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College of Arts and Sciences

Degree and Course Requirements

Degree Requirements

Students accepted into the IPFW Communication graduate program before Fall 2011 are required to complete 33 credits in approved courses. Beginning in Fall 2011, all students are required to complete 36 credits in approved courses.  Students enrolled in the IPFW Department of Communication graduate program are able to earn either a Master of Arts (M.A.) or a Master of Science (M.S.) in professional communication. The M.A. is recommended for those intending to pursue a doctoral program. Some students, particularly from abroad, have specific reasons for earning an M.S. Both degrees are awarded by Purdue University.

International students are generally required to take (at least) 9 credit hours to fulfill their student visa requirements. If an international student has a teaching assistantship, that requirement is met with 6 credit hours.

Graduate students who earned an undergraduate degree from IPFW normally may not repeat 500-level Communication graduate classes to fulfill the Masters degree. Degree candidates may petition the Graduate Director in certain limited cases, such as when the student can show that the course topic will vary considerably. In such instances, the burden of proof is on the student, who may assemble a dossier for consideration by the Graduate Director. The dossier may include copies of syllabi, a statement from the instructor, and other materials showing that the course will be taught in a significantly different way.

Graduate students must create an Advisory Committee. Committees will be comprised of graduate faculty members, and should be composed after you have completed 15-21 credits. You are encouraged to choose individuals who are familiar with the subject of your synthesis paper, and the chair should be the person most knowledgeable about the area or the approach you are writing about. This committee will evaluate your synthesis paper. The chair of the committee will administer comprehensive examinations, as well.

Once you have your advisory committee and 15-21 credit hours, you need to complete and have approved a Plan of Study. The plan of study is simply a list of courses you have completed and plan to complete along with the names of your committee. It must be signed and approved by your committee, the Graduate Director and the Graduate Dean at Purdue, West Lafayette. If the plan of study is not approved by two semesters before you intend to graduate, you will not be allowed to graduate. Once you are ready to complete the Masters Plan of Study form (GS-6), make sure you carefully follow these important instructions.

To be considered for graduation from an IPFW program, you must submit an application for graduation. If you do not apply for graduation by the deadline posted, you may not be considered for honors, your name may not appear on the program, and your spring degree may not be available at Commencement.

If you are finishing your degree... Graduation Application Deadline
Fall Session June 1
Spring Session November 1