Graduate Special Student Admission Requirements

1. What does it mean to be a graduate special student at Gallaudet?

Individuals who are not currently enrolled in a graduate or certificate program at Gallaudet University (including Gallaudet employees) who wish to register for a graduate course must apply and be accepted as a graduate special student. Typically graduate special students are not eligible for financial support from Gallaudet University; however Gallaudet employees may qualify for a tuition waiver. Continuation as a graduate special student depends on satisfying the academic standards that apply to all graduate students.  

2. What are the requirements for graduate special student status?

To take courses as a graduate special student, an individual must have a bachelor's degree with at least a B (3.0 on a 4.0 scale) cumulative grade point average. To apply, one must complete a short application form, submit a copy of the B.A. or B.S. transcript, and pay a $75 non-refundable application fee.  

3. I took a graduate-level course five years ago as a graduate special student. Do I need to apply again before I may take another course as a special student?

Graduate special student status remains active for five years before one must reapply. Graduate special student status begins once an individual is admitted to Gallaudet as a graduate special student. If it has been more than five years since an individual took a course, it will be necessary to reapply.  

4. Are there limitations on the courses that I can take as a graduate special student?

A graduate special student must obtain the instructor's permission to register for any course. Not every course is open to graduate special students. For example, enrollment in certain graduate courses is limited to degree-seeking students. Graduate special students should check with the department for availability prior to registering for the course.  

5. What if I want to become a full-time Gallaudet graduate student after taking a few courses as a special student?

There may be a limit on the number of credits that may be applied to a degree program. If an individual plans to seek admission as a degree-seeking student in the future, he or she should check with an advisor in the department to ensure that the courses taken as a graduate special student will be acceptable for the program. Admission as a graduate special student neither implies nor guarantees subsequent admission to a degree program at Gallaudet University.  

6. How do I register for classes at Gallaudet as a graduate special student?

Application as a Graduate Special Student

  1. Apply to become a Graduate Special Student.
  2. Upon acceptance as a graduate special student, complete a Course Selection Form.
  3. Check with the department about course offerings and prerequisites.  Obtain the instructor's signature granting permission to take the class.
  4. Obtain the signature of the Assistant Dean in the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School, who acts as the advisor for graduate special students.
  5. Submit the Course Selection Form to the Registrar's Office.
  6. Contact Student Accounts about paying for the course (business registration).    

Application as a Graduate Special Student during Summer Sessions
Summer enrollment is handled by the Center for Continuing Studies (CCS). Contact CCS, see the summer catalog, or go to for more information.