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Graduate Student Classifications

Full-Time Graduate Student

  • has matriculated into a degree-program
  • has a minimum of 9 credits per semester
  • has a maximum of 21 credits per semester, unless the student obtains permission from the Dean of the Graduate School and Professional Programs (GSPP)

Students in programs that do not have summer course requirements, do not need to enroll for classes during the summer. Students enrolled for their final semester of coursework may enroll for fewer than nine credits and remain classified as full-time if they are completing remaining degree requirements. Certain other exceptions may be made by the Dean of the Graduate School and Professional Programs at the request of the appropriate department chair and associate dean.

Part-Time Graduate Student

  • has applied and been accepted to a graduate school degree or certificate program
  • has less than 9 credits per semester
  • is not eligible for dormitory residence, unless the student obtains permission to reside in a dormitory from the Director of Residence Life and Dean of Student Affairs. 
  • may have restrictions related to financial aid

Note: Typically, part-time study is negotiated with the appropriate program director and department chair. Part-time students typically must meet all statutes of limitations for their program.

Degree-Seeking Graduate Students

This classification refers to a student who has completed the application process for a graduate degree or graduate certificate program and who has been accepted by the faculty of that program.

Graduate Special Students

This classification refers to students who are enrolled in courses offered by the Graduate School but are not pursuing a program of study leading to a graduate degree or certificate. The application process for graduate special students is described below.

The Assistant Dean for Graduate School Curriculum, Policy and Operations acts as advisor to graduate special students. All graduate special students must obtain the instructor's permission to register for any course. In the absence of the instructor, the program director or the chair of the department may provide permission for a graduate special student to register for a course. The signature of the program director or the chair will constitute permission for the Assistant Dean to approve the registration of the student. The person who signs is obliged to inform the instructor of the additional student(s) enrolled in the class. Enrollment in some graduate courses is limited to degree students. Graduate special students may not enroll as a Gallaudet student in courses in other universities or colleges in the Consortium and are not eligible for financial aid.

Admission as a graduate special student does not imply subsequent admission to a degree program. Graduate special students intending to become degree students should select courses in consultation with the appropriate graduate program and the Assistant Dean for Curriculum, Policy, and Operations. The appropriate academic department determines eligibility for future enrollment in a degree program as well as the potential application of credit hours earned as a graduate special student to future degree work.

Consortium Graduate Students

Matriculated graduate students from other universities in the Washington Consortium may take courses at Gallaudet University under the rules and provisions of the Consortium. Class limits will permit regular Gallaudet University graduate students into the class before Consortium students.

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