Certificate Programs

UH Manoa offers a number of graduate-level programs that culminate in the awarding of a certificate. These programs are available to classified graduate students who are enrolled in one of the master’s or doctoral degree programs described in this Catalog. In a few areas, applications may be considered from non-degree-seeking students. Certificates require a minimum of 15 credit hours of specified courses and a 3.0 GPA in those courses. Detailed information may be obtained by writing to the appropriate graduate chairs.

Certificate programs are offered in the following fields:

  • Advanced library and information science
  • Advanced women’s studies
  • Asian studies
  • Chinese studies
  • Clinical psychology
  • Conflict resolution
  • Disability and diversity studies
  • Disaster management and humanitarian assistance
  • Early childhood Pk-3
  • Gerontology
  • Global health protection and security
  • Historic preservation
  • International cultural studies
  • Japanese studies
  • Korean studies
  • Literacy leader
  • Museum studies
  • Nursing
  • Ocean policy
  • Online learning technology
  • Pacific Islands studies
  • Philippine studies
  • Planning studies
  • Public administration
  • Public policy
  • Reading K-12
  • Renewable energy and island sustainability
  • Resource management
  • Second language studies
  • South Asian studies
  • Southeast Asian studies
  • Teach tech
  • Teacher leader
  • Telecommunications and information resource management
  • Tropical medicine
  • Urban and regional planningg

 

Master’s Degree Programs

UH Manoa confers the degrees of master of arts, master of education, master of education in teaching, master of environmental management, master of fine arts, master of geoscience, master of landscape architecture, master of library and information science, master of music, master of public administration, master of public health, master of science, master of social work, and master of urban and regional planning.

Faculty or staff members at rank 3 and above may not be awarded a master’s degree by UH Manoa in the graduate program administered by the department in which they are employed.

The master of accounting degree is offered through the Shidler College of Business for students who are contemplating careers in professional accountancy.

The master of arts degree is offered through the Colleges of Arts and Sciences, the School of Pacific and Asian Studies, and the Hawai‘inuiakea School of Hawaiian Knowledge for advanced course work including research in the following disciplines:

  • American studies
  • Anthropology
  • Art and art history
  • Asian studies
  • Communication
  • Communicology
  • Dance
  • East Asian languages and literatures
  • Economics
  • English
  • French
  • Geography
  • Hawaiian
  • Hawaiian studies
  • History
  • Linguistics
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Pacific Islands studies
  • Philosophy
  • Political science
  • Psychology
  • Religion
  • Second language studies
  • Sociology
  • Spanish
  • Theatre

The master of education degree is offered through the College of Education for advanced course work including research in the following disciplines:

  • Curriculum studies
  • Early childhood education
  • Educational administration
  • Educational foundations
  • Educational psychology
  • Learning design and technology
  • Special education

The master of education in teaching degree is offered through the Institute of Teacher Education.

The master of fine arts degree is offered through the Department of Theatre and Dance and the Department of Art and Art History for creative endeavors.

The master of geoscience for professionals is offered through the Department of Geology and Geophysics.

The master of environmental management degree is offered through the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Management.

The master of library and information science degree is offered through the Department of Information and Computer Sciences as preparation for careers in information services in public, college, school, and technical libraries. Graduates are also prepared for careers in other types of information environments.

The master of music degree is offered through the Department of Music for composition and performance in music.

The master of public administration degree is offered through the Public Administration Program.

The master of public health degree is offered through the Public Health program to provide individuals with a broad background for professional practice in the field of public health at local, state, national, and international levels.

The master of science degree is offered through the Public Health program, the Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Education, Engineering, Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources and the Schools of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, Medicine, Nursing and Dental Hygiene, Travel Industry Management, and for advanced course work including research in the following disciplines:

  • Animal sciences
  • Astronomy
  • Athletic training
  • Atmospheric sciences
  • Biological engineering
  • Botany
  • Cell and molecular biology
  • Chemistry
  • Civil and environmental engineering
  • Clinical and Translational Research
  • Communication sciences and disorders
  • Computer sciences
  • Developmental and reproductive biology
  • Electrical engineering
  • Entomology
  • Food science
  • Geology and geophysics
  • Kinesiology and rehabilitation science
  • Marine biology
  • Mechanical engineering
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular biosciences and bioengineering
  • Natural resources and environmental management
  • Nursing
  • Nutritional sciences
  • Ocean and resources engineering
  • Oceanography
  • Physics
  • Public health
  • Travel industry management
  • Tropical medicine
  • Tropical plant and soil sciences
  •  Tropical plant pathology
  • Zoology

The master of social work degree is offered through the School of Social Work. The program prepares graduates for counseling individuals, families, and groups; for social policy formulation and community organization; and for research and administration in the human services.

The master of urban and regional planning degree is offered through the Department of Urban and Regional Planning.

Requirements and Procedures for Master’s Degrees

The rules and requirements listed below are those of Graduate Division and must be observed by all students pursuing a master’s degree. Note that some graduate programs have special requirements.

Residence

The minimum residence requirement is two semesters of full-time work or four six-week summer sessions or the equivalent in credit hours applicable to the student’s degree program.

Language Requirements

At the discretion of the graduate program, candidates may be required to take an examination to demonstrate comprehension of one or more foreign languages. Please refer to the graduate program’s website for additional information on such requirements.

Time Allowed

Masters students are expected to complete all requirements within seven years after admission into the doctoral program. Candidates who fail to complete all requirements within seven years of admission will be placed on probation and are subject to dismissal at any point after, but automatically after 10 years. Extensions of time are allowed only upon petition by the graduate chair explaining why more time might be justified.

Types of Master’s Degree Programs

In general, there are three types of programs that students may follow to earn a master’s degree; thesis, Plan B, and examination. Not all plans are available in all programs.

Graduate Student Services uses progress forms to track thesis and dissertation students. These forms are available on the website.

Thesis (Plan A)

Credit Hour Requirements

A minimum of 30 credit hours is required including 18 credit hours of approved course work, excluding 699s and Thesis 700, at least 12 of which must be in courses numbered 600-798; at least one graduate seminar in the major or related field; and at least 6 credit hours of Thesis 700. The thesis research credit requirements are set uniformly for each graduate program by the faculty in that program.

Candidates must be registered in the thesis research course (700) each semester during which the thesis is being written. Candidates who accumulate the maximum number of thesis research credit hours, but fail to complete the thesis must register for a minimum of 1 credit hour of thesis research at the beginning of the term in which all requirements for the degree will be completed.

Thesis Requirement

When a thesis proposal has been approved by the student’s committee, the chair of the graduate program sends to the Graduate Student Services Office a Student Progress Form II (approval of thesis topic). The student may then enroll in the thesis research course (700) at the beginning of the next term. Students must register for Thesis 700 during the announced registration period. Failure to make satisfactory progress on a thesis does not entitle a student to a refund of tuition.

Upon request by the thesis committee, relevant work done by the student in directed reading/research (course 699) may be utilized as part of the thesis research. In such instances, the total credit hours for such directed reading/research (course 699) and thesis research (700) to be applied toward the minimum requirement for the degree shall not exceed the maximum total credit hours specified for thesis research in the graduate program.

The thesis committee is made up of three members of the graduate faculty.
The chair of the thesis committee is primarily responsible for directing and guiding the candidate’s research and writing activities. It is the student’s responsibility to keep all members of the committee informed of the scope, plan, and progress of both the research and the thesis. The committee members approve via Progress Form II and Progress Form IV (signature page). Guidelines for thesis preparation are available on the Graduate Division website.

The electronic submission of the thesis is required. Submit a pdf file online via ProQuest ETD. Theses must be submitted by the specified deadline (see the “Calendar”).

General Examination

At the option of the faculty of the graduate program, a general examination may be required before a student is advanced to candidacy for a master’s degree. All students within a particular graduate program must take the examination if it is required. The examination is usually given during the first semester of residence. It is designed to reveal the quality of the student’s preparation for advanced work in the program and the ability of the student to pursue graduate work at the master’s level. The examination also enables the student’s committee or advisor to assist in planning a program that will overcome any deficiencies in the student’s background.

A student who passes the examination may be recommended for advancement to candidacy for the master’s degree. A student who fails the general examination may repeat it once upon approval by the graduate program. However, students failing the general examination a second time are dropped from the program.

In graduate programs not requiring a general examination, the student may be advanced to candidacy upon the recommendation of the advisor and/or the graduate faculty of the program concerned. It is assumed that in these cases the recommendation for advancement to candidacy will be based on some evaluation of the student’s potential performance other than a general examination. Students who are denied advancement to candidacy are dropped from the program and lose their status as classified graduate students.

Final Examination

A final oral examination covering the thesis and related areas may be required by individual graduate programs. All Plan A students within a particular graduate program must take the examination if it is required at all. It should be held prior to the specified deadline before the end of the term during which the degree is conferred. It is conducted by the thesis committee and is open to all graduate faculty members. As an alternative, the committee chair may have the candidate present results of the thesis at a departmental graduate seminar, but all members of the thesis committee must be present.

Students failing the final examination may repeat it only once upon petition approved by the graduate program. Notification should be sent to the Graduate Student Services Office via the Form II of a second attempt. Students who fail the final examination a second time are dropped from the program and lose their status as classified graduate students. If the graduate program does not require a final examination, the chair of the graduate faculty concerned reports the completion of all degree requirements on Student Progress Form III.

Plan B

Credit Hour Requirements

A minimum of 30 credit hours is required. A minimum of 18 credit hours must be earned in courses numbered 600-798 (excluding Thesis 700) including at least one graduate seminar in the major program or in a related program. Not more than 9 credit hours in directed reading/research (course 699) may be applied to meet degree requirements. This degree plan typically includes a final project, practicum, or similar culminating experience.

When the student is advanced to candidacy, the chair of the graduate program appoints a program advisor or a program committee made up of members of the graduate faculty. The program advisor/committee advises the candidate and approves a coherent program of courses for the candidate.

Candidates must be enrolled during the term in which they complete the requirements for the degree; regular course work or the appropriate Master’s Plan B Studies 500 may be used to meet this requirement. The 500 course is offered as a 1-credit course with a mandatory grading of S/NG but does not carry credit toward meeting degree requirements.

General Examination

At the option of the faculty of the graduate program, a general examination may be required before a student is advanced to candidacy for a master’s degree. All students within a particular graduate program must take the examination if it is required at all. The examination is usually given during the first semester of residence. It is designed to reveal the quality of the student’s preparation for advanced work in the program and the ability of the student to pursue graduate work at the master’s level. The examination also enables the student’s committee or advisor to assist in planning a program that will overcome any deficiencies in the student’s background.

A student who passes the examination may be recommended for advancement to candidacy for the master’s degree. A student who fails the general examination may repeat it once upon approval by the graduate program. However, students failing the general examination a second time are dropped from the program.

In graduate programs not requiring a general examination, the student may be advanced to candidacy upon the recommendation of the advisor and/or the graduate faculty of the graduate program concerned. It is assumed that in these cases, the recommendation for advancement to candidacy will be based on some evaluation of the student’s potential performance other than performance in the general examination. Students who are denied advancement to candidacy are dropped from the program and lose their status as classified graduate students.

Final Examination

At the option of the faculty of the graduate program, a final examination may be required of Plan B candidates for the master’s degree. If required, it is designed to determine the candidate’s achievement in the graduate program at the master’s level. This examination has several possible forms. It may be a seminar appearance, a written comprehensive examination, an oral examination, some equivalent, or a combination of these. If a final examination is required by the graduate program, it must be given prior to the established deadline before the end of the term during which the degree is conferred.

Students failing the final examination may be permitted to repeat it only once upon approval by the graduate program. Notification should be sent to the Graduate Student Services Office via the Form II of a second attempt. Students failing the examination a second time are dropped from the program and lose their status as classified graduate students.

Examination (Plan C)

Neither a thesis nor a certain number of credit hours is required by this plan. The student must demonstrate competence by examination and must meet the minimum residence requirement of two semesters of full-time study.

A preliminary conference will be held to discuss the student’s objectives and how to meet them and to determine the general program the student will follow to prepare for the required examinations. The conference will be conducted by the chair of the graduate program or by a designated member of the graduate faculty. The plan of study developed at this conference may include course work and/or independent study and research. Plan C is available in second language studies, linguistics, mathematics, natural resources and environmental management, physics, and tropical plant and soil sciences. Each graduate program specifies its own requirements in addition to the following:

Candidates must be enrolled during the term in which they complete the requirements for the degree; regular course work or the appropriate Master’s Plan C Studies 500 may be used to meet this requirement. The 500 course is offered with a mandatory grading of S/NG but does not carry credit toward meeting degree requirements.

General Examination

A general exploratory examination (oral and/or written) will be given to determine if the intended candidate should be admitted to candidacy for the master’s degree under Plan C and to ascertain weaknesses in the student’s academic preparation. This examination is designed to reveal the quality of the student’s preparation for advanced work in the program and the ability of the student to pursue graduate work at the master’s level. The examination will be conducted by the student’s interim advisor and the graduate faculty of the program or a committee thereof consisting of at least three members of the faculty. It is given during the first semester of residence and is from one to two hours in length. A student who fails the general examination may repeat it upon approval by the graduate program. Notification should be sent to the Graduate Student Services Office via the Form I of a second attempt. A student who fails the general examination a second time is dropped from the program and loses classified graduate student status.

Final Examination

A final examination or series of examinations, written and oral, will be given to determine the candidate’s comprehension of the graduate program at the master’s level. Since there are no course requirements for this plan, the final examinations will be designed to give the student opportunity to demonstrate a level of achievement consonant with the level of achievement required by Plans A and B. It is assumed that many students will prepare themselves for the examinations by taking courses recommended by advisors.

Specifications for the number of written examinations required, what they cover, and the amount of time required for each (two or more hours for written examinations and one or more for the oral portion) are set forth in the statement of requirements in each graduate program. The written examinations may be given by the candidate’s committee or by an examination committee of graduate faculty members constituted for that purpose.

The oral portion of the final examination follows the written portions and must be held prior to the specified deadline before the end of the term during which the degree is conferred. It is conducted by the candidate’s committee and is open to all members of the faculty. The examination must be announced in the weekly News@UH. It may be scheduled on any working day during normal working hours. Arrangements for the final examination must be made at least three weeks prior to the date of examination for fall and spring semesters, and four weeks prior to the date of the examination for the summer.

Candidates failing the final examination may be allowed to repeat it upon approval by the graduate faculty concerned. Notification should be sent to the Graduate Student Services Office via the Form II of a second attempt. Students failing the final examination a second time are dropped from the program and lose their status as classified graduate students.

Doctor of Philosophy Programs

Faculty or staff members at rank 3 and above may not be awarded a doctoral degree by UH Manoa in the graduate program administered by the department in which they are employed.

The doctor of philosophy (PhD) degree is awarded only for the most distinguished scholarly achievement. The quality of a candidate’s work is judged by a variety of means, culminating in a set of comprehensive and final examinations and a dissertation. The dissertation describes completed research and must be a significant original contribution to knowledge in the candidate’s chosen program. The additional, special requirements in any given graduate program prepare the candidate for the examinations and successful completion of the dissertation.

Candidates are accepted only in graduate programs in which the teaching staff, library, laboratory equipment, and cooperative relationships with other research institutions make it possible to offer training.

The doctor of philosophy is offered in the following areas

  • American studies
  • Anthropology
  • Astronomy
  • Atmospheric sciences
  • Botany
  • Business administration
  • Cell and molecular biology
  • Chemistry
  • Civil and environmental engineering
  • Clinical research
  • Communication and information sciences
  • Computer science
  • Developmental and reproductive biology
  • East Asian languages and literatures
  • Economics
  • Education
  • Educational psychology
  • Electrical engineering
  • English
  • Entomology
  • Epidemiology
  • Geography
  • Geology and geophysics
  • History
  • Learning design and technology
  • Linguistics
  • Marine biology
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanical engineering
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular biosciences and bioengineering
  • Music
  • Natural resources and environmental management
  • Nursing
  • Nutrition
  • Ocean and resources engineering
  • Oceanography
  • Philosophy
  • Physics
  • Political science
  • Psychology
  • Public health
  • Second language studies
  • Social welfare
  • Sociology
  • Theatre
  • Tropical medicine
  • Tropical plant and soil sciences
  • Tropical plant pathology
  • Urban and regional planning
  • Zoology

Doctor of Education

The degree of Doctor of Education (EdD) is awarded for distinguished academic preparation for professional practice in the field of education. The quality of a candidate’s work is judged by a variety of experiences, culminating in an internship, a set of comprehensive and final examinations, and a dissertation. The dissertation is based on a selected research problem and is a significant part of the candidate’s field experience or internship.

Doctor of Public Health

The degree of Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) is awarded for distinguished academic preparation for professional practice in the field of public health. The quality of a candidate’s work is judged by a variety of means, culminating in a set of comprehensive and final examinations and a dissertation. The dissertation must be a significant original contribution to knowledge in the field of public health practice. Required course work is designed to prepare the candidate for the examinations and the dissertation.

Doctor of Nursing Practice

The degree of Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is awarded for distinguished academic preparation for professional practice in the field of nursing. Candidates must progress through course work and a series of capstone experience culminating in a final project. The student must produce a tangible and deliverable academic product that is derived from practice immersion experience and is reviewed and evaluated by the faculty.

Requirements and Procedures for Doctoral Degrees

Time Allowed

Doctoral students are expected to complete all requirements within seven years after admission into the doctoral program. Candidates who fail to complete all requirements within seven years of admission will be placed on probation and are subject to dismissal at any point after, but automatically after 10 years. Extensions of time are allowed only upon petition by the graduate chair explaining why more time might be justified.

Credit Hour Requirements

There is no minimum number of required course credit hours set for doctoral degrees. Registration in courses by doctoral students is governed by (1) the judgment of advisors or faculty in charge of the relevant program of study as to the importance of particular course work to the training and preparation of the candidate for the writing of examinations and/or the dissertation; (2) residence requirements; and/or (3) provisions of graduate assistantships, fellowships, or scholarships. For information regarding required or recommended courses, see the section appropriate to the graduate program.

Language Requirements

At the discretion of the graduate program, candidates may be required to take an examination to demonstrate comprehension of one or more additional languages. Please refer to the graduate program’s website for additional information on such requirements.

Doctoral Committee

The chair of the graduate faculty of the program recommends to Graduate Division appointment of a doctoral committee consisting of at least five members of the graduate faculty. Formation of the committee should occur prior to the student’s preparation for the comprehensive and dissertation proposal process. The student and chair of the committee should ensure the eligibility of members to serve on the committee in advance. The committee must include one graduate faculty member from another field of study. This is the University representative and he/she must be a full member of a graduate faculty at arm’s length from the program of the candidate. The majority of the committee and the committee chair must be from the graduate program in which the degree program is offered. This committee, appointed by Graduate Division, prescribes for the candidate a course of study in preparation for the comprehensive and oral examinations described below. It also approves the dissertation research topic and the dissertation itself.

It is the student’s responsibility to select an appropriate dissertation topic coinciding with the expertise and interest of a graduate faculty member who is willing to work with him/her.

Examinations

Doctoral candidates must pass the following examinations:

Qualifying Examination

A qualifying examination may be required by some graduate programs. The purpose of this examination is to determine whether to encourage students to proceed in a doctoral program and, if encouraged, to enable advisors to assist students in planning a program that will familiarize them with the requisite knowledge and techniques of their chosen graduate program. Graduate programs requiring this examination give it early in the intended candidate’s program (often coinciding with the master’s final examination). It may be oral and/or written and is conducted by a special examination committee appointed by the graduate chair of the graduate program or by the student’s doctoral committee. A student who fails the qualifying examination may repeat it once at the discretion of the graduate faculty concerned. However, students failing the qualifying examination a second time are dropped from the program and lose their status as classified graduate students.

Comprehensive Examination

The comprehensive examination is an important step in the sequence of study toward the doctoral degree. This examination covers the major graduate program and work fundamental thereto and minor fields as may be required by the graduate program. Its purpose is to ascertain the student’s comprehension of the chosen graduate program.

The examination is given only after the student has completed the foreign language requirement, if any, and when, in the judgment of the graduate faculty, the student has had sufficient preparation in the graduate program either through course work or other individual study and research. The comprehensive examination may be either oral or oral and written. It is conducted by a committee of the graduate faculty.

A student who fails the comprehensive examination may repeat it once at the discretion of the graduate faculty concerned. A student who fails the examination a second time is dropped from the program and loses classified graduate student status.

The student who passes the examination is eligible, at the option of the various graduate programs, to receive a UH Manoa certificate indicating that all requirements of the doctorate except for the dissertation have been completed.

Final Examination

A final examination in defense of the dissertation may also cover related subjects and is required of all candidates for the doctoral degree. The examination is oral and is conducted by the candidate’s doctoral committee. It is never less than one hour in length. Arrangements for the final examination must be made at least two weeks prior to the date of examination, since an announcement must appear in the News@UH. The examination must be held while UH Manoa is in session and must be open to the public.

A candidate who fails the final examination may be allowed to repeat it upon approval by the graduate faculty concerned. Notification should be sent to the Graduate Student Services Office via the Form II of a second attempt. A candidate who fails the final oral examination twice is dropped from the program and loses classified graduate student status.

A candidate who passes the examination, and who has met all other requirements, will be awarded the doctoral degree at the end of the appropriate term.

Dissertation

The doctoral dissertation for the PhD is expected to be a scholarly presentation of an original contribution to knowledge resulting from independent research.

An essential aspect of dissertation research is the free and full dissemination of research results. Moreover, all dissertations must be publicly defended in an oral examination. Therefore, proprietary or classified information is not suitable for a dissertation; data which cannot be made public at the time of the final defense should not be incorporated into the student’s research.

When the dissertation topic has been approved by the doctoral committee, it will notify the Graduate Student Services Office through submission of Student Progress Form II. The candidate may then register for the dissertation research course (800) during the next registration period.

A candidate should look to the chair of his or her doctoral committee for primary direction regarding research methods and the preparation of results. It is the joint responsibility of the chair and the student to see that all members of the committee are kept informed of the scope, plan, and progress of both the research and the dissertation. Guidelines for preparation of the dissertation can be obtained on the Graduate Division website.

Copies of the completed dissertation must be submitted to committee members at least four weeks prior to the date of the final oral examination. Please check with Graduate Student Services (or the website) regarding the submission procedures for thesis and dissertations.

A majority of the members of the doctoral committee, including the committee chair, must approve both the dissertation and the oral defense of the dissertation. A minority member has the right of appeal to Graduate Division for a final decision. The chair must ensure that the final form of the dissertation, including revisions and amendments agreed upon, is acceptable to a majority of the committee. The committee members express their approval on the Student Progress Form III and Student Progress Form IV (formerly signature page).

Candidates must be registered in the appropriate dissertation research course (800) during the term in which the work for the degree is completed. Failure to make satisfactory progress on the dissertation does not entitle a student to a refund of tuition.

The graduate chair of a program has the privilege of being an ex officio member of all doctoral committees in the field.

All doctoral students are required to publish their dissertation via ProQuest ETD. Dissertations must be submitted by the specified deadline (see the “Calendar”).