Graduate Student Handbook

8.3 Pre-Candidacy Enrollment Policy

All doctoral students will be required to be enrolled in every semester pre-candidacy (summer session excluded) until graduation. At a minimum, students must be enrolled for at least 1 credit hour per semester, which may consist of credit(s) for coursework, pre-candidacy dissertation research, or Independent Study hours with the advisor. While the individual graduate programs will monitor the enrollment of all pre-candidacy students, it ultimately will be the responsibility of each student to ensure that they are meeting the enrollment provisions of this policy.

Pre-candidacy students who do not enroll in at least 1 credit hour in autumn and spring semester will be notified of the pre-candidacy policy in the College. If, after the student is notified of the policy, the student does not enroll, the student is withdrawn from active student status. A student whose status has been withdrawn will not be allowed to continue on in the doctoral program until reinstated. A hold will be placed on the student’s university record preventing any further registration or access to university resources. A student wishing to be reinstated to the doctoral program will need to petition the division or program and the GSC. The chair of the division or program and the GSC chair must approve the reinstatement. If approved, the GSC chair will send a formal request to the OSU Graduate School to allow the student to resume studies and register.

Leave of Absence
Pre-candidacy students who cannot continue in their doctoral program due to extenuating circumstances can request a Leave of Absence from their doctoral studies on a semester by semester basis for up to a maximum overall leave period of one year. While there are many situations upon which a leave can be requested, such as the birth or adoption of a child or a serious medical condition, a leave will not be granted with the sole reason of financial hardship.

The initial request for a leave should be submitted by the student to the chair of the division and then forwarded to the GSC chair. If the leave is approved at the program level, the GSC chair will formally request the leave in writing to the Dean of the Graduate School. A request for a leave needs to be submitted before the actual leave period begins. Verification of circumstances should be included as part of the leave request. If a leave is granted, the student’s pre-candidacy period will be paused until the student returns to continuous enrollment status.