Feb 04, 2023  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
    
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog

Information about the Graduate Curriculum


Graduate School Experience

Curricular Terminology

Types Of Graduate Experiences - Academic Program Offerings

Academic Degree Program Types

Accelerated Degree Programs

Traditional Master’s and Executive Master’s Programs

Bachelor’s-to-Doctoral Programs

Post-Master’s Doctoral Programs

Professional Master’s Programs

Research Master’s Programs

Professional Doctoral Programs

Research Doctoral Programs 

Artist Diploma Programs 

Educational Specialist (Ed.S.) Programs

Simultaneous Enrollment In Multiple Graduate Programs/Certificates

Dual Degree Programs

Concurrent Degrees

Graduate Certificates for Graduate Minors (Post-Bachelor’s and Post-Master’s)

Interdisciplinary Graduate Programs (IGP)

Non-degree-seeking Status

Graduate Students In Undergraduate-Level Courses

 

 

Graduate School Experience

The reasons for enrolling in graduate school are as varied as the people who make up the graduate student population. The decision to seek an advanced degree means that you share with other UNLV graduate students a spirit of adventure that comes with discovery— the discovery of new information, new skills—and discovery of the depths of your intellectual abilities. You will also share a capacity for hard work, because graduate study, whatever the subject matter, is difficult. But at the end of the rigorous and oftentimes exhilarating graduate coursework and research in your chosen field, you will have the satisfaction of having mastered a body of knowledge that places you in an elite group. Earning your graduate degree will be an achievement that marks the beginning of a professional career, more than an end of your academic studies. Your graduate degree will prepare you to engage with other experts in your field and to move forward to make notable contributions in your area of study and beyond.

 

Curricular Terminology

Academic Program: A graduate academic program is a term used in MyUNLV to define the area that houses an academic plan. This is typically aligned with the academic department or school that owns the academic plan. 

Academic Plan: A graduate academic plan is a defined course of study recognized at UNLV and approved by NSHE that leads to a degree or certificate. An academic plan at the graduate level may include Master’s degree programs, Educational Specialist and Artist Diploma degree programs, doctoral degree programs, and certificate programs. 

Academic Subplans: A subplan is a term used within MyUNLV. Each academic plan may have zero, one, or multiple subplans and these are designated for each Plan in the Graduate Catalog. At the graduate level, there are two types of sub-plans utilized in MyUNLV: concentrations and tracks.

  • Concentrations: Concentrations may be created within an academic degree program plan. A Concentration generally consists of at least 9 credits and is a grouped set of courses from one or more subject matter areas that are related to the academic program plans’ discipline. Concentrations may appear on transcripts.

    • Sample of the top of a graduated student’s transcript where a concentration subplan appears:

  • Tracks: Degree tracks may also be created as a type of academic degree program plan. Academic degree program plans may be labeled by tracks which are culminating experiences and/or program types which include post-bachelors, post-Masters, dual or accelerated. Tracks never appear on transcripts.

  • Emphasis: An academic plan may also include smaller groupings of courses known as emphases. Emphases are smaller groups of courses than concentrations, and they simply allow a slightly more focused plan of study for students within the academic plan. Emphases are only recognized by departments and schools. It is important to note that emphases are not tracked, students do not apply to them, they do not appear in MyUNLV, and they do not show up anywhere on UNLV student transcripts.

 

Types Of Graduate Experiences - Academic Program Offerings

The graduate curriculum is designed to educate, train, and mentor graduate students to ensure success in their graduate programs and diverse careers. The Graduate College publishes an annual Graduate Catalog containing the official graduate curriculum and strives to ensure that no other websites or resources contain course lists or program requirements so that there’s no duplication or discrepancies. 

Prospective graduate students are subject to the admissions requirements of the Catalog that is active during the admissions season. Admitted graduate students are subject to the program and degree requirements in the Catalog that is active during their first semester. Students, with approval of their department, may switch to the program and degree requirements in any Catalog in effect from admission until the term graduation.

Additionally, the graduate faculty is responsible for and owns the graduate curriculum. Graduate faculty initiate and approve new courses and programs, as well as changes to the graduate curriculum. The Graduate College promotes graduate programs and curricular excellence by collaboratively working with faculty on the development of impactful new courses, certificates, and programs, as well as thoughtful changes to improve the existing curriculum. The Graduate College’s role is to support faculty who design, build, implement, and own the graduate curriculum.

 

Academic Degree Program Types

At UNLV, we offer graduate degrees at the master’s, specialist/artist diploma, and doctoral levels. The following program types are offered:

Program Track Options

  • Accelerated undergraduate to graduate programs (Undergraduate to Graduate, High School to Graduate)
  • Traditional and executive master’s programs
  • Bachelor’s to doctorate programs
  • Post-master’s doctoral programs

Credential Types

  • Master’s programs (professional and research-based) 
  • Doctoral programs (professional and research-based)
  • Artist diploma programs
  • Educational specialist programs

Simultaneous Enrollment In Multiple Graduate Programs/Certificates

  • Dual graduate degree programs in which some program credits are shared
  • Concurrent degrees in which a student matriculates simultaneously through two programs without sharing any credits
  • Graduate certificates (post-bachelor’s and post-master’s tracks: either enroll as a stand-alone experience or add to a program for a graduate minor)

Interdisciplinary graduate programs

  • Graduate interdisciplinary certificates and degrees are housed in the Graduate College and run by a group of faculty from two or more schools or colleges.

 

Program Track Options

Accelerated Degree Programs

Accelerated degrees, sometimes referred to as integrated bachelor’s to graduate programs or undergraduate bridge programs, provide an accelerated path to earning both a baccalaureate and a graduate degree. All requirements for both the baccalaureate and graduate degrees must be met, but depending on the program there will be six to 12 credits of shared coursework, thereby reducing the time it takes for students to earn both degrees. For this reason, these are sometimes called 3/2 or 4/1 programs because it is often possible to earn both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in a total of five years. Such programs help recruit high-achieving undergraduate students into UNLV graduate programs and provide them with challenging academic experiences and expanded opportunities.

Accelerated programs are approved through the standard university and Graduate College curriculum and program approval processes and are not available for individual student design. A list of approved accelerated programs is below.

 

Traditional Master’s and Executive Master’s Programs

UNLV offers master’s degrees in a wide variety of disciplines. Two common types are the Master of Arts and Master of Science. Specialized master’s degrees may also be offered which include Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Fine Arts, etc. Many master’s programs consist of 30-40 credits within an area of study; but specialized master’s programs, such as the MBA, M.Arch, MFA, and the like, may have more credit requirements and some are considered terminal degrees in their field. 

In addition to varying types of master’s degrees, there may be different ways or formats in which degrees are offered. Executive master’s degrees are generally designed for mid-career professionals who are employed full-time. As such, they may have the same or similar requirements to the traditional master’s programs, but courses are designed in convenient offerings to better match working professionals’ schedules. 

Bachelor’s-to-Doctoral Programs

Bachelor’s-to-doctoral degree programs admit students possessing a four-year baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution directly into a doctoral program, without requiring completion of a master’s degree first. Some programs are designed in a way that allows for the award of an embedded master’s degree while in the process of completing doctoral degree requirements. These types of degree programs allow for the specialization of a particular area of study with candidates being awarded a doctoral degree after meeting all degree requirements, including a successful dissertation or doctoral project defense.

Post-Master’s Doctoral Programs

These types of degree programs admit students who already have earned a master’s degree into a doctoral program. There are generally fewer course requirements in these doctoral programs compared to bachelor’s-to-doctoral programs because students have already completed a master’s degree. Students are awarded a doctoral degree after fulfilling all degree requirements, including a successful dissertation or doctoral project defense. 

 

Credential Types

Professional Master’s Programs

Professional master’s degree programs are often connected to workforce needs and typically focus on skills and knowledge to prepare candidates for career-oriented professional positions in their chosen field, and may involve licensure. Generally, professional master’s students’ culminating experiences are projects, internships, field experiences, exams, capstone classes, or the like. 

 

Research Master’s Programs

Research master’s degree programs are typically oriented towards research and scholarship in preparation for a research career, leadership position, or a stepping stone for entry into a doctoral program in a chosen field. 

 

Professional Doctoral Programs

Professional doctoral degree programs focus on research related to professional expertise and practice more than basic research. These programs prepare candidates to be experts in a professional field and highly skilled leaders who have mastered a knowledge base that will inform practice in their chosen discipline. Students complete a dissertation or doctoral project. These are terminal degrees in their field.

 

Research Doctoral Programs 

Research doctoral degree programs are oriented toward original research and scholarship. Graduates of these types of programs are prepared to conduct original research and make contributions to their field by contributing discoveries or new knowledge. Students complete a dissertation. The degree awarded is the terminal or highest degree in the field. 

 

Artist Diploma Programs 

This type of degree is typically focused on arts-based coursework with students being admitted into the program only after achieving at least one major degree such as a bachelor’s and/or master’s degree. This program is often reserved for musicians and artisans who display the highest caliber of musical or artistic accomplishments.

 

Educational Specialist (Ed.S.) Programs

These professional degrees are unique to the field of education and offer advanced studies for educators (teachers, administrators, etc) to gain specialized knowledge in a field of study (e.g., educational technology, principal leadership, early childhood, etc.). The degree is generally considered more advanced than a master’s degree and typically requires fewer credit requirements and less research than a Ph.D. or Ed.D. 

 

Simultaneous Enrollment In Multiple Graduate Programs/Certificates

Dual Degree Programs

Dual​ degrees are formal programs and approved through the graduate curricular processes, where students are simultaneously enrolled in both that result in the awarding of two degrees. The primary benefit of ​dual​ degrees is that the total number of credits required to earn them is reduced or shared in particular cases. UNLV offers dual degrees between two graduate programs and between a graduate program and a professional program. Dual degrees consisting of either a graduate and a professional program or two graduate programs may be built in one of two ways: 1. There is a reasonable reduction in the total number of graduate degree credits aligned to accreditation requirements and best practices in the specific disciplines among peer or aspirational peer institutions or 2. There is no reduction in the total number of graduate degree or professional/graduate degree credits, but one degree may typically transfer six to 12 credits to the other depending on and aligned to accreditation standards and best practices in the specific disciplines among peer or aspirational peer institutions.

Below is a list of currently approved ​dual​ degree programs:

 

Concurrent Degrees

Graduate students may pursue a concurrent or double degree. Concurrent or double degrees may be earned when a student enrolls in two programs simultaneously. Students who are concurrently enrolled in more than one graduate degree must be admitted, enrolled, and complete all of the requirements for both degrees; there can be no “sharing” or double counting of degree requirements or course credits. Graduate students must complete the full application process for each degree and receive permission from both academic departments and the Graduate College dean by submitting a Concurrent Degree Enrollment Approval form (see also: student forms )

Please note that concurrent degrees differ from “dual degrees.” See dual degrees for more information.

 

Graduate Certificates for Graduate Minors (Post-Bachelor’s and Post-Master’s)

Graduate certificates are formal academic credentials which students apply for admission to, matriculate through, and complete in the same manner as graduate degrees. However, graduate certificate programs are generally faster to complete. They are generally 12-18 graduate credits, similar to minors, that allow students to gain specialized skills and expertise. They help build skills, develop focused areas of expertise, and enhance resumes and vitae. 

Students may enroll in certificate programs either as a stand-alone educational experience to earn the credential or as an additional credential (like a graduate minor) earned while also working on a graduate degree. Certificate course credits earned before your graduate or professional degree, or simultaneously, may be approved to be used toward your graduate degree program. Students enrolled in a graduate or professional degree may still be awarded certificates as long as the certificate course credits were taken prior to the completion of the graduate or professional degree. Students who are admitted and enrolled solely in certificate programs may not be eligible for federal financial aid or Graduate College scholarships or fellowships (Please see UNLV’s Financial Aid & Scholarships). For more information about graduate certificates, please visit our graduate certificates webpage.

 

Interdisciplinary Graduate Programs (IGP)

IGPs are a growing part of graduate education at the master’s and doctoral level at UNLV, and a thriving part of graduate communities on most Top Tier campuses. IGPs are graduate programs that cross departments, schools, and/or colleges, with participating faculty from multiple disciplines. Each IGP has its own affiliated faculty, a program director, and an executive committee who together manage the graduate program. All IGPs are structurally housed in the Graduate College and are run by faculty from two or more schools or colleges. 

Developed to address regional, national, and global issues and complex questions that are best answered by multiple perspectives and transdisciplinary expertise, IGPs generate transformative knowledge and often fill a gap in specialized workforce needs. Interdisciplinary graduate programs provide the student with educational and career opportunities across numerous disciplines, unlike what is delivered within the boundaries of a single department curriculum. The combination of faculty expertise across departments and schools/colleges provides the student with a broad perspective of the content area. See the UNLV Degrees Directory for the current list of IGPs.

 

Non-degree-seeking Status

Non-degree-seeking status is designed for individuals with a bachelor’s degree who wish to enroll in selected graduate-level courses without being admitted to a graduate degree/certificate program. For information about a non-degree seeking application, admission, and enrollment policies, please see Graduate Non-Degree-Seeking Information  and also the Graduate College website.

Graduate non-degree-seeking students may enroll in up to 15 credit hours during the fall and spring semesters and up to 12 credits during the summer (no more than six credits in a single five-week term). Graduate non-degree-seeking students are not eligible for federal financial aid or Graduate College scholarships or fellowships.

A graduate non-degree-seeking student wishing to seek a degree must separately apply for admission to the Graduate College and pay an application processing fee. A maximum of 15 credits of graduate-level coursework taken with grades of B or better as a graduate non-degree-seeking student may count toward the degree program at the discretion and approval of the graduate coordinator, and/or department chair, and Graduate College dean.

To remain active and eligible to enroll, graduate non-degree-seeking students must maintain at least one credit of enrollment in each rolling six semesters. Graduate non-degree-seeking students who do not meet this requirement will have their status deactivated and need to reapply in order to enroll in future courses.

 

Graduate Students In Undergraduate-Level Courses

For information about the policies about graduate students enrolling in undergraduate-level courses, please see registration, enrollment and curricular policies.  

If a graduate student enrolls in undergraduate-level courses in their graduate career (under a graduate non-degree-seeking or graduate degree- or certificate-seeking program), the undergraduate course enrollment will be marked as “cross-career” on the student’s official transcript and those courses will not contribute to earned credits or graduate GPA. 

  • If graduate students need undergraduate-level courses to show as earned credit on their transcript for employment or educational reasons, they must submit and pay for an undergraduate non-degree seeking application through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions and register for those courses in an undergraduate career.
  • If a graduate student takes undergraduate courses in their graduate career and needs them changed to reflect earned credit at a later date, they will be required to submit and pay for an undergraduate non-degree seeking application through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions in order for the coursework to be moved.

 

 

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