Sunday, August 14, 2016

Degree Application Deadlines and Instructions

NOTE: If you will complete your Thesis at the end of the current quarter but have not filled out a degree application, or if you forgot to select a declared emphasis (if applicable) on your degree application, contact your MFA Advisor as soon as possible. (If you will complete your degree in December 2017 (at the end of fall quarter), your degree application was due by May 30, 2017.) 

DEGREE APPLICATION INFORMATION:
The Application for Degree is an online form accessible in the student portal that must be filled out and submitted toward the end of your degree program. Every MFA student must complete a degree application form in the student portal by the appropriate deadline, following the instructions below. Students who have officially declared an emphasis must select the appropriate emphasis on the degree application form in order to have that info appear on their transcripts.

DEADLINES TO SUBMIT DEGREE APPLICATION:

-If you will complete your degree in March 2018 or in June 2018 (at the end of winter quarter or spring quarter 2018), you must complete the electronic degree application form in your student portal no later than December 30, 2017.

-If you will complete your degree in September 2018 (at the end of summer quarter 2018), you must complete the electronic degree application form in your student portal no later than March 30, 2018.

-If you will complete your degree in December 2018 (at the end of fall quarter 2018), you must complete the electronic degree application form in your student portal no later than May 30, 2018.

DETERMINING YOUR DEGREE COMPLETION DATE:

-Check your Transcript in your student portal to see the number of credit hours you have completed to date. (Note that the auto Degree Audit function in the portal does not always accurately reflect MFA classes and may note some as Electives, but all MFA classes do count toward your degree. Your MFA Advisor will individually approve all degree audits.)

-The MFA in Writing degree requires 48 credit hours. The last 3 credit hours taken must be the Graduate Thesis class. (Additional classes can be taken along with the 3-credit Thesis. At least 6 credit hours are required for financial aid/student loan eligibility.)

-Estimate the number of credit hours you plan to take each quarter. (Each online class is 3 credit hours; each on-campus cluster is  9 credit hours.) We offer four quarters per year. This will determine your projected date of graduation.

-If you have taken graduate classes at other universities that are applicable to the MFA degree, email your MFA Advisor to request a transfer evaluation. Up to 9 credit hours of applicable graduate coursework may be applied to your MFA at LU. The graduate transfer credit process is not automatic and must be requested in writing via email to your MFA Advisor. This should be done as early as possible to allow time for the transfer credit to be approved and applied to your LU transcript, so that you can accurately determine your projected date of graduation.

-If you have declared an emphasis area for the MFA degree, the total number of credit hours required remains the same, but you must have taken at least 27 credit hours in your emphasis area, you must include at least one of the required Foundational classes for your emphasis area as part of your 48 credit hours of coursework, and your Thesis must focus on the emphasis area.

-Contact your MFA Advisor with any questions about your degree plan. As of mid-July 2017, all MFA students whose last names begin with A through L are advised by Beth Mead; all MFA students whose last names begin with M through Z are advised by Gillian Parrish.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR COMPLETING THE ONLINE DEGREE APPLICATION:

-In your student portal, you will see a menu item in the left column called My Forms. You will click this link to access the online degree application (Application for Degree form).

-Type your name exactly as you'd like it to appear on your diploma.

-Choose your MFA Advisor (Beth Mead for A-L or Gillian Parrish for M-Z) as your advisor.

-Choose the degree MFA in Writing. Do NOT choose Creative Writing (this is an undergraduate focus for the BA in English degree).

-If you have officially declared an emphasis (by contacting your MFA Advisor to request this, filling out the required paperwork, returning the paperwork to your Advisor, and receiving all approvals), then you must choose your emphasis area from the drop-down list on the application form (Fiction, Poetry, or Creative Nonfiction).

-Choose the graduation date that reflects when you will complete your degree requirements. This is the end of your final quarter, when you will complete your Thesis. The Thesis must be taken in your final quarter in the program. For example, if you plan to do the Thesis in winter quarter (Jan-March), your graduation date is March 30. The only months that are options for MFA students to complete their degrees are March, June, September, or December, since we are on the quarter system.

-Note that your graduation date/date of degree completion is not the same as the date of the graduation ceremony (Commencement). Two ceremonies are held each year. The May ceremony is open to students who complete their degrees in March or June. The December ceremony is open to students who complete their degrees in September or December. It is not required to walk in the ceremony. The MFA Reading event is usually held the night before graduation, to allow students who are travelling from out-of-state to participate in both events. Reading event information will be sent to students and alumni, who must respond to request participation. Contact your MFA Advisor with any questions.

APPLICATION FEE:
Once your degree application has been approved, your student account will list the $125 graduation fee. This is a flat fee for all Lindenwood University students and does not reflect whether or not you plan to walk in the graduation ceremony. Contact the Business Office with any questions.

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