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Change of Graduate Major or Degree Objectives for Graduate Students

Official changes in graduate objectives are to be initiated at the GAPE office. If the change in objective is from one graduate major to another, or from one academic session to another, the Change of Graduate Major Petition form, available at sjsu.edu/gape/forms, must be completed. Submission of this form by the student is not, however, synonymous with approval of the change. The new department must review you as a candidate for their program through initial communication with GAPE office after GAPE receives your change of major request. There is no fee for this change so long as the student was enrolled the semester prior to the application term. The student should become knowledgeable of any additional admission requirements of the department being entered. Student transfer to the new major is not automatic, but instead requires approval from the incoming department. The department must follow-up with the student request by signing the Change of Major Decision Form and returning its decision to the GAPE office. GAPE will then update the student's status to reflect the new program change.

If a student obtains permission to change their major or concentration after advancing to graduate candidacy and the second program has different requirements than the first, then a new candidacy form (Petition for Advancement to Graduate Candidacy) with the signature of the new graduate advisor must be filed. The change of either major or concentration is made by virtue of approval of the Change in Graduate Major Petition. Graded courses on the first form can be eliminated on the second form if not part of the new curriculum.

For a change in the culminating plan from Plan A (thesis) or C (creative project) to Plan B (project or comprehensive exams) or vice versa, no new candidacy form is needed. Any 299 units, project course units, or exam preparation course units in which a Credit was given must be retroactively dropped or, less attractive to students, changed to an NC (no credit) grade. For a switch to Plan B, project and exam preparation courses as well as additional content courses might then be required, depending on the program. These changes all require that GAPE be informed by means of filing the Request for Course Substitution in Master's Degree Program for each course change. Degree requirements for the new plan must be satisfied in full. Therefore, retroactively adding a 298 (project) class, for example, in place of a 299 (thesis) class will be permitted only if all the requirements of the project have been met. The requirements for projects include a written report in every case.