To view policies for PhD students, please refer to the Academic Information section of this Bulletin

Course Load

The normal load for full-time graduate students is 9-12 units per semester. The course selection and load must be worked out with and approved by the student's adviser. Graduate students with research and teaching-assistant duties will typically enroll for course loads commensurate with the requirements of these duties. The course load will be determined after consultation with the student's adviser and the person supervising the student's duties as a research or teaching assistant. Students otherwise employed full- or part-time, on- or off-campus, will determine a satisfactory reduced course load with their advisers. International students on student visas are required to maintain full-time enrollment status.

Registration

All graduate students in Engineering must register each fall and spring semester until all degree requirements are complete. Newly admitted students will receive information on creating a WUSTL key from the University Registrar. The WUSTL key is used to register for courses online via WebSTAC during open registration periods. All registrations require online approval by the student's faculty adviser. Students may register in one of three categories:

  • Active Status: A graduate student is viewed as having an active full-time status if enrolled in nine (9) or more units or an active part-time status if enrolled in fewer than nine (9) units. Graduate students must be authorized by their adviser prior to registration. International master's students on F1 and J1 visas are required to take a minimum of 9 units per semester except in their final semester. In order to have part-time status in their final semester, international master's students must complete a Reduced Course Load form available from the Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS).
  • Continuing Student Status: The Continuing Student Status course option may be used when graduate students are approved to register for fewer than 9 units but still need to maintain their full-time status. When students are registered for the Master's Continuing Student Status (883) course or the Doctoral Continuing Student Status (884) course, they will still be viewed as having a full-time status, even if they are taking fewer than 9 units. Both placeholder courses are 0-unit audit courses with no tuition charges associated with them for engineering students; however, students may be charged health insurance and/or student activity fees associated with full-time status. The Txx or Exx 883 and Exx 884 course options are contingent upon adviser and departmental approval. Note: The 883 status is not available for master's students on F1 and J1 visas; domestic master's students may register under the 883 status only in their final semester with departmental approval. The 884 course is for DSc students only. Engineering PhD students will register for the LGS 9000 Full-Time Graduate Research/Study placeholder course to maintain full-time status.
  • Nonresident or Inactive Status: Graduate students who do not need to maintain full-time status and who do not need to register for any course or research units during a given semester should, with departmental and adviser approval, register under the Nonresident/Inactive Status placeholder course option. Graduate students on an official leave of absence should also register under this status, but, again, only with adviser and departmental approval. (Note: PhD students in this situation must use Leave of Absence forms or other forms provided by the Graduate School). A DSc student wishing to register under a nonresident/inactive status should register using the Exx 886 course number. A master's student should register for the nonresident/inactive status using the Txx or Exx 885 course number. Both placeholder courses are 0-unit audit courses with no tuition charges associated with them for engineering students. Students registered this way are not viewed as full-time and will not automatically have university health insurance fees or coverage. This registration does not defer student loans, and it does not serve as a legal status for international students. The nonresident/inactive status will assure that the student's major program will remain open. This option is not available to international students (due to F1 and J1 visa requirements), unless approved by the Office for International Students and Scholars. A nonresident/inactive status is allowed only for a few semesters, at the department's discretion. Any student contemplating a nonresident/inactive status must remember to be aware of the residency requirements and the total time limitation required for degree completion.

Graduate Student Reinstatement: Graduate students who do not register in one of the above categories will have to apply for reinstatement if they wish to re-enroll at a future time. For reinstatement information, master'​​​​​s and DSc students should contact Engineering Student Services at 314-935-6100, and PhD students should contact the Graduate School at 314-935-6880. Students seeking reinstatement may be required to pay a reinstatement fee, take special reinstatement examinations, and repeat previous work if it fails to meet contemporary standards. Candidates for the DSc degree who apply for reinstatement may be required to repeat qualifying examinations.

Grades

Satisfactory academic progress is a prerequisite for continuation in engineering degree programs. Most financial awards, and all federally funded awards, are contingent upon the maintenance of satisfactory academic progress. The following are minimal standards of satisfactory academic progress for Doctor of Science and master's students. Degree programs may set stricter standards, but may not relax the standards listed below. Acceptability of grades below B- for fulfillment of degree requirements is determined by individual departments.

Doctor of Science (DSc) students must maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.00.

  • Academic probation occurs if a semester or cumulative grade point average drops below 3.00.
  • A DSc student is eligible for academic suspension if any one of the follow occurs. The student:
    • receives an F grade in a course, or
    • earns a semester or cumulative grade point average less than 2.00, or
    • has been on probation for two semesters and has not attained a 3.00 cumulative grade point average.

Master's students must maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.70.

  • Academic probation occurs if a semester or cumulative grade point average drops below 2.70.
  • A master's student is eligible for academic suspension if any one of the follow occurs. The student:
    • receives an F grade in a course, or
    • earns a semester or cumulative grade point average less than 2.00, or
    • has been on probation for two semesters and has not attained a 2.70 cumulative grade point average.

Master's and DSc students eligible for academic suspension will have their names sent to their respective departments for their comments and recommendation before they are automatically suspended from a graduate program within the school. Students suspended may petition the associate dean in Engineering Student Services for reinstatement. Reinstatement petitions will be referred to the Graduate Board for review.

A grade of "I" in a course other than research must be removed no later than the close of the next semester; if not, the "I" turns into an "F" at the end of the next regular semester after the "I" grade was assigned.

Satisfactory academic progress for engineering students in PhD programs is monitored by the Graduate School as well as the degree program. Please refer to the Graduate School website for specific information related to policies concerning PhD students.

Transfer Credit

A maximum of 6 units of graduate credit obtained at institutions other than Washington University may be applied toward the master's degree. Approved transfer credit for undergraduate course work completed at a different institution cannot be posted until a letter is received from that institution's registrar, which states the graduate level course work was not used to satisfy undergraduate degree requirements.

A maximum of 24 units of graduate credit earned at institutions other than Washington University may be applied toward the Doctor of Philosophy degree and a maximum of 48 units for the Doctor of Science degree. Transfer credit must be recommended by the adviser, department or program chairman, and be approved by the appropriate registrar. No graduate courses carrying grades lower than B can be accepted for transfer toward any graduate degree.

No courses will be accepted toward degree requirements if the course exceeds the 10-year maximum time period unless they have formal approval of the Engineering Graduate Board.