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Combined Bachelor's-Master's Programs

In a combined bachelor's/master's program, some graduate level courses initially taken for undergraduate credit may also be applied towards the graduate credit requirements for a master's degree program at the University of Maryland. A bachelor's/master's program may be developed for an individual student, or it may be a structured program.

Individual Student Bachelor's/Master's Program

A program may be developed by an individual student in consultation with his/her academic advisor. Such a program is available only to students whose academic performance is exceptional. It is to be developed according to the individual career interests and goals of the student and should be an integrated learning experience rather than merely the completion of a certain number of graduate and undergraduate credits. The proposed program requires the approval of the Directors of both the undergraduate and the graduate programs involved and of the Dean for Undergraduate Studies and the Dean of the Graduate School . Normally no more than nine credits of graduate courses applied to the bachelor's degree may be counted also for graduate credit in an individual student's program. Courses to be double-counted must be at the 600 level or above and must be passed with at least a "B-" grade. Individual study courses, internships, or courses given as credit by examination are not eligible. The credits to be double-counted will be designated as applicable to the graduate program of study after the student receives the bachelor's degree and matriculates in the Graduate School.

Structured Bachelor's/Master's Program

A structured bachelor's/master's program is a clearly defined curriculum combining an existing undergraduate program and an existing master's program at the University of Maryland, offered by the same or by different departments. It is designed for students whose academic performance is exceptional and should be an integrated learning experience rather than merely the completion of a certain number of graduate and undergraduate credits. A proposal for such a program should be submitted by the colleges housing the academic programs concerned and requires the approval of the Graduate Council, the Dean of the Graduate School , the Senate PCC Committee, and the President.

Necessary features of a structured bachelor's/master's program include the following:

  • Specific requirements for admission to the combined program that speak to the exceptional performance of the students to be admitted. At a minimum, students accepted for the program must be clearly admissible to the graduate program portion.
  • The program should be designed so as not to unduly delay the completion of the bachelor's degree. Taking graduate credits should not unduly limit the breadth of the student's experience through premature specialization.
  • All requirements of the bachelor's program and of the master's program must be completed before the student may receive both degrees. Where appropriate, graduate courses taken while an undergraduate may substitute for courses required in the undergraduate major program.
  • The students may be offered deferred admission to the Graduate School at the end of the junior year program, subject to completion of the senior year program in a timely fashion and with a specified level of achievement. Formal admission to the Graduate School will require completion of all requirements for the bachelor's degree.
  • The credits to be double-counted will be designated as applicable to the graduate program after the student receives the bachelor's degree and matriculates in the Graduate School .

A structured bachelor's/master's program may normally include up to nine credits of graduate level courses that are counted both for the bachelor's program and the master's program. More than nine double-counted credits may be allowed if both of the following conditions are satisfied:

  • The additional graduate credits applied to the undergraduate program do not unduly limit the breadth of the student's experience through premature specialization.
  • The master's program requires more than thirty credits.