Jun 22, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog 
    
2023-2024 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Graduate Division General Information



Academic Integrity

Academic integrity standards are established to provide a systematic process for engagement between faculty, students, and administration. Further, consequences are established to remedy violations of academic integrity. Each student shall observe standards of honesty and integrity in academic work completed at WNMU. Adherence to the standards is considered a serious matter. Violations of academic integrity such as cheating and plagiarism, intentional or unintentional, may result in penalties including dismissal from the university.

Violations include any behavior that misrepresents or falsifies a student’s knowledge, skills or abilities. Such violations include two broad categories: (1) cheating and (2) plagiarism.

  1. Definition:

    Cheating includes, but is not limited to, using or attempting to use unauthorized materials such as notes, texts, images, electronic devices, and unauthorized copies of test materials. Cheating is also understood to mean unauthorized collaboration with others, copying the work of another, interfering with the work of another, taking an examination for another student or knowingly permitting another person to take an examination for oneself, or any action that presents the work of others to misrepresent the student’s knowledge, skills or ability.

    Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to, the intentional or unintentional representation of another’s work as one’s own without proper acknowledgment of the original author or creator of the work, failure to quote and/or cite sources, providing or receiving unauthorized assistance in the preparation of any academic work, the fabrication of sources or information, or submitting the same work for more than one course/instructor without the permission of the current course instructor.
  1. Procedures for Addressing Academic Integrity Violations by Faculty and Students:
    1. Faculty Members
      If a faculty member suspects a student has violated academic integrity, the faculty member should handle the matter in the manner specified below:
      1. Communicate with the Student
        The faculty member must communicate or provide documentation of attempting to communicate with the student who has allegedly violated academic integrity to discuss the matter within 10 working days following discovery of the violation during the semester or if at the end of the semester, 10 working days after the start of the new regular semester following the semester in which the alleged violation occurs.
        1. If the faculty member finds the student did not violate academic integrity, the matter is closed and the allegations are dismissed.
        2. If the faculty member finds the student violated academic integrity, the faculty member must file a report within 10 working days after communicating with the student to the dean/chair of his/her department, to the dean/ chair of the student’s academic department or the Center for Student Success if undeclared, and to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. The report will describe the nature of the violation and the action taken.
        3. If the faculty member finds the student quality of violating academic integrity and chooses to handle the matter directly with the student, the possible sanctions include, but are not limited to, failure/grade penalty on the assignment, rewriting the assignment, failure/grade penalty on the test, and failure/ grade penalty in the course.
        4. If the faculty member is unable to communicate with the student because the alleged violation occurs at the end of the semester, a grade of NR will be reported on the Academic Integrity Report and page 1 of the report will be forwarded to the Office of the Registrar.
        5. If the student fails to respond within 30 days, the faculty member may assign a grade at his/her discretion.
      2. Referring the Violation to the Academic Integrity Committee
        If after communicating with the student, the faculty member believes the student has violated academic integrity, he/she may choose to refer the matter to the Academic Integrity Committee for a hearing by the Committee. The referral must be made within 10 working days after meeting with the student during the semester or if at the end of the semester, 10 working days after the start of the new regular semester following the semester in which the alleged violation occurs. The faculty member must report the alleged violation to the dean/chair of his/her respective department, to the dean/chair of the student’s academic department or the Center for Student Success if undeclared, and to the chair of the Academic Integrity Committee.
    2. Students Accused of a Violation
      If a student is accused of violating academic integrity, he/she must communicate with the faculty member making the accusation.
      1. Communicate with Faculty Member
        The student must communicate with the faculty member who has suspected him/her of violating academic integrity to discuss the matter within 10 working days following discovery of the violation during the semester or if at the end of the semester, 10 working days after the start of the new semester following the semester in which the alleged violation occurs. If the matter is not resolved with the faculty member to the student’s satisfaction, the student may refer the matter.
      2. Referring the Issue to the Dean/Chair of the Department
        If after communicating with the faculty member, the student feels the matter is not resolved to his/her satisfaction, he/she may refer the issue to the dean/ chair of the department where the alleged offense occurs and to the dean/ chair of the student’s academic department or the Center for Student Success if undeclared within 10 working days of communicating with the faculty member. The dean/chair of the department must convene a meeting of the student and the faculty member within 10 working days of the referral.
      3. Referring the Issue to the Academic Integrity Committee
        If no resolution of the matter is reached, the student may refer the matter to the Academic Integrity Committee. The student must submit a report requesting a hearing within 10 working days after the meeting with the dean/ chair of the department of the faculty member.
  2. Academic Integrity Committee
    The Academic Integrity Committee shall be a standing Faculty Senate committee which replaces all previously established committees for the resolution and disposition of violations of academic integrity non-residential issues (Academic Integrity Panel). The Discipline Committee will not hear issues on Academic Integrity.
    1. Composition
      The Academic Integrity Committee is composed of three faculty members and three alternates on a two-year departmental rotating basis. Committee members will be nominated by academic department to serve on the Committee. Three student members and three alternates appointed by the ASWNMU and one staff member who has taught a college level course and one staff alternate who has taught a college level course will be appointed by the Staff Senate at the beginning of the academic year. The Committee shall elect a chair, vice-chair and secretary. In the event that a quorum of the regular members cannot be obtained for a pending matter, and the chair determines that a hearing must occur before a quorum can be obtained, alternates identified above may serve.
    2. Duties
      The duties of the Academic Integrity Committee shall include by not be limited to the following tasks:
      1. Hear cases brought before the committee after the following the above procedures;
      2. Make recommendations based on substantial evidence presented;
      3. Be governed by rules consistent with due process procedures an approved by the legislative branch of the Associated Students, the University Administration, and the University Board of Regents.
      4. The chair of the Academic Integrity Committee will be responsible for notifying the faculty member and the student in writing, (by letter of WNMU e-mail) and by phone of the date, time and place at which the Committee will hold a hearing. In addition, the chair is responsible for conducting the hearing or rescheduling a hearing as outlined in III.C.3.
      5. The vice-chair is responsible for notifying the members of the Academic Integrity Committee (faculty, students, and staff) of the date, time, and place at which the Committee will hold a hearing. The vice-chair may also conduct a hearing in the absence of the chair and will fulfill the duties of the chair in that case. If this occurs, a faculty alternate will serve on the committee as the third faculty member.
      6. The secretary is responsible for preparing a written report of the hearing which includes the decision of the Committee, having the chair or vice-chair sign the report and forwarding copies of the report to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the faculty member, the dean/chair of the faculty member’s department, the dean/chair of the student’s academic department or the Center for Student Success if undeclared, the student and the Registrar.
    3. Hearings
      1. Procedures
        If the above procedures have not been followed, a hearing will be conducted.
      2. Notice to the Faculty Member and the Student
        Within 10 working days after an alleged violation of academic integrity has been referred to the Academic Integrity Committee, the chair of the Committee will notify the faculty member and the student, in writing (by letter or WNMU e-mail), and by phone, the basis for the alleged violation, and the date, time, and place at which the Committee will hold a hearing.
      3. Date of Hearing
        The hearing should not take place until at least 10 working days after the notification is sent. If the hearing falls during a University holiday, break in the semesters, during the summer months, or when a quorum of the Academic Integrity Committee is not available, the chair has the responsibility to schedule the hearing within the earliest reasonable time frame.
      4. Who May Attend
        Members of the Academic Integrity Committee, the student and the faculty member must attend the hearing. Witnesses and the dean/chair of the department of the faculty member may attend the hearing. The student has the right to have someone with him/her who may only speak at the pleasure of the Committee, but can also informally consult with the student.
      5. Failure to Appear
        If the faculty member or the student fails to appear at the hearing on the date, time, and place specified in the notice, the Academic Integrity Committee may hear testimony and evidence and reach a decision on the basis of that evidence. If either party is unable to appear on the date specified in the notice, he/she should notify the chair for the reasons that prevent. If the chair determines that good cause exists for not attending on the scheduled date, a new date for the hearing will be set no later than 30 days within the semester that the alleged violation occurs or if at the end of a semester, 30 days after the start of the new semester following the semester in which the alleged violation occurs.
      6. Reports
        The Secretary of the Academic Integrity Committee shall prepare a written report of the hearing which includes the decision of the Committee. The chair or the vice-chair of the Committee will sign the report before it is sent to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the dean/chair of the faculty member’s department, the dean/chair of the student’s academic department or the Center for Student Success if undeclared, the faculty member and the student. A copy of the report will also be placed in the student’s official file in the Office of the Registrar.
  3. Appeal of Decision from Academic Integrity Committee
    1. If the student or the faculty member does not accept the decision of the Academic Integrity Committee, he/she may appeal the decision in writing to the Vice President for Academic affairs within 10 working days after receiving the report from the Academic Integrity Committee.
    2. The Vice President for Academic Affairs shall review the record of the hearing and the evidence supporting the appeal and shall determine whether the decision of the Academic Integrity Committee was arbitrary or shall affirm the decision.
    3. If the Vice President for Academic Affairs finds the decision to be arbitrary, he/she may reverse the decision. In all cases, the decision of the Vice President for Academic Affairs in final.
  4. Consequences
    1. A first finding of a violation of academic integrity will result in an Academic Integrity Warning.
    2. A second finding of a violation of academic integrity will result in an Academic Integrity Probation.
    3. A third finding of a violation of academic integrity will result in an Academic Integrity Suspension. Students may reapply for admission after one year.

Policy and Procedures adapted from similar policies and procedures from UNM, NMSU, ENMU, Baylor University, and Virginia Tech

Advisement

  1. Advisement with regard to the graduate student’s program is provided by a program advisor(s) in the college, school, or department in which the program is offered.
  2. The graduate student and his or her assigned advisor(s) will develop the student’s degree plan, which must be approved by the advisor(s), the Associate Dean(s)/Department chair(s), the appropriate Dean of the College, and the Graduate Division. The plan is a working agreement among the respective parties. Copies of the signed, final degree plan will be filed in the Registrar’s Office, and the major college(s), school(s), or department(s). Such signatures are not needed, beyond that of the student and advisor, until it is time to file paperwork for graduation.

Procedures for Completing a Graduate Degree

  1. Final Degree Plan and Application for Graduation
    The advisor will forward a final degree plan to the Associate Dean(s)/ Department Chair(s) for review and signature. The head of each department will then send it to the Graduate Division Director for final approval. The approved degree plan with all signatures is sent to the Office of the Registrar. The Application for Graduation must be filed online with the Office of the Registrar by the following deadlines: September 1 for spring graduation, February 1 for summer graduation, or June 1 for fall graduation. Students will be advised of the results of the degree evaluation by the Office of the Registrar.
  2. Comprehensive Examinations
    For graduate degree programs requiring completion of a program-administered comprehensive exam, students apply for permission to take the comprehensive examination at the beginning of the semester in which the examination is to be scheduled. A minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate credit must have been completed or in progress during the semester in which the examination is scheduled. Administration of the comprehensive exam will be the responsibility of the Associate Dean/Department Chair and the student’s advisor(s). This examination may be retaken only once.
  3. Exit Requirements
    Students must meet exit requirement(s) as determined by each graduate program. In some degree programs, a national specialty test may be taken in lieu of the program’s written comprehensive examination; students should check with their advisor(s) for clarification. Students seeking a graduate certificate or degree in the areas of Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, Secondary Education, or Special Education must achieve the minimum score on the appropriate PRAXIS tests. Students seeking a degree in Educational Leadership may take the, PRAXIS - Educational Leadership Administration and Applications Test (5412), or WNMU Comprehensive Exam.  Students seeking a degree in Counseling may take the Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Exam (CPCE). These examinations should be taken the semester before the student expects to graduate. Students seeking degrees in the area of Reading may take the PRAXIS Teaching Reading K-12 Test (5206) in lieu of the written comprehensive examination.
  4. Thesis Option
    Academic Programs offering graduate level coursework for the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies may offer a thesis option. A student who is considering the thesis option, as the exit requirement(s) of the M.A. Interdisciplinary Studies program, should confer with the advisors in each of the chosen fields of study to verify that this is an option and, if so, select a thesis topic before completing 24 credit hours.
    1. Thesis Committee. A candidate for the M.A. Interdisciplinary Studies program may request the advisors in each of his or her fields of study to serve on the thesis committee. A student completing a thesis should follow the instructions of the thesis committee concerning the development and preparation of the project.
    2. Thesis Hours. A maximum of 6 thesis hours may be applied toward the M.A. Interdisciplinary Studies program. Once enrolled, a student must remain continuously enrolled in thesis hours until full completion of all thesis requirements have been met.
    3. Thesis Grading. Thesis hours completed during the development and preparation of a thesis but prior to its final completion will be assigned a “PR” grade and will contribute to the “Hours Attempted” and “Hours Earned” sections of the student’s transcript. The “PR” grade will not, however, contribute to the G.P.A. Once the thesis is completed, the thesis committee will assign a Passing or Failing grade (“P” or “F”). While a grade of “P” will not contribute to the graduate G.P.A., a grade of “F” will contribute to the overall graduate G.P.A. and may prevent the student from graduating.
    4. Timing of Thesis. Any student who has completed all coursework must complete his or her thesis within the following two full academic semesters. Any request to extend beyond two semesters must be made in writing to the the Thesis Committee and Department Associate Dean/Chair..
    5. Thesis Proposal. A student is required to submit the thesis proposal to his or her thesis committee six months prior to the anticipated completion of his or her graduate program.
    6. Submission of Thesis. The student is responsible for completing the following:
           Submitting the thesis proposal to advisor(s) six months prior to anticipated completion of the graduate program;
           Submitting the first draft of the thesis to advisor(s) in electronic form 90 days prior to the date of gradation;
           Submitting the final copies to advisor(s) and abstract 30 days before the graduation date.
    7. Requirements for Completion. The student may be required to satisfactorily pass an oral examination on the thesis, as well as other examinations which may be required. A student must consult with his or her advisors about the oral examination requirement for each field of study.

      Further details regarding the thesis option can be found in the Thesis Preparation Instructions for the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies which may be obtained from the department.
  5. The student must have removed any indebtedness to WNMU and completed all coursework, all exit criteria, and passed all required examinations prior to the last day of the semester in which his or her degree will be conferred. PRAXIS and comprehensive examination scores must be posted in the Office of the Registrar by the last day of the semester in which the student wishes to graduate.

Course Load

WNMU certifies a student’s enrollment status as to full-time or part-time according to the guidelines below. (See section on Financial Aid for definition of full-time for funding purposes).

Course Load Graduate Guidelines:

Fall and Spring Semesters

  1. Full-time: 9 or more graduate credit hours per semester
  2. Three-quarter time: 7-8 graduate credit hours per semester
  3. Half-time: 5-6 graduate credit hours per semester
  4. Less than Half-time: 1-4 graduate credit hours per semester

Summer (all sessions combined)

  1. Full-time: 6 or more graduate credit hours per semester
  2. Three-quarter time: 5 graduate credit hours per semester
  3. Half-time: 3 graduate credit hours per semester
  4. Less than Half-time: 1-2 graduate credit hours per semester

Course Load Limitations

A graduate student in academic good standing is limited to taking 12 credit hours during each semester of the regular academic year unless he or she petitions for an overload and is approved by the Advisor, Department Chair, and Dean/AVPAA. During the summer semester, a graduate student in academic good standing is limited to nine credit hours unless he or she petitions for an overload and is approved by the Advisor, Department Chair, and Dean/AVPAA.

The Master of Social Work Advance Standing program has received special exception, allowing their graduate students in academic good standing to take 18 hours in the Fall and Spring terms.

The Master of Arts in Counseling program limits it’s students to 9 credit hours in Fall/Spring and 6 credit hours in the Summer terms.

A graduate student on academic probation is limited to taking nine credit hours during each semester of the regular academic year. During the summer semester, a graduate student on academic probation is limited to six credit hours. Graduate students on academic probation may not petition for overloads.

Earning Concurrent or Subsequent Graduate Certificate or Master’s Degrees

Any student pursuing two or more Graduate Certificates or Master’s Degrees may “double-count” credits as outlined below:

Type of Degree Double-Counting Policy
Two or more Graduate Certificates 1/3 of the total credits of any certificate may be double counted subject to approval of the subsequent program or if concurrent subject to approval from both programs.
Graduate Certificate and Master’s Degree

All graduate certificate credit may be double-counted for a concurrent or subsequent master’s degree.  Up to 1/3 of the total hours required for a subsequent graduate certificate may be double-counted from a previous master’s degree. 

* Graduate certificates may be conferred at the same time as a master’s degree for which credits are redundant unless specifically prohibited by the program. 
 

Master’s Degree and Master’s Degree 1/3 of the total credits of a concurrent or the subsequent degree may be double-counted subject to limitations outlined below. 

Graduate students must meet the admissions requirements for concurrent or subsequent programs before being eligible to take classes within those graduate programs and receive financial aid, if applicable.


Any student pursuing a subsequent master’s degree at WNMU is eligible for a 6-hour reduction in credits allowed by the Graduate Division. Further, when pursuing the subsequent degree, they are also limited to 1/3 or 9 credits of transfer hours from outside institutions or double-counting of internal credits as approved by the receiving program, with the waiver of 6 hours counting as part of those 9 credits or the 1/3 (total waived and transfer-approved hours may not exceed these limits).
If a graduate program has developed specific criteria allowing up to 1/3 transfer hours toward the total degree requirement, then the 6 hour degree reduction must be counted as part of the 1/3 hours allowance.

If a graduate program has not developed such criteria, then three transfer hours are allowed in addition to the six hour reduction, given the Graduate Division cap of 9 hours. 

Internal double counted credit should be requested by a student at 1) the time of admission, 2) within the first term of attendance at WNMU, or 3) within one term of completing the hours at the outside institution.  For more information see examples under the section, Transfer Credit and Resident Requirement

Grade Requirements

Minimum Grade Requirements

No more than three credit hours with a grade of C will count toward fulfillment of the requirements for the master’s degree, graduate certificate, or for an alternative licensure program. A cumulative grade point average of 3.0 is required for graduation. A student must be in good standing to graduate.

In addition to the above requirements, graduate Social Work students must earn a grade of “B” or better in any core graduate Social Work course. Graduate Social Work students receiving a grade of “C” or below in any core graduate Social Work course will be required to repeat the course.

Academic Good Standing

A graduate student is considered to be in Academic Good Standing if he or she has cumulative and semester G.P.A.s of 3.0 or higher and is showing satisfactory academic progress as shown in the table below. If the semester G.P.A. is non-existent due to an incomplete grade or a total withdrawal, the semester G.P.A. used will be from the most recent semester where a G.P.A. exists.

Cumulative G.P.A. Academic Standing
Cumulative and Semester G.P.A. 3.00 or higher Academic Good Standing
Cumulative or Semester G.P.A. below 3.0 Academic Probation
Semester G.P.A. below 3.0 while on probation Academic Disqualification
Cumulative and Semester G.P.A. below 3.0 Academic Disqualification

Academic Probation

The academic records of all graduate students are reviewed at the end of the semester and each summer session. A student whose cumulative or semester grade-point average at the end of the semester or summer session is less than a 3.0 will be placed on Academic Probation. Students placed on Academic Probation will receive notification from the Graduate Division.

Academic Disqualification

Students with a cumulative and semester grade-point average below 3.0 or a semester grade-point average below 3.0 while on probation will be disqualified from the Graduate Division. 
Students placed on academic disqualification are sent a certified email by the Graduate Division.

The first disqualification from WNMU Graduate Division is for one full semester from the date of disqualification. A student who is disqualified from the Graduate Division may file an Appeal for Readmission for Academic Disqualification from the Graduate Division. A second disqualification may not be appealed. The student must serve a suspension of one full semester. With any subsequent disqualifications, the student must serve a full one calendar year disqualification without any right to appeal. Students serving their disqualification must contact the Office of the Registrar for re-admission following the disqualification period.

Reinstated from Disqualification:

Disqualified students who are reinstated, re-enter WNMU Graduate Division on academic probation. During the disqualified period, a student may not register for classes, live in student housing, or participate in student activities at WNMU.


Note: Disqualify students from another institution are not eligible to enroll at WNMU until they have served the suspension period of that institution.

Appeal Process for Disqualification from the Graduate Division

Students are encouraged to begin the appeal process by consulting with their advisor(s). The following appeal process must be followed:

  1. The student is encouraged to complete an appeal form within sixty (60) days of the date of disqualification that explains the circumstances of the disqualification and any action he or she has undertaken to address the problem. A current unofficial transcript must be included.
  2. The appeal form and the transcript must first be submitted to the program’s designated contact person, who will then take the appeal to an appeals committee within that department or program. For Interdisciplinary Studies, the appeals committee will consist of at least one representative from each of the student’s concentrations.
  3. If the appeals committee approves the appeal, a copy of the appeal is sent by the department or program to the student, the Graduate Division at GradDivision@wnmu.edu, and the Registrar’s Office at registrars@wnmu.edu.
  4. If the appeals committee denies the appeal, a copy of the appeal and denial is sent to the student by the department or program. The student may appeal further by emailing a copy of the appeal, the denial, and a transcript to the Director of Graduate Division at GradDivision@wnmu.edu to be forwarded to the Graduate Council.
  5. The Graduate Council will set a meeting date to discuss the student’s appeal. The Chair of the Graduate Council will invite the student and department or program representative(s) to attend this meeting.
  6. After a decision is rendered by the Graduate Council, the decision will be communicated in writing by the Chair of the Graduate Council to the student, his or her advisor(s), Department/Program Appeals Committee, Director of Graduate Division, and the Registrar’s Office.
  7. The Graduate Council will serve as the final Graduate Appeals Committee. Decisions made by the Graduate Council are not appealable and are final and binding.
  8. Students may appeal academic disqualification no more than two times.

Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students

Purpose and Scope

Federal regulations mandate that a student receiving financial assistance under Title IV programs must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress in his or her course of study regardless of whether or not Financial Aid is awarded each semester. Western New Mexico University’s (WNMU’s) Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students must be applied consistently to all Financial Aid recipients within identifiable categories of students (such as full-time or part-time).

Students pursuing Graduate Certificates or Master’s degrees are responsible for understanding and adhering to the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students.

Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress for Graduate Students is measured with the following standards as mandated by Federal Regulations:

  • Qualitative (Cumulative Grade Point Average)
  • Quantitative Percentage (Attempted hours/Earned hours)

Qualitative Standard

Students will be expected to maintain the minimum academic standards as outlined in the Graduate Studies section of the WNMU catalog. WNMU uses a 4-point scale for grade point average (G.P.A.) and requires students to maintain a 3.0 cumulative G.P.A. or better.

Quantitative Standard

The quantitative standard is used to accurately measure a student’s progress in a program. Students must complete 67% of the course load for which they register each semester. The chart below shows credit hour totals and the number of credits that must be completed to meet this requirement.

Graduate Students 67% Completion Rate Requirement
67% Completion Rate Requirement
(Attempted Semester Hours X 67%)

Attempted Semester Credit Hours 67% Completion Rate Requirement

Earned Semester Credit Hours must be more than or equal to: (amended 10/25/12)

18 Credit Hours 67% 12 Credit Hours
17 Credit Hours 67% 11Credit Hours
16 Credit Hours 67% 11 Credit Hours
15 Credit Hours 67% 10 Credit Hours
14 Credit Hours 67% 9 Credit Hours
13 Credit Hours 67% 9 Credit Hours
12 Credit Hours 67% 8 Credit Hours
11 Credit Hours 67% 7 Credit Hours
10 Credit Hours 67% 7 Credit Hours
9 Credit Hours 67% 6 Credit Hours
8 Credit Hours 67% 5 Credit Hours
7 Credit Hours 67% 5 Credit Hours
6 Credit Hours 67% 4 Credit Hours
5 Credit Hours 67% 3 Credit Hours
4 Credit Hours 67% 3 Credit Hours
3 Credit Hours 67% 2 Credit Hours
2 Credit Hours 67% 1 Credit Hour
1 Credit Hour 67% 1 Credit Hour

 

Note: All graduate credit, including transfer credit, must have been earned within the seven years prior to issuance of the graduate degree as outlined in the Graduate Studies section of the WNMU Catalog. (See Time Limit).

How are my grades evaluated under the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students?

  • The student’s cumulative G.P.A. must be a 3.0 or higher to satisfy the requirements of the qualitative standard of the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students.
  • Grades of “A”, “B”, “C”, “D”, “F”, “NF”, “P”, and transfer credit will be considered credit hours attempted and earned.
  • Grades of “W”, “I”, “MW”, or “MI” will not be considered as credit hours earned for the 67% Completion Rate Requirement but will be considered as credit hours attempted for the semester.
  • Grades of “PR” assigned for thesis hours during the development and preparation of a thesis but prior to its final completion will be considered credit hours attempted and earned.
  • Students who withdraw from the university must still maintain Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress for Graduate Students for the 67% Completion Rate Requirement.

What happens if I fail to meet the standards of the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students?

  1. Following the first semester in which a student does not meet the standards of the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Warning Status for the next semester of enrollment. Students may be allowed to receive Financial Aid funds while on Financial Aid Warning Status as long as they are otherwise eligible.
  2. A student who is on Financial Aid Warning Status and who improves his or her academic performance as defined by the qualitative and quantitative standards will be placed in good standing and may be eligible to continue to receive Financial Aid for following semesters.
  3. A student who is on Financial Aid Warning Status and who fails to meet the standards of the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension and denied further funding until he or she meets the qualitative and quantitative standards.
  4. Appeals Process
    A student who fails to meet the standards of the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students under certain circumstances beyond the student’s control, such as illness, death in the family, or an accident, has the right to appeal. Throughout the appeal process the student must be prepared to pay his or her own expenses, such as tuition, fees, books, supplies, etc. Please follow the procedure below to appeal a Financial Aid Suspension:
  • A Financial Aid Appeal form must be obtained from and submitted to the WNMU Office of Financial Aid.
  • Documentation supporting the extenuating circumstances must be available for review.
  • It is the student’s responsibility to follow up with the Office of Financial Aid after submitting a complete appeal form with all of the required documentation to determine the status of his or her appeal.
  • Appeals will be approved or disapproved by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee.
  • If a Financial Aid Appeal is approved, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Probation and will be eligible to receive Title IV aid. The student’s record is reviewed after the first semester of probation. If the student has brought his or her term G.P.A. up to a 3.0 and has also successfully completed 67% of the total number of credits attempted during the Financial Aid Probation semester, he or she will be placed in good standing. If the student has completed 67% of the total number of credits but did not bring his or her cumulative G.P.A. up to a 3.0 and the term G.P.A. is a 3.0 or better, the student is eligible for one additional semester of Financial Aid Probation. If the term G.P.A. is less than a 3.0, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension. A student who is on Financial Aid Probation will be notified by university e-mail of his or her status and what he or she must do to continue to receive Financial Aid.
  • If a Financial Aid Appeal is disapproved, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension and denied further funding until he or she meets the qualitative and quantitative standards. If otherwise eligible, a student may complete his or her program of study but must pay his or her own expenses, such as tuition, fees, books, supplies, etc.
  • All decisions made by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee are final.

Complete Withdrawals and the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students

Students who completely withdraw must still maintain the standards of the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students. A complete withdrawal will always have a negative effect on a student’s standing under this policy. If a student completely withdraws during the semester and follows the appropriate procedures and deadlines, his or her grades for the semester will be all “W”s. These grades are not passing; therefore, the student did not meet the 67% Completion Rate Requirement and will be placed either on Financial Aid Warning, Office of Financial Aid Probation, or Financial Aid Suspension depending on what his or her status was before the semester began.

Impact of Academic Probation and Disqualification on Financial Aid

Students on Graduate Division Academic Probation or Graduate Division Academic Disqualification automatically will be placed on Financial Aid Warning or Financial Aid Suspension, respectively. If a student successfully appeals his or her Graduate Division Academic Disqualification, that appeal has no effect on his or her standing with the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students; he or she will still be on Financial Aid Warning or Suspension. Please refer to the Financial Aid Appeals Process.

Notification of Status under the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Students placed on Financial Aid Warning or Financial Aid Suspension will be notified by the Office of Financial Aid by e-mail of their status after grades are available.

The effect of dropping or withdrawing from a course

Students who reduce their course load by dropping or withdrawing from a course after the semester has begun risk non-compliance with the 67% Completion Rate Requirement. For more information, contact the Office of Financial Aid.

The effect of Financial Aid Suspension on Financial Aid Awards

Title IV federal aid for graduate students consists of loans; therefore, all loan awards will be cancelled if a student is on Financial Aid Suspension.

Consortium Agreements and the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students

When WNMU has a Consortium Agreement with a participating institution, the student must meet the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students of the institution that is awarding aid.

The effect of repeating courses

There is no specific limitation on the number of times a student may attempt a course under the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Graduate Students. All course attempts, even repeated courses, will count when assessing whether a student meets the 67% Completion Rate Requirement. Financial Aid however, can only pay for a course that has been repeated twice, the third time and more the student must pay for the course(s) out of pocket.

The effect of Incomplete grades

Courses in which the student receives an incomplete (“I”) at the end of the semester will count as attempted credit hours and as a non-passing grade when assessing if a student meets the 67% Completion Rate Requirement.

Return of Title IV Federal Aid

See Office of Financial Aid  section of the catalog.

Graduate Division Assistantship/Scholarship Program

The purpose of the Graduate Division Assistantship and Scholarship Programs at WNMU is to provide graduate students with supplemental learning experiences which enhance their graduate education programs.

Graduate Division Assistantships

Eligibility

  1. Graduate students who have been admitted as Graduate Division FINAL Admission students are eligible to apply for a Graduate Division Assistantship position.
  2. In addition to meeting the Graduate Division’s academic standards, a Graduate Division Assistant must also achieve a 3.0 G.P.A. each semester. Failure to maintain a 3.0 G.P.A. jeopardizes the Graduate Division Assistantship which may be revoked upon review by the Graduate Division.
  3. Graduate Division Assistants normally enroll for six graduate credit hours and may not take more than twelve or fewer than six graduate credit hours each fall and spring semester. Enrollment in three graduate credit hours for the summer session is required to maintain a Graduate Division Assistantship.
  4. Final approval of Graduate Division Assistantship and terms and conditions are approved by the Graduate Division. 

Graduate Division Assistantships are intended as 12-month assistantships, providing students the opportunity to work the fall, spring, and summer semesters. Contracts are issued by term, allowing partial-year appointments. Graduate Division Assistantship Appointment

In-State Tuition Rate

An out-of-state or international student who receives a Graduate Division Assistantship is eligible for the in-state tuition rate. All regulations applicable to U.S. citizens are also requirements for the international Graduate Division Assistant. Additionally, an international graduate student may hold a Graduate Division Assistantship only if he or she holds an F-1 (student) visa.

Termination

A Graduate Division Assistantship may be terminated or altered upon the occurrence of:

  1. Enrollment in less than six graduate credit hours during a fall or spring semester or less than three graduate credit hours during the summer session;
  2. A G.P.A. below 3.0;
  3. Withdrawal from the institution by a student;
  4. Unsatisfactory performance review.

Graduate Division Scholarship

The Graduate Division Scholarship is intended to increase enrollment of students from groups traditionally under-represented in graduate education. Special emphasis will be placed upon academic fields of high regional and national priority and fields in which under-representation is most severe. Priority will be given to New Mexico students from those groups with the most severe under-representation and students with the greatest financial need. These scholar positions are primarily funded by the State of New Mexico.

Eligibility

A Graduate Division Scholarship may be awarded to an individual who:

  1. Is a citizen of the United States or a permanent resident alien and is a member of a group under-represented in his or her intended graduate or professional field of study;
  2. Has met the admission requirements and is accepted for enrollment as a full-time student in a graduate or professional field of study with high priority or under-represented;
  3. Agrees to serve in an unpaid assistantship at WNMU for 10 hours per week during the academic year; the remaining 10 hours are paid, in part, by WNMU. A total of 20 hours worked per week is required.
  4. Is eligible according to a standard needs analysis (FAFSA) or when a Financial Aid exercises professional judgment in accordance with WNMU’s and applicable federal Financial Aid standards to determine that circumstances, for which documentation exists in the student’s file, warrant adjusting the cost of attendance, expected family contribution or other factors to make the program responsive to a student’s special financial circumstances.

Categories

Each Graduate Division Scholarship provides students the opportunity to work the fall, spring, and summer semesters.

Maintaining Eligibility

If a student is deemed eligible under New Mexico Title 5 Post-Secondary Education, Chapter 7 Tuition and Financial Aid, Part 15 Graduate Scholarship Program and accepts the Graduate Division Scholarship Award, a student must:

  1. Remain in good academic standing by maintaining a 3.0 G.P.A.;
  2. Be enrolled as a full-time graduate student (six graduate credit hours during the fall or spring semesters; three graduate credit hours during the summer session is optional);
  3. Agree to serve in a paid assistantship for 10 hours per week during the academic year and summer sessions; and
  4. Agree to serve in an unpaid assistantship at WNMU for 10 hours per week during the academic year.

Termination of Graduate Division Scholarship

A scholarship is terminated upon the occurrence of:

  1. Withdrawal from the institution by the award recipient;
  2. Failure to re-enroll for consecutive academic years;
  3. Failure to be a full-time graduate student;
  4. Substantial noncompliance by the award recipient with the Graduate Scholarship Act or its rules, regulations, or procedures.

Graduate Credit

Only graduate students may enroll in 500 or 600 level courses; however, seniors at WNMU who have a grade point average of 3.0 may petition to enroll in 500 level classes. Students may take a maximum of nine graduate credit hours while completing the undergraduate degree. Students who are deficient in certain undergraduate courses in the major field will be expected to remove these deficiencies without graduate credit. When it is apparent that further work in auxiliary subjects may make a substantial contribution to the M.A. and M.A.T. graduate program, the student may be allowed to take up to nine credit hours of courses at the undergraduate 400 level. Registration for such courses must have the approval of the student’s advisor, the Department Head in which the courses are offered, and the Graduate Division. The instructor is required to submit to the Graduate Division an outline of all extra work undertaken by the graduate student to justify graduate credit in a 400 level course.

When students register for a course numbered below 500 for graduate credit, they must make certain that the registration form carries official notation of the fact.

Course Numbering Standards

Independent Study Courses

Independent Study Courses may be made available by special arrangement between the individual student and the professor.

There are three types of arranged Independent Study Courses.

  1. Directed Study is used when the student wishes to study some subject not regularly offered (this course is numbered 585).
  2. Directed Research is used when the student is performing research under the direction of a faculty member (this course is numbered 590).
  3. Tutorial Reading is used when a student must take a regularly offered class on an independent basis. This course is identified with its original course number with a TR/______ at the beginning of the course title.

Independent Study Courses (Directed Study, Directed Research, and Tutorial Reading) shall be used primarily for the purpose of academic enrichment. The assignment and approval of Independent Study Courses for other reasons shall be strictly limited to emergency situations. Coursework earned by “Independent Study” normally will be limited to six semester hours. With documented support from the program of study, a student, may apply to the Graduate Division for permission to exceed this limit.

Professional Development Credit (College of Education)

Professional Development Credit (PDC) will be offered by Western New Mexico University (WNMU) for the purpose of professional development, enrichment, and salary advancement credit. PDC will be accepted only in special cases, for a maximum of six hours of WNMU degree credit toward program electives, with prior approval from the Professional Education Committee (PEC), the Associate Dean of the College of Education, and the Vice President for Academic Affairs. PDC courses are not part of WNMU’s approved programs nor are they appropriate substitutes. Professional Development Credits are not recommended for licensure and endorsement purposes. Transcript credit will identify PDC by the numbers 444 (undergraduate credit) or 544 or EDUC 545  (graduate credit) and a listing of the course title as Professional Development: “Title of Course.”

Workshops

Workshop courses are numbered 580/680. These courses are “special topic workshop” courses that are developed for numerous reasons including one-time pilot courses, a particular expertise of a visiting faculty member, a field trip, etc. Workshops do not differ in academic rigor or workload requirements from other graduate courses. A workshop course can be offered up to two times before the department decides to make it a permanent course.

Registration

The University’s academic year is divided into two semesters and one summer session. Graduate students may enter the Graduate Division at the beginning of any period. They are expected to register prior to or on the days set aside for that purpose. Absences, including absences due to late registration, are counted from the date of registration.

Student Grade or Instructor Professional Conduct Complaint Appeals Process

  1. Scope. This policy applies to student complaints concerning:
    1. Assignment of Grades; or
    2. Professional conduct of an instructor that does not involve a complaint of discrimination or harassment, such as a complaint of unfair treatment not involving discrimination or decisions about eligibility for program or degree requirements.
  2. Definitions.
    1. “Working days” means Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, unless the day is a school holiday or vacation period. If the last day of the designated time period is a school holiday or vacation period, the designated time period will run until the end of the next day which is not a school holiday or vacation period. The term “vacation period” does not include the week of final exams.
  3. Procedures
    1. Step 1.
      1. The student must submit a written complaint to the instructor within 30 working days of receiving grade notification or experiencing the disputed conduct. The student must also provide a copy of the written complaint to the Dean, Vice President for Academic Affairs, and the Vice President for Student Affairs.
      2. Within 10 working days of receiving the written complaint, the instructor will respond to the complaint, stating in writing the instructor’s decision and the basis for the decision. The instructor will also provide a copy of the written decision to the Dean, Vice President for Academic Affairs, and the Vice President for Student Affairs.
      3. If the student is dissatisfied with the instructor’s decision the student may proceed to Step II.
    2. Step II.
      1. Within 10 working days of receiving the instructor’s decision, the student must submit a written complaint to the department chairperson of the instructor, stating why the student is dissatisfied with the instructor’s written decision. The student must also provide a copy of the written complaint to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Vice President for Student Affairs.
      2. If the instructor is the department chairperson, within 10 working days of receiving the chairperson’s decision, the student must submit a written complaint to the Dean of the department, stating why the student is dissatisfied with the chairperson’s written decision. The student must also provide a copy of the written complaint to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Vice President for Student Affairs.
      3. The department chairperson, Dean, or a faculty member designated by the department chairperson or Dean (“designee”) will investigate the complaint and, within 10 working days of receiving the written complaint, advise the student and the instructor, in writing, of the department chairperson’s, Dean’s, or designee’s findings and decision. The department chairperson, Dean, or designee will also provide a copy of the written decision to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Vice President for Student Affairs. The department chairperson’s, Dean’s, or designee’s investigation may include interviews with the student, the instructor, other students in the course, other instructors who have taught the course, and the review and comparison of pertinent papers and examinations.
      4. If the student is dissatisfied with the department chairperson’s, Dean’s, or designee’s decision, the student may proceed to Step III.
    3. Step III.
      1. The student must submit a written request to the Student Appeals Committee for a hearing. The student must submit the request within 5 working days of receiving the department chairperson’s, Dean’s, or designee’s written decision.
      2. The student should refer to the Student Appeals Hearing Guidelines found in the Student Handbook for a further explanation of the Student Appeals Committee hearing guidelines.

Time Limit

All graduate credit, including transfer credit, must have been earned within the seven years prior to issuance of the graduate degree unless a Petition for Validation of Courses over Seven Years Old is submitted and approved. This form may be obtained from the Office of Academic Affairs, Graduate Division, or from advisor or program.

Tour Credit Hours (Graduate)

A maximum of six graduate hours of tour credit, such as travel abroad courses, may be applied toward a master’s degree.

Transfer Credit and Resident Requirement

Individual master’s degree programs have the option to approve transfer credits, not to exceed one-third (1/3) of the total required to complete the degree. Any master’s degree program without specific criteria related to transfer credit limit may not exceed the Graduate Division limit of nine (9).

Graduate certificate programs are limited to transfer credits of one-third (1/3) of the total required to complete the degree not to exceed six credits. 

The College of Education Alternative Licensure programs are limited to nine (9) credit hours of transfer credit.

Continuing education and extension courses are excluded. Correspondence work will not be accepted for graduate credit.

Any coursework requested for transfer into a degree at WNMU must be reviewed and approved by the student’s advisor(s), Associate Dean/Department Chair and Dean of the College based upon its appropriateness to the student’s degree plan, with final approval by the Director of the Graduate Division. Transfer credits must have been earned no more than seven (7) years prior to the issuance of the graduate degree. (See Time Limit.)

Starting in Fall 2011, only grades earned at WNMU count towards the student’s cumulative G.P.A. Transfer grades will start with a T/ and not count in the G.P.A. (Ex. T/A, T/B, T/C, etc.)

Transfer hours should be requested by a student at 1) the time of admission, 2) within the first term of attendance at WNMU, or 3) within one term of completing the hours at the outside institution.

All graduate hours of credit except the permitted transfer hours must be earned from WNMU.

EXAMPLE:

First Masters Second Masters  
36 credit hours
-0 transfer credit
36 credit hours residency
36 credit hours
-0 transfer credit
-6 hours waived
30 credit hours residency
 
36 credit hours
-9 transfer credits
27 credit hours residency
36 credit hours not to exceed the 9 transfer credits
-6 credit hours waived allowed by Graduate Division
-3 transfer credit
27 credit hours residency
 
36 credit hours
-1/3 transfer credit
24 credit hours residency
36 credit hrs not to exceed the 1/3 of transfer credit
-6 credit hours waived
-6 transfer credit
24 credit hours residency
 

Transfer Credit Posting:

If a course is equivalent to a course WNMU offers, then it is posted as a WNMU course.

  • Example: MGMT 501 from XYZ University is equivalent to BSAD 550  at WNMU
  • WNMU will post the transfer course as BSAD 550  

If a course is not equivalent and WNMU offers the same type of subject codes, and the course seems reasonable then it is posted as XXXX 599.

  • Example 1: PSYCHOLOGY, transfer university code is PSY 501 from XYZ University. WNMU does not have an equivalent course but offers the same type of subject code.
  • WNMU will post the transfer course as PSY 599.
  • Example 2: PSYCHOLOGY, transfer university code is PSY 502 from XYZ University WNMU does not have an equivalent course but could be considered as a subject code within WNMU Psychology curriculum
  • WNMU will post the transfer course as PSY 599.

If a course is not equivalent and WNMU does not have the same type of transferring in subject codes, then WNMU will be post the transfer credit as MISC 599.

  • Example: Animal Science, transfer university code is ANSC 621 from XYZ University. WNMU does not have an equivalent course and does not have same type of transferring subject codes.
  • WNMU will post the transfer course as MISC 599.

Advisors determine what courses will transfer into WNMU. The Office of the Registrar inputs the graduate transfer hours from the approved Degree Plan Change Forms provided by the Advisors, Associate Dean/Department Chair, and the Director of Graduate Studies.

Master of Business Administration

A maximum of one third (1/3) of the total hours needed to complete the M.B.A. program with or without optional concentrations may be transfer credits from appropriately accredited Business program as determined by the Director of the M.B.A. Program.

Master of Arts in Educational Leadership

A maximum of 12 credits, one third (1/3) of the 36 credits may be used for the program.

Master of Arts in Teaching

Credit for Prior Learning

  • Credit will be awarded based on evidence of learning, not for experience or time spent.
  • Determination of credit awards will be made by appropriate subject matter and credentialing experts.
  • Specific assessment and policies and procedures will be implemented for all programs accepting credit for prior learning.

The College of Education recognizes prior learning as achieved by teachers licensed via alternative licensure completed outside of a graduate school setting. Credit will be awarded based on evidence of learning as demonstrated through the completion of a Teaching Event Portfolio. The Teaching Event Portfolio requires applicants to develop and teach an instructional unit, and provides documentation of planning, instruction, assessment, and reflection on student learning. Qualified faculty within the College of Education will evaluate the Teaching Event Portfolio. Applicants may be awarded up to 12 credit hours of graduate credit towards the completion of a Master’s of Arts in Teaching:

Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies

A maximum of twelve hours of transfer credits may be applied toward an M.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies when completed as a 36 hour degree, with transfer hours not exceeding the 1/3 limit for each concentration. For Example, with an 18-hour concentration, 6 hours could be accepted, and with a 9-hour concentration, just 3 hours would be permitted. When completed as a 30-hour degree, transfer credits would be limited to 6 hours, with the 1/3 cap applied to each discipline as mentioned above. All transfer hours must be approved by program faculty and the Chair of Interdisciplinary Studies with regard to content and requested hours.

Master of Science in Nursing

A maximum of nine (9) transfer credits may be applied towards the MSN degree. Of these, only the following combination of courses (equivalent of nine credits hours) may be applied towards the M.S.N. degree:

Master of Arts in Social Work 

A total of 1/3 of the hours needed to complete an M.S.W. degree may be transfer credits from another CSWE accredited M.S.W. program. For the 39 credit hour advanced standing M.S.W. that would mean a possible total of 13 hours. For the non-advanced standing M.S.W. program of 60 credit hours that would mean 17 could be transfer credits. All transferred courses must reflect a grade of “B” (3.0) or higher from the granting institution.

The following courses must be taken at WNMU: SWK 681  and SWK 682 .

All transfer hours must be approved by program faculty and the department chair with regard to content and requested hours. In accordance with accreditation guidelines from the Council on Social Work Education, the School.