Programs of Study

A program of study (POS) is a required document that lists the courses a student must take to complete their degree. A POS is required for students in all degree and certificate programs. The POS must list at least the same number of credit hours as required by the program’s description in the Graduate Catalog. The Graduate School can provide waivers for students in those programs that have lowered the number of required hours since the student was admitted.

Please refer to our sample POS [PDF]

A program of study must meet minimum credit hour requirements:

  • Doctoral programs must require a minimum of 15 total credit hours of research and research support coursework.
  • A Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree must require a minimum of 90 credit hours post bachelor’s degree.
  • A Ph.D. degree in a program that requires a master's degree for admission must require a minimum of 60 credit hours post-master's.
  • A Ph.D. degree in a program that allows a specialist’s degree for admission must require a minimum of 36 credit hours post-specialist’s.
  • Doctoral degrees in clinical or practitioner programs must require a minimum of 84 hours if admitting students post-bachelor’s degree. If admitting students post-master's degree, a minimum of 41 new hours are required.
  • A specialist degree must require a minimum of 32 credit hours (post master's degree).
  • A master's degree must require a minimum of 30 credit hours.
  • A graduate certificate must require a minimum of 12 credit hours.

A combined bachelor’s–master's program must require a minimum of 142 credit hours, including a minimum of 30 graduate credit hours (courses numbered 500 and above). It must include an undergraduate major of at least 30 hours and must satisfy all undergraduate degree requirements, including General Education. (Please note: the requirement of an undergraduate minor is waived for combined bachelor’s -master's program students.)

Students must ensure that all courses on their program of study meet the Time Limitation for degree completion and Residency Requirements. Any changes to the program of study that depart from the required courses listed in the Graduate Catalog must have the signed approval of the Department Head/School Director of that Program. Students who fail to obtain a program of study approved by their advisor assume full responsibility for their registrations and for satisfying University, Graduate School, and departmental program requirements. An approved program of study must be on file in the Office of Records and Registration, 303 Pierce Hall, allowing the office to complete a degree audit once a student applies for graduation. Students should schedule an appointment with their academic/graduate advisor to set up a program of study as soon as possible within their first semester.

Please see section XXV. Residency Requirements for information regarding the minimum number of credit hours a graduate student must take once accepted and enrolled in an EMU degree program to receive a graduate degree from Eastern Michigan University.

Skip Section Navigation