Master's Degree Requirements


When a student is admitted to graduate study, an adviser is appointed by the chair of the major department. A student who is academically qualified in general but deficient in course preparation may be required to make up the deficiencies at the postbaccalaureate level. This may be recommended prior to beginning graduate work, or in some cases, can be done simultaneously.

Continuous Enrollment Requirement

There is no formal Graduate School continuous enrollment requirement for the master’s degree. Individual master’s programs, however, may require continuous enrollment. A student should consult with his or her academic department.


A minimum of 30 semester credits of graduate work is required in all master’s degree programs. This includes thesis credit. Some departments require more (see departmental requirements). A minimum of two-thirds of the total graduate credits required in any master’s program must be completed at the University. A maximum of six workshop credits may be applied to a master’s degree. Such credits must be relevant to the degree program, recommended by the student’s adviser and approved by the Dean of the Graduate School.


Students must file an online application for graduation with the Office of the University Registrar after completion of one-half of the credits required for their degree program or by the following dates:

  • April 1 for Spring Commencement
  • July 1 for Summer Commencement
  • November 1 for Fall Commencement

Students wanting to attend the commencement ceremony must visit the Office of the University Registrar website to respond to the ceremony.

To be cleared for graduation, a candidate must have completed coursework with a minimum cumulative graduate grade-point average of at least 3.00; submitted an online application for graduation with the University Registrar; paid all applicable fees; and met any other applicable department and University requirements.

If a thesis is required, a final online submission, properly prepared, is due in the Graduate School at least three weeks prior to commencement. This copy must be signed by the adviser, faculty reader, department chair, and college dean prior to submission to the Graduate School. A manual titled Guidelines for Preparing a Thesis or Dissertation is available online and all copies of the thesis must conform to these instructions.

Optional Department Requirements

Each department may set special requirements with regard to entrance examinations, qualifying examinations, foreign language, required courses and thesis. Details are available from the chair of the major department.

Residency Requirements

There are no formal residency requirements for the master’s degree. A student may meet the degree requirements of the Graduate School and the department through either full- or part-time study.

Time Limit

All requirements must be completed within six years after beginning graduate-level coursework at The University of Akron or elsewhere. Extension of up to one year may be granted in unusual circumstances by the Dean of the Graduate School upon written request by the student and recommendation by the adviser, department chair, and college dean.

It should be noted that the requirements listed by department elsewhere in this rule refer to the minimum necessary for a degree. It is entirely within the prerogative of the department to assign additional credits of coursework or other requirements in the interest of graduating a fully qualified student.

No graduate credit may be received for courses taken by examination or for 500-numbered courses previously taken at the 400-number course level as an undergraduate without advance approval from the dean of the Graduate School. “Repeat for change of grade” is not available at the graduate level.

Transfer Credits

Up to one-third of the total credits required for a master’s degree may be transferred from an accredited college or university, including The University of Akron. Departments and colleges may set more restrictive limits. All transfer credit must be at the “A” or “B” level (4.00 to 3.00) in graduate courses. The credits must be relevant to the student’s program as determined by the student’s academic department and fall within the six-year time limit. A University of Akron student must receive prior approval from his or her academic department for transfer courses taken elsewhere. A block transfer of credit may be requested if the student holds a prior graduate degree from an accredited college or university, including The University of Akron. A block transfer of credit does not apply to the student’s six-year time limit for degree completion.

A student seeking to transfer credit must have full admission and be in good standing at The University of Akron. Transfer credit shall not be recorded until a student has completed 12 semester credits at The University of Akron with a grade-point average of 3.00 or better. Transfer credits from other institutions shall not be computed as part of the student's University of Akron grade point average.