Advancement to Candidacy and Graduation

Once you have met the prerequisites for candidacy, you should meet with your advisor to start the advancement to candidacy process. Your advancement to candidacy document is a contract between you and Humboldt State University that details the requirements of your master's degree. The Advancement to Candidacy includes your application for graduation.

When to Advance

    • After your first year as a graduate student
    • Usually the semester BEFORE your last semester

Before you Advance

    • Work with your advisor or committee to plan your coursework and thesis/project.
    • Submit a proposal to the Institutional Review Board (IRB) for research with human subjects, or
    • Submit a proposal to the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee for research with non-human vertebrates.

Candidacy Prerequisites

    • Classified standing (cleared admission deficiencies, if applicable).
    • Minimum of 12 units of coursework completed for your program.
    • Cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in all courses taken as a graduate student.
    • Approval of plan to use humans or animals as subjects for research, if applicable.
      • A copy of the approval letter must be attached to candidacy paperwork.

Completing the Advancement Form

Your proposed course list must meet the following requirements:

    • Minimum of 30-semester units of approved coursework
    • 21 or greater semester units are taken at HSU (Residency requirement):
      • HSU Extended Education cannot be used for resident credit
    • At least half the units required are graduate level (500-600 courses)
    • No more than six thesis or project units
      • Maximum of nine total units for independent study, field work, and thesis/project courses
    • B- or better in all courses taken to satisfy the requirements for the degree
      • Must maintain a GPA of 3.0 or better

Your proposed course list cannot include:

    • Lower division courses (100-200 level)
    • Courses more than seven years old

Program Codes

    • Check the "R" for all courses taken at HSU
    • Check the "G" for all courses taken at the graduate level (500-600)
    • Check the "C" for all thesis/project units
    • Check the "I" for any independent study, directed study, or research units taken (different from thesis/project units)
    • Check the "U" if the course was an undergraduate course (only 300-400 level courses accepted)
    • Check the "TEP" box for any courses that are transfers, extension (e.g., HSU Extended Education) or post-baccalaureate (e.g., from a credential program)

Submitting the Advancement Form

    • The Advancement to Candidacy and Graduation uses Adobe Sign for routing and signatures. The form must be signed by your advisor, committee members (if applicable) and the graduate coordinator. 
    • You will need to pay the graduation processing fee before you can submit the paperwork.
    • You will need to attach a copy of your approval from the IRB or Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee if applicable.