2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Academic Policies

Student Responsibility

It is the responsibility of each student to take the initiative to plan his or her own program and to meet graduation requirements in accordance with the University’s policies described in the catalog. As changes occur, it is the student’s responsibility to remain current. Advisers will assist the student in the task.

Student Access to Records

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended, (FERPA, also known as the Buckley Amendment) is a federal law which allows students the right to inspect their education records and provides that colleges and universities will maintain the confidentiality of those records.

The law basically says that no one outside the institution shall have access to the student’s education records nor will the institution disclose other than Directory Information from those records without the student’s written consent, except in an emergency.

A copy of the full text of the law is available at the Registrar’s Office. The only non-directory information California Lutheran University releases to a third party is academic standing, released only to parents of dependent students placed on academic probation or suspension.

Campus personnel who are allowed access to educational records are those who are acting in the student’s educational interest. This group is defined by the University to include personnel in the Registrar’s Office, Enrollment and Student Life, Financial Aid, Institutional Research and university officials with a legitimate educational interest as determined by the registrar. Faculty advisers are included under the latter category.

California Lutheran University’s FERPA policy allows university employees to release Directory Information to anyone, but we will not release information on students in bulk for commercial purposes (credit card agencies, etc.).

Annually, California Lutheran University informs students of their rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended (FERPA, also known as the Buckley Amendment).

The Act was designed to protect the privacy of education records, to establish the right of students to inspect and review their education records and to provide procedures to correct inaccurate or misleading information in those education records through the hearing process. Students also have the right to file complaints with the FERPA office concerning alleged failures by the institution to comply with the Act.

The Act allows students the right to inspect their education records and provides that colleges and universities will maintain the confidentiality of those records.

At Cal Lutheran, no one outside the institution shall have access to a student’s education records without the student’s written consent with the exception of parents who claim the student as a dependent for tax purposes. The University will inform parents if there has been a change in the student’s academic standing, specifically if the student is placed on probation or suspension or is removed from those statuses. A copy of the full text of the law is available in the Registrar’s Office.

California Lutheran University's FERPA policy allows university employees to release Directory Information to anyone, including Scholarship donors, but we will not release information on students in bulk for commercial purposes (credit card agencies, etc.).

The items defined as Directory Information at California Lutheran University are:

  • Name (includes Preferred First Name)
  • Address (City and State only)
  • E-mail address (California Lutheran University assigned only)
  • Birth Date (date of birth is only released to official agencies as required for matching student records or as a validation of positive identification of a student when furnished by a person making an inquiry)
  • Photographs and video recordings of students are permitted if there is not personally identifying information of the class or of the students in the class
  • Dates of attendance
  • Degree date
  • Degrees awarded or anticipated; with honors and major
  • Previous institution most recently attended (generally speaking released for athletes only)
  • Participation in recognized campus activities or s

The only circumstances under which Cal Lutheran will disclose other than Directory Information is in cases of emergency or personal safety and to notify parents of changes in their student’s academic standing. In all other cases, the institution may release only the items identified above.

Students have the right to have Directory Information withheld completely. This means the University will not release any information from education records, including the items listed above, without prior written consent. If a student withholds directory information, the student's name will not appear in the student directory. To request Directory Information be withheld, complete a “Request to Opt Out of Directory Information” form and file it with Academic Services. The form is in effect through the end of an academic year; it must be re-filed annually.

At Cal Lutheran, a school official may access education records as long as they have a legitimate education interest. A school official has a legitimate education interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. A school official is a person employed by Cal Lutheran in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research or support staff position (including law enforcement personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom Cal Lutheran has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, collection agent, degree conferral or enrollment verification processing agent, placement sites for internships or other similar placements); a person serving on the Board of Regents; a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks; consultants, volunteers or other outside parties to whom the University has outsourced institutional services or functions that it would otherwise use employees to perform. As allowed within FERPA guidelines Cal Lutheran may disclose education records without consent to officials of another school, upon request, in which a student seeks or intends to enroll. Questions about access should be directed to the Registrar.

Statement on Academic Freedom

It is fundamental to the health of an academic institution and ultimately to the health of a society at large that individual persons and groups of persons exercise their responsibility and freedom to search for the truth and to speak the truth as it is discovered.

In a collegial community, the corporate person of the university institution and the persons of the faculty, administration and the student body bear mutual responsibility to exercise professional competence and to extend to one another the trust and respect which foster an environment for the exercise of academic freedom.

California Lutheran University endorses the principles of academic freedom. CLU’s complete policy on academic freedom is contained in the Faculty Handbook.

Statement on Academic Honesty

The educational programs of California Lutheran University are designed and dedicated to achieve academic excellence, honesty and integrity at every level of student life. Part of Cal Lutheran's dedication to academic excellence is our commitment to academic honesty.

Students, faculty, staff, and administration share the responsibility for maintaining high levels of scholarship and academic integrity on campus. Any behavior or act which might be defined as 'deceitful' or 'dishonest' will meet with appropriate disciplinary sanctions, including a grade of 'F' in a course, suspension, or dismissal from the university.

Definition of Academic Dishonesty

A general definition of academic dishonesty is "any behavior or act that implies an intent to make someone believe what is not true, as by giving a false appearance." Since intellectual honesty is central to the academic enterprise, students and faculty must accept and respect the principle of acknowledging information, ideas and language that have been borrowed from someone else. Plagiarism (any failure to document sources), cheating, unethical computer use, and facilitation of academic dishonesty are examples of behavior which will result in strict disciplinary sanctions.


Plagiarism occurs whenever a source of any kind has not been acknowledged. Every student must understand the correct procedures for acknowledging and identifying sources of borrowed material. The basic rule is this: Give credit where credit is due. In other words, if you include any material which is beyond your firsthand experience, and which is not common knowledge of scholars in your field, you must cite your source in a way that your reader can (a) find the source from the information in your reference and (b) immediately determine which information is your source's contribution to scholarship and which is yours. Specifically:

  • If you quote directly, using three or more words from the original source, you must place quotation marks around the quoted material and cite the source.
  • If you paraphrase (rephrase in your own words), you must still cite your source, including a full documentation of reference; the best procedure is to acknowledge that you are paraphrasing.
  • If you present material that may be common knowledge, but your arrangement or discussion of that material is borrowed, you must cite that source in a reference.

If you have any questions about proper ways of documenting sources in footnotes or bibliography, consult the department in which the course is taught. Departmental assistants, and/or the Writing Center are prepared to assist students in proper documentation forms.

Cheating: Cheating covers a wide range of academically dishonest behaviors including but not limited to:

  • Turning in someone else’s work as your own
  • Purchasing assignments or papers and claiming that work as your own
  • Giving another student your work to pass off as his or her own
  • Aiding other students by surreptitiously providing answers in an exam 
  • Copying another student’s answers in an exam setting, even if that student willingly provided the answers
  • Using unauthorized material or resources (paper or electronic) when taking an exam.  This includes use of cell phones or any other electronic resource that may either contain downloaded information or be able to access information electronically
  • Distributing material unauthorized by the course instructor about any exam or assignment
  • Asking a tutor to do assignments, papers, or exams for you
  • Providing dishonest rationales or excuses when requesting special circumstances, or treatment which results in delayed or incomplete course requirements. 

Academic Bribery: Soliciting, offering or accepting money, gifts or favors in order to alter or influence grades.

Deception:  Providing false information when engaging in formal academic work including research deadlines, assignments, and tests.  This includes providing false identification, false disability information in order to gain additional time when taking tests, providing false excuses when seeking deadline extensions, and falsely claiming to have submitted assignments. 

Fabrication: Providing false data, information or citations in any academic work.  This includes altering or making up data for use in experimental research and providing fake or altered quotes or bibliographic references for research. 

Facilitating Academic Dishonesty: Intentionally helping students engage in acts of academic dishonesty.  This includes improper grading of written/oral exams, grade fraud, negligence regarding conditions that foster cheating, or knowingly abet/allow cheating. 

Identity Fraud: Asking another individual (this need not be a student – it can also be an external source for academic papers) to assume one’s identity for any academic purpose or offering to assume another student’s identity for an academic purpose.  This can be done in exchange for money, gifts, or favors.

Multiple Submissions: Submitting work done in a previous class with the claim that it is new and original.  While previous work may provide the basis for subsequent work, the prior work must be made known to and approved by the instructor.

Paper Mills:  Providing papers to suppliers of academic papers for sale (‘Paper Mills’) is no different than providing papers to other students to pass off as original work, and is viewed as a form of Facilitating Academic Dishonesty.  Papers published in ‘Open Access Journals’ or otherwise made available to the public with the sole intent of publication are acceptable.

Sabotage:  Engaging in any activity that hinders or prevents another student from being able to complete their work.  This includes altering or deleting resources or disrupting experiments.  This can also include creating a condition that hinders the ability for other students to take tests.

Unethical Computer Use: Unethical computer use includes the use of any technology (which can include computers, cell phones, tablets, watches, etc.) or computer software (programs, documentation, data bases) in violation of copyright law. It also includes unauthorized use of computer software or hardware, such as use for private business, breaking access codes, and pranks resulting in damage to software or hardware, breach of privacy or confidentiality, or violation of copyrights.

Procedure for Disciplining Student Dishonesty

Whenever a member of the faculty or other university official has reason to believe that a student has committed a breach of academic honesty, the faculty member or official will confront the student, allowing the student an opportunity to speak on his/her behalf. If, in the opinion of the faculty member, a breach of academic honesty as defined above has clearly occurred, the faculty member or official must file a Report of Academic Dishonesty form with the Vice President for Academic Affairs. The form will be placed on file. This procedure should be completed as soon as is reasonably possible.

First Offense

If the Vice President for Academic Affairs determines this is a first offense, the disciplinary action will be handled by the professor. Possible sanctions may include an 'F' on the assignment or an 'F' in the course.

Policy Statement Pertaining To Graduate Students

Due to the serious nature of such an offense and the resulting questions regarding student ethics, doctoral programs may assign sanctions including academic probation, suspension from the university or dismissal from the university after a first offense with the approval of the Department Chair/Program Director, the Dean and the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Sanctions will be determined by reviewing each specific breach of academic honesty, the context of the breach and the nature of the breach.

Second Offense

If the Vice President for Academic Affairs determines this is a second offense, in addition to the sanctions imposed by the professor, the Vice President for Academic Affairs may choose to impose additional sanctions such as academic probation or suspension from school.

Third Offense

A third report of academic dishonesty will automatically result in the student's suspension or dismissal from the university.


An allegation of cheating or an imposed sanction may be appealed to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, who will then constitute a special evaluation committee using the same procedures identified for grade challenges. Such a committee will be composed of three faculty,  one appointed by each of the following:

  • Dean of the School/College
  • Chairperson of the Faculty Affairs and Development Committee
  •  Vice President for Student Affairs

The committee will choose its own chairperson. The committee will solicit written statements from all concerned parties and evaluate all available evidence. The committee will report its recommendation to the Vice President for Academic Affairs whose decision is final.


In the event that a student drops or withdraws from a course after an act of academic dishonesty has been or is in the process of being fully adjudicated, the procedures above must still be followed, including the filing of a report with the Vice President for Academic Affairs.  The professor should note in the report that the student has withdrawn or dropped the course.  If the sanctions would have resulted in an “F” in the course, then the student will be re-enrolled in the course and assigned a grade of “WF”.

Attendance at Classes

Regular attendance at all classes is essential. Students are expected to be punctual, do the work assigned and not be absent without good cause.

Registration Information

Course Load

Requirements for graduation are measured in terms of semester credit hours. Normally, each credit hour earned will require one hour of class time per week for 15 weeks during the semester (or its equivalent).

The class hours per week are appropriately adjusted for the 11-week and 8-week online programs. The student spends two or three hours in preparation for one hour of class time.

Most courses are assigned three credits. Six or more credits is considered full time in all graduate degree programs. Four to five credits are considered ¾ time. Three credits is considered half time. Less than three credits is considered less than half time.

PLTS: Twelve credits is considered full time.  Six credits is considered half time.  Less than six credits is considered less than half time.

Registration Procedures

Registration procedures are outlined on the Registrar’s Office website at http://www.callutheran.edu/registrar. Students who are enrolled in an online program should also refer to instructions on the website at https://www.callutheran.edu/cif. To be officially enrolled in class, students must have their financial standing cleared by the Business Office and admission requirements cleared by the Graduate and Adult Admissions Office. Student registration is contingent upon remaining in good academic standing.

PLTS registration procedures are subject to revision as program management migrates to SelfService. Please refer to the PLTS website for current registration procedures: http://www.plts.edu/

Course Additions

Students may not add courses after the second class meeting of the semester. To add a course after initial registration, students should submit an Add/Drop form to the Registrar’s Office or use SelfService which can be found at http://www.callutheran.edu

Withdrawal from Courses

Withdrawal means withdrawing from one or more courses or separation from the University for the remainder of the semester. The Registrar provides the proper withdrawal forms which incorporate all the necessary procedures to clear the records at the time of withdrawal. Proper withdrawal protects the student’s record, which remains on file in the Registrar’s Office.

  1. Students may drop courses or withdraw from the University through approximately the 10th week of the semester or equivalent percentage of an 8 or 11 week term (specific date listed in Academic Calendar) with a grade of W.
  2. After the last date to withdraw, students may not officially withdraw from classes or from the University, except for medical reasons. Medical withdrawal forms are available through the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs.
  3. With the privilege of admission to California Lutheran University, students accept the responsibility of clarifying the records (including financial records) if they withdraw from a course or from the University before the end of the semester.
  4. Students who do not complete a course and do not officially withdraw from the University will receive a grade of UW for the semester (counted equivalent to a grade of F in the GPA). The university does not automatically drop students who register for a course and then choose not to attend.

Note: Academic withdrawal deadlines do not correspond to tuition reduction deadlines. Tuition reduction policies are outlined in the section on University Costs. The financial obligation for withdrawing from the University is usually severe.


A student may audit a course with the approval of the instructor. The student will earn no credit and receive no grade and will not be required to complete assignments or take examinations. The student may not claim credit or challenge the course for credit at a later date. Adequate attendance for recording of “AU” on the student’s transcript must be verified by the instructor. The charges for auditing are listed in the section of this catalog titled University Costs. Auditing a class does not grant access to a course's Blackboard page.

Grading Policies

Grades and Grade Points

The cumulative grade point average (CUM GPA) is computed by dividing the total number of grade points earned by the total number of credits attempted, based on CLU and transferable course work. The CLU grade point average (CLU GPA) is computed by dividing the total number of grade points earned by the total number of credits attempted, based on CLU course work. CLU policy does not allow for rounding up decimals when computing the GPA. When the GPA is recorded, it is truncated at the third decimal.

Only courses with grades of “C” (2.0) or better will be counted toward the total number of credits required for the degree. Courses resulting in a grade of C- or below must be repeated. A “B” (3.0) average is required for continued enrollment in the graduate program and for receiving the master’s degree.

Students in the PsyD Program: Grades of B- or better are considered passing.

Graduate grades and grade points are assigned according to the following grading scale:

Grade   Grade points per attempted credit hour earned
A 4.0
A- 3.7
B+ 3.3
B 3.0
B- 2.7
C+ 2.3
C 2.0
C- 1.7
D+ 1.3
D 1.0
D- 0.7
F 0.0
WF 0.0
UW 0.0

The following grades are not used in computing the GPA:

Grade   Grade points per attempted credit hour earned
IN Incomplete No grade points, no credit given
IP In Progress No grade points, no credit given
PR Progressing No grade points, credit given
P Passing No grade points, credit given
NC No Credit No grade points, no credit given
FC Failed Comprehensive Exam No grade points, credit given
W Withdrawal No grade points, no credit given
AU Audit No grade points, no credit given
NR No Report No grade points, no grade report submitted by faculty

A grade of “IN” (Incomplete) may be assigned only in the case of a student who, for illness or other circumstances beyond his or her control, has missed a final examination or major piece of work. A student may not make up the Incomplete by repeating the course. Make-up work must be evaluated by the instructor who assigned the original grade of Incomplete. If not made up within one year’s time, an “IN” automatically becomes an “NC.” A student may petition in writing to extend an “IN” beyond one year if there are extenuating circumstances.

“IP” (In Progress) is given for theses, practica, internships and courses wherein the work has been evaluated and found to be satisfactory to date, but the assignment of a grade must await its completion. “IP” carries no credit until replaced by a permanent grade. The “IP” grade may be replaced by the appropriate final letter grade within one calendar year from the start of the class. “IP” grades that have not been resolved within that time frame or by the time the student graduates will convert to a final grade of "F" (undergraduate) or "NC" (graduate).

A grade of "PR" (Progressing) is intended for use in dissertations for the doctoral program in Psychology.  The Progressing grade grants credit but reflects the work completed on the dissertation to date and not the final dissertation. "PR" is the default grade for all dissertation courses. The "PR" grade remains on transcripts and only requires a change to Pass for PSYD-704 (successfully defended dissertation proposal) and PSYD-7XD (dissertation completion).

Academic Probation and Disqualification

Academic Probation

A minimum 3.0 CLU GPA and cumulative GPA are required of all students enrolled in a graduate program or enrolled in the teacher preparation program. Students whose CLU or cumulative GPA falls below 3.0 will be placed on academic probation. Students on academic probation must bring their CLU GPA and cumulative GPA up to 3.0 in the following 15-week semester.  Students in 8-week and 11-week programs are given two terms to bring their CLU GPA and cumulative GPA up to 3.0.

Students in Programs in the Graduate School of Psychology: Any single grade below a B- or No Credit in any course is considered failing and will result in academic probation and the convening of a faculty academic review meeting. Academic probation ends when the failed course has been repeated and passed.

Students in the Graduate School of Psychology Programs:  Please refer to the policies in either the "Doctorate in Clinical Psychology" or the "Psychology Master's Programs" sections of this catalog for additional probation, remediation, and/or dismissal criteria that are program specific.

Students in Graduate Programs in the School of Management: A grade below a B- in any foundation course is considered failing.  This will result in academic probation.  Students may not repeat a foundation course more than once.

Students in a PLTS Program: A grade below a C is considered failing.  This will result in academic warning or probation.  Students may not repeat a core course more than once.

Academic Suspension

The following classes of students may be placed on academic suspension:

  1. Students on academic probation, who fail to recover their CLU and cumulative GPA to 3.0 with in the next 15-week semester, or within two terms in 1-week or 8-week programs.
  2. Students in programs in the Graduate School of Psychology who receive a second course grade below B- or No Credit during the lifetime of their program or who fail to meet the terms of their remediation plan.
  3. Students in programs in the Graduate School of Psychology who receive a grade of F.
  4. Students in graduate programs in the School of Management, who receive a grade below B- in any foundation course a second time.
  5. Students who fail to fully participate in the Academic Support program.
  6. Students who have been reinstated following suspension that fail to meet all readmission conditions specified for that individual at the time of readmission.

Students on academic suspension may not take courses at Cal Lutheran. Students who have been suspended from the University must submit a letter of appeal to be considered for reinstatement. All students who have been reinstated following suspension will be subject to rules that apply to students in their second semester on probation.

In order to establish the conditions that may lead to readmission, the letter of appeal must include the following:

• A written rationale for readmission

• A tentative plan for success if readmission is granted

• Transcripts of all work completed since suspension

All petitions for readmission must receive final approval from the Provost.

Academic Disqualification

At the discretion of the appropriate committee, the following classes of students may be academically disqualified:

  1. Students on academic probation, who fail to recover their CLU and cumulative GPA to 3.0 with in the next 15 week semester, or next two 11 week term or 8 week terms;
  2. Students in programs in the Graduate School of Psychology who receive a second course grade below B- or No Credit during the lifetime of their program or who fail to meet the terms of their remediation plan.
  3. Students in graduate programs in the School of Management, who receive a grade below B- in any foundation course a second time.
  4. Students who fail to fully participate in the Academic Support program;
  5. Students who have been reinstated following suspension that fail to meet all readmission conditions specified for that individual at the time of readmission.

If, following readmission on probation, a previously suspended student is suspended for a second time, that student is subject to academic disqualification.  

Recommendations regarding student dismissal are made by the appropriate committee to the Dean. The Dean reviews any recommendation to dismiss and if in agreement, writes the letter of dismissal and sends it to the student (copying other relevant offices).

Students in the PsyD Program:  Recommendations regarding student dismissal are made by the appropriate committee to the Dean.  The Dean reviews any recommendation to dismiss and if in agreement, writes the letter of dismissal and sends it to the student (copying other relevant offices).

Students have one week to appeal academic disqualification.  The appeal must be filed directly with the Provost.  After one week, academic disqualification is not subject to appeal. Students on academic disqualification may not take any further courses at Cal Lutheran. 

Repeated Courses

Students may repeat a course, unless otherwise specified, regardless of the grade received. Grades of C- or lower, however, cannot be used to meet degree program requirements and must be repeated. In calculating the GPA, grades for the initial attempt and all subsequent repeats will remain on the student’s academic record; however the higher grade will replace the lower grade in calculating the GPA. Credit for the course will be given only once and all repeated courses must be completed at CLU.

Students in the Graduate School of Psychology Programs: PsyD and Master's program grades below a B- must be repeated, and Master's program grades of No Credit must be repeated.

Students in the MBA Program: A grade below B- in any foundation course must be repeated.  Foundation courses may only be repeated once.

Students in a PLTS Program: Grades of C- or below must be repeated.

Grade Reports and Transcripts

Grades for all courses, including those that may have ended prior to the last day of the semester, are processed at the semester’s closing date. Grades are available online through SelfService at www.callutheran.edu. Grade reports will not automatically be mailed to students.

 Official transcripts of a student’s complete record must be requested on-line through www.callutheran.edu/transcripts.  Students may request either paper or electronic copies for a fee.  For electronic copies, California Lutheran University has appointed Credentials Inc. as the designated agent for processing and sending official electronic transcripts on behalf of California Lutheran University. The PDF transcript that is produced using this service contains the identical information as the printed transcript and can be certified as unaltered by uploading the file to the company’s website that is provided during the delivery process.  Credentials Inc. has been granted the authority to deliver all such electronic transcript requests on behalf of California Lutheran University and respond to any inquiries regarding the transactions.

The University reserves the right to withhold grade reports or transcripts if the student has unmet financial obligations to the University.

Grade Challenges and Changes

The normal presumption in the administration of grades at California Lutheran University is that the instructor alone is qualified to evaluate the academic work of students in his or her courses and to assign grades to that work.

If a student believes that a grade was assigned in error, he or she should approach the instructor immediately. If the instructor believes that the grade was assigned in error, he or she will submit a grade change form identifying the reason for the change. Grade Changes must be submitted within one semester following the term in which the initial grade was earned.

If a student believes that a particular grade was assigned in a manner that was arbitrary or unjust or that crucial evidence was not taken into account, the student may file a grade challenge. The challenge must be presented in writing to the instructor by the end of the semester in which the disputed grade was given. If an agreement cannot be reached, then the student may present a written appeal to the department chair or program director who is the instructor’s immediate supervisor. If the conflict cannot be resolved at the departmental level, then the student may appeal in writing to the appropriate dean, who will follow the process described in the Faculty Handbook.

Transfer of Credit

Students may petition to transfer up to six semester credits of graduate course work taken at other colleges and universities with institutional accreditation from regional accrediting bodies as defined by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation to their program at CLU. Nine units may be transferred if the student has completed a previous master’s degree. Transfer work must be:

  1. graduate level (applicable to a graduate degree at the institution granting credit)
  2. completed within program completion time limit set by the School.
  3. completed with a grade of at least “B”
  4. documented by official transcripts from the institution
  5. listed on a “Petition for the Transfer of Credit”
  6. approved by the appropriate program director and dean. Transfer of credit from CLU to another institution requires approval of the receiving institution.

Students in the PsyD Program: PsyD students may transfer 9 units of acceptable coursework and may waive an additional 15 units.

Transfer of credit or course waivers are not granted for practica, internships, theses, dissertation, or elective courses. We consider these courses fundamental to the program’s character and must certify that students have received training according to those standards. Additionally, some topics in clinical psychology require ongoing training and development throughout our professional careers. These include ethics and cultural competency. As such, course transfers and waivers are not accepted for PSYD 763 – Ethics and PSYD 782 – Multicultural Psychology

Student in a PLTS Program: Please visit the PLTS website for a complete listing at: http://www.plts.edu/

Second Master’s Degree

A person seeking to earn a graduate degree at CLU who has already earned a graduate degree may petition to transfer up to nine credits of equivalent course work into the second degree program. The candidate must present satisfactory official evidence of course work completed in the first graduate program that would equate to the courses exempted in the CLU program. The final determination of degree requirements will be made by the program director and the appropriate dean.

Modification of Academic Requirements

Students who wish to modify courses or program academic requirements may submit a “Graduate Petition Form,” available on the CLU website at www.callutheran.edu/students/academic-services/forms, to the appropriate graduate office. All requests are reviewed by the appropriate program director and dean. Waiving a course does not grant credit. It simply means the student does not have to enroll in the course and may substitute an elective course, if necessary.

Students in the School of Management Graduate Programs: Students in School of Management graduate programs may be approved to waive course credit based on merit.  Students should contact their program to pursue this option.  A maximum of six credits may be waived.

Independent Study

Independent study is research in an area not covered by course work listed in the CLU catalog and is always listed with the appropriate department number as “Independent Study.” Approval of independent study must be obtained by completing the appropriate request form available from the Registrar’s Office. The form must be signed by the student, instructor and appropriate program director and submitted to the Registrar’s Office by the last day to add a class. Standards and work requirements for independent study are the same as those for a course which is part of the regularly scheduled curriculum. Non-degree seeking students are not eligible to enroll in an Independent study.

Students in the PsyD Program: Independent studies are not permitted in the PsyD program to substitute for any course that is required for graduation. Additionally, students are not permitted to arrange tutorials with instructors to repeat failed courses. Failing a course requires one to retake the course when it is offered even if that means delaying internship or graduation.  Students must take required courses at the times that they are offered and must take courses in their intended sequence.

Academic Limits

A student’s program is limited to a maximum combination of 12 credits of course waivers, transfer of credit, credit by examination, tutorial work and independent study.

Students have seven years to complete a master’s degree program after initial registration for courses, except for Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary (PLTS) which does not have a limitation.  Under special circumstances, prior to the end of the program completion time limit, students may petition for an extension of time. A student is considered to not have been continuously enrolled if she or he does not register for classes for one calendar year. Continuous enrollment or re-entry into a program requires normal progress toward a degree. Students who do not enroll continuously must meet with a university adviser prior to subsequent enrollments to determine if changes in the program have occurred. These students must also complete, with their adviser, a new program advisement form and admission application. Such students are subject to new program requirements and a review of course recency and transfer credit.

Student in a PLTS Program: Please see Transfer of Credits for more information regarding limits on the PLTS webpage.

Comprehensive Examinations

Comprehensive exams are part of the degree requirements of some master’s programs. In addition, several programs include a comprehensive exam as an optional degree requirement. Given several times each year, these exams permit students to demonstrate their mastery of the knowledge and skills presented throughout their degree programs.

Students should see their program advisers for additional information about test schedules, formats, and preparation.

Thesis or Project

Students in the graduate programs in Education, Psychology, and Public Policy and Administration may be required or may elect to do a thesis or project as part of their degree program. Students registering for 599, 599A or 599B have one year to complete all thesis work. If more than one year is required, a student must re-register for the 599 Thesis course.

To be eligible for graduation in a given semester, a student must submit a minimum of three signed copies of the thesis or project for binding at least 15 days prior to the end of that semester.

Completion of a Degree Program

Students may graduate at various times during the year, depending on the program in which they are enrolled. MBA, MPPA, and MSCS students may graduate any one of four times during the year: May, August, November or February. Students in the Education or Psychology programs may graduate in May, August or December. The commencement ceremony is held once each year in May. Candidates for August graduation may participate in the May ceremony if they are within six credits of degree completion. Upon completion of all degree requirements, students are mailed an official copy of their transcript listing the degree earned. This is normally sent eight weeks after the semester ends. Diplomas are usually available within eight to 12 weeks of the end of the semester.

Two semesters prior to the semester in which candidates plan to complete the master’s degree program, they should complete the following:

  1. Make arrangements to take the comprehensive examination, if their program requires one
  2. Submit the “Application for Degree” to the Registrar’s Office. Refer to the Registrar’s Office website at www.callutheran.edu/registrar for application deadlines.
  3. Meet with an adviser to ensure all requirements are met (optional).
  4. Education students must complete an exit interview with the appropriate program director.

Students in the PsyD Program:

  • For students wishing to walk in the ceremony for the master’s degree, students must have successfully completed all Year 1 coursework (fall, spring, and summer) and the Year 2 fall coursework, be on schedule to complete the PsyD Master’s Competency Exam, and be enrolled in Year 2 spring semester courses.
  • Students may walk in the ceremony for the doctoral degree if by March 15 the student has enrolled in or completed internship, passed PSYD 733 Dissertation Research Seminar 3, and a received a statement from their dissertation chair that the student is highly likely to defend the dissertation by August or has already successfully defended the dissertation.

Athletic Eligibility

Students with a Cal Lutheran and cumulative GPA at 3.0 or above are eligible for intercollegiate competition and/or participation in any activity that requires absence from classes. Students must be enrolled full time unless they meet the terms specified in the NCAA final semester policy. Eligibility shall be further dependent on conformity to the declared standards of deportment at Cal Lutheran.