Section 8.2: DUAL DEGREES

Graduate dual degree programs allow students to simultaneously pursue two graduate degrees at the same level (two master’s degrees or two doctoral degrees) or two graduate degrees at different levels (one master’s degree and one doctoral degree).1 Rather than sequentially completing first one degree and then the other, the amount of time required to complete both sets of degree requirements may be reduced by completing the programs in a coordinated way. Graduate dual degrees are distinct from combined degree programs, which allow students to simultaneously pursue two degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels (see policy on Combined Bachelor’s/Master’s Degree Program in the University Catalog for details).

Coursework common to both programs must constitute a well-planned and meaningful part of each program. A minimum of 60 percent of the total credit hours required for each degree program must be unique to that degree program, after which some courses may be double counted. The percentage of unique hours that must be completed in each degree program may vary from the 60 percent minimum only when the graduate dual degree program has been formally approved by the university.

Graduate credit transferred from another institution is limited to a maximum of 12 credit hours across both degree programs. Doctoral-level courses may be applied toward a master’s degree. Under no circumstances may master’s-level courses be applied toward a doctoral degree.

The maximum time limits for completing degree requirements and graduation apply to each degree individually (see the policy on Academic Standing–Graduate Student in the University Catalog for details).

Kent State University allows for both informal and formal dual degree programs, as described below.

Informal Dual Graduate Degree Programs

Students may simultaneously pursue two graduate degrees in different programs through an informal dual degree program (those that have not received official university approval). Informal dual degree programs offer students the flexibility to double-count some coursework, given that the two programs in question approve the arrangements. Once admitted to both degree programs, the student and advisor(s) must plan an integrated course of study. The plan must be approved by both programs and filed with the respective college(s). Culminating experiences (e.g. capstone courses, theses, dissertations, applied projects) and comprehensive examinations cannot be shared.

Formal Dual Graduate Degree Programs

A formal dual degree program is one that has been officially approved by the university. It has one curriculum established by two programs resulting in the completion of two graduate degrees at the same level. The following programs have been formally approved by the university:

1 This policy does not apply to dual concentrations. Students should contact their program coordinator if they are interested in completing dual concentrations. 

Reason for Policy

Policy enforces uniform standards for students seeking to pursue multiple degree programs, either concurrently or subsequently.

Procedures

Undergraduate Dual Degrees and Double Majors

Undergraduate students request the second major/degree through the Manage My Program application in FlashLine and review program requirements in their GPS degree audit.

Graduate Dual Degrees

An applicant who is not currently a graduate student at Kent State University must submit an application and pay an application fee for each program.

Students who are currently enrolled in one graduate program at Kent State University must submit an application and pay an application fee for the second program, indicating on the application that the intent is to complete both degrees rather than to transfer from the first to the second program.

If applying to a formal degree program (see list above), the applicant/student should indicate the specific dual-degree concentration in the program.

If admitted to an informal degree program, the student and advisor(s) must plan an integrated course of study. The plan must be approved by both programs and filed with the respective college(s).

Forms/Instructions

Additional Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

There are no FAQ associated with this policy.

Definitions

Degree: an award for completion of a course of study at a specific level designated by the customary titles of associate, bachelor’s, master’s, specialist or doctorate. Examples: Associate of Arts degree, Bachelor of Arts degree, Master of Arts degree, Doctor of Philosophy degree.

Double Counting: allowance of a course (and its credit hours) to count toward the requirements of two programs.

Double Major: combines two majors with the same degree; e.g., Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and the Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology.

Dual Degree: combines two majors with different degrees, e.g., Bachelor of Arts degree in Fashion Merchandising and Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Business Management.

Formal Dual Graduate Degree: dual graduate degree program that has been officially approved by the university; the curriculum for the dual degree is published in the University Catalog.

Informal Dual Graduate Degree: an agreement between two program areas to allow a student admitted to both degree programs to double-count specific coursework toward both.

Major: a set of requirements for completion of a degree as authorized by the Kent State Board of Trustees and the Ohio Department of Higher Education. Examples: Geography major, Nursing major, Public Health major.

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