Non-degree graduate status is used by students who are not pursuing a degree program. Typically, non-degree students take classes:
- For their personal or professional development
- To help them decide whether or not they want to pursue a degree
- While in the process of applying to a degree program
- Or when they do not meet the Minimum Requirements for direct admission into a degree-seeking master's program.
Students who are required by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services to be degree-seeking students are not eligible for non-degree status.
The application form for non-degree graduate status is at Graduate Admission → Prospective Students. Official transcripts are required; the GRE, TOEFL, and letters of recommendation are not. Applications for non-degree graduate student status are reviewed by the department's Graduate Admission Committee.
Non-degree graduate students can register for at most 9 credit hours per semester. They should consult with the Non-Degree Graduate Student Advisor on course selection and other matters relating to their academic program, especially if they are interested in eventually pursuing a graduate degree. Non-degree students should not fill out a Program of Study (Form 401 or 406), even if they plan to apply for degree-seeking status in the future.
Changing Status To Degree-Seeking
A non-degree graduate student who wants to become a regular degree-seeking student must apply through Graduate Admission and be accepted to a degree program. Simply taking courses does not confer degree-seeking status.
Non-degree students who meet the minimum requirements for a degree program can apply for degree-seeking status at any time, even during their first semester while non-degree. Students who do not meet the minimum requirements should follow the appropriate case below. Grades of "B" or better must be earned in all courses below.
Case 1: Students with a Bachelor's degree in CS and a GPA ≥ 2.5 / 4.0 but < 3.0.
- Apply for non-degree graduate status and take at least two 400- or 500-level CS courses*.
- Then apply for admission to the Master of Computer Science (not Master of Science in CS) degree program.
Case 2: Students with a Bachelor's degree not in CS and a GPA ≥ 2.5 / 4.0 but < 3.0.
- Apply for non-degree graduate status and take Deficiency Courses (CS 201, 401, 402) as necessary.
- Next take at least two more 400- or 500-level CS courses*.
- Apply for admission to the Master of Computer Science (not Master of Science in CS) degree program.
Case 3: Students with a foreign diploma not equivalent to a US Bachelor's degree and a GPA ≥ 3.0 / 4.0.
- Apply for Undergraduate Post-Baccalaureate (UBP) status (see Graduate Admission → Prospective Students) and take any necessary one or more 200- and 300-level Deficiency Courses. (Foreign students note: You cannot be UPB while on a student visa.)
- Next take at least two 400-level CS courses*.
- Apply for non-degree graduate status and take at least two 500-level CS courses.
- Apply for admission to the Master of Science in CS or Master of Computer Science degree program.
(*) Deficiency courses (in particular CS 401 and 402) do not count as 400-level courses.
Applying Non-Degree Coursework To A Degree Program
After admission into a degree program, a student can request that up to 9 credit hours of non-degree coursework be applied to the degree Program of Study. CS 201, 401, and 402 cannot be applied; see Transfer Courses for details.