Jul 23, 2024  
2017-2018 Graduate Catalog 

About the UNLV Graduate College

The UNLV Graduate College   


The University of Nevada, Las Vegas – then Nevada Southern – began offering some graduate courses in the 1950s, but it was not until 1964 that the university established the Division of Graduate Studies, and 1965 when we admitted our first UNLV graduate students. In 1967, the university conferred its first eleven graduate degrees: nine of the degrees were from the School of Education and two were from the School of Science and Mathematics. Then in 1971-1972, the Graduate College was established by the Nevada Board of Regents. After decades of growth and maturation, today the Graduate College is responsible for graduate faculty, Master’s, Doctoral, and Specialist degree programs, as well as graduate certificate programs, and graduate degree and non-degree seeking students at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.


With an institutional mission of advancing graduate education at UNLV, the Graduate College supports our more than 135 graduate certificate, master’s, specialist, and doctoral programs. We work closely with departments and the graduate faculty to provide UNLV’s more than 4,000 graduate students with the highest quality academic experience, not only through course work, but also through research/creative activity and professional development opportunities. Our overarching goal is to support and promote tomorrow  UNLV’s unique blend of graduate programs while providing services that facilitate graduate study and enhance student learning.

Our Graduate College top tier mission is to provide strong, collaborative leadership promoting a lively intellectual climate where:

  1. the highest quality graduate scholarship and research can flourish;
  2. we provide advanced educational opportunities to graduate students and empower them to success;
  3. we offer exemplary student services across the graduate lifecycle;
  4. we cultivate a graduate community of faculty and student scholars who thrive in collaboration with partners throughout Nevada; and
  5. we strategically grow our professional graduate programs and our research doctoral community.

Goals & Objectives

Our core values and guiding principles are: excellence, equity, diversity, opportunity, and impact.

We strive daily to cultivate a campus climate that celebrates new ideas and diversity of perspectives, to encourage and support outstanding graduate research and creative activity, and to advocate for graduate education and the numerous benefits it brings to faculty, our campus, our students, and the community. The Graduate College collaborates with academic colleges and departments to provide outstanding graduate programs and to assist graduate students from admissions through graduation.

To accomplish these objectives, the Graduate College’s areas of responsibilities include the following:

  1. Recruitment. Collaborate with graduate programs to support the recruitment of diverse and outstanding new graduate students.
  2. Admissions. Prospective graduate students apply for admission for graduate study in the Graduate College and the department or program in which they wish to study, simultaneously. The Graduate College evaluates applicant transcripts, foreign credential evaluations, GPA, and English proficiency. Departments recommend applicants for admission (or they deny their application), and the Graduate College renders the final decision. Meeting Graduate College admissions requirements is a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for graduate admission.
  3. Retention and graduation. The Graduate College utilizes graduate tracking data, best practices, and innovative programs to foster successful student retention and to stimulate the pipeline to graduation.
  4. Graduate student probation and separation. The Graduate College is responsible for handling graduate student probation, and for separating students who are failing to successfully progress in their graduate programs.
  5. Graduate Student Records. The Graduate College is responsible for the maintenance of all graduate student academic records and required forms.
  6. Electronic Systems & Data. The Graduate College is responsible for the design, management, and coordination of electronic systems & strategic data to support graduate students, graduate faculty, staff, and graduate programs.
  7. Conferral of Degrees. The Graduate College is responsible for certifying and posting all graduate degrees and certificates.
  8. Program Review. This involves the periodic review of all programs and departments that offer graduate or professional degrees, in conjunction with the Graduate Council and the Faculty Senate (excluding The Law School and the School of Dental Medicine).
  9. Curriculum and Program Development. The Graduate College works closely with the Graduate Council to oversee: all graduate and professional curriculum development; new, innovative, graduate program development; and to review and approve all changes to existing graduate programs.
  10. Graduate Student Funding. The Graduate College oversees and runs the GA program, and is the centralized unit for the distribution of graduate scholarships and fellowships. We coordinate with Financial Aid on periodic cost of living studies for graduate students, and on the awarding of scholarships, and other graduate student financial matters. We collaborate with the UNLV Foundation in the development of new graduate funding sources and graduate scholarship and fellowship awards.
  11. Graduate College Student Success Institute. The Graduate College provides professional development opportunities for graduate students, non-academic advisement, and outreach services, and handles all graduate student academic appeals.
  12. Graduate & Professional Student Association (GPSA). The Graduate College works closely in support of the GPSA, and the GPSA manager, and co-sponsors events such as the Annual GPSA Research Forum.
  13. Graduate Faculty. The privileges, rights, and responsibilities associated with full and associate graduate faculty status are designated by the Graduate College, which reviews and approves all applications for GFS. Further, the Graduate College is committed to supporting graduate faculty in their scholarship, mentorship, and other professional endeavors related to, and supportive of, graduate education.
  14. Awards and Recognition of Achievement. The Graduate College runs several prestigious award competitions each year to recognize outstanding accomplishments by graduate students and graduate faculty. Striving for excellence is a collaborative effort. The Graduate College works closely with the Graduate Council, graduate faculty, the GPSA and graduate students, and graduate programs, to maintain and enhance excellence in individual disciplines and to achieve our shared mission, goals, and objectives. Striving for excellence is a collaborative effort. The Graduate College works closely with the Graduate Council, graduate faculty, the GPSA and graduate students, and graduate programs, to maintain and enhance excellence in individual disciplines and to achieve our shared mission, goals, and objectives.

Equal Opportunity 

It has been, and will continue to be, the policy of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, to be an equal opportunity institution. UNLV is an EEO/AA/Title VI/Title IX/Section 504 institution.  All applicants to the Graduate College, and admitted students, will receive equal consideration and access to programs and activities, without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, or covered US veteran status.