PPM 70-600 Graduate Studies (Policy) on www.olc.edu

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                                               GRADUATE POLICY

                                       Graduate Studies Department

                                         Oglala Lakota College

                                        Kyle, South Dakota 57752

                                                                          5-06-2005, 03-28-13

                                 GRADUATE STUDIES DEPARTMENT POLICY

A.	Oglala Lakota College develops and offers graduate level degree programs and 
        courses in harmony with the mission and purposes of the College.  These emphasize 
        the Lakota perspective.
B.	Graduate Credits
        a.	All courses given credit towards a Master’s degree must be graduate level courses 
               (500 level or above)



I.         Graduate Studies Oversight:

   A.	Oglala Lakota College offers the following graduate degree: 

        Master of Arts in Lakota Leadership and Management.
        *Emphasis in Education Administration

   B.	The Director of Graduate Studies chairs the Policy and Review Committee 
        consisting of the Vice President for Instruction, four (4) academic department 
        chairpersons and three (3) faculty members with earned PhD’s.  The Policy 
        and Review Committee’s functions include:

        1.   Approval of graduate faculty members. 
        2.   Review of graduate degrees, programs, and courses.
        3.   Recommend new graduate degree programs and courses to Instructional 
             Affairs Committee. 
        4.   Review and recommend changes in graduate policies and procedures. 
        5.   Approve advisory board membership. 

   C.	Each degree program will have an advisory board composed of community 
	members, field professionals, full time faculty, and one graduate student 
	carrying at least three (3) credit hours.  Advisory boards shall:

        1.   Provide wolakolkiciyapi to each degree program.  
        2.   Serve as external advocates to the program.
        3.   Assist in fund raising for the program.
        4.   Provide advice to the Director of the Graduate Studies Department.
        5.   Meet at least biannually.
        6.   Consist of not less than five (5) or more than seven (7) members.

II.	Student Related

   A.	All students must submit the completed graduate application for admission 
        form prior to enrolling in graduate courses and have a bachelor’s degree or an 
        earned graduate degree from an accredited academic institution.

   B.	There are two (2) types of admission.

        1.   Degree Admission – a degree admission is intended for students seeking 
             one of the Master’s degrees.
             a.   Cumulative undergraduate 2.5 GPA or an earned graduate degree.

        2.   Non degree admission – a non degree admission is intended for students 
             seeking continuing education, certificate renewal, and personal enrichment.

   C.   Student Course Load

        1.   Full time status is six (6) graduate credit hours per semester.

III.       Degree Programs

   A.	Academic Progress

        1.   All graduate degree programs require nine (9) credit hours of Graduate 
	     Studies Department core courses.
        2.   All graduate students enrolled in a degree program must receive at least a 
             “B” in any course or will be placed in probationary status (student is 
             restricted to taking three (3) credit hours the next semester and must 
             receive a B or better). 
        3.   Students admitted to a graduate program may retake a core or required 
             course once.  If they receive less than a “B” grade the second time, they are 
             on academic suspension.  Suspended students must reapply for admission 
             to the Graduate Program.  
        4.   Graduate students are required to apply for degree candidate status after 
             completing nine (9) credit hours.

   B.	Class size
        Minimum class size for graduate courses is six (6), maximum size will be 
        fifteen (15) or, at the discretion of the Graduate Studies Director, class size 
        may be adjusted.

   C.	Grading
        The instructor will grant credit for the course when course objectives are             
        achieved and meet the rigor and competency of graduate coursework. 
	1.   Instructors will assign grades according to Oglala Lakota College 	
	     grading policy, (A-B-C-D-F).
	2.   Incomplete grades are strongly discouraged.  Only extreme, 
             extenuating circumstances should result in an incomplete grade which 
             must be made up before a student may enroll in additional graduate 
             level courses.
        3.   Students enrolling in flex numbered, non-approved degree program     
	     graduate courses are subject to approval through the appropriate 
	     department, Graduate Director, and Vice President for Instruction 
        4.   Change of grade (see policy 76-200).  Appendix one (1)
   D.   Attendance Policy
        It will be at the discretion of graduate faculty to establish their attendance 
        policy as stated in the course syllabus.  Due to graduate level course 
        expectations, it is recommended that faculty drop graduate students who miss 9 
        course contact hours.

   E.	Transfer Credits
        1.   Graduate students may transfer in six (6) graduate credit hours from 
             another accredited institution upon review of official transcripts by the 
             Director of the Graduate Studies Department. For time limits see policy 
             70-920. (see appendix B)

   F.	Independent Study

	Students may enroll for 3 graduate credit hours of independent study in their 
        final semester of coursework prior to enrollment in Community Action Project 
        (CAP)/ School Community Action Project upon approval of Graduate Studies 
        Director and appropriate faculty.  Students must maintain a GPA of 3.0 or 

   G.   Status Sheets
        Once a student enters a degree area, the student must obtain a status sheet for 
        that degree program from the counselor or academic advisor and keep it as a 
        permanent record of his/her progress.  Students should always consult their 
        status sheets when making course decisions and upon advisement of the 
        Graduate Studies Department staff. If a student fails to maintain enrollment for 
        one semester, and changes have been made to the status sheet, that student 
        must follow the new status sheet.  The Graduate Studies Office will retain 
        copies of the status sheets.	

IV	Graduate Faculty

   A.	All Oglala Lakota College full-time instructors and administrators with an 
        earned doctorate are eligible to become members of the graduate faculty.

   B.	Individuals without an earned doctorate may be approved by the Director of 
        Graduate Studies, provided they have demonstrated expertise in the area to be 
        taught and are able to supervise graduate research and or graduate level 

   C.	Full-time faculty of undergraduate departments are approved to teach graduate 
        courses by the Director of Graduate Studies or Vice President for Instruction in 
        consultation with the appropriate Department Chairperson.

   D.  	Adjunct graduate faculty are approved by the Director of Graduate Studies.

   E.	Scheduling:

        The Director of Graduate Studies, in coordination with the Vice-President for 
        Instruction, may schedule courses as part of special projects offerings to 
        designated constituencies.

   F.	Faculty Teaching Load:

        1.   One graduate course is equivalent to one and a half (1 ½)   
             undergraduate course teaching loads per semester.  The maximum 
             teaching load for a full-time graduate instructor is nine (9) credit hours 
             per semester.  The minimum teaching load for a full-time graduate 
             faculty member is six (6) credit; an approved non-teaching assignment 
             will constitute the remainder of instructor’s academic teaching load.  
             No overloads are allowed when teaching graduate courses fulltime.

        2.   Adjunct faculty instructors may teach one (1) graduate course per 
             semester and may not teach any other graduate course during that 
             semester.  Exception:  In the case that an interim class is taught an 
             adjunct instructor may teach a second class as long as the dates in 
             which the classes are taught do not overlap each other.  Compensation 
             is at 5/4 the associate rate for teaching undergraduate courses.

        3.   Full time faculty for other departments may teach one (1) graduate 
             course per semester upon approval from their respective department 

        4.   Overload may be considered only when a full time faculty has not been 
             approved to teach a graduate course as part of undergraduate teaching 
             load.  (Full time faculty may teach one (1) graduate course (nine (9) 
             hours undergraduate 

V.	Student Grievance Policy
	The grievance procedure set forth herein is designed to provide a method to resolve 
        differences excluding grievances regarding grades (76-200).  Time lines are to be 
        adhered to unless all parties involved in the grievance agree to modifications.

	A grievance is defined to be a claim (request or complaint) by a student not covered 
        under the Personnel Complaints and Grievance procedures.

	Student Grievance Procedure

	Step 1: Student hereafter referred to as grievant, will submit a written grievance 	
		within ten (10) working days of the incident to the Director of Graduate 	
		Studies with proper documentation and stated outcomes.

	Step 2: Director of Graduate Studies will attempt to resolve the issue by calling a
		meeting with the concerned parties.  This meeting will be called within five 
		(5) working days of receiving the written grievance.

	Step 3: If the issue is not resolved at this level, the grievant will take it to the Vice 
		President of Instruction.  The Vice President for Instruction will attempt to 
		resolve the issue by calling a meeting with the concerned parties.  This 	
		meeting will be called within five (5) working days of receiving the written 
		grievance from the student.

        Step 4: If the issue is not resolved at this level within five (5) working days, the 
                grievant will take it to the “Appeals Committee” which consist of one member 
                each from the Graduate Advisory Board, student membership, graduate 
                faculty, and Policy and Review Committee.

	Step 5:	If the issue is not resolved at this level within five (5) working days the 	
		grievant may make written submission to the President who must rule on the 
		issue within ten (10) working days.

	Step 6:	If the issue is not resolved at this level within 10 working days, the grievant 
        	may request that the President’s Secretary place this on the agenda of the next 
                Board of Trustees Personnel/Grievance Committee.

   A.	In the event the grievance involves the Director of Graduate Studies,
        the Vice President of Instruction will assume the role of the Director 
	in this process.

   B.   Student can have representation at their own expense.

VI.	Academic Dishonesty

To promote the value of honesty, plagiarism by a student will result in a hearing 
for immediate dismissal from graduate studies.  

The Director of Graduate Studies will call a meeting within ten (10) days after 
receiving written complaint for plagiarism by the faculty member.  A committee 
that consists of the Director for Graduate Studies, full time graduate faculty 
member, Graduate Policy Review Committee member, and Vice President of 
Instruction will hear the complaint.  The student will be informed in writing by the 
Director for Graduate Studies of the Committee decision within five (5) days.

There will be no appeal from a finding of dismissal.



   1.   The instructor of each course shall be satisfied that the student has achieved 
        competency in expected course objectives if credit is to be granted.  Grades and 
        assessment of students for credit work shall be the prerogative of the approved and 
        assigned instructor within the grading policy of OLC.

        A.   The assigned instructor shall normally be the sole judge of the quality of student work 
             and grades.

        B.   If an instructor becomes unavailable before completion of the course or of giving 
             grades, another instructor may either complete the course or grade by special 

   2.   Change of Grade

        A.   Changes of grades occur only upon written notification to the Registrar by the 
             assigned instructor.  A grade becomes permanent and cannot be changed after two 
             semesters have passed from the end of the semester in which the grade was 

        B.   Grades given by an assigned instructor may be changed only by written notice to the 
             Registrar by the same instructor.

        C.   If the instructor is no longer available, the student must consult with the appropriate 
             department chairperson.

   3.	Grade Grievances

        Students with a grievance over a grade that has been assigned them by a faculty 
        member, may avail themselves of the following process to ensure that a careful review of 
        the grade and the basis for it in the instructor's syllabus has been provided.  However, in 
        the end, it must be clear that only the faculty member can change the grade given.  
        Students need to understand that grades have to represent a professional judgment on 
        the level of academic performance and that hardship factors should not lead to a lowering 
        of standards for student performance.

        A.   The first step is for the student to request a meeting with the faculty member to 
             present their case for a different grade than that assigned.  If the faculty member 
             finds they had overlooked some work, not added correctly, been unfair, etc.  he/she 
             can submit a Change of Grade.  If not, and the student is not satisfied, the student 
             may proceed to step two.

        B.   If not satisfied with or unable to arrange step one, the student asks the Graduate 
             Studies Director to arrange a meeting with the faculty member, and the Vice 
             President for Instruction (within 12 weeks).

I.   The student and the faculty member are then to give each of these people a copy 
     of documentation of their case and the reasons for their actions.  The syllabus 
     should be a key reference in each case.

II.   If the Director of Graduate Studies and the Vice President for Instruction agree 
      with the grade assigned by the faculty member, the grade stands and no further 
      action is warranted.

III.   If the Director of Graduate Studies and/or Vice President for Instruction come to 
       a conclusion with the instructor that a change of grade is called for, the 
       instructor will submit a Change of Grade.

IV.   If the Director of Graduate Studies and/or Vice President for Instruction feel a 
      change is warranted and the faculty member cannot bring himself/herself to the 
      same conclusion, no Change of Grade will be submitted and the faculty 
      member's rights will stand inviolate.  No further review is provided or allowed. 

(Cross Ref.: 86-200 Student Grievance)

Appendix B



Time limitations on all credits transferred to Oglala Lakota College from other accredited 
institutions shall be no more than ten (10) years unless authorized by department chairs in 
specific instances.

Individual departments shall develop time limitations for their professional degree 

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