Much of the material contained in this section gives details pertaining to Krieger School of Arts and Sciences (KSAS) and/or Whiting School of Engineering (WSE), or University-wide policies. However, there are graduate student issues and policies that are department specific. In those instances, students are referred directly to their department administrator or department handbook for further information.
A Note about PhD Education:
Ph.D. education is fundamental to the University’s teaching and research mission. For an intellectual community of scholars to flourish, it is important to acknowledge the principles that underlie the compact between Ph.D. students, the faculty, and other members of the University community.
It is in this spirit that the Doctor of Philosophy Board, in collaboration with faculty and students from across the University, has articulated a statement of rights and responsibilities for doctoral students at Johns Hopkins. The principles described in this document are to be realized in policies established by the various Schools of the University; the Schools will also develop mechanisms to monitor and enforce such policies. For more information see the Statement of the Rights and Responsibilities of PhD Students.
Annual Review Policy
Feedback and Mentoring are crucial to the success of a graduate student. As such, there is a Homewood Annual Review policy. At least once per academic year, all full‐time Homewood graduate programs are required to provide a written review to: (a) all doctoral students, and (b) all master’s students conducting thesis research. Annual reviews should be completed before the start of the next academic year, barring unexpected circumstances.
Departments should include mention of funding continuation, as appropriate; as well as have a space for discussion about the student’s professional development goals and ways to develop strategies to achieve those goals. This review must include the opportunity for the student to offer self‐evaluation. Students who fail to attain a program’s minimum level of performance may be placed on academic probation or dismissed using the procedures outlined in the Homewood Schools Policy for Graduate Student Probation, Dismissal, and Funding Withdrawal. In making these decisions, particularly that of dismissal, the program will take into consideration extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control.
The Whiting School of Engineering has established a Guide to Effective Annual Reviews to assist both advisors and students make these annual reviews a useful tool in the development of each student.
Student Enrollment Statuses
Graduate students in the full-time Arts and Sciences and Engineering degree programs based at Homewood are initially enrolled as full-time and are given a Resident status. Prior to a student changing his or her registration status, approval from the student’s degree program and appropriate office(s) must first be secured.
Every full-time KSAS Master’s student must register for a minimum of two consecutive semesters as a full-time, resident graduate student.
Every full-time WSE Master’s student must register as a full-time resident graduate student for at least two semesters or satisfy an equivalent requirement approved by the appropriate department.
Combined bachelor’s-master’s degree students are exempt, as are those who enter a WSE master’s degree program after two or fewer semesters following completion of a JHU undergraduate degree.
Every full-time PhD Student (WSE and KSAS) must register for a minimum of two consecutive semesters as a full-time, resident graduate student.
Degree-Seeking Graduate Students
Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
All KSAS full-time students are required to be enrolled in two courses of any level for credit/letter grade, or one course at the 800-level for credit/letter grade. Graduate students who are full-time students are charged full tuition. The office of the deans must approve any exceptions.
Whiting School of Engineering
All WSE Graduate Students enrolled in Homewood-based full-time programs must be enrolled in at least 9 credits to maintain full-time status in each fall and spring semester. Most graduate students enrolled in research-oriented engineering degree programs (M.A., M.S., M.S.E., Ph.D. etc.) are full-time students. However, part-time study consistent with residency requirements is common in many engineering departments. Students should consult with individual departments to determine the requirements for part-time study. Visit http://homewoodgrad.jhu.edu/academics/wse-graduate-credit-hours/ for more information, and for Frequently Asked Questions.
Part-Time Graduate Students
New Homewood graduate students starting their full-time program in a part-time status are extremely rare, and are only allowed when the chair of a department or the director of a degree program makes a qualified written request to, and receives approval from, their cognizant Dean's Office of Academic Affairs.
Students already matriculated in their degree program who wish to change to a part-time status after completing at least one semester of full-time study may ask for permission of their program, and the Office of International Services (OIS), when applicable, to change status.
Students will generally not be eligible to switch to part-time status if they are working primarily on the Homewood campus or working full-time on research for their degree. Part-time graduate students must still meet their degree residency requirements before they receive an advanced degree. Part-time has two major components:
- a student cannot be part-time without prior approval from their department, and from OIS (when applicable)
- a part-time student cannot take more than 2 classes in a semester, or they will be automatically put back to full-time status (note that for WSE graduate students, part-time is any credit load below 9 credits (not including 9 credits)).
For current tuition information, visit Homewood Student Accounts at https://studentaffairs.jhu.edu/student-accounts/tuition-fees/.
- Part-time tuition charges are by the course in KSAS.
- WSE graduate students who are part-time in a full-time program are charged a minimum tuition fee up to 3 credits. Any additional credits taken by a WSE graduate student who is part-time in a full-time program will be charged by the credit.*
*Due to COVID-19, in the 2020-2021 academic year there may be a temporary deviance from the above part-time tuition credit minimum and cost policy. Students are encouraged to contact their program for current information.
Part-Time Health Benefits
Students in KSAS and WSE full-time programs who are in a part-time status are automatically enrolled in student health benefits, and may be responsible for assessed premium(s). Visit https://studentaffairs.jhu.edu/registrar/students/student-health-benefits/ for more information.
Generally, students who are part-time cannot be on student payroll. Please consult with the Office of Student Employment Services for more information.
Part-Time International Students
Visa-holders (F-1, J-1, etc.) wishing to change their enrollment status to part-time must meet with OIS to determine eligibility. International students cannot be part-time unless they are in their final semester of their degree program. Eligible students must complete both of the below steps:
- Secure permission from OIS to apply for part-time status (this is a USCIS form, and not an university registration/enrollment form), and
- Ensure their academic department has submitted documentation to make the official switch to part-time status.
In some cases, graduate students from other institutions of higher education may participate in a visitation or residency at the Homewood Campus. These students are designated as visiting, and are not candidates for a Johns Hopkins graduate degree.
Visiting Graduate Students primarily take courses.
Visiting Graduate Scholars primarily pursue research.
Visiting Non-Degree Learners have already attained a bachelor’s degree, are not enrolled at another institution, and wish to take courses at Homewood (KSAS and WSE only) for a maximum of two consecutive semesters.
Visit http://homewoodgrad.jhu.edu/academics/visiting-grad-student-scholar-policies/ for complete information.
Visiting Graduate Application
All visiting students must apply through their intended program of study and through the online application.
Interested Krieger School of Arts and Sciences (KSAS) applicants should visit http://grad.jhu.edu/apply/visiting-students/.
Interested Whiting School of Engineering (WSE) applicants should visit https://engineering.jhu.edu/graduate-admissions/visting-grad-students/.
Visiting Graduate Enrollment
Visiting students may be enrolled on a full- or part-time basis with the approval of the chair of the department and the dean of their respective school. Visiting graduate students will be limited to two consecutive terms of either full- or part-time study.
All non-degree visiting graduate students/visiting graduate scholars must register in every semester that they are here for the visiting student course (AS.990.890 /EN.990.890 ); there is no tuition charge for this course. Failure to register may result in the student's removal from payroll, loss of health insurance, visa compliance issues, and/or lapses in university services/access.
Combined Bachelor's/Master's Students
Combined Bachelor's/Master's Student refers only to undergraduate students who have been accepted for concurrent study in a KSAS or WSE Homewood-based full-time graduate program while still completing their undergraduate requirements.
Most combined students will switch to graduate status to complete degree requirements. Combined students cannot both apply for and start their combined status in the final semester of their undergraduate status.
In order for a student’s status to change from undergraduate to graduate, a Change of Classification Form for Combined Students must be completed. Academic Staff in the student's chosen graduate program are responsible for signature and submission of this form for students who have:
- Completed eight semesters of full-time undergraduate student at JHU (or the equivalent for transfer students), or
- Completed undergraduate degree requirements prior to the eighth semester of full-time undergraduate study at JHU (or the equivalent for transfer students).
Postdoctoral Fellow Appointments
Postdoctoral fellows are at the university to undertake a research program in cooperation with a member of the faculty. All appointments are arranged through the individual departments. Proof of successful PhD completion and eligibility for employment will be required before any appointment may begin.
Graduate Study Abroad
The cateogry of Graduate Study Abroad (GSA) presumes a continuation of the graduate student's full-time resident status during the period of overseas or off-campus study. GSA students should discuss all plans with their department/advisor in advance. International students should always consult with Office of International Services before making any travel plans or status changes. The Graduate Study Abroad Application is available here.
Students who are enrolled in the Student Health Benefits Plan are encouraged to contact the Office of the Registrar prior to leaving campus for coverage details while abroad.
Any student traveling abroad should first register with the Johns Hopkins Travel Registry. For full information regarding the registry, visas, immunizations, and other helpful travel information please visit http://web.jhu.edu/aroundtheworld/travel.html.
GSA for Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
Graduate Study Abroad students are typically those in the departments of Anthropology, Comparative Thought and Literature, and Modern Languages and Literatures, While the History of Art Department does not have a general requirement of study abroad, many of its graduate students do go abroad to conduct dissertation research.
The use of this category for situations other than those noted above requires the approval of your department chair of the Homewood Graduate Board.
A student on Graduate Study Abroad is required to pay 10% of the full-time tuition rate for each semester abroad. The KSAS Dean's Office will pay the remaining 90% tuition balance.
GSA for Whiting School of Engineering
Graduate Study Abroad status applies to degree-seeking WSE master’s and doctoral students engaged in graduate education at a different institution (coursework and/or research) with departmental/advisor approval.
A student on Graduate Study Abroad is required to pay 10% of the full-time tuition rate for each semester abroad.
As this is a unique subcategory of the nonresident status, health insurance benefits are not guaranteed (although students may opt to pay on their own for the student health insurance) and semesters away do not count towards the residency requirement. Graduate Study Abroad students should discuss this with their department/advisor.
Nonresident (NR) status is a full-time status typically reserved for students who have completed all required course work and exams (Internal and GBO, as per degree requirements), are working on their thesis or dissertation, and are primarily not on campus. The Nonresident PhD/Masters Study Away Application is available here.
The nonresident student's advisor/department is not obligated to cover the cost of tuition nor of the University's health benefits for Nonresident students. Nonresident students who are enrolled in JHU's health benefits are responsible for paying the premiums themselves if there is no available support from the student's department/advisor.
Students who are enrolled in University Student Health Benefits are encouraged to contact the Office of the Registrar prior to entering into a NR status.
Additionally, international students should always consult with OIS before making any travel plans or status changes.
Students on Nonresident status are charged 10% of full-time tuition per semester, unless otherwise stated.
NR for Krieger School of Arts and sciences
Graduate students may be eligible for Nonresident Status if they:
- Have completed all coursework and requirements for the graduate degree other than the presentation and defense of the master’s essay or doctoral dissertation;
- Have reached the end of their departmental support period or have exhausted support from grants and cannot be fully supported by the department;
- Work 19.9 hours per week or fewer during the academic year if employed by Johns Hopkins University in any capacity (intersession or summer employment can be full-time, however). If working, students must be on salary (not stipend) and paid hourly. NOTE: Research or teaching assistants expected to work more than 19.9 hours per week do not qualify for Nonresident status.
NR for Whiting school of engineering
Full-Time Program PhD and Master's students are generally only eligible to apply for one of the three Nonresident Statuses if they have no outstanding coursework (defined as either assignments/tests required for a class in which a student is currently enrolled or coursework in progress towards resolving an Incomplete grade) or exams (internal and preliminary GBOs for example) to complete:
- NR WSE PhD/Master's dissertation/thesis/capstone/project completion: Student is very nearly finished—just has some writing up to do and defend—but needs to leave campus to start work. Expectation is one semester, but two may be allowed. Typically, the student pays the NR tuition, and typically receives no stipend or health benefits support.
- NR WSE PhD/Master's study away: Student (with or without advisor) has the opportunity to be actively engaged in PhD work but at a non-JHU facility. Student typically remains fully supported by PI/department/host facility (NR tuition, stipend, health benefits support provided for student) as long as the student remains eligible for payroll at JHU. Graduate Study Away students should discuss all plans with their department/advisor in advance.
- NR WSE PhD/Master's internship/co-op: Student voluntarily takes time to pursue other pursuits that may be only tangentially relevant to their degree. The expectation is that they will return to campus in a residential capacity to complete their degree. Student typically pays NR tuition, receives no stipend or health benefits support. Time in this status is typically one year, but can be renewed for a second year.
Nonresident students are permitted access to campus, faculty advising and JHU services, however, they are not permitted to enroll in courses, with these three exceptions:
- international students who file for Curricular Practical Training F1 (CPT1) through the OIS may register for a course entitled “Research and Teaching Practicum” (KSAS) or “Engineering Research Practicum” (WSE), and/or
- enrollment in EN.500.603 Graduate Orientation and Academic Ethics, and/or
- enrollment in AS.360.625 Responsible Conduct of Research.
Exceptions 2 and 3 are granted by the student's respective Office of Graduate Academic Affairs.
While in Nonresident Status, students are required to online enroll in AS.910.600 /EN.910.600 for each semester.
The maximum amount of time that a student may retain Nonresident Status is four semesters for KSAS master’s students and ten semesters for KSAS doctoral students, and 1-2 semesters for WSE doctoral and master's students (see WSE-specific nonresident statuses for PhDs and Master's students above). Upon reaching this limit, the student will be required to register for either part-time status (WSE only, as appropriate) or full-time Resident status until degree completion.
NR Application Procedures
Students are required to complete and sign an Application for Nonresident Status indicating that they meet the requirements as stated above. The form should be signed by the department, the OIS (if applicable), and either the WSE Assistant Dean for Graduate and Postdoctoral Academic Affairs (or the Vice Dean for Education, or other WSE designee), or the KSAS Vice Dean for Graduate Education (or KSAS designee).
Students should apply for Nonresident status well in advance of the first semester for which it is desired. When requesting a change of status for the current term, such petitions should be submitted no later than the end of the second week of the semester.
Leave of Absence
A Leave of Absence (LOA) is an approved absence from the University during which time students are not charged tuition nor are they required to register. Time spent on an LOA is regarded as an approved break in study and is not counted toward the total time-to-degree. If a student fails to register without obtaining an approved LOA the student will be considered withdrawn from their degree program.
- Students are encouraged to contact the Registrar’s Office prior to applying for an LOA for details regarding health benefits while on LOA.
- Students must schedule a consultation with either Renee Eastwood (KSAS) or Christine Kavanagh/Allison Leventhal (WSE prior to completing their LOA application.
- International students must contact OIS before filing for LOA.
All KSAS and WSE full-time and part-time program graduate students are eligible for LOA if one of the following conditions prevents them from continuing with their graduate studies (financial difficulty alone is typically not a valid reason for requesting an LOA):
- A documented physical or mental medical condition.
- Compulsory military service.
- Personal Issues that preclude academic engagement over a long period of time or immediate personal/ family hardship.
LOA Tuition and Financial Support
Students on LOA are not charged tuition for the semesters they are granted the leave; the period of leave is simply regarded as an approved interruption of the degree program; however, the University cannot guarantee that financial support will be available when students resume their studies. After taking an LOA, students must re-apply for tuition assistance, research assistantships, fellowships and/or teaching assistantships. Such matters are left to the discretion of the department. Before applying for a LOA, students should consult their department for information regarding funding opportunities upon return from LOA.
Graduate students may apply up to four semesters of LOA (summer terms are not counted) when medical conditions, compulsory military service, or personal or family hardship prevents them from continuing their graduate studies.
Continued approval is based on the reason(s) for the request. Additional information may be requested by the department, or either the WSE Vice Dean for Graduate Education or their designee, or the KSAS Vice Dean for Graduate Education, Centers and Programs or their designee.
Students on LOA are not permitted to use any University student services and/or facilities (e.g., computing labs, library, labs, athletic facilities, etc.), and may not be enrolled at another University.
Students on LOA who wish to continue working at Johns Hopkins are not eligible to be paid through the Student Payroll Office and must therefore be hired through the appropriate divisional Human Resources Department.
No progress toward degree completion or coursework can be made while on LOA.
Students on LOA do not have access to student health benefits. The only exception is for a student on a MLOA (medical leave of absence). Students should consult with their cognizant Dean's Office of Academic Affairs (Renee Eastwood, KSAS; Christine Kavanagh, WSE) for more information.
LOA Application Procedures
To be granted LOA status, students are required to complete and sign a LOA Application form and provide a letter stating the reason for their application. The form must be signed by the student’s department, the OIS (if applicable), and either the WSE Vice Dean for Graduate Education (or WSE designee), or the KSAS Vice Dean for Graduate Education, Centers and Programs (or KSAS designee).
The departure of a student from one of the Homewood Schools without prior arrangement of Nonresident status or Leave of Absence status will be deemed a permanent withdrawal from the student’s program. Students who withdraw from their program must be formally readmitted, at the discretion of the department, before they may return to the University. If readmitted, they do not pay a second application fee, but must satisfy the residency requirement for the degree following readmission (even if previously satisfied), and pay all outstanding fees.
LOA and Academic Probation
If a student needs to take a LOA while they are on an Academic Probation, their probation is paused for the duration of the approved LOA period. Upon the student's return from LOA, their probation is reactivated with the same terms, but the clock for the probation is reset from the date of return to the longer of:
- the minimum time period dictated by the policy for the appropriate category as noted on the student's original probation letter (such as research, coursework, etc.), or
- the remainder of the student's probationary period as noted in the student's original probation letter.
Course Information and Academics
The below policies apply to both continuing and new students, unless noted specifically otherwise.
All students must register before they can attend classes or use university facilities. Detailed instructions about registration will be provided to all students before the registration period each term. If the student has not been notified at least two weeks before the start of classes for any fall or spring term, the Office of the Registrar should be contacted immediately.
Students who for any reason do not complete their registration until after the prescribed registration period are required to pay a late registration service fee. The late registration fee schedule is posted under Term Dates & Deadlines on the Office of the Registrar's website. Graduate students must obtain permission from the chair of their department to register after the second week of classes.
Students will not be allowed to register if there are unpaid bills from a previous term. The student is required to pay tuition or make financial arrangements with the Office of Student Accounts before registering for a given term.
Visit https://studentaffairs.jhu.edu/registrar/students/graduate-registration/ and https://registrar.jhu.edu/idr/ for more information.
Withdrawal by Lack of Registration
Students who are not registered by the end of the fourth week of a given semester and either
- have not responded to correspondence from their department, advisor, Office of Academic Affairs, and/or Office of the Registrar about their intention to remain in the program, or
- have responded to correspondence but have not made effort to maintain a valid student status (defined as either enrolled or on an approved leave of absence), will have been deemed to have withdrawn themselves from the university and will be processed as a withdrawn student in the student information system (SIS). It is important to note that paying tuition is not the same as registering for classes.
Grading basis for graduate courses deliberately includes both letter grades and P/F grades. Instructors should have the widest discretion possible in grading graduate students’ work; therefore both grading bases are available to the instructor for courses at the graduate level. While policies in most departments vary, most graduate students receive letter grades or Pass/Fail grades for their coursework. Students should consult their department chairs and instructors to determine their grading requirements.
Letter Grades (A through F)
Changing letter grades of A through F to a Passing grade is not permissible at any time.
All other grade change requests (e.g., B to A) are acceptable only within one year of semester end date. Change requests beyond one year can only be changed as a result of clerical error and must be accompanied by a written explanation/justification from the course instructor.
Incomplete Grades (I)
Students who are confronted with compelling circumstances beyond their control that interfere with the ability to complete their semester's work during the normal course of a term may request an incomplete grade from the instructor. Approval of such a request is neither automatic nor guaranteed. Procrastination or distraction by other pursuits are not regarded as compelling circumstances, and extensions in these situations are unfair to students who have completed their course requirements within the allotted time.
Students who are in good academic standing have until the end of the third week of the next semester to finish incomplete work. Exceptions to this deadline require a petition from the instructor, and appeal to the student's respective graduate affairs office before the end of the third week of the following semester. When appealing to change the deadline, faculty members must specify a new date for completion of the work which must be before the end of the current semester. Incomplete grades cannot typically be held over into a third semester in order to complete the missing work, nor can incomplete grades be resolved by retaking the course.
Dropping a course with an Incomplete grade is not permissible at any time.
Changing an Incomplete grade to a final grade (A through F, Pass) may be done by the instructor if during the designated timeframe. After that deadline passes, grade change requests must be sent via a grade change form to the student's cognizant Dean's Office of Graduate Academic Affairs (Renee Eastwood, KSAS/Christine Kavanagh, WSE) for review and approval.
Special Rules for Graduating Students
Students with incomplete grades in required courses at the date of degree conferral will not graduate. Students with incomplete grades in courses that are not required for degree completion may still graduate. However, the deadline for completion is abbreviated; students must resolve incomplete grades within 30 days after the date of degree conferral which is when the university closes their graduate record.
In-Progress Grades (IP)
Reserved for classes in which it is expected that the assigned work will require more that one semester to be completed, but the class itself will meet for only one semester, such as graduate seminar courses.
Dropping a course with an IP grade is permissible only with the approval of the instructor, and the Dean’s Office.
Changing an IP grade to a final grade (A through F, Pass) is acceptable at any time before the student’s departure from the university, and requires the instructor’s approval.
Missing Grades (MR, X)
A missing grade (denoted by an MR or an X on the transcript) appears if the instructor has not submitted a grade within the defined grading period for the semester.
- An instructor may submit a Grade Change form directly to the Office of the Registrar to change a MR or X grade to a final grade.
- Dropping a course with a MR or X grade is not permissible at any time.
- Changing a course with a MR or X grade to Audit is not permissible at any time.
When a graduate student enrolls in a course with Audit status, he/she must reach an understanding with the instructor as to what is required to earn the AU grade notation. If the student does not meet those expectations (e.g., fails to attend class), the instructor must notify the Office of the Registrar in order for the student to be retroactively dropped from the course. Dropped coursework does not appear on the student’s transcript.
Changing a course registration from Audit (student receives no letter grade) to Credit (student receives letter grade), or from Credit to Audit is permissible during the official deadlines for each semester. Registration changes beyond this deadline are not permissible.
Changing a final grade (A through F, Pass, I, IP, MR, or X) to AU is not permissible at any time.
The following ASEN Graduate Courses cannot be taken for Audit:
- Graduate Research
- Dissertation Research
- Master’s Thesis
- Master’s Essay
- Independent Study
These courses can only be taken as P/F or for a letter grade, at the instructor’s purview.
The registrar's website has detailed timelines, deadlines, and approval requirements for add/drops. Note that all withdrawals will be noted with a W on the student’s transcript.
The refund schedule can be found on the Student Account website.
A registration hold will be placed for students who have not obtained clearance from the Office of International Services (OIS), Student Accounts, Student Health Insurance or Student Health and Wellness Offices. Students should meet with the office that placed the hold so that the hold can be removed. Students who have an advisor’s hold on their registration must have their advisor release the hold online.
WSE Master’s degrees (M.A., M.S., M.S.E) and PhDs
For students who earned an undergraduate degree outside of the Whiting School of Engineering or the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, two courses completed before the undergraduate degree was conferred can only be applied to a Whiting School of Engineering master’s degree if evidence is provided by the undergraduate degree-granting institution that the course was not applied to the undergraduate degree, and with JHU advisor/department approval. Students are encouraged to secure permission to transfer a course as early as possible in their time at JHU to avoid issues.
WSE graduate students may transfer in up to two graduate-level courses from another institution which were completed after the undergraduate degree was conferred, if evidence is provided that the course was not applied to any previous degree, and with JHU advisor/department approval. Students are encouraged to secure permission from their WSE master’s/PhD program faculty advisor to transfer a course as early as possible in their time at JHU to avoid issues, and a transcript from any relevant academic institution must be included with conferral completion paperwork submitted to the Academic Affairs office. EXCEPTION: WSE master’s students in a department‐approved study abroad program can transfer in additional coursework (i.e., beyond two courses), but in total, at least half of the courses/credits applied to the WSE master’s degree must be taken/earned at Johns Hopkins. Individual graduate programs reserve the right to enforce stricter policies.
Double Counting Courses
WSE Master’s degrees (M.A., M.S., M.S.E) and PhDs
The Whiting School of Engineering (WSE) has established the following policies on double-counting coursework for all students in the full-time (Homewood) programs and the part-time Engineering for Professionals (EP) programs. If an individual program adopts double-counting policies more strict than these, the program’s policies override the school-wide policies. Students are encouraged to refer to individual program policies.
With bachelor’s‐master’s and master’s‐master’s double‐counting, across any number of degree programs, a student can reduce the number of master’s courses required by up to two (with approval of the programs involved). Beyond that, the remaining courses must be unique to the degree program. With a ten‐course master’s degree program, for example, eight of those courses must be unique to the program and not applied to a different degree at any level. A student can double‐count any number of undergraduate courses to the various master’s degrees (but at most, two to each master’s program) and he/she can double‐count the same course across any number of degrees pursued (again, with the approval of the programs involved).
WSE Bachelor’s-Master’s Double Counting
Coursework applied to a bachelor’s degree: Students either in a WSE combined (bachelor’s/master’s) program or seeking a WSE master’s degree after having earned a WSE or Krieger School of Arts and Sciences bachelor’s degree may double-count two courses (400-level or higher) to both programs with the permission of the master’s faculty advisor. WSE master’s degree candidates may not double-count courses applied to a bachelor’s degree earned at a different institution. Individual graduate programs reserve the right to enforce stricter policies.
Coursework not applied to a bachelor’s degree:
For students who are either in a WSE combined bachelor’s/master’s degree program or have already earned a Whiting School of Engineering or Krieger School of Arts and Sciences bachelor’s degree and are seeking a WSE master’s degree, any graduate-level coursework (as defined by the WSE graduate program) not applied to the undergraduate degree may be applied to the graduate degree, regardless of when that course was taken (i.e., before or after the undergraduate degree has been conferred) with the permission of the master’s faculty advisor.
For students who earned an undergraduate degree outside of the Whiting School of Engineering or the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, two courses completed before the undergraduate degree was conferred can only be applied to a Whiting School of Engineering master’s degree if evidence is provided by the degree-granting institution that the course was not applied to the undergraduate degree, and with advisor approval.
WSE Master’s-Master’s Double Counting
Coursework applied to a master’s degree:
Students pursuing (1) a WSE master’s and a master’s from any JHU school simultaneously or (2) a WSE master’s after having earned a master’s from any JHU school may double-count either two semester-length courses or three quarter-length courses across two master’s programs, as long as the courses are equivalent to the 400-level or higher in WSE full-time graduate programs. The student must receive approval from both master’s degree program faculty advisors if both sets of degree requirements will be completed at the same time. For a student to double-count coursework from two master’s degrees whose requirements are met at different times, the student must obtain only the approval of the faculty advisor in the program to be finished second. Individual graduate programs reserve the right to enforce stricter policies.
Timing and Ramifications for Current Students:
This policy will be applied to all students entering a WSE master’s program in Fall 2007 and beyond. Any student who has entered a WSE master’s program before then will be exempt from this policy and should follow the course arrangement made with his/her advisor, provided it is in compliance with departmental, school and university requirements.
Declaration of Double-Counted Course:
WSE master’s students wishing to double-count courses must submit these courses to the WSE master’s program for approval. If it is learned that a student has double-counted a course for the WSE master’s degree without permission of the WSE master’s program, this program reserves the right to revoke the degree.
Research and Scientific Writing Courses
Through the Center for Leadership Education graduate students may enroll in writing courses designed to assist with dissertation and grant writing. Students may enroll for this course at no additional charge. The course is offered in the fall and spring semesters however, space is limited. For additional information go to https://engineering.jhu.edu/cle/.
Transcripts may be requested from the Office of the Registrar. A request for one copy is normally processed within one to three business days of receipt of the request. Requests for multiple transcripts require additional processing time. Standard delivery of transcripts is by U.S. Mail first-class. Visit https://registrar.jhu.edu/credentials/transcripts/ for information on ordering transcripts. Partial transcripts of a student’s record will not be issued.
Official and/or unofficial transcripts of work at other institutions that the student has presented for admission or evaluation of credit become the property of the university and cannot be copied or reissued. If a transcript of this work is needed, the student must obtain it directly from the issuing institution.
Summer and Intersession Courses
Summer Courses: while most summer courses offered at the Homewood Campus are undergraduate level courses, graduate students may enroll in these courses with permission from their department chair and the course instructor. No financial assistance is available for graduate students who wish to take summer courses. In special cases, graduate students may also take courses at other divisions of the institution.
Graduate students may register for the course Summer Independent Research (AS.990.892 ) with the approval of their department chair. There is no charge for this course as independent research projects conducted during the summer are not graded and carry no academic weight. An NG (“no grade given”) will appear on the student’s transcript.
Intersession Courses: graduate students are eligible to enroll in Intersession coursework. Grades are generally given on an P/F scale. Some students use this period to participate in research, independent study, or internships. A list of Intersession offerings is published in late November or early December. A special form, available in the Registrar’s Office, is used for Intersession registration. Students should register before winter break. Students who register for research, independent study, or an internship during Intersession must have the approval signature of their faculty sponsor and academic advising office. This opportunity is offered tuition-free.
Visit https://summerprograms.jhu.edu/program/intersession-program/ for more information.
Course Re-Take Policy
At the discretion of the Homewood graduate program, a graduate student may retake a course, but the grade from the initial effort will remain on the transcript. This applies whether the initial effort occurred while the student was an undergraduate student or a graduate student.
The below policies apply to all new and continuing graduate students in the Homewood Schools, unless specifically noted otherwise.
Academic Review Policy
This policy applies to all full-time KSAS and WSE doctoral students and master’s students conducting thesis research. Each graduate program is required to publish its own policies and standards with respect to academic standing. At the end of each semester, all full-time Homewood graduate programs are expected to review the academic records of their graduate students to evaluate academic progress. For more information, please review the Homewood Schools Graduate Student Academic Review Policy.
WSE has established a Guide to Effective Annual Reviews to assist both advisors and students make these annual reviews a useful tool in the development of each student.
Students who fail to attain a program’s minimum level of performance may be placed on academic probation or dismissed using the procedures outlined in the Homewood Schools Policy for Graduate Student Probation, Dismissal, and Funding Withdrawal. In making these decisions, particularly that of dismissal, the program will take into consideration extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control.
Whenever it is determined that a graduate student has failed to meet minimum academic, research, and/or TA requirements, that student may be placed on academic probation.
This change in status requires a formal letter and a meeting between the student and either their faculty advisor, chair, and/or departmental director of graduate studies. The letter should clearly outline the student’s academic shortcomings, indicate the corrective measures necessary to remain in the program and state the length of the student’s probationary period. Any funding ramifications for the student should be included as well.
Please see the full policy for more information on process, appeals, etc.
Dismissal After Probation
This must be done with a formal letter citing the reason for dismissal and requires a meeting between the student and their faculty advisor or the departmental director of graduate studies. Academic dismissal will be noted on the student’s transcript at the request of the program and with the approval of the cognizant Dean. A student may appeal this decision.
Dismissal Without Probation
A student may be dismissed without a formal probation period under three circumstances:
Meet the conditions for dismissal based on coursework as stated by the academic program in its department handbook or on its website;
Fail an oral or written examination for which successful completion is necessary to continue in the program (as stated in the program’s degree requirements), or fail to meet any condition resulting from a qualifying or GBO exam; or
Is found to have committed academic or research misconduct and expulsion is the outcome of the deliberations as outlined in the Homewood Graduate Academic Misconduct Policy or the University Research Integrity Policy. Under these circumstances, programs are expected to follow the same procedures for Dismissal After Probation.
In addition, students are also subject to immediate dismissal on non-academic grounds in accordance with the Johns Hopkins Student Conduct Code as well as all applicable policies at the university policies page.
Academic Dismissal Consequences
When a student is dismissed from the University, several consequences follow:
The Office of the Registrar cancels the student’s registration for the next semester, and authorizes a reversal of tuition assessed for that semester. This does not mean that the student directly receives a refund. For example, if the student has been funded by the department, the department would be eligible for the refunded funds. Additionally, any refund amount is subject to the refund schedule published by the Office of Student Accounts.
Notation of dismissal may be placed on the student’s transcript at the request of the program and with the approval of the cognizant Dean.
The Office of Student Financial Services suspends financial aid to the student, and work-study aid.
The Office of International Services performs duties as required by U.S. federal regulations regarding persons not eligible to study at the University.
Eligibility for student health benefits will end. Please contact the Office of the Registrar for specific information.
The student loses access to university services, property, and nonpublic spaces.
Please see the full policy for more information on process, appeals, etc.
Readmission Following Dismissal
The terms for readmitting a student who has been dismissed for academic reasons are established by individual departments. The readmission process should be described in the dismissal letter, if deemed appropriate. Students who have been dismissed should discuss the readmission process with their advisor. The terms for readmitting a student who has been dismissed for reasons other than academic/research/TA performance are decided by the student's cognizant Dean's Office of Academic Affairs.
Please see the full policy for more information on process, appeals, etc.
Once a student withdraws from the University, their student transcript is closed, and changes to their academic record will not be permitted. International students must consult with Office of International Services to ascertain their visa obligations before withdrawing from the university. Students who withdraw from their program must be formally readmitted, at the discretion of the department, before they may return to the university. If readmitted, they do not pay a second application fee, but must satisfy the residency requirement for the degree following readmission (even if previously satisfied), and pay all outstanding fees.
Please see the full policy for more information on process, appeals, etc. Note that the same ramifications as listed under 'Academic Dismissal Consequences' apply.
Students wishing to withdraw from the University must file a Termination/Withdrawal Form with their Department. Graduate students are encouraged to consult the chair of their department prior to submitting their written notice.
Withdrawal by Lack of Registration
Students who are not registered by the end of the fourth week of a given semester and either
have not responded to correspondence from their department, advisor, Office of Academic Affairs, and/or Office of the Registrar about their intention to remain in the program, or
have responded to correspondence but have not made effort to maintain a valid student status (defined as either enrolled or on an approved leave of absence), will have been deemed to have withdrawn themselves from the university and will be processed as a Withdrawn student in the student system (SIS).
It is important to note that paying tuition is not the same as registering for classes. For more information, please see the Student Enrollment Statuses information under Academic Policies.
Any outstanding fees will be followed up with the student/their department by the Office of Student Accounts. Students who withdraw from their program must be formally readmitted, at the discretion of the department, before they may return to the university.
The below policies apply to both continuing and new students, unless noted specifically otherwise.
Academic Requirements for Graduate Degrees
Information for degrees administered by the Homewood Graduate Board is located at https://homewoodgrad.jhu.edu/academics/graduate-board/degree-requirements/.
Information for degrees administered by the Doctor of Philosophy Board is located at https://provost.jhu.edu/education/graduate-and-professional-education/doctor-philosophy-board/.
Doctor of Philosophy (KSAS and WSE)
In addition to any departmental/divisional PhD requirements, PhD students must meet the following to be considered eligible to apply for graduation:
- A minimum of two consecutive semesters as a full-time, resident graduate student.
- Completion of registration in the semester during which degree requirements are met (note: students completing in a Summer term generally should have been registered for the summer graduate research course, but it is allowable if the last official semester of registration is the Spring semester immediately prior to degree conferral).
- Certification by a department or program committee that all school, departmental, program, and/or committee requirements have been fulfilled.
- A dissertation approved by at least two referees appointed by the department or program committee, and submitted to Electronic Theses & Dissertations.
- Successful completion of a Graduate Board Oral (GBO) examination as determined by the department or program committee. This is classified as either a preliminary or a final examination.
- Though time-to-degree is determined by the department, and may not exceed 12 years, continuation in the program will be based/contingent upon satisfactory academic progress after eight years of enrollment.
PhD Advisor/Good-Standing Policy
A PhD student conducting research and/or in the writing phase of their degree program will not be able to remain in good standing with their academic and research progress if they do not have a research/dissertation advisor.
KSAS Master’s Degrees (M.A., M.F.A., M.S.)
- A minimum of two consecutive semesters as a full-time, resident graduate student.
- Completion of registration in the semester during which requirements are met.
- Certification by a department or program committee that all requirements have been fulfilled.
- A thesis approved by at least one referee and submitted to the Commercial Binding Office when the department requires a thesis.
- Meets the requirements of the school’s time-to-degree policy.
WSE Master’s Degrees (M.A., M.S., M.S.E., M.S.E.M.)
- Every student must register as a full-time graduate student for at least two semesters or satisfy an equivalent requirement approved by the appropriate department. (Combined bachelor’s-master’s degree students are exempt, as are those who enter a WSE master’s degree program after two or fewer semesters following completion of a JHU undergraduate degree.)
- Every student must be registered in the semester during which degree requirements are met; this includes students who have no courses remaining in which to enroll but must resolve coursework for which an Incomplete grade was assigned.
- Every student must provide certification by a department or program committee that all departmental or committee requirements have been fulfilled.
- If the student is submitting a formal essay to the MSE Library to help complete master’s degree requirements, the essay must be approved by at least one reader. (See the Homewood Academic Council Faculty Status table, under “Thesis Supervision of Graduate Students,” to determine who may serve as the reader/advisor. Additional readers, if required by program, need only program approval.)
- All courses applied to the master’s degree must be at the 400-level or higher. At their discretion, individual graduate programs may institute a higher course level as the minimum for their own students.
- Every student must earn the master’s degree within five consecutive academic years (10 semesters). Only semesters during which a student has a university-approved leave of absence are exempt from the 10-semester limit; otherwise, all semesters from the beginning of the student’s graduate studies—whether the student is resident or not—count toward the 10-semester limit.
- Every student must complete training on academic ethics (EN.500.603 Graduate Orientation and Academic Ethics).
- Every student must complete training on the responsible and ethical conduct of research, if applicable. (Please see the WSE Policy on the Responsible Conduct of Research.)
Time to Degree (TTD)
The time-to-degree (TTD) limit for degree candidates is typically determined by a specific program. However, JHU’s general policy requires that TTD not exceed nine years for Ph.D. candidates, and five years for WSE and KSAS terminal master’s candidates.
The TTD count begins with the first semester of registration as a matriculated student. Time spent on an approved LOA will not be counted toward the graduate student’s TTD. Students unable to complete degree requirements within the required time limit are required to withdraw from the University.
Full TTD policies for WSE and KSAS can be found at http://homewoodgrad.jhu.edu/academics/graduate-board/new-grad-board-residency-page/ and https://provost.jhu.edu/education/graduate-and-professional-education/doctor-philosophy-board/.
Co-tutelle de Thèse
JHU will recognize dissertation research and subsequent dissertation submission for the purposes of a degree from JHU alone. It will sign no agreement that supports the concept of a student submitting the same work to different universities to receive two distinct degrees.
The University, however, wants to promote international exchange and in this spirit the Graduate Board has agreed to accommodate students with a desire to include faculty from a foreign university to participate in their research and defense process. Upon submission and review of a current curriculum vitae, the Graduate Board will allow one advisor to be a faculty member of a foreign university and in certain cases will allow the committee to be expanded to include other faculty from a foreign university as long as the majority represent JHU. The University will provide no funds to cover expenses. Funding for travel would be up to the department or the foreign university.
All proposed co-tutelle agreements are to be submitted to the Graduate Board for review.
Commencement and Degree Conferral
The below policies apply to both continuing and new students, unless noted specifically otherwise.
There are three official conferral dates each academic year for the University (December, May, August). The conferral date is printed on the diploma. A formal University Commencement Ceremony is held once per academic year, traditionally in May. Students who have not satisfied all graduation requirements by the deadlines determined by the Graduate Board or the WSE Office of Academic Affairs are not eligible to participate in the graduation ceremony. Students who complete the degree requirements prior to the ceremony in May can request an official statement of completion from the Office of the Registrar or the Homewood Graduate Board Office. Visit https://studentaffairs.jhu.edu/registrar/students/graduation/ for deadlines and official conferral dates.
Upon degree conferral, the graduate’s record is closed. No changes thereafter can be made to the graduate’s transcript.
A student will not be graduated with unresolved outstanding charges of misconduct or academic ethics violations.
Application for Graduation
All graduate students must submit an online Application to Graduate, through their SIS account, in order to generate degree conferral and receive a diploma. Students should consult with their Graduate Coordinator, the Homewood Graduate Board’s website, and the WSE Office of Academic Affairs' website respectively to determine current deadlines. The dates of these deadlines change each academic year.
In addition to submitting the general application to graduate, engineering students preparing to graduate from a master’s or doctoral program must complete paperwork indicating the courses they intend to apply to their degree. This paperwork is distributed by each department's Graduate Coordinator and once completed should be returned to them.
Completing Graduation Requirements
Departmental graduation requirements vary; therefore, students are encouraged to speak with their departmental administrator to learn details of their requirements.
KSAS Master's Degree Completion
All KSAS master's students must complete all of the following steps for the degree to be conferred, and to generate a diploma:
- Minimum of two consecutive semesters of registration as a full-time, resident graduate student
- Certification by a department or program committee that all departmental or committee requirements have been fulfilled
- Thesis approved by at least one reader when the department or program requires a thesis
- Submission of the thesis to the MSE Library Electronic Theses and Dissertations when a Master of Arts with essay is being requested
WSE Master’s Degree Completion
All WSE master's students must complete all of the following steps for the degree to be conferred, and to generate a diploma:
- An Application to Graduate must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar either online or on paper, depending upon status;
- Department-specific certification forms must be submitted to and approved by the department graduate coordinator, and then those forms must then be submitted to the WSE Office of Academic Affairs by the published deadline(s);
- If a formal master's essay is used to complete degree requirements, the student must submit a properly-formatted essay to the MSE Library Electronic Theses and Dissertations system by the date listed on the WSE website; the emailed submission receipt (generated by the library) must be included in paperwork forwarded to the WSE Office of Academic Affairs.
Visit: http://engineering.jhu.edu/graduate-studies/academic-policies-procedures-graduate/ for more information on deadlines and policies.
DOCTORAL DEGREE COMPLETION
- A minimum of two consecutive semesters of registration as a full-time, resident graduate student
- Completion of registration in the semester that degree requirements are met
- Certification by a department or program committee that all school*, departmental, program, and/or committee requirements have been fulfilled
- A dissertation approved by at least two referees appointed by the department or program committee** and submitted to the library. The dissertation must adhere to the Graduate Board Dissertation Guidelines. (Referees must certify that the dissertation is a significant contribution to knowledge and worthy of publication)
- Successful completion of a Graduate Board oral examination. As determined by the department or program committee, this is classified as either preliminary or a final examination
- Though time-to-degree is determined by the department and may not exceed 9 years, continuation in the program will be based/contingent upon satisfactory academic progress after eight years of enrollment. Any approved leave of absence would not count toward the 9 years.
*Whiting School of Engineering doctoral students must complete training on academic ethics and responsible conduct of research. Krieger School of Arts and Sciences students must complete training on the responsible conduct of research if applicable.
**Referees (also known as readers) are responsible for signing the ‘readers letter/report’ that confirms that the dissertation is a significant contribution to knowledge and worthy of publication. At least one referee should be internal to the student’s academic program, external referees (to the university) must be approved by the Graduate Board through the same process as external examiners participating in the Graduate Board oral examination.
Degree Completion Deadlines
Each spring semester, the Graduate Board and the WSE Office of Academic Affairs (for WSE master’s students) issues deadlines for submission of theses and essays for the following academic year. These deadlines must be met for a student to be listed as a degree candidate. Students can access the calendar of deadlines on the Homewood Graduate Board’s website (for KSAS master's students, and for KSAS and WSE PhD students), the website of the WSE Office of Academic Affairs (for WSE Masters), or by contacting their department administrator.
- Students who complete their master’s essay or doctoral dissertation after the end of a semester but before the first day of class of the next semester do not have to register for that next semester. (They will have to file for graduation in that semester, and will not be eligible for student payroll once they are no longer a registered student).
- Graduate students completing a final degree during the first eight weeks of the fall semester or the first four weeks of the spring semester will generate a tuition reimbursement for that semester to whatever entity covered the cost - the student, the department, the advisor, etc. This applies only to students for whom completion of a master’s project, master’s essay, master’s journal submission, or doctoral thesis is the sole remaining degree requirement at the start of the final semester.
- If a student completes a Tuition Deferral Form indicating an expectation to complete the degree within a specific grace period, no payment is required to register for that semester. However, if the grace period deadline is not met that semester’s tuition charge will be added to the student’s account.
- Note that students who complete in the Grace Period for either the fall or spring semesters (or finish in the summer term), and are registered in the semester/term in which they completed are eligible to stay on student payroll until the degree conferral date.
Grades Towards Degree Completion
Grades must be submitted in SIS by the posted deadline for each semester, including grades for courses that are required for graduation. Graduating students who are taking courses at cooperative schools or other divisions of the University must make arrangements with their instructors on the first day of class to have final grades submitted to the host school’s Registrar and then to the Homewood Registrar by the Homewood grade submission deadline. If such an arrangement cannot be made, students should not remain enrolled in the course.
The Homewood Graduate Board is responsible for the administration of policies and procedures for the Doctor of Philosophy of the Schools of Arts and Sciences and Engineering, and for Masters degrees in the School of Arts and Sciences.
The Graduate Board oversees:
- Graduate Board Oral (GBO) Examinations for ASEN Ph.D. students: with the approval of the department chair, a GBO may be scheduled at any time during the academic year. Requests for a GBO examination must be submitted to the Graduate Board a minimum of three weeks before the examination is to take place.
- Dissertation/Thesis Instructions: The student is responsible for obtaining and observing the detailed instructions concerning submission of their dissertation/thesis from their departmental office, and the Homewood Graduate Board Office. Visit http://homewoodgrad.jhu.edu/academics/graduate-board/degree-candidacy/ for more information.
- Initial Ph.D. Degree confirmation
- Dissertation submissions
- Recommendations for conferral to the Doctor of Philosophy Board
- See the Deadlines for Degree Completion website for more information.
Doctor of Philosophy Board
The Doctor of Philosophy Board advises the Provost about University-wide issues pertaining to the PhD. It approves new degree programs and sets guidelines and policies that affect all PhD. students. The Board respects the strong tradition of local autonomy of the Schools, and seeks to enhance the visibility and prominence of PhD. education across the University.
The Homewood Graduate Board submits its list of approved KSAS and WSE PhD conferrals to the Doctor of Philosophy Board for final university approval. No PhD degree is officially conferred until after the Doctor of Philosophy Board has approved and recommended conferral to the President of the University, and the President approves.
Dissertation and Thesis/Essay Submission
ETD (Electronic Theses and Dissertations)
An ETD is a digital version of a dissertation that is available to the public via the Internet. Universities and colleges in the United States and abroad have been moving toward this type of publication for the past decade. In the Fall 2013, Johns Hopkins launched its own ETD portal and process.
All thesis and dissertation submissions must be through the ETD process and portal. See the ETD page for more information, deadlines, and instructions.
The student is responsible for obtaining and observing the detailed instructions concerning submission of their dissertation/thesis from their departmental office, the Homewood Graduate Board Office and ETD guidelines of the Johns Hopkins Libraries and Museums. Students may also contact the ETD coordinator at email@example.com.
After submitting their dissertation to the ETD Submittal Tool, the library will check the dissertation for proper formatting and either approve it or contact the student to make required changes. After the ETD is approved the student will receive an approval confirmation from the system. Students are required to forward this approval email to their departmental academic staff and cc either the Assistant Dean for Graduate and Postdoctoral Academic Affairs in WSE (Christine Kavanagh) or the Director of Graduate and Postdoctoral Academic Affairs in KSAS (Renee Eastwood) as appropriate, with the following items:
- The title of their dissertation typed in the body of the email in title case format with correct spelling and punctuation.
- The degree type and program/department
- A single PDF of the dissertation title page and abstract
The degree requirements are not complete unless the final ETD is submitted to the library by the published deadline and the above information and attachments are provided by the student to the Graduate Board Office via the email to the department and the cognizant Assistant Dean or Director of Graduate and Postdoctoral Academic Affairs.
Graduate Alumni Enrollment
After degree conferral, KSAS and WSE Homewood graduate alumni who wish to enroll for coursework that does not lead to a degree are considered Visiting Graduate Students, and should follow the application and enrollment information located at http://homewoodgrad.jhu.edu/academics/visiting-grad-student-scholar-policies/