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Policies

Rowan University's policies connect the university's mission to the actions of the Rowan community. The policies are meant to clarify the institution's expectations of its members, mitigate institutional risk, and support the university's compliance with laws and regulations. Please take time to review the policies listed below. 

RowanGSBS Policies

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Enrollment

University policy states that, except for authorized dual degree programs (e.g., D.O./Ph.D.), no student registered in the graduate program shall at the same time be enrolled as a medical student or serve as an intern, resident or member of the clinical staff of Rowan University or any hospital affiliated with it. However, if you are a non-matriculated, quick admit student within the GSBS, you may also be a non-matriculated, quick admit student within another school.

Postdoctoral Appointees are eligible to attend graduate courses at the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSBS) at the discretion of the instructor and pending available space and resources. The instructor may write a letter attesting to participation in the course, but no formal record will be kept by GSBS and postdoctoral fellows will not be considered students within GSBS. Postdoctoral fellows are not required to pay tuition, but fees may be assessed to cover actual costs of supplies.

Registration

Unless granted a formal leave of absence, students enrolled in degree programs are required to register every semester until the degree is granted. Registration for any semester is not complete until all required immunizations and health insurance have been obtained and all tuition and all required fees have been paid.

Registration will not be permitted beyond the first two weeks of courses. Credit will not be given for courses in which the student was not registered. Tuition and fees for each semester are payable in advance. Additional late fees will be charged to student accounts that have not been paid by the due date.

A student has 10 academic days after receipt of an exam grade to initiate an inquiry regarding a specific question. The university e-mail system must be used for this correspondence.

Biomedical Sciences Program Makeup Exam Policy

  • Upon registering for a course and receiving the syllabus a student commits to the scheduled exam dates and assignment due dates.
  • Once seated for the exam, the exam must be completed and may not be retaken.
  • Course-specific make-up exam policies may be specified in the syllabus, including point penalties.
  • If the student knows in advance that they will not be able to sit for an exam, they should notify the course director to schedule a make-up. Make-up exams may be scheduled prior to the scheduled exam date.
  • If the student cannot take an exam on a scheduled date, the student may request a makeup exam.
  • A request for a make-up for a missed exam must be made less than 48 hours after the scheduled exam time.
  • All make-up requests must be made using an online Make-up Exam Request Form available on the RowanGSBS website under the student portal. No make-up requests will be granted without completing this formYou must log in to your ROWAN account when using this form. If you already have a personal Google account, you must sign out to access this form
  • All requests for make-ups will be reviewed by the MBS program director in consultation with the Course Director. Course Directors alone may not grant make-up exam requests.
  • Make-up exams will be scheduled to occur within 72 hours of the scheduled exam. In the event that the student cannot meet that timeframe, a request for an extension may be made. No make-up exams may be scheduled more than one week from the originally scheduled exam.
  • Only the course director, an instructor in the course, or the MBS program director may proctor a make-up exam and must be present throughout the exam.
  • The scheduling of the make-up exam is under strict time constraints. Because the course director or an instructor in the course must be present throughout the exam, students requesting a make-up exam are limited to those times and days that one such faculty member is available to proctor.
  • All make-up exams must be taken during daytime business hours on days the school is open unless otherwise agreed to by the faculty proctor.
  • Make-up exams may not be scheduled during class time of any class in which the student is enrolled, including the one needing the make-up.
  • Make-up exams are subject to all the same conditions and limitations as the regularly scheduled exam.
  • Requests for exceptions to any of the above stipulations must be made in writing to the MBS program director. These will be reviewed in consultation with the Course Director and GSBS Dean on a case by case basis.

Makeup Exam Policy (Excluding Biomedical Sciences Program)

It is the student’s responsibility to contact the course director within 48 hours of a scheduled examination in order to schedule a make-up examination or missed required assignment. If the student fails to contact the course director within 48 hours, the student may, at the discretion of the program, receive a grade of a “zero” for that examination or that missed required assignment. If the student does contact the course director within 48 hours, the student will need to provide a valid reason. Valid reasons include but are not limited to:

Personal or family emergency
Emergency travel related to a family emergency
Personal illness (doctor’s note required)
Special events (childbirth or complication of pregnancy)

It is up to the course director to determine if the student’s excuse and documentation are sufficient enough to allow a make-up examination or grant an extension for a missed required assignment. If a make-up examination is granted, the student must schedule it within two (2) weeks of receipt of approval unless granted an extension by the course director. This will ensure that the student has been given an opportunity to make-up an examination while not being unfair to all of the students who took the exam at its originally scheduled time. The course director may require the student to take an examination that is different in format, content or length from the examination that was administered to the class. Appeals of the course director’s decision should be made first to the department chair and then to the Senior Associate Dean.

The method of determining grade point average for RowanGSBS as of July 1, 2013 is as follows:  Each course’s semester credit hours with an “A” grade is multiplied by 4.0 quality points; “A-” grade is multiplied by 3.7 quality points “B+” grade by 3.3 quality points; “B” grade by 3.0 quality points; “B-” grade by 2.7 quality points; “C+” grade by 2.3 quality points; “C” grade by 2.0 quality points; “C-” grade by 1.7 quality points; “D+” grade by 1.3 quality points; “D” grade by 1.0 quality points;  “D-” grade by 0.7 quality points; and “F” grade by 0.0 quality points.  The total number of quality points divided by total of semester hour credits completed constitutes the grade point average.

Prior to July 1, 2013, the method of determining grade point average for the GSBS was as follows:  Each course’s semester credit hours with an “A” grade is multiplied by 4.0 quality points; “B+” grade by 3.5 quality points; “B” grade by 3.0 quality points; “C+” grade by 2.5 quality points; “C” grade by 2.0 quality points; “D” grade by 1 quality point (for “D” grades earned prior to the Fall 2011 semester) and “F” grade by 0.0 The total number of quality points divided by total of semester hour credits completed constitutes the grade point average.

Quality Points Example:

A student who takes a 3 credit course and earns a grade of “A” receives a total of 12 quality points for that course (grade of “A” is valued at 4 quality points; 4 quality points x 3 credits = total of 12 quality points).   If the student had earned a grade of “B” in the same 3 credit course the total quality points would have been 9 (grade of “B” valued at 3 quality points x 3 credits).  

GPA Calculation Example:

The total number of quality points divided by total of semester hour credits completed constitutes the grade point average.  For example, a student who has earned a total of 30 credits and who has a total of 116.50 quality points has a GPA of 3.88, which is calculated by dividing 116.50 by 30.

Transfer credits and credits for courses graded Satisfactory or Pass, while included in earned credits, are not included in the GPA hours or the GPA calculation as they do not have any quality point value. 

Repetition of any course results in both the original grade and the new grade appearing on the transcript; however, the quality points from the earlier grade are not calculated into the student’s cumulative grade point average.

Students must demonstrate satisfactory knowledge and skill in academic work and research performance in order to complete a program of study. A letter grade is used to report the final evaluation of a student's performance in a course. In determining a grade, each faculty member utilizes criteria established and discussed with students at the beginning of each course.  Only the instructor of a class has the authority to submit grades for students in that class to the University Registrar’s Office.

Grades may be assigned through administrative action, if the faculty member of record is unable or unwilling to assign grades in a timely manner.

A grade for a student is subject to change only in the event of clerical or calculation error or to change an incomplete or "in progress" to a performance letter grade. In all other instances, an instructor wishing to change a grade must submit a recommendation of change to the University Registrar. A change of grade occurs only under extraordinary circumstances; and the reason must be stated on the official “Change of Grade Request” form.

The following grades are used to report the quality of academic and/or research performance and are reported on a 0-4 point scale as follows:

Grade

Quality Points
A Excellent 4.0
A-   3.7
B+   3.3
B Good 3.0
B-   2.7
C+   2.3
C Marginal 2.0
C-   1.7
D+   1.3
D Poor 1.0
D-   0.7
F Failure 0.0

            
IN: Incomplete     
IP: In Progress
S: Satisfactory    
U:  Unsatisfactory
P: Passing (Pass/Fail Course Only)
W: Official Withdrawal   

For courses on Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory scale, an “S” grade (Satisfactory) will be awarded in those instances where the student has performed class work necessary to pass the course.  S/U grades do not contribute to the GPA.

A grade of Pass/Fail ("P" or "F") is given for courses at the discretion of the program faculty. Each program determines the maximum number of allowable pass/fail courses. Pass/fail grades are not used when calculating grade point averages.

A grade of "IN" (formerly “I”) is normally given only when circumstances beyond the control of the student prevent completion of course requirements.  Students receiving a grade of "IN" (formerly “I”) are responsible for finding out from the instructor the exact work required to remove the “Incomplete” grade. Incomplete grades must be converted to a letter grade no later than the end of the next semester in which the course is offered, unless otherwise approved in advance by the GSBS Senior Associate Dean.  If a grade is not received during this time frame, the "IN” (formerly “I”) is converted to an "F."

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Doctoral Students
Ph.D. students requesting a transfer from one program to another within GSBS must apply through the GSBS Senior Associate Dean. Such a transfer does not extend the period of GSBS stipend support or the maximum time permitted to obtain the Ph.D.

Students withdrawing from the doctoral program are eligible to receive a thesis-based M.S. degree with approval of the doctoral Program Director, the GSBS Senior Associate Dean and the GSBS Executive Council.  In certain circumstances, students may petition the Senior Associate Dean to be eligible to receive a M.B.S degree.  Students transferring from a doctoral to a Master of Science degree program, who at the time of the transfer have completed 30 or more credits and have fulfilled the course requirements for the M.S. degree that they are pursuing, will be coded as in thesis phase status and will be subject to the fees associated with their degree and time status.  If at the time of transfer the student has completed less than 30 credits, they must fulfill the academic and tuition/fee obligations of the program to which they transfer.

Students who transfer from a doctoral program to a masters program are no longer eligible to receive a Graduate Fellowship. This policy applies to all graduate programs within and between the partner institutions participating in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences doctoral programs e.g., Rutgers University.

Master's Students
Students in the Master's programs who matriculate to a medical/dental school prior to completing the degree requirements may request an educational leave of absence for a maximum of one year to complete the requirements of the program if they wish to obtain the Master’s degree. To earn graduate school course credit for a medical or dental school course the student must complete an application for transfer credit and submit the application, an official transcript and course description(s) to the GSBS Senior Associate Dean for approval. Students may apply no more than six credits of graduate level courses to the Master’s degree.   

Students not completing the GSBS Master’s degree requirements within the one year educational leave of absence period may be required to re-apply to the GSBS and undergo a new admissions process.

Approval of transfer of credits from GSBS Master’s program to a GSBS Ph.D. program will be done on an individual basis at the discretion of the program director and the GSBS Senior Associate Dean. All students must maintain satisfactory academic progress status as described in the GSBS Transfer Credit policy. 

Certificate Students
Students are eligible to apply all credit from a Certificate to a Master’s degree program as long as all of the transfer courses were taken within the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.  There is no minimum grade requirement when applying courses from the Certificate to Master’s programs.  The application of credits from a GSBS Certificate program to a GSBS Master’s program must be approved by the program director and GSBS Senior Associate Dean.   To be eligible to transfer from a Certificate program to the Master’s program the Certificate must have been completed within the previous two years. 

Overview

By registering for a GSBS course, a student commits to completing all course requirements. A student will not be automatically dropped or withdrawn from a course for not completing course requirements, for not attending classes, or for non-payment. The student is financially and academically responsible for all courses for which they are registered.

However, after the pre-semester course registration period, a student may need to adjust their course registration. Such registration adjustments include adding, dropping, or withdrawing from a course, or complete withdrawal from all courses. The policies and procedures for each of these options are described below.

A student is strongly advised to speak with the Program Director and the Financial Aid office before deciding to add, drop, or withdraw to determine how the change would affect the student’s academic status and financial liability.

Deadlines

For current Drop/Add and Withdrawal deadlines, see the GSBS Academic Calendar. These are the only deadlines used by the GSBS office for processing registration adjustments. Any description of timelines below are for explanation purposes only, please refer to the academic calendar if you are unsure.

Add/Drop

Adding or Dropping a course means the course will be added to or removed from the student’s transcript permanently. The course must be added or dropped by the published deadline on the GSBS academic calendar, typically the first 10 days of the semester, by the processes indicated below. If a course is dropped by this deadline, the tuition and fees associated with the course are cancelled. If a course is added, tuition and fees associated with that course are added to the student’s account, and would need to be paid by the appropriate deadlines.

Early Add/Drop period:
From the time Registration opens, up to and including 5 days after the start of the semester, students may add or drop a course through Rowan Self-Service.

Late Add/Drop period:
Adds or Drops cannot be performed online in Rowan Self-Service after 5 days from the start of the semester. To add or drop a course between 5 and 10 days after the start of the semester, the student must complete the Registration Adjustments form and submit to the GSBS office. Adding a course after 2 class sessions have met requires approval of the Course Director. No add or drop requests will be made after 10 days from the start of the semester; after 10 days, a student choosing to leave a course must withdraw from it (see below).

Withdrawal

A course cannot dropped after 10 days into the semester. To leave a course after that deadline, the student must withdraw by completing a Registration Adjustments form. A student cannot withdraw from a course after 3/4 of the semester has passed (see the GSBS Academic Calendar for published deadline). After a withdrawal, the course remains on the student’s transcript with a “W” grade, which does not impact the GPA. The student is still responsible for all associated tuition and fees for the course they withdraw from, and withdrawing may impact the student’s financial aid. Withdrawals count toward the number of times a course may be repeated (retaken). Credits from withdrawn courses count in the student's Attempted hours for the term, but not the Earned hours, meaning that the credits do not apply toward program completion, but they do count for Full-Time enrollment status for the current term.

Complete withdrawal and Leave of Absence

If a student needs to leave the program entirely during the semester, they must withdraw from all courses using the Registration Adjustments form. If they intend to return, they may apply for a Leave of Absence. The policies described above for single-course withdrawals apply to complete withdrawals as well.

The Information Resources and Technology (IRT) will assign every student a university email address.  This email address is vital to provide pertinent university information to the student regarding all university business including, but not limited to, financial aid, seminar announcements, and campus events.  IRT facilitates informational technologies through the networking of people, information and resources.  THIS IS THE ONLY EMAIL ADDRESS THAT OFFICIAL UNIVERSITY BUSINESS CAN BE CONDUCTED ON. THEREFORE, IT IS PERTINENT THAT YOU USE YOUR ASSIGNED EMAIL ADDRESS  FOR ALL COMMUNICATIONS.
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Tuition and fees for each semester are payable in advance. There is a late fee of $50.00 per month for unpaid balances. A student receiving financial aid is subject to loan conditions. A student may arrange a deferred payment plan with the Bursar's Office.

Any student who elects to use the deferred payment plan and finds it impossible to meet this obligation must contact the Bursar’s Office immediately to make alternate arrangements.

Students may not continue enrollment, be awarded a degree or certificate, or receive documents including, but not limited to, transcripts and grades, until all financial accounts are fulfilled to the satisfaction of the Bursar’s Office (see University Policy on Student Tuition and Fee Obligations).

Upon notification by the Bursar’s Office, the school’s registrar will be responsible for encumbering records of a student whose account is past due.

Doctoral Student Policies

Full-time graduate students are expected to devote their energy to completing the program as expeditiously as possible and should not be engaged in outside employment. Students accepting a fellowship do so with the understanding that they are not permitted to work on a regular basis outside the normal functions of their educational programs. In the event of unusual circumstances, students may request approval from their department and the GSBS to work up to 20 hours per week.
Note: Contact the GSBS office for procedures regarding salary. Your department should NOT complete a "Staff Position Request" form; it may jeopardize issuance of your stipend check.
Students must provide the Graduate School office with their social security numbers for purposes of identification and for stipend taxation. Foreign students not holding a Social Security card are required to apply for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) when they arrive at the Graduate School; applying for a Social Security Number is optional.
A limited number of graduate fellowships and tuition waivers are available to full-time matriculated doctoral students.  These fellowships are based on merit and students must remain in good academic standing to be eligible for continued support.  The Graduate School currently awards Graduate Fellowships to full-time (minimum of 9 credits/semester) doctoral students in accordance with the following guidelines.
  1. Fellowships for the academic year are $30,500 for all students in good academic standing.
  2. GSBS Graduate Fellowships are subject to availability of funds.
  3. Students not in good academic standing are subject to discontinuance of fellowship and tuition remission.
  4. Students who switch from a doctoral program to a master’s program are no longer eligible to receive a Graduate Fellowship.
  5. All doctoral students in year 1-4 have their tuition waived. However, all doctoral students in their 5th year and beyond may be required to pay a $200 per semester “thesis phase” (maintaining matriculation) fee.

Application for a competitive extramural predoctoral fellowship generally involves a considerable amount of work on the part of the student and faculty.  Award of these fellowships, however, is beneficial to everyone involved.

Students awarded a competitive fellowship will receive a supplement to bring their stipend to $2,000 above the GSBS fellowship award. All award letters must be forwarded to the GSBS office for the student’s file and for verification of fellowship award amount and fellowship duration. It is the responsibility of the student and the Program Director to ensure that the GSBS receives this information.

According to the IRS, fellowships and scholarships are taxfree for degree-seeking students ONLY if used for tuition, fees and other required educational expenses.  Since tuition for doctoral students generally is paid separately from the stipend, it is likely that most or all of your stipend will be subject to federal income tax.  This is true whether the stipend comes from a grant or from the GSBS.

The difference between being paid on a research grant or from other sources involves withholding tax. 

Students being paid from a research grant are considered to be working on the grant project and, therefore, receiving wages.  Thus, money is withheld for taxes based on the number of dependents indicated on the W-4 form filled by the student with the University. The amount of the fellowship, in the form of wages, is reported to the IRS on Form W-2.  These students can adjust the number of dependents so that the money withheld approximates the tax they will owe at the end of the year, leaving them with little or no additional tax obligation (or resulting in a refund).

Students paid from the GSBS directly are not considered to be working and the University is not required to withhold taxes unless requested.  This has certain advantages and disadvantages.  Although the paycheck may be somewhat larger than that received by a student paid from a research grant, the amount of the stipend is reported to the IRS on Form 1099 and it is likely that the student will be subject to federal income tax on the stipend payments.  Thus, students not having taxes withheld may find that they owe money they no longer have.  This is especially true for students with a working spouse.  Based on this potential problem, it may be advisable to file a W-4 form and have a minimal amount of money withheld each pay period, giving the same safety feature as for those receiving stipends from a research grant.  W-4 forms can be picked up at Human Resources.

In addition, certain countries have specific treaties with the United States that may affect their tax liability, and that issue is not covered in this document.  Information on taxes related to the fellowships you receive can be found on the IRS and NIH web sites.

Checks will be issued to students on a bi-weekly basis. Students do not pay social security, unemployment or disability taxes. GSBS fellowships are not-for-service awards and are not subject to New Jersey State tax.

All students must file income tax returns with the Federal and State Governments at the end of each calendar year. It is the responsibility of each student to file prior to the deadline date (April 15). A W-2 or 1090 form will be sent directly to your mailing address. Foreign students are required to file income tax returns, regardless of a tax treaty (Form 1040-NR).  Students receiving GSBS Fellowships not subject to New Jersey State tax should include a statement with their NJ tax return indicating the following:

                “Graduate fellowships awarded by this institution are to further the recipient's education.  They are not intended as payment for services and do not directly benefit the institution.”

GSBS will provide verification of this statement, if needed. 

Depending upon the availability of funds, the GSBS may offer up to $600 for travel expenses to doctoral students who have an approved thesis proposal and who are presenting papers at national meetings. The guidelines for these awards are:

  • A formal abstract acknowledging Rowan University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences as a research site.  This acknowledgment should be located in the title lines of the abstract.
  • The student is first author on the abstract to be presented.
  • The research is part of the approved dissertation proposal.
  • Only one award will be made to a doctoral candidate each 12 months.
  • The request for award must be accompanied by a copy of the abstract and a “Student Travel Approval” form, approved by the department chair. This form can be found online at “GSBS Student Forms”.

Vacation- A three week vacation period is granted to GSBS students by permission of the department. 

Parental Leave-Graduate students will receive full stipend support for up to 6 weeks of parental leave for the birth or adoption of a child.  Either parent is eligible.  The Program Director, Mentor (where applicable) and GSBS office must be informed in writing of the student’s intent to take parental leave and the applicable dates. 

Rowan University Policies

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