Last updated August, 2022.
Graduate programs at Salisbury University are supported and administered by the Office of Graduate Studies, the Graduate Council, and directors of individual graduate programs.
Graduate Council Bylaws (SU)
The following are the bylaws of the University’s Graduate Council.
Article I - Graduate Council
The Graduate Council is the coordinating body for graduate study in the university and serves as an advisory board to review appeals on matters concerning the interpretation of regulations governing graduate study and the degree programs as related to the university as a whole. The Council shall approve all changes in the graduate curriculum, evaluate trends in graduate education, and make recommendations to the Faculty Senate concerning the mission of graduate education and the utilization of resources within the university to meet the needs of its graduate constituency. The decisions of the Graduate Council are subject to review by the Faculty Senate, the graduate dean, and final approval of the Provost of the university.
The Graduate Council shall consist of the graduate dean, the vice president of enrollment management, the registrar or their designees; and the liaison from the Faculty Senate (all ex officio and nonvoting); the program director from each graduate program (all ex officio and voting); one elected graduate faculty representative from each school or college (unit) (voting); and one graduate student (voting) appointed by the university provost or their designee.
- Unit representatives are Graduate Faculty members who are not program directors. Separate elections within each unit, as needed, will be conducted by the Faculty Senate during the spring semester.
- Terms of unit representatives shall be two years and staggered. Terms begin July 1 and end June 30. If additional units are established, initial terms will be one or two years depending on which best balances the number of representatives elected each year.
Section 3. Officers
- Officers of the Council shall consist of the chair and vice chair. Voting members of the Council are eligible to serve as officers.
- Officers are elected by the Council each year at the final Spring Semester meeting. Officers’ terms begin on July 1 each year.
- The vice chair shall assume the duties of the chair in their temporary absence. In such a case, the vice chair shall appoint, with the agreement of the Council, a temporary vice chair.
- If the current chair leaves the Council, the vice chair shall assume the duties of the chair for the remainder of the year and a new vice chair shall be elected by a majority vote of the Council.
- The chair shall preside at all meetings of the Council and be responsible for supervision and execution of its business. The vice chair shall record the meeting minutes and distribute a copy of it to each Council member prior to the next Council meeting, unless a staff member is available to perform these duties.
- The chair, with the approval of the Council, shall create ad hoc committees and appoint their membership.
- The Faculty Senate President, with the approval of the Council, shall appoint members of the graduate faculty to fill vacancies created by the resignation or extended absence of elected members. The appointment will be for the unexpired term of the absent member.
Section 4. Meetings
- The Council shall hold regular meetings each semester of the academic year. The notice and agenda shall be sent to the members of the Council no less than three days prior to each regular meeting. A majority of the voting members of the Council shall constitute a quorum.
- Special meetings may be called in the following ways:
- by the chair of the Council, or
- by written petition of a majority of the members of the Council, or
- by the request of the university Provost.
(Note: Notice of a special meeting shall include the agenda and shall be sent to the members of the Council as far in advance of the meeting as possible.)
- Following Council approval, the minutes of Council meetings will be posted on the Graduate Council website.
Section 5. Committees
The Council shall establish, but is not limited to, the following standing committees: 1) Academic Policies and 2) Graduate Curriculum. The Council shall also establish Ad Hoc Committees as needed.
a. Academic Policies Committee
The purpose of the committee shall be to make recommendations to and receive suggestions from the Graduate Council for academic policies and procedures regarding such matters as admission, readmission, academic standing, retention and standards for all graduate courses, procedures regarding tuition and fees, time limitations and the grading system, and standards of academic honesty and regulations concerning appeals.
b. Graduate Curriculum Committee
The purpose of the committee shall be to make recommendations to and receive suggestions from the Graduate Council for the general coordination and improvement of graduate studies, and to screen all proposed additions, deletions, and changes in the graduate curriculum.
c. Ad Hoc Committees
Ad hoc committees will carry out specific tasks not within the purview of a standing committee and will cease to exist on presentation of the final report to the Council. The Council shall determine the size of each ad hoc committee.
d. Standing Committee Membership and Structure
The membership and structure of the standing committees of the Graduate Council will be as follows:
- Each committee shall consist of three Council members, elected by the Council, from which committee members shall elect a chair.
- Each committee shall not have more than one member from any graduate program.
- Committee chairs shall submit an annual report of their year’s activities to the Council chair no later than June 30. The Council chair shall arrange for the reports to be posted on the Council website.
Article II - Graduate Faculty
Section 1. Graduate Faculty Definition
The graduate faculty consists of full-time tenured and tenure-track faculty, who possess a terminal degree as defined by their respective program or accrediting agency and who have been nominated for graduate faculty status.
Section 2. Graduate Faculty Member’s Rights and Privileges
Being a member of the graduate faculty affords the following rights, privileges and responsibilities:
- to serve as a Graduate Program Director,
- to supervise and administer comprehensive examinations, and
- to direct or chair thesis, dissertations or comparable demonstrations of scholarship.
Departments/CHHS schools should forward requests to add members to the Graduate Faculty to their dean. Upon approval of the Dean, requests for additions should be forwarded to the Dean of Graduate Studies & Research. The Dean of Graduate Studies & Research shall ensure that Graduate Faculty Members are identified as such.
Section 3. Special Appointment to Graduate Faculty
Aside from university faculty, it is sometimes desirable for an external individual with particular expertise or ability to serve as a member of a graduate student’s thesis advisory committee. Special Appointments can only serve as committee members. They cannot chair or co-chair a thesis committee.
Department chairs/school directors should forward requests to add Special Appointments to the Graduate Faculty to their dean. Upon approval of the dean, requests for additions should be forwarded to the Dean of Graduate Studies & Research.
Article III - Purpose and Procedures
The Graduate Council acts as the executive body of the Graduate Faculty.
The Graduate Faculty may request, by a majority vote of those present at a regular or special meeting, a delay in any policies or recommendations made by the Graduate Council so that it can conduct its own review of an issue. The Graduate Faculty may elect members to an ad hoc committee to review the issue and report back its recommendation within 30 days. This recommendation, which may be amended at a meeting of the Graduate Faculty, must be approved by a majority vote of those present and will supersede the action of the Graduate Council and move forward to the Faculty Senate.
Meetings may be called (1) by a majority vote of the Graduate Council; (2) when requested by the President or the Provost of the university; or (3) when requested, in writing, by at least 20 members of the graduate faculty.
A quorum for Full Graduate Faculty meetings is 30 members of the graduate faculty.
The chair or vice chair of the Graduate Council shall preside at all meetings of the Graduate Faculty. The vice chair shall serve as recording secretary, unless a staff member is available to perform this duty.
Article IV - Bylaws Adoption and Amendments
Adopting or amending the Bylaws of the Graduate Faculty may be proposed by a majority vote of the Graduate Council or by petition of twenty (20) members of the graduate faculty.
Adopting or amending the Bylaws of the Graduate Faculty requires that Graduate Faculty members receive a ballot at least one week before the ballot is due to be submitted. Passage of changes requires a positive vote from 2/3 of the submitted ballots. Members will vote on each change individually. Voting may be handled electronically.
Article V - Graduate Administration
Section 1. Administration and Implementation of Graduate Studies
The Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost administers Graduate Studies with the assistance of the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research, dean of enrollment management, the registrar, and the graduate program directors. The graduate faculty implements the graduate programs.
Section 2. Appointment/Reappointment of Graduate Program Directors
Academic deans, school directors, or department chairs, depending on internal unit administrative structure, assume responsibility for recommending the appointments and evaluations of graduate program directors to the Provost.
The term and responsibilities of the graduate program director will be specified in a letter of appointment from the Provost.
Section 3. Responsibilities of Graduate Program Directors
The graduate program director is responsible, either personally, or by coordinating departmental faculty, for:
- recruiting students;
- admitting students into the graduate program;
- advising, including preregistration and other academic advising, graduate program information, and career counseling;
- approving transfer credits, requests to study at another institution, and requests for graduate credit during the undergraduate senior year;
- keeping and monitoring student records for permanent retention in University academic records;
- preparing graduation audits;
- recommending graduate curriculum and course sequencing;
- scheduling graduate courses;
- serving as a voting member of the Graduate Council;
- disseminating information from the Graduate Council to the unit and/or department;
- selecting and supervising graduate assistants.
- overseeing program evaluation and ensuring external accreditation, as appropriate.
Section 4. Evaluation of Graduate Program Directors
The appropriate academic dean, school director, or department chair evaluates graduate program directors yearly and recommends continuation or termination of directors to the Provost. The department and/or unit will determine evaluation procedures in advance.
Salisbury University is authorized to offer master’s degree programs in applied biology, health and human performance, business management, conflict analysis and dispute resolution, education, English, geographic information systems management, history, mathematics education, nursing and social work. Salisbury University is authorized to offer doctoral degree programs in education and nursing practice. The requirements for the graduate degrees currently offered by Salisbury University have been established by the graduate faculty in the university’s academic departments and are published in the University’s Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog.
The University graduate programs are administered by the provost in cooperation with the Assistant VP for Enrollment Management and deans of units that offer graduate programs and the registrar. Following are the guidelines for graduate program administration.
- Authority of Deans - Authority for the design, development and implementation of individual graduate programs rests with the dean of the units in which those programs are offered. Programs are supervised in accord with a “chain-of-command” which begins with faculty who develop graduate courses and programs, moves to graduate program directors selected by departments to implement those programs, and thence to department chairs/school directors in which the programs are offered. Department chairs/school directors have administrative and supervisory responsibility for programs in their departments/CHHS school and for the work of their graduate program directors. Department chairs/school directors, in turn, report to the dean who is responsible for the graduate programs of the departments/CHHS school of the unit. The deans report to the Provost who has final authority over graduate programs.
- Authority of the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research - Authority for the management of university-wide aspects of graduate study rests in part with the Dean of Graduate Studies & Research who engages in general recruitment for graduate students, disseminates general information about the university and supervises the application process and admission of students to graduate study at the university. The dean supervises publication of the graduate section of the academic catalog and Graduate Student Handbook in cooperation with the Graduate Council.
- Role of the Graduate Council - The Graduate Council develops university-wide policy and procedures for graduate study at the university and for the coordination of the individual graduate programs offered by departments and units. The Graduate Council shall consist of the graduate dean, the vice president of enrollment management, the registrar or their designees; and the liaison from the Faculty Senate (all ex officio and nonvoting); the program director from each graduate program (all ex officio and voting); one elected graduate faculty representative from each school or college (unit) (voting); and one graduate student (voting) appointed by the university provost or their designee.
- Role of Graduate Program Directors - Graduate program directors are appointed by Provost upon the recommendation of their departments and assist the Provost in administering the graduate program. Graduate program directors are appointed according to procedures detailed in Article V Graduate Administration of this handbook under the Graduate Council Bylaws (SU) section. Program directors disseminate general information about the university and specific information about individual graduate programs offered by their units and departments, supervise the application of students to graduate study in their departments, monitor graduate student compliance with university wide academic policies for graduate students, and work in close coordination with the Graduate Council, Provost, Assistant VP of enrollment management, registrar, and deans to implement approved policies and procedures.
- Graduate Faculty Advocacy - Graduate faculty are supported by and supervised by their department chairs/school directors and by the deans. Support for special graduate program activities such as research and release time is provided to graduate faculty by their department chairs and deans in accordance with the overall plans of the departments and units, and within the context of the Mission and Academic Long Range Plan of the University.
- Application for Graduate Study at Salisbury University - The purpose of application is to become eligible for post-baccalaureate study. Students who are accepted for graduate study are encouraged to affiliate with a particular graduate program but do not necessarily have to do so. Steps in the application process include:
- development by the Graduate Council of general admission requirements;
- application by prospective student;
- notification in writing to applicants by the dean of graduate studies of receipt of the application;
- notification to applicants who are accepted and who have expressed interest in a particular graduate program that their interest will be conveyed to that program’s director who will, in turn, contact them; and
- forwarding of applications of students expressing program interest to the director of the program of interest.
- Admission to Individual Graduate Programs - The process of admitting students to the individual graduate programs of the university is managed by the graduate program directors in the departments/units which offer these programs. Steps in this admission process include:
- development of criteria for program admission by department/unit offering program;
- evaluation of records of program applicants by graduate program directors;
- notification in writing to applicants by program directors of acceptance, conditional acceptance or non-acceptance; and
- notification in writing to the registrar of the student’s acceptance into the program, including the starting semester for which admission is granted.
- Program Design, Development and Approval - Before designing an individual graduate program, faculty/departments/deans must tender a prospectus of the program to the secretary of higher education and the University System of Maryland (USM) via the Graduate Council, the Provost and the President of the university. Once this prospectus has been reviewed and approved by the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC), Board of Regents (BOR), faculty working with their departments, department chairs/school directors and deans may proceed with the design of a full, program proposal. This proposal must then be approved by the Graduate Council, the Provost, the University System of Maryland (USM) Academic Affairs Advisory Council and USM Board of Regents; and ultimately by the Maryland Higher Education Commission. The design, development and approval of individual graduate programs results in degree requirements, graduate courses and program sequences. Steps leading to these results include:
- notification by prospectus to the Secretary of Higher Education of intent to develop a specific graduate program with copies to provost and Graduate Council;
- discussion and review of program prospectus by USM constituents;
- design of proposed graduate program, including requirements, courses and sequences by faculty/departments/deans;
- review and approval of program by Graduate Council;
- review and approval of program by Provost of the University;
- review and approval of program by USM Academic Affairs Advisory Council;
- review and approval of program by USM Board of Regents;
- review and approval of program by Maryland Higher Education Commission;
- publication of program including requirements, courses and program sequence in university’s Academic Catalog.
- Process for Appeals by Graduate Students - The general principal governing appeals of procedures, requirements or decisions by graduate students is that appeals related to general university concerns are heard by the Provost and that appeals related to individual graduate programs are heard by program directors, department chairs then deans in sequence as necessary. Where students seek the hearing of appeals which may concern both general university and individual program matters, the Provost and the director, department chair and/or dean of the relevant unit will work together in close cooperation to consider the appeal. There are several kinds of appeals which have been identified as within the authority of either the provost or deans of units and these are listed below.
- extension of grades of Incomplete;
- permission for enrollment beyond 15 hours;
- extension of the Drop/Add period; and
- Scheduling of Graduate Courses - The scheduling of graduate courses is, in general, governed by the program sequences of which they are a part and is the responsibility of the department chairs in which the programs are offered, subject to the approval of the dean, working in close cooperation with the Registrar. Steps in the process for scheduling graduate courses include:
- submission by department chairs/school directors/deans of schedules of graduate course offerings to the Provost for regular terms and to the Registrar for winter and summer terms;
- online publication by the Registrar of comprehensive and graduate-only schedules-of-classes for regular terms and for winter and summer terms.
- Marketing of Graduate Programs and Recruitment of Graduate Students - Graduate program marketing and recruitment activities are shared by the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research, graduate program directors, and deans in the following way:
- promulgation of the array of graduate programs available at SU by the dean of enrollment management at general graduate student recruitment events;
- specific recruitment of minority graduate students to graduate study at SU and at special minority graduate student events; and
- marketing and recruitment for individual graduate programs by directors/department chairs/deans at events and through methods possible given the unit resource allocations.
- Graduate Student Shared Governance - Salisbury University believes strongly in the shared governance model. The Graduate Student Council (GSC) is the official political and social body for the graduate students at SU. The GSC’s goal is to provide avenues for intellectual, professional, personal, and social development through grants, advocacy, public presentation of research, graduate community events, and campus service support.
Graduate Student Concurrent Inter-Institutional Registration
Graduate students at Salisbury University may register concurrently at other institutions in the University System of Maryland in accordance with BOR III - 2.41 UNIVERSITY SYSTEM OF MARYLAND POLICY ON GRADUATE STUDENT CONCURRENT INTER-INSTITUTIONAL REGISTRATION.
Combined Bachelor’s/Master’s Programs
- Faculty who wish to develop combined bachelor’s/master’s degree programs must design such programs cooperatively with the dean, Graduate Council and the Office of Academic Affairs. Combined programs must be approved in accordance with the steps described in the university’s curriculum manual, Curriculum Approval Guide.
- Salisbury University undergraduate students who are within nine hours of completing requirements for the baccalaureate degree, who have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.75 (3.25 in business), may register for graduate credit to be taken concurrently with the remaining courses in the baccalaureate program, providing they have obtained prior authorization from the appropriate graduate program director on the Application for Graduate Credit in Senior Year form (there is no fee for this form) and space available in the class. Students within six hours of the baccalaureate degree may enroll in up to six hours of graduate credit. Those within seven to nine hours of the bachelors may take up to three graduate credits. Graduate coursework taken under this agreement cannot be applied to the undergraduate degree program and will be billed at the graduate credit rate in addition to the undergraduate costs.
BOR III - 7.11
Graduate Assistants are, first and foremost, graduate students pursuing an education. The opportunity to work closely with faculty and undergraduate students in teaching, research, or administrative environments is an integral part of that education. The University is committed to ensuring that graduate assistant assignments are productive, enhance student qualifications, meet funding support and workload goals, and are consistent with the educational objectives of the student and their program. Graduate Assistantships Policy (USM BOR Policy III - 7.11: VII-4.50 rescinded on 12/3/10) provides detailed expectations for graduate assistantships. Salisbury University supports graduate students by:
- Advancing the student’s graduate education through practicum-based experiences, including the development and application of teaching, research and other skills, while also advancing the mission of the institution.
- Providing financial support, including stipends and tuition assistance, to aid degree-seeking students enrolled in SU master’s programs and appointed as graduate assistants in the pursuit of their graduate degrees.
- Providing a Graduate Student Handbook.
Information about Graduate Assistantship Policies are available in the Graduate Assistant Policy Handbook. Forms and waivers are available online.
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