Exception to Policy Requests

Requests for Exception to Graduate Policy
The Associate Vice-Provost for The Graduate School is responsible for the review and final approval or denial of Petitions for Exception to graduate student policies. The student’s academic advisor, graduate program director, or dean of the college where the program resides, must support all exceptions in order for the Associate Vice-Provost for the Graduate School to approve them. The student must complete the appropriate Petition for Exception form as provided on The Graduate School webpage. All materials must be submitted to The Graduate School either via email or as a hard copy.

Petition for Exception to Twelve-credit Hour Limit: Twelve-credit hour limit on courses completed prior to admission to a program: Grand Valley policy allows graduate students to take a maximum of 12 graduate credit hours without being admitted to a specific graduate program. Once the student gains admission to a graduate program any credit hours beyond the limit must be granted an exception to the policy in order to be counted toward the degree. The student seeking this exception should contact their academic advisor to initiate the Petition for Exception.

Petition for Exception to Eight-year Time Limit to Degree Completion: All courses to be counted for a master’s degree at Grand Valley must be completed within eight years. This time limit is a way of ensuring the student’s validity and currency of knowledge at the time of graduation. The student will be required to either repeat the course or take an approved substitute, if unable to demonstrate currency. The start date for the eight-year time limit begins with the first course taken toward the degree planned program.

Petition for Exception to Graduate Student Policies: Students seeking to appeal other graduate academic policies must complete the appropriate Petition for Exception form as provided on The Graduate School webpage. The student’s academic advisor, graduate program director, or dean of the college where the program resides, must support all exceptions for the Associate Vice-Provost for The Graduate School to approve them.

Credit Overload: Full-time graduate students register for nine to 12 credit hours per semester. Permission from the dean of appropriate academic college is required for more than 15 hours per semester.

Petition to Return: Following a voluntary absence of two or more consecutive semesters or sessions, a graduate student must complete a Petition to Return form. This form serves to update the student’s demographic record. Graduate students are reminded that following a voluntary absence of 24 consecutive months they must follow the Grand Valley State University Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog requirements in effect at the time of their return to Grand Valley. Such students should meet with their program advisor to revise their study plan. 

Graduate students who wish to return to Grand Valley following an academic dismissal must submit a written appeal to the dean of the appropriate division. Graduate students who wish to change to a different program within Grand Valley must complete the application process for that program. No additional application fee is required, and the applicant need not supply duplicate copies of official transcripts already on file.

Petition to Return: Non-Degree Students who have been Dismissed
Non-degree seeking graduate students applying for readmission to the university after dismissal for failure to maintain a 3.0 GPA must submit a Petition to Return to the Dean of the Graduate School prior to being readmitted to the university or admitted to a specific graduate program.

The student must provide a statement that explains factors that led to the low GPA and a plan of study that would permit the student to overcome the low GPA. This plan must be approved by the Graduate Director in the program into which the student seeks to gain admission. The student is not allowed admission into the program until the GPA is raised.

Suggested methods of improving the GPA include: repeating courses in which the student performed poorly to get a better grade, taking fewer courses than previously attempted, working closely with professors to ensure that course work is of quality, meeting regularly with the advisor to discuss progress, ensuring that all prerequisite requirements are fulfilled, and refrain from taking advanced courses too early in the program.

The student may take more than one semester to raise his or her GPA to 3.0, particularly if the student has reduced his or her per semester course load. This should be included in the student's plan of study and approved by the student's advisor, the Graduate Director of the program, and the Dean of the Graduate School.

Forms Library
For a Petition to Return from, please see the registrar's office forms.

Page last modified December 15, 2022