Policy Details

Date of Last Update

Approved By
  • University Academic Senate / Provost

Responsible Office
Provost Office


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Graduate Academic Policy on the Minimum Number of Credit Hours Required for the Masters Degree

FH 2.04 L

  1. Policy Scope
  2. Definitions

Policy Scope

1.  A minimum of 33 graduate-level credits must be earned for a Masters degree to be awarded.  Graduate-level credits for the master’s degree are earned in those courses that are numbered 500 and above that do not meet the definition of leveling course.

2.  At least 24 credits must be earned at GVSU.

3.  The following types of credit are NOT considered to be graduate-level credit for the purpose of this policy:

    a.  Credit earned for completion of a leveling course as defined below.

    b.   Credit that was earned more than eight years prior to the award of the degree.

          Exceptions to this provision may be granted for courses over eight years old:

i.  based on evidence provided by the student that demonstrates currency in the content of the course, and

ii.  on the recommendation of the Graduate Program Director for the degree sought, and

iii.  with the approval of the Dean of The Graduate School.

4.  No more than nine (9) credits earned from dual listed graduate courses may be applied toward the degree.


A leveling course is a course that is intended to provide knowledge skills and competencies expected of students entering a specific graduate program, and that is routinely waived or not required for students with sufficient undergraduate coursework in the discipline or program area.