The Graduate School Manual

The Graduate School Manual


This manual has been designed to provide information and guidance to graduate faculty as they advise graduate students and interact with the Graduate School. This document also represents current Graduate School policies and procedures.


The Graduate School

Under the direction of the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School, the Binghamton University Graduate School provides administrative coordination for graduate education and programs and is responsible for academic, financial and institutional matters of concern to graduate students. The Graduate School Office (Couper Administration Building 108; 607-777-2077; answers general questions concerning the University and interprets Graduate School policies and procedures. Information regarding funding, fees, incomplete grades, add/drop procedures, degree completion, and academic deadlines can be obtained from the Graduate School Office or from the graduate director or faculty advisor of the student's program.

Graduate Council

The governing body of the Graduate School is the Graduate Council. The Graduate Council, chaired by the Dean of the Graduate School, consists of 21 faculty members (elected from among designated graduate faculty) and four graduate students (designated annually by the Graduate Student Organization). The Graduate Council's functions include establishing regulations for the Graduate School, reviewing and approving proposed graduate courses and programs, developing standards for the admission and matriculation of graduate students, and recommending priorities for the allocation of graduate support resources.

Directors of Graduate Studies

Directors of Graduate Studies (DGS) are responsible to the graduate faculty of their program and to the Dean of the Graduate School for the recruitment, admission, advising, and monitoring of progress of students in their programs. Consequently, they have an important effect on the quality of graduate programs at Binghamton University.

Directors of Graduate Studies are appointed by the graduate faculty within a program. The DGS is normally a tenured faculty member, holding the rank of associate professor or above, and must be a full member of the graduate faculty as defined in Article II of the By Laws of the Graduate School.

The DGS of a graduate program reports directly to the Dean of the Graduate School or to the Dean's designee on all matters relating to graduate education in the program. The DGS is responsible to the Dean of the Graduate School for the administration of the specific graduate program, including record keeping, administration of graduate program funds, admission decisions, appointment of TA/GA/RPA/fellowship recipients, program requirement changes and new programs, advising and registration, appointment of advisory and examination committees, and other degree requirements related to the graduate program. Additionally, the DGS serves as the focal point for dissemination of information from the Graduate School and for the gathering of information.

Directors of Graduate Studies serve as program advisors to each student until the student has a thesis or dissertation director. The DGS then recommends that the thesis or dissertation director be appointed the student's advisor or committee chair. In areas where theses are not required, the DGS is the advisor of all students not writing theses unless the graduate program stipulates otherwise. All student schedules must be endorsed by the student's advisor. If it is desirable, a DGS may recommend that additional advisors in the program be appointed. A DGS who will be absent from the University for a significant portion of a semester must inform the faculty within the unit and the Dean of the Graduate School so that a substitute may be appointed.


Application Fee

Academic Test Scores

Application Deadlines

Types of Admission: Degree Programs

Deferral of Admission

Dual-Degree Programs

Admission: Non-Degree/Non-Matriculated Status

Materials Needed for Consideration for Admission

Administrative Procedures for Admission

Admission Deposit


International Student Admission

English Proficiency Exams

International Student Financial Statement

Award of a Second Degree in the Same Field

Switching From One Department/School to Another Within the University

Enrollment and Registration


Residence Requirement

Dissertation Registration

Continuous Registration and Leaves of Absence

Add/Drop Privileges


Incomplete Grades

Auditing of Courses

Transfer of Graduate Credits

Full-Time Working Toward Degree Status

Overload Policy


Determination of Academic Standing

Course Repeat Policy


Leaves of Absence

Graduate Students in Undergraduate Courses

Undergraduate Students in Graduate Courses

Non-Degree/Non-Matriculated Students

Academic Policies: Master's Degree

Advising and Guidance

Requirements for a Master's Degree


Master's Thesis

Graduate Application for Degree (GAFD)

Awarding of the Degree


Degree Conferral and Commencement

When Completion Letter is Needed

Checklist for Completion of Degree Requirements

Dual and Double Degree Programs

Double Counting Credits

Award of a Second Degree in the Same Field

Schedule of Fees for Processing of a Thesis

Academic Policies: Doctoral Degrees

Interdisciplinary Doctoral Programs

Admission to Doctoral Work

Beginning the Program

Requirements for a Doctoral Degree

Research Skills Requirements

Comprehensive Examination

Admission to Candidacy (for ABD Status)

Five-Year Limit for Admission to Candidacy

Dissertation Planning


Graduate Application for Degree (GAFD)

Dissertation Committee

Dissertation Defense

Outside Examiner

Final Oral Exam (Dissertation Defense)

Remote Participation in Dissertation Defenses

Preparation, Submission, and Binding of the Dissertation


Degree Conferral and Commencement

When Completion Letter is Needed

Checklist for Completion of Degree Requirements

Survey of Earned Doctorates

Schedule of Fees for Processing of a Dissertation

Academic Policies: Certificate

Types of Certificates

Stand-Alone Certificates

Add-On Certificates

Certificates of Completion

Guidelines for Preparing or Submitting a Thesis or Dissertation

Manual of Style

Sequence of Pages

Title Page

Copyright Notice

Committee Page

Table of Contents

Spacing and Margins


Page Numbering

Corrections and Hand Lettering

Illustrative Materials

Tables and Figures

Bibliography or References

Print Quality


Schedule of Fees

Thesis/Dissertation Template

Thesis/Dissertation Formatting Guide

Funding Policies and Guidelines

Required Paperwork

Terms and Conditions for Acceptance of Tuition Scholarships

Teaching/Graduate Assistantships (TAs/GAs)


Research Project Assistantships (RPAs)

Federal College Work Study Employment

Student Assistant Employment

Federal Financial Aid

Payment of Fees for ABD Students


Taxation of Stipends

Graduate Student Employees Union


Resources for Graduate Students


Graduate Student Conference Travel and Research Funding

Foundation Travel Grant

Emergency Loan

Guidelines on Graduate Student Rights and Responsibilities


Academic Evaluation

Financial Support

Requests for Waivers of Graduate School Procedures and Regulations

Grievances, Hearings and Appeals

Academic and Professional Conduct

Policy on Graduate Student Severance or Removal of Support

Monitoring/Modification of Guidelines on Graduate Student Rights and Responsibilities

Monitoring of Guidelines

Modification of Guidelines

Grievance Appeal Procedures

Definition of Grievance

Range of Grievance Appeal Committee Jurisdiction

Conditions of Grievance to the Appeal Committee

Initial Steps to the Formal Grievance Appeal Procedure

Consideration of Formal Appeal

Grievances Emanating from Units Administered through the Graduate School

Grievances in which the Vice Provost and Dean and/or Associate Dean of the Graduate School are Primary Parties

Right to Final Appeal

Academic Honesty

Binghamton University's Academic Honor Code

 The Graduate School's Role in Academic Honesty Cases

When an Academic Unit Resides within the Graduate School