Progress Toward the Degree

Following is a guide to the steps required to earn the M.S. degree. A detailed description of the steps required for each of the individual graduate programs is included within the programs section of this catalog.

Steps Toward the M.S. Degree

  1. Applicant is admitted to the graduate program.
  2. Student submits individual program plan or an official declaration of Masters Degree to the Office of Graduate Studies no later than the end of the semester in which the first six graduate credits are completed.
  3. After completing at least 8 - 15 credits, depending on the individual program requirements, student develops thesis/project proposal. Proposal is reviewed and approved by the thesis/project committee. Students not required to complete a thesis will register for coursework as directed by their adviser. After receiving approval from the major professor or committee, proposals are submitted, along with form GR-2, to Office of Graduate Studies.
  4. Student may register for thesis/project or professional project credits and continue work on project.
  5. Student files Application for Graduation with the Registrar's Office through the Student Information System (SIS).
  6. Student schedules thesis defense or professional project presentation by filing form GR-3 when the project or thesis document is nearly complete.
  7. Open thesis defense meeting or professional project presentation takes place. Filing form GR-4 with the Office of Graduate Studies indicates satisfactory completion of thesis and defense or the professional project and presentation.
  8. The Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies checks the final format of thesis or professional project report.
  9. Student submits to Office of Graduate Studies the required number of thesis or report copies for final approval and deposition in University library.
  10. Graduate receives diploma.

Official Declaration of Master’s Degree or Program Plan

Students in the Applied Leadership, Environmental Science and Policy, and Management programs file this declaration to assign the program of study outlined in this catalog. A substitution form must be filed when courses outside the standard degree requirements are chosen. Students in the Social Work program develop a program plan (GR-1). The primary responsibility for ensuring that each student's program or degree plan meets the requirements and regulations of the M.S. program rests with the student. The student develops the program plan with his or her thesis committee chair or program adviser. If the student has not selected a major professor or adviser, the graduate program chair can approve the program plan as the student's adviser.

All program or degree plans are subject to final approval by the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies. They may suggest changes to ensure that the plan conforms to the overall philosophy and requirements of the M.S. program. The Office of Graduate Studies will contact the major professor or program adviser and the student if changes are necessary.

An Official Declaration of Master's Degree or program plan must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies in the semester in which the student completes the first six credits of graduate-level course work. It must be approved before a student can register for additional courses. Subsequent changes may be made, but these are subject to further review by the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies. All changes must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies on an Academic Plan Substitution Form so that the student's file remains current.

A maximum of 15 credits of graduate coursework completed at other institutions can be applied toward a UW-Green Bay graduate degree. Individual programs may accept fewer credits.

Documents substantiating certain course work should accompany the program plan to the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies, if appropriate. These may include:

  • Documents of transfer credits accepted by the student's committee.
  • Petitions for changes in graduate program requirements.

Thesis/Professional Project

The project and the formal paper that documents it are distinctive to the UW-Green Bay graduate program. All students complete a thesis/project working with their major professor and committee or a professional project supervised by an adviser. The project provides an opportunity for graduate students to focus and apply their course work and make a public contribution to knowledge. Successful completion of a thesis or professional project is a clear indication of a student's ability to define, investigate, and solve problems.

Thesis/Professional Project Proposal

The proposal is a formal document that provides an overview of the planned study. It must include an explanation of the research problem, issue, or situation to be addressed, its relevance or application, the methods and resources that will be used in completing the project, and a list of references cited.

To prepare the proposal, students in the Applied Leadership for Teaching and Learning or Environmental Science and Policy programs should use the Guidelines for Preparing the Proposal provided by the Office of Graduate Studies. Students in the Management and Social Work programs will be provided guideline materials in the classroom. A copy of the thesis proposal guidelines and form GR-2 are available on the Office of Graduate Studies website (www.uwgb.edu/graduate).

After a student has completed the minimum number of course work credits required by the degree program, he or she prepares a proposal. The thesis committee or the professional project adviser must approve the proposal at a formal meeting. For students in the Applied Leadership for Teaching and Learning and Environmental Science and Policy programs, a copy of the approved proposal and the signed GR-2 form are sent to the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies for final approval and inclusion in the student's official file.

Also at this time or no later than completion of 21 credits, the student files an Application for Graduation with the Registrar's Office listing the earliest possible graduation date.

Thesis/Professional Project Registration

Students in the Applied Leadership and Environmental Science and Policy programs may only register for thesis/professional project credits with an approved proposal on file. Enrollment for thesis/project credits may be for one to six credits per term and may be spread over several terms as appropriate. A student must be registered for a minimum of one thesis/professional project credit during the term in which a thesis defense is scheduled. Students in the Management program may register for professional project credits upon completion of at least 24 credits.

Thesis Report Preparation

The thesis is a formal document and must be prepared to conform to UW-Green Bay library requirements and graduate program standards. In preparing the thesis, students should carefully follow the Style and Format Requirements Master's of Science Thesis. Copies of the guidelines and of the GR-3 form are mailed to students along with notice of proposal approval. It is the student's responsibility to prepare and present the final document in an acceptable format. Several writers' guides and style manuals are commercially available. To prepare the professional project report, students should carefully follow the guidelines provided by respective course instructors.

Thesis Defense

The thesis defense is an open event attended by the candidate's graduate committee and other interested individuals. The defense permits the committee to ascertain whether the student has adequately understood and seriously attempted to solve a significant problem.

The student must file form GR-3 to schedule the thesis defense with the Office of Graduate Studies at least one week in advance of the proposed date. The thesis defense or project presentation (Environmental Science and Policy; Applied Leadership for Teaching and Learning) should be scheduled during one of the academic terms unless other specific arrangements are acceptable to all parties.

Prior to the thesis defense or project presentation, the Office of Graduate Studies will provide form GR-4 to the major professor. After a satisfactory defense/presentation, the major professor and committee members sign the form and return it to the Office of Graduate Studies. A dissenting signature must be accompanied by an explanation from the dissenting member. The Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies may withhold approval of the thesis defense pending resolution of any differences. A candidate is considered to have passed his or her thesis defense or project presentation only after all issues have been resolved and the completed GR-4 is returned to the Office of Graduate Studies.

Thesis Report Deposition

Upon satisfactory conclusion of the thesis defense and an acceptable graduate summary from the Registrar's Office, the candidate is required to supply two copies of his or her thesis, including two copies of any audio/visual components and one additional copy of a title page and abstract, to the Office of Graduate Studies. After the major professor signs the document, the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies reviews and signs it or returns the document for revision. Two copies of the final document are forwarded with a binding fee ($12 per copy, but subject to change), collected from the student, to the UW-Green Bay library as a permanent record of the student's scholarly or creative activity. If the candidate wishes, additional copies provided by the student may be bound at the same per copy fee, payable to UW-Green Bay. Diplomas are not awarded until all these requirements have been met.

COMMENCEMENT

UW-Green Bay holds two commencement ceremonies each year. These are at the end of the fall and spring semesters. For graduation in the fall, a student's defense must be scheduled and held before the last day of fall semester classes. For spring, the defense must be scheduled and held before the last day of spring semester classes. An Application for Graduation must be completed and submitted to the registrar prior to November 1 and April 1, respectively. Students who will complete their work during the summer may participate in the preceding spring ceremony.