing requirement. The student's Plan of Study must be filed in the Graduate Studies Office by the end of the second semester of attendance. A minimum of 30 to 60 credits (varies by academic program) is required for the master's degree. At least half the required minimum number of credits should be taken in courses which are open to graduate students only (numbered 700-899).

Student Responsibility
It is the responsibility of students to be informed and to follow all university and graduate policies, degree program requirements and any specific requirements of their major program.

Graduate students are expected to maintain academic integrity in meeting the requirements for a graduate degree. Evidence of academic misconduct may result in certain sanctions, such as failure in a course or dismissal from Graduate Studies. Chapter 14 UW-Superior Student Academic Disciplinary Procedures of the Wisconsin Administrative Code for the University of Wisconsin System outlines the procedures for identifying academic misconduct and the appropriate sanctions. Chapter 17 UW-Superior Student Nonacademic Disciplinary Procedures of the Wisconsin Administrative Code for the University of Wisconsin System outlines the procedures for identifying nonacademic misconduct and the appropriate sanctions. Graduate students are expected to abide by the Code of Ethics specific to their chosen field of study.

Student Identification
After registration and payment of fees, students should obtain a student identification card at the Yellowjacket Union. Several benefits are available to those who hold a current ID card, including but not limited to: use of materials from and facilities of the Jim Dan Hill Library, use of networked computer labs, use of the Health & Wellness Center, and discounts at many university-sponsored events.

Dates for advanced registration for each term are published at Students should meet with their advisors before registration.

Course Repeat
Students may repeat only courses for which they received a grade of W. The grade earned in the repeat replaces the grade of W as the grade of record. All course repeats must be taken through UW-Superior.

Graduate Courses
Only courses numbered 500 and above may be accepted as graduate courses. Requirements are established by the course instructor and approved by the Graduate Council.

Credit by Examination
Graduate credit will not be awarded through the mechanism of credit by examination. Any student desiring to have completed graduate coursework entered on the official transcript shall be required to officially enroll in the course, complete all graduate course requirements and have a grade officially recorded by the graduate faculty member of record.

Credit Load, Academic Year and Summer
The minimum full-time credit load for a graduate student is nine credits per semester. The maximum load for a graduate student is 15 credits per semester. The maximum load includes Continuing Education classes. It is expected that one graduate credit should require at least 48 hours of work from the student. Graduate students may enroll for a maximum of 12 credits in courses which occur during various summer dates between the end of the spring term and before the beginning of the fall term.

Exceptions to Graduate Studies Policies
Exceptions to established Graduate Studies policies may be requested by submitting a petition to the Graduate Council. Petitions are student initiated and brought forward to the Graduate Council through the student's advisor. Petition forms are available in the Graduate Studies Office or online at 

Final Examination
The graduate programs hold the option of requiring a written and/or oral examination.

Grading System
No grade below C carries graduate credit. A 3.00/4.00 grade point average is required for graduation. The grade "IP" (In Progress) may only be given in courses not normally completed in one semester, such as a thesis, practicum or internship. An "IP" grade may be changed to a letter grade any time at the discretion of the instructor up to a maximum of seven years from the beginning of the course. Conversely, the grade "I" (Incomplete) should be given in courses which are normally completed within the framework of one semester. A grade of "I" may be awarded only if a minimum of 2/3 of the coursework has been completed. A grade of "I" must be completed within one calendar year or the grade may convert to an F. If the work for the "I" is not completed within that time and the grade not converted, it will remain an I and cannot be removed.

The catalog requirements in effect upon the student's term of entry define the graduation requirements for the degree sought. Application for the graduate degree must be made online at the beginning of the final term of attendance. Payment of a graduation fee is required.

To be graduated at the end of a specific term, all requirements and course work must be completed within four weeks of the final day of the student's last term of attendance. Students who have applied but do not graduate must reapply for graduation.

Students who have not enrolled in graduate coursework within a calendar year are considered inactive. Inactive students must update and reactivate their files by completing a Graduate Reentry form before they will be eligible to register for graduate courses. Forms are available at and the Graduate Studies Office.

Residency Requirement
A minimum of half or 50 percent of the required credits of each graduate program must be earned through UW-Superior. Please check with individual programs for the allowable number of transfer credits.

Satisfactory Academic Progress
The Associate Dean of Graduate Studies shall notify the faculty advisor of any student who has failed to achieve a 3.00/4.00 grade point average by the time the student has attempted 20 semester hours of graduate work.

Graduate students who receive a stipend, salary, or nonresident tuition waiver from the university, based upon their status as a graduate student, must maintain satisfactory academic progress each term of their award or appointment. This requirement also applies to students granted a nonresident tuition waiver under the Tuition Award Program (TAP). Satisfactory academic progress requires completion of at least nine earned graduate credits, with a grade point average of 3.00/4.00 or greater, per semester. Courses in which a grade of IP is given shall be considered earned credits. (The grade point average of 3.00/4.00may be required in fewer than nine graduate credits if the stipend stipulates that a smaller number of credits may be taken.)

Second Master's Degree
Additional master's degrees are permissible but each such degree requires 30 to 60 semester credits (as per the catalog requirements) beyond the credits earned for the previous master's degree(s). Courses taken as part of a prior master's degree may not count toward the credit requirement for a subsequent master's degree. Students who have completed a master's degree program at UW-Superior who wish to re-enter for a second master's degree may use a Re-Entry form available as indicated above.

10-Year Limit
All credits used in meeting the requirements of a graduate degree or certification in professional education must be earned within a period of not more than 10 consecutive years, commencing with the enrollment date in courses applicable to the degree (or certification program) rather than the completion date of applicable courses.

Thesis, Seminar Paper or Project
All master's degree candidates are required to complete a thesis or culminating project as prescribed by the graduate program and approved by the faculty advisor. Evidence of completion of this requirement must be verified by the advisor as indicated on the student's Plan of Study. The thesis, paper or project must be submitted electronically to the student's advisor. Two copies of the thesis must be bound and archived at the Jim Dan Hill Library. Individual programs may require additional copies of the final thesis, paper or project.

UW-Superior meets current federal regulations by expecting that all graduate student and faculty research dealing with human subjects will secure approval from the UW-Superior Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects.

Transfer Credit
A student who is admitted may transfer up to 15 credits from other institutions accredited to offer graduate programs provided the transfer credit is appropriate to the degree being undertaken. No credit below a grade of B will transfer and no credit will be allowed for undergraduate work, work completed more than seven years before the expected degree, or work used to complete another degree. Students who wish to transfer credit from another accredited institution must: 

  1. Have an official transcript sent to the Graduate Studies Office.
  2. Complete a Transfer Credit Request form.

Each course transferred must have approval of the student's faculty advisor and department and will be recorded by the Graduate Studies Office. Transfer Credit Request forms are available in the Graduate Studies Office.

Financial Aid Opportunities

Graduate students have access to a variety of financial aid opportunities as described below.

Advanced Opportunity Program
The Advanced Opportunity Program (AOP) of UW-Superior makes funds available for eligible graduate students who are disadvantaged or belong to American ethnic minorities (limited by UW System Guidelines to Native American, African American, Hispanic, and Southeast Asian students). Applications for AOP Fellowships should be submitted by April 1 preceding the academic year of planned attendance at UW-Superior.  Applications are submitted to the Financial Aid Office ( and the student must file a financial aid application ( Partial AOP stipends may be awarded to part-time graduate students who otherwise qualify for the AOP fellowship. 

Minnesota-Wisconsin Reciprocity
Minnesota and Wisconsin employ reciprocity for tuition purposes. Minnesota students may pay Minnesota resident fees at UW-Superior provided they are granted Reciprocity Fee Status by the Minnesota Higher Education Coordinating Board. Apply online at

Tuition Award Program
The Tuition Award Program (TAP) allows UW-Superior to waive a portion of the out-of-state tuition that nonresident students are charged. Graduate students applying for admission may also apply for a TAP award. Applications, which include information on limitations and restrictions, are available from the Financial Aid Office or online at Applications must be received by April 1 for the following fall semester. 

Need-Based Financial Assistance
Graduate students may be eligible for need-based financial aid through the Office of Financial Aid or online at

Admission to Graduate Studies and financial aid need to be completed by March 1 for students desiring work study. Graduate special students are not eligible for financial aid. 

Beecroft Graduate Travel Grant
The Beecroft Graduate Travel Grant provides a grant of $1,000 for travel to the New England states, the province of Quebec, or countries outside the United States and Canada to graduate students whose graduate work would be aided or enhanced by travel. Applications are available in the Graduate Studies Office or online at



Graduate Tuition/Refund of Tuition and Fees

Graduate Tuition/Refund of Tuition and Fees
UW System policy specifies that graduate students who take undergraduate courses as part of their graduate program will be charged at the graduate tuition level for all courses. Students will receive refunds for courses dropped from their schedule according to the tuition and fee refund schedule published at The day of record for the drop is the day written notification is received by the Registrar's Office.