Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply?

All students must submit a graduate application, the application fee, an official transcript from your baccalaureate degree granting institution, and official admission test scores (e.g. GRE, GMAT, MAT). Some programs require additional information such as letters of recommendation, essays, and/or interviews. Please see the application process for more information. International students must submit additional documentation.

What are the application deadlines?

The Office of Graduate Studies does not have strict deadlines for submitting a graduate application. The recommended dates for submitting your application are as follows: August 1 for Fall admission, December 1 for Spring admission, May 15 for Summer I admission, and June 15 for Summer II admission. Although these date are target dates, students are encouraged to compete the application process as early as possible.

Some programs have earlier application deadlines, and some programs have later deadlines. Students should contact the program's graduate advisor for specific deadline requirements.

International Students have earlier admission deadlines and should contact the Office of International Programs regarding application requirements.

Where do I send my transcripts, letters of recommendation, and other admission documents?

Send all admission material to: Office of Graduate Admissions, SHSU, Box 2478, Huntsville, TX 77341-2478

If I completed my baccalaureate degree at SHSU, do I have to send an official transcript to Graduate Studies?

Maybe. Most programs will not require an official transcript from SHSU graduates. Please contact the graduate advisor for program specific requirements.

What undergraduate GPA do I need to be accepted into graduate school?

Most programs require a minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.5 or 2.8 on the last sixty hours of undergraduate coursework to be considered for admission. Some programs will waive the minimum GPA requirement if supported with an appropriately high admissions test score.

What GRE, GMAT, or MAT scores do I need to be accepted into graduate school?

Each program has its specific admission requirements. There is no set minimum score needed for admission. The score on the admission test is just one of several factors considered for admission.

May I start the program without taking the required admission exam (GRE/GMAT/MAT)?

Some programs allow conditional admission. For these programs, the graduate advisor may allow a student to take classes for one semester without taking the required admission exam. It is at the discretion of the graduate advisor and academic dean to offer a student conditional admission status. A student granted conditional admission must meet the program's admission requirements to continue the program beyond the initial semester.

If I already have a Master's degree, do I need the GRE/GMAT/MAT?

Maybe. If the first master's degree is in a closely related field to the second master's degree, the graduate advisor may waive the GRE requirement. Each program has it specific requirements. Please contact the graduate advisor for program specific requirements.

For how many years are the GRE and GMAT valid?

Five years.

I no longer have access to my GRE/GMAT/MAT scores. Do I have to take the test again?

Most programs will accept test scores that have been taken in the last five years. The test providers recommend that the tests be retaken after five years.

Can I start the program in any semester?

Some programs allow students to start in any semester while other programs only allow students to start the program in only one semester each year. Please contact the graduate advisor for information about a specific program.

How long after I submit an application will I be able to register?

Submitting an application is not sufficient to earn admission. Students who have submitted ALL the required admission documentation and are admitted to a program will be sent a letter of admission. Most programs will make an admission decision within a week or two of the admission file being complete. Some programs (especially those with limited enrollment capacities) make all of the admission decisions on a set date. Please contact the graduate advisor for program specific timelines. Students can check their admission status through SamWeb.

After I submit my application, will someone contact me to let me know I am clear to register?

Submitting just an application is not sufficient to earn admission. Students who have submitted all of the required admission documentation and are admitted to a program will be sent a letter of admission by the respective department or college. Students can check their admission status through SamWeb. Please contact your graduate advisor for specific details about your application status.

How much does graduate school cost?

The most recent fee structure for SHSU is available through the Bursar's Office.

Is a thesis required in all master's programs?

No. Many master's programs offer a non-thesis option.

How long will it take to complete the program?

Most masters programs take two to three years to complete. Doctoral programs usually take four to five years to complete. The number of hours taken per semester and the length of time spent completing the thesis/dissertation have the greatest impact on the length of the program.

What are the GPA requirements to graduate from a graduate program?

Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.00 on all graduate level coursework. Students who earn one grade of "F" or three grades of "C" in 500-, 600- or 700-level courses will be terminated from the program. A student cannot graduate with three grades of "C" in a graduate program.

How large a course load should I take?

Full-time students can usually handle nine to twelve hours per semester. Students on an assistantship will usually take nine hours. Generally, students who work should not take more than six credit hours (two courses) per semester. Most students can handle two courses while working. However, if your job entails a lot of travel, you might consider taking only one course per semester. While the workload differs with each course, a good general rule is to expect to work at least six to ten hours per week outside of the classroom for each course.

How long can I take to complete the program?

A student has six years from the initial semester of admission to complete the program.

What happens if I miss a semester?

Admission to graduate studies remains valid for one year after the last semester of enrollment. For example, if a student is accepted and enrolls in the Fall 2011 semester, he/she may sit out for an entire year and enroll in the Fall 2012 semester without reapplying to the program.

Students must submit a new Graduate Studies Application and Application Fee if they:

  • are accepted into the program but do not enroll
  • resign (withdraw) from the University
  • sit out of the program for more than one year after their last semester of enrollment

For more information, please contact the Office of Graduate Studies.

Can I transfer in classes from another program?

Maybe. Most graduate programs that accept transfer hours allow a maximum of six graduate hours to be transferred. Please contact the graduate advisor for program specific limitations.

Are any of SHSU's graduate programs available online?

Yes. Please view our Online Programs or visit SHSU Online to view SHSU's distance learning opportunities.

What is the average class size?

The average class size for graduate classes is approximately 12. Most classes range from 5 to 30 students.

Are graduate assistantships available?

Most graduate programs offer, on a competitive basis, a limited number of graduate assistantships. All students who have demonstrated distinguished academic performance may apply. All assistantships require students to work 20 hours per week at the main campus in Huntsville. Please contact the graduate advisor for further details.

If I just want to take undergraduate classes, why do I have to apply to Graduate Studies?

Students who have already earned a baccalaureate degree and want to take additional undergraduate classes can be accepted with post-baccalaureate status and must submit a graduate application. Students who wish to earn a second baccalaureate degree must submit an undergraduate application.

When re-applying, do I have to re-submit my transcripts?

You must submit only those transcripts from colleges/universities attended since last applying to SHSU. If you have not attended SHSU for more than one year, you may be asked to re-submit your transcripts.

If I change majors, do I have to submit a new application, transcripts and other documents?

Yes. A student must submit a new application requesting admission into a different degree program. All admission material required by the new degree program must also be submitted. It may be possible to request that a previous program transfer admission materials to the new program. Please see the application process for more information.

If I've already paid the SHSU graduate application fee, do I have to pay it again?

Yes. The graduate application fee must be paid with every new application you submit.

What is considered full-time and part-time?

For the fall and spring semesters, full-time is nine credit hours or more. Less than nine-hours is part-time.

If I'm just taking classes to raise my undergraduate GPA, do I have to take the GRE?

No. Students seeking to raise their undergraduate GPA may be admitted with post-baccalaureate status and limited to taking only undergraduate classes.

Can I apply to more than one program at a time?

No. A student may seek only one degree at a time. Please apply to only one program at a time.

Does SHSU offer graduate programs at other campuses?

Yes. SHSU offers graduate programs at the University Center in The Woodlands and University Park in Tomball.

Who can I contact for further information?

Office of Graduate Studies, SHSU, Box 2478, Huntsville, TX 77341-2478
Tel: (936) 294-2356, Fax: (936) 294-1271, E-mail:

For program specific information, please contact the appropriate graduate advisor.