Current Student Policies


This section contains policies that are applicable to graduate students in the Physical Sciences Division, including information on

The Student Manual is the official statement of University policies, regulations, and expected standards of conduct applicable to all students. Students are expected to be familiar with these policies.

In all instances, conduct involving a possible violation of University policies and regulations and other breaches of standards of behavior expected of a student in the Physical Sciences Division should be brought promptly to the attention of the PSD Dean of Students. The Physical Sciences Division follows the Area Disciplinary System outlined in the Student Manual.

Dean's Summons

From time to time, a Dean or their designee will require the immediate presence of a student to address a matter of genuine urgency. In such cases, the Dean or designee may issue a summons requiring the student to appear in person at a specified time and place, regardless of the student's other commitments. Failure to appear as required by the summons is a serious matter and may result in a restriction of registration or referral to an area Disciplinary Committee.

Divisional and Departmental Policies

In addition, PSD graduate students are required to comply with specific divisional, departmental, or program policies where such exist, including training in the Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR).

Academic Policies

Good Standing and Academic Probation Policy

Good Standing

In order to be in Good Standing in the Physical Sciences Division, students are expected to complete required courses, maintain GPA minimums, adhere to deadlines, and fulfill requirements as set out by each individual program or department. If a student has any questions about relevant degree milestones or maximum timelines for completion of requirements for a PhD or Master’s program, they are encouraged to contact the program directly or to reach out to the Dean of Students office at any time.

Students are expected to maintain Good Standing and make academic progress toward the degree throughout their graduate career.  If a student is deemed not to be in Good Standing based on the criteria outlined above, the student may be placed on Academic Probation upon the recommendation of the faculty in their program and approval of the department or program chair.

Academic Probation

Students on Academic Probation will be informed in writing about the expectations for how they may return to Good Standing and given a timeline for completion of those requirements, generally a minimum of one quarter.  A copy of this document, along with the student’s confirmation of receipt and acknowledgement of the terms of the probation letter shall be sent to the Dean of Students.

Students who are unable to meet the expectations outlined in the Academic Probation letter may not be permitted to continue in the program.

Disability Accommodations

The Divison's guidance on using disability accommodations and quarterly procedures can be found on the SDS Accommodation Process page

The University's policy on disability accommodations can be found in the Student Manual.

Student Disability Services (SDS) welcomes students to self-identify as an individual with a disability. SDS staff will engage with you in an interactive process to identify the necessary services and accommodations to ensure equitable access to University programs and services. Students can complete a request for an accommodation by submitting the online Student Disability Services Request Form.

If SDS determines that accommodations are appropriate they will provide the student with an Accommodation Determination Letter that states the approved accommodations. Copies are shared with the Dean of Students Office. The Dean of Students Office will assist with the implementation of accommodations.

For general questions about accommodations, please email

For questions about implementing your accommodations, please email Sierra Sterling, Assistant Dean of Students, Physical Sciences Division.

Family Life and Employment

Leaves of Absence

The University's policy on leaves of absence can be found in the Student Manual. 

From time to time, students may want or need to take a leave of absence from their studies in the Physical Sciences Division. If you are considering a leave of absence, please contact your Student Affairs Administrator in your department or the Dean of Students Office directly ( for information about next steps.

International students considering a leave of absence must consult with the Office of International Affairs in addition to working with their Department and the Dean of Students Office.

List-host Policies

  • Email messages must be related to the business and mission of the Physical Sciences Division.
  • Emails of a personal nature, such as notices of items for sale, lost or found items, and solicitation of goods or services are not allowed.
  • Messages that publicize or endorse causes (even a very good cause), such as relief efforts for victims of natural disasters or organizations seeking assistance that are not already associated with the University are not allowed.
  • List-host moderators have the right to withhold any messages that do not meet the guidelines set forth in this policy.

University Policies