Graduate School

Matthew J. Baasten, Ph.D, interim dean


The Graduate School currently offers 12 degree programs in seven academic areas. The courses, curricula, and faculty are provided cooperatively by the Pamplin School of Business Administration, the Shiley School of Engineering, the schools of Education and Nursing, and the College of Arts and Sciences. Each program is administered by a director within its school or department. These directors, together with the dean of the Graduate School, comprise the Graduate School Council. The Graduate School was established in 1950 and has awarded over 10,000 degrees since then, including 191 doctoral degrees.


The Graduate School offers rigorous educational experiences in a personalized learning environment. The University of Portland’s graduate curricula are designed to provide candidates with the cutting-edge knowledge and skills they need to provide insightful, global, and ethical leadership within their professions, both now and into the future. Graduate programs at the University of Portland have the following objectives:

[I] Expand and deepen applied and conceptual knowledge in a particular discipline or profession, while also fostering the interdisciplinary exploration that can uncover new knowledge at intersections of disciplines and professional fields.

[II] Offer an environment that supports degree completion and candidate success through rigorous and relevant coursework, personalized attention, and manageable program length.

[III] Foster instructional experiences that are embedded with professional ethical practices promoting respect, justice, sustainability, and other Catholic social teachings, while also wrestling with the paradoxes.

[IV] Be accessible to all exceptionally qualified candidates.

[V] Connect respective industries, employers, and professions to the classroom to encourage entrepreneurship, professional internships, and practica.

[VI] Employ innovative approaches that demand team-work, develop leadership through expert service, and require the highly developed communication and collaboration aptitudes necessary for global work and living.

[VII] Conduct research and develop performance and capstone projects that integrate multiple domains of knowledge and promote lifelong learning and habits of mind.

Programs of Study

The degrees currently offered in the Graduate School are:


Executive M.B.A. in Nonprofit Management (E.M.B.A.)

Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.)

Master of Science in Finance (M.S.)

Communications Studies:

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Master of Science (M.S.)


Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)


Master of Arts (M.A.)

Master of Education (M.Ed.)

Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.)


Master of Engineering (M.Eng.)


Master of Science (M.S.)

Doctorate of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.)


Master of Arts in Pastoral Ministry (M.A.)

Academic Regulations

The academic regulations listed in the opening section of this University Bulletin also apply to graduate students with the following modifications:

  1. No student may register for more than 12 semester hours of credit in a semester without the consent of the dean of the Graduate School and the program director.
    1. The grade of C is the lowest grade that carries with it graduate credit. Courses receiving lower grades (e.g. C-) will not carry graduate credit, but will be included in the student’s cumulative grade point average (G.P.A.) calculated according to the point system described in the University Academic Regulations (V. Grades and Credits).
    2. Only courses in which a grade of C-, D+, D, or D- has been received may be repeated at the University of Portland for academic credit. In such cases the new grade and credit will replace the original in the calculation of grade point average; however both courses and grades will remain on the permanent record, with the original course denoted by the symbol RP.
  2. Students who receive an IP in Thesis 599 or a graduate course are normally expected to comply with the academic regulation that the work be completed within one year. However, in exceptional cases the dean of the Graduate School may, upon recommendation of the graduate program director, extend the period of time which a student has to complete his or her thesis or the course and receive a grade.
  3. No course or practicum numbered above 499 may be taken on a “pass/no pass” basis for hours required toward an advanced degree except Thesis 599.
  4. Students may not use credits obtained by challenge or advanced placement toward the hours required for an advanced degree.
  5. Thirty semester hours of courses numbered 500 and above are the minimum requirements for a master’s degree. (Consult the individual programs for the precise requirements as some programs require more than 30 hours.)
  6. Students must have a cumulative G.P.A. of 3.00 to earn a degree.
  7. A student must maintain a G.P.A. of 3.00 to remain in good standing. A student who is not in good standing will be given specific conditions by the program director. If these conditions are not fulfilled, the student will be dismissed from the Graduate School by the dean of the Graduate School.
  8. Master’s degrees requiring 30 to 36 semester hours must normally be completed within a period of five years. Master’s degrees requiring 37 or more semester hours must normally be completed within a period of six years. In exceptional cases these periods may be extended by the dean of the Graduate School upon recommendation of the graduate program director.
  9. Students completing a master’s degree with a thesis requirement must complete the thesis in compliance with regulations adopted by the Graduate School Council. Copies are available from the Graduate School or the graduate program director for your degree program.
  10. Transfer of credits:
    1. With the approval of the dean of the Graduate School, a maximum of nine semester hours may be transferred to a master’s degree program from an accredited institution if they are acceptable for graduate degree credit in the source institution. (Consult the individual graduate programs for details as some allow less than nine hours of transfer credit.) However, credits or courses used to satisfy the requirements of any other degree cannot be applied to the fulfillment of a subsequent degree in the Graduate School.
    2. Only those courses graded B or better are eligible for transfer.
    3. No credits transferred from another institution may be applied to a master’s degree if they were earned in courses that began more than five years before the date that will appear on the degree.
    4. Graduate credits earned through distance learning will be considered for transfer, subject to the same criteria as traditional courses with respect to quality, relevance, and timeliness as well as the accreditation of the source institution, including the provisions of regulation 10[g] below.
    5. Normally credits should be transferred at the time of the applicant’s original acceptance into a graduate program so they may be integrated into the planning of a program. A request for a later transfer may be denied.
    6. To transfer graduate credits taken at another university during the time of a student’s graduate work at the University of Portland requires written authorization before such work is taken.
    7. Where the University of Portland graduate program has a special accreditation, the source institution may be required to have the same or an equivalent accreditation.
    8. M.B.A. students who qualify for admission may transfer more than nine hours of graduate credit under provisions of multilateral admission agreements.
  11. Students may not accumulate more than nine hours of credit in the nonmatriculated status. After nine credit hours, a student must seek admission to a program in order to have the hours apply to a degree.
  12. A student who expects to receive a degree at the end of a semester or the summer session must apply for the degree within the time limits set by the registrar.
  13. Unless excused by the dean of the Graduate School, the candidate for a master’s degree is expected to attend commencement exercises at which the degree is conferred.

Student Classification

All students, regardless of classification, must apply for admission.

Graduate degree student is one who has been accepted into a program leading to a master’s degree.

Postbaccalaureate student is one who is admitted to the University for postbaccalaureate work but not into a degree program. Admission as a postbaccalaureate student does not imply acceptance to a graduate degree program. Regular admission to the Graduate School must be obtained from the dean of the Graduate School before any work will be accepted towards a graduate degree.

Nonmatriculated graduate student is one who applies for admission in order to register for credit but who is not a degree-seeking student at the University. Enrollment as a nonmatriculated student implies no commitment on the part of the University regarding regular admission at a later time. Credits earned while in the nonmatriculated classification do not necessarily apply toward requirements for a degree should a student later be accepted into a degree program. Regular admission to the Graduate School must be obtained from the dean of the Graduate School before coursework will be accepted toward a graduate degree.

Admission as a nonmatriculated student requires that the student submit a nonmatriculated student application to the Graduate School along with a $50.00 application fee, relevant transcripts, and other requested documents prior to their initial registration.

Accumulation of more than 9 hours of graduate credit in the nonmatriculated status is not permitted, and any such student who accumulates 9 semester hours is required to seek regular admission to a degree program in keeping with procedures determined by the Graduate School.

Post graduate student is one admitted into a certificate program or graduate coursework extending educational experiences beyond the master’s degree.

Doctoral student is one who is fully admitted to a doctoral degree program.

Application and Admission

  1. Correspondence concerning admission to the Graduate School under any classification should be addressed to the Graduate School, 5000 N. Willamette Blvd., Portland, OR 97203-5798; phone: (503) 943-7107; toll free: (800) 227-4568; e-mail:
  2. Before applicants will be considered for admission as degree students the following must have been received or met:
    1. Completed and signed application forms (online or paper)
    2. The non-refundable admission fee. (Graduates of the University of Portland are exempt from this fee.)
    3. An official transcript sent directly to the University of Portland Graduate School showing all college credit attempted and/or completed from each college and university previously attended. Transcripts from foreign universities must be in English or be accompanied by an English translation certified as authentic. Evidence of possession of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution is required. All official transcripts submitted become the property of the University and cannot be copied or returned to the applicant.
    4. Three recommendations from persons knowledgeable of the applicant’s ability. Two should normally be from former professors. Note: The M.A.T. program requires four letters of recommendation and a résumé. The M.Ed. program requires three letters of recommendation, a résumé, and a copy of the teaching certificate. The post master specialty program requires two letters of recommendation, a résumé, and a copy of the teaching certificate. Nursing requires two letters of recommendation.
    5. Evidence of scholastic background that indicates ability to do satisfactory graduate work. Usually this is considered to be a B average.
    6. Appropriate score on a standardized test. The Graduate Management Admission Test is required in business. For the school of education's M.A.T. program a Basic Skills Test, and the Oregon Educator Licensure Assessment Test (ORELA) and the appropriate PRAXIS Specialty Test (if applicable) are required. M.A.T. applicants who wish to teach at the Early Childhood, Elementary and Middle levels must take the NES EAS Elementary Education subtest I and II (multiple subjects). For all other programs the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination is required. The Test of English as a Foreign Language is required for applicants whose native language is not English. A minimum score of 550 is required except for the master’s programs in business administration (where the score is 570) and communication studies and music (where the minimum score is 600).
    7. A statement of academic or professional goals, appropriate to the specific program.
    8. Specific admission requirements, including undergraduate G.P.A., of individual degree programs are listed in the individual programs’ information.
  3. Admission to a program leading to a master’s degree is given only by the dean of the Graduate School when the following conditions are fulfilled:
    1. The documentation required above is complete.
    2. A positive recommendation is received from the graduate program director of the department or school involved. (A personal interview may be required.)
  4. Applications should be complete not later than one month before the student’s beginning class at the University to provide time for adequate consideration and program arrangement. Some programs have a fixed deadline for submission of all materials.
  5. Students who fail to register in the first semester after admission, or who in the regular year-round program fail to register for a semester, or who in a summer-only program fail to register for a summer session, must seek re-admission from the dean of the Graduate School.
  6. The graduate student who desires to change to a different degree program must submit a formal change of program application to the dean of the Graduate School.
  7. If offered a seat in the AEM UP or M.A.T. programs, a non-refundable $500 deposit is required and will be credited towards the first semester tuition.

2012-2013 Tuition and Fees

See 2012-2013 Tuition and Fees