Graduate students who have not yet met all requirements for admission to full graduate status or who have not filed all relevant documents with the appropriate office of admission may be conditionally admitted. Students admitted in this provisional status must satisfy all of those conditions by the end of the first semester of enrollment, or within the time period deemed appropriate by the student’s academic department or the Office of Degree Progress. Full graduate student standing is granted after all conditions have been met within the time limit given.
The ability to communicate effectively in English — to read, write and speak the language fluently — is vital to student success at USC. Students are expected to demonstrate their proficiency in English as part of the application process. However, USC does not set minimum scores for admission purposes. Minimum threshold for English proficiency test scores is used for placement purposes only. The university uses these scores to determine whether an admitted student needs to take the International Student English (ISE) examination, an internal placement exam offered at USC, upon arrival. This exam assesses English writing and oral skills. Students who do not pass either or both segments must register for appropriate courses that they are required to complete while pursuing their academic degree at USC.
A master’s candidate who is writing a thesis and has completed all course work for the degree must enroll each fall and spring semester in the appropriate thesis registration until the thesis has been approved. Students should consult the appropriate school or departmental section of the USC Catalogue for specific thesis registration requirements. For programs subject to the policies of the Graduate School, students may not register for more than 2 units of 594 in a given semester. After 594a and 594b, a student must register and pay for 2 units of 594z each fall and spring semester until the student completes the thesis, makes any committee-required revisions and submits all graduation forms and the thesis to the university. Students who submit their completed and signed graduation forms to the university and then, once cleared by the thesis coordinator, upload their manuscript by the Drop/Add date of the fall or spring semester will not be required to register in 594 in that term.
No more than 4 units of credit in 594 may be received or applied toward the degree regardless of the number of semesters the candidate may be required to register.
Doctoral students completing a dissertation are to be registered in Dissertation 794 each fall and spring semester, for a minimum of two semesters (794a and 794b) after being admitted to candidacy (i.e., after passing the qualifying examination), until the student completes and defends the dissertation, makes any committee-required revisions and submits all graduation forms and the dissertation to the university. If the student is admitted to candidacy before the end of the third week of classes, the student must register for Dissertation 794 for the remainder of that semester and must do so before the end of the third week of classes. If the student is admitted to candidacy after the third week of classes, the student may not register for Dissertation 794 until the following semester. After registration in 794a, 794b, 794c, and 794d, the student must register and pay for two units of 794z although the registration carries zero units of credit. Grades recorded for 794 will remain as “IP” (In Progress) until the degree is conferred. Credit will be applied toward 794abcd registrations when the degree has been cleared by the Degree Progress Department. Refer to the Graduate School section of the USC Catalogue for further information.
GRSC 800 Series
The GRSC 800 series is a mandatory non-credit registration for graduate students who have completed all course work and are not otherwise registered while taking the master’s comprehensive or the doctoral qualifying examination. Fees are equivalent to one unit of tuition. All registrations in the GRSC 800 series are subject to verification of the completion of the following prerequisites for each course. Students may enroll in three semesters of GRSC 800 before approval from the university is required.
GRSC 800 Studies for the Qualifying Examination: Refer to the Graduate School section of the USC Catalogue for further information on eligibility to take the qualifying examination.
GRSC 810 Studies for the Master’s Examination: Completion of all course work for the master’s degree as verified on the Credit Summary. The Credit Summary is issued by the Degree Progress Department after the student has filed the proper forms with the appropriate school.
GRSC 596 Internship for Curricular Practical Training is a 1-unit course designed to allow an international student to gain practical work experience in the student’s field of study. The internship must be located at an off-campus facility, and USC faculty must individually supervise students in the academic component. To enroll, students must be in good academic standing (have completed a minimum of one semester of full-time enrollment with at least a 3.0 GPA) and be enrolled full time in the term of intended GRSC 596 registration. All students must complete an application (available from the student’s academic adviser) and provide a copy of the internship/employment offer letter.
USC Diploma in Innovation
The USC Diploma in Innovation is a signature one-year program designed to enable current USC Ph.D. students to collaborate in translating their academic interests into innovative projects with tangible benefits to society. This selective program is offered free of charge to current USC Ph.D. students in good standing from all disciplines, whose proposals are accepted by a faculty committee.
All USC Ph.D. students admitted to the Diploma in Innovation program will be required to register in GRSC 791ab Directed Study leading to the Diploma in Innovation. In addition to satisfactory completion of these courses, students will present their final projects to a faculty committee, which will determine whether the student will receive the Diploma in Innovation.