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Welcome to Georgia Southwestern State University Graduate Studies!

We are pleased you have chosen to continue your education with us in a caring community of learning. Faculty and staff are dedicated to making your education a rewarding experience. For your convenience, Georgia Southwestern offers courses in the evenings and on weekends, on campus and on-line as well as the regular daytime graduate schedule. At the same time, we invite you to become actively involved in our community and to contribute to its continuing growth and quality programs.

The Orientation program presented here is designed to expedite your understanding of the procedures you need to follow to accomplish your goals. Please take the time now to read through this information, fill out the short evaluation survey, and send it electronically to the appropriate school.

We look forward to working with you and sharing your excitement about learning at Georgia Southwestern State University.


Once the acceptance letter is received, the student should contact his/her advisor as indicated on the letter. After consultation with the advisor, the student may register with the advisor or online through the Registration Academic Information Network (RAIN). See section below for additional information about RAIN.


Following registration for the term, students may add or drop courses during the published add/drop period.

  • Students must discuss adding or dropping courses with their advisors.
  • Students who enter courses after the first day of class are responsible for making up missed assignments.

After the published add/drop period, students may adjust their schedules only by "withdrawal." (See below.)

Students registered for courses that have the first class meeting after the designated add/drop period will be subject to the withdrawal from class policy or the withdrawal from the university policy below. Any orientation session for online or off-campus courses is considered the first class meeting for the course.


A student who wishes to withdraw from the University should confer with the Counseling Services Office for the proper procedure. A student who wishes to withdraw from an individual class should initiate action in the Registrar's Office.


Graduate students taking nine or more hours will be considered full-time. Graduate students may take a maximum of fifteen hours per term.


Grade Point Average for Graduate Students 
The grade point average (GPA) for graduate students includes all attempts on all graduate courses. It is a true cumulative GPA.

Policy on Repeating Graduate Courses 
Normally, a course is counted only one time for credit hours toward a degree. If a graduate student wants to repeat a course that falls into this category, the student may do so with the understanding that credit hours attempted and quality points earned in all attempts of the course will be counted in the student's grade point average (GPA) .

The grading system for graduate courses is as follows:

Grade Achievement Quality Points
A Above Average 4
B Average 3
C Unsatisfactory 2
D Poor 1
F Failing 0
I Incomplete 0
W Withdrawn 0
WF Withdrawn Failing (same as F) 0
WM Withdrawn for Military Purposes 0
S Satisfactory 0
U Unsatisfactory 0
NR No grade reported by instructor 0

A grade of I may be given in extenuating circumstances. If a grade of I is not removed before the end of the following term, it automatically becomes an F.
Students enrolled for thesis or directed study credit will receive an S for satisfactory performance or a U for unsatisfactory performance.
Students who for non-academic reasons stop attending class prior to midterm should withdraw from the course. A grade of "I" cannot be assigned in this situation.


Graduate students will not be allowed a retest on any final examination.


Students pursuing a Master's degree must maintain the following standards:

  1. A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better
  2. Only two courses with grades of C can be applied to the degree
  3. No course with a grade below a C will be applied toward a degree
  4. In any graduate degree program, all requirements, including course work at Georgia Southwestern State University, transfer credit and transient credit course work, must be completed within seven (7) calendar years from the date of initial enrollment in course work, without regard to the initial admission status and 
    without regard to credit hours earned.

Graduate students pursuing the Specialist degree must maintain the following academic standards:

  1. Maintain an overall graduate GPA of 3.25
  2. No course with a grade below a B will be applied toward the degree
  3. Only one course with a grade of C may be repeated one time
  4. Degree requirements must be completed within seven (7) calendar years from the time of first enrollment.

Please review other requirements for the School of Education. Students under review or dismissed will follow the same procedures as for the MasterÆs degree.

Each School with a Graduate Program may have other academic requirements; please check the School web site or the appropriate section of the current Bulletin.


Graduate students who fail to maintain academic standards will be placed under academic review at the end of the semester in which their status falls below the required standards.

  1. Students who have been placed under review will have early registration cancelled for the following semester. These students will not be able to register on-line and must report to their advisor.
  2. The Registrar will send the names of students under review to the Director of Graduate Studies, the Deans of each School, the Department Chairs with graduate courses,, and the graduate advisors.
  3. Students under review must meet with their advisor to develop a remediation plan to demonstrate how the student can be returned to good standing. The plan will be forwarded to the Dean of the School for his or her signature before being placed in the student's file. A copy of the form will also be sent to the Director of Graduate Studies and to the Graduate Admissions Specialist.
  4. At the end of the probationary semester, if the student is not successful in returning to good standing, the Dean of the School, in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies, will send a certified letter of dismissal to the student with a copy to the student's advisor, the Director of Graduate Studies, and the Graduate Admissions Specialist.
  5. Graduate students who are dismissed from the School may write a letter of appeal within ten class days from the receipt of the dismissal letter to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Students re-admitted on appeal will have one additional semester to return to good academic standing.
  6. Re-admitted students who do not return to good standing after the initial probationary semester will be dismissed from the program and the university.
  7. Dismissed graduate students may re-apply for admission to the program after three calendar years. If the student is re-admitted, he or she must meet all requirements for the degree program at the time of re-enrollment. The years completed prior to dismissal will count towards the total seven (7) years to complete the degree. Re-admission is not automatic. Each application will be considered individually.

Please review other requirements for the School of Education. Students under review or dismissed will follow the same procedures as for the Master's degree.


The Registration and Academic Information Network (RAIN) allows students to access their academic and financial records on-line. Students can view holds, midterm grades, final grades, academic transcripts, registration status, class schedules, curriculum sheets, as well as their financial aid status, account summaries and fee assessments. RAIN provides a convenient method for students and faculty to obtain information via the web. It is a secured site which is continually expanding to provide 24 hour access to all students. Information is routinely added to RAIN, including term-specific notices and deadlines. Students must access RAIN to receive grades for all courses since grade mailers are no longer produced. Instructions for access to RAIN can be found in the Registrar's Office.


Financial aid is available only for graduate students who have been officially admitted into a graduate degree program.  Georgia Southwestern State University has funds available for short-term loans to assist graduate and specialist students accepted under regular admissions status. Funds are generally available within one to five working days to qualified students who are currently enrolled in three or more graduate semester credit hours.


Georgia Southwestern State University provides access to programs and makes reasonable accommodations for the needs of students with disabilities. Information on how to access services can be found on the Disability Services webpage.


For the provision of an academic learning environment and the protection of students and the total University community, the University has adopted a policy for the administrative medical withdrawal of students. A student may be administratively withdrawn from the University when, in the judgment of the Vice President for Student Affairs in consultation with the Director of Counseling Services, the University physician, the student's parents or spouse, the student's physician, and appropriate health professionals, it is determined that the student suffers from a physical, mental, emotional, or psychological health condition which (1) poses a significant danger or threat of physical harm to the student or to the person or property of others or (2) causes the student to interfere with the rights of other members of the University community or with the exercise of any proper activities or functions of the University or its personnel or (3) causes the student to be unable to meet institutional requirements for admission or continued enrollment, as defined in the Student Conduct Code and other publications of the University.

Except in emergency situations, a student shall, upon request, be accorded an appropriate hearing prior to the final decision concerning his or her continued enrollment at the University.


The student ID card is the official means of identification for currently enrolled students. GSW student identification cards are made during the registration process at the beginning of each term and also on a specific day each week throughout the semester. In order to obtain an ID card, the student should contact the Office of Student Accounts at (229) 931-2013. A student must present the ID card in order to receive services at the University and at the request of a University faculty or staff member.  A $10.00 fee is charged for replacing a lost or stolen student ID card and is paid at the Business Office.


In order to help create an environment conducive to the furthering of educational pursuits and personal development, the University has established minimum behavioral expectations of students. These expectations, as well as student rights, are published in the Rights and Responsibilities section of the GSWeathervane. Also included in this publication is the University policy statement relative to implementation of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.

Each student is responsible for reading and observing the policies stated in the student handbook. The GSW Weathervane is revised annually and is made available to students in the Office of Student Life, located in the Marshall Student Center, and online at GSW Weathervane Student handbook.

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