Dec 02, 2022  
Graduate Catalog 2019-20 
Graduate Catalog 2019-20 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Master of Arts in Youth and Community Development (Accelerated)

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Advisors: Karen Blaisure (September – June),
Richard Zinser (July and August),
Room 3326, Kohrman Hall

The Accelerated Graduate Degree Program (AGDP) in Youth and Community Development allows qualifying students to begin accumulating credits toward completion of a Master of Arts degree in Youth and Community Development while still enrolled as undergraduates in the Family Studies major, the Child and Family Development major, and the Youth and Community Development major. Undergraduate students admitted to the MA in Youth and Community Development, with senior standing, may take up to 12 credit hours of designated 5000- and 6000-level courses for graduate credit. These designated courses may be used in completion of both the bachelor’s degree and the master’s degree.

Degree hours

The Master of Arts in Youth and Community Development requires a total of 33 credit hours. An undergraduate degree in a Family Studies major or a Child and Family Development major requires a total of 122 credit hours. Students in these two majors enrolling in the AGDP for the maximum 12 graduate credits would earn 143 total undergraduate and graduate credits in contrast to the typical combined 155 undergraduate and graduate credit hours under the usual progression to degree(s).

Students will pay undergraduate tuition for designated AGDP 5000- and 6000-level courses as undergraduates, and the courses will be included in the flat tuition rate. On completion of the undergraduate degree, the student will be re-classified as a graduate student and then will pay graduate tuition rates.

Students who have received their baccalaureate degrees will be ineligible to apply for this program and retroactively claim credits toward the M.A. degree.

Admission criteria

1. Students must have a declared major in Family Studies, Child and Family Development, or in Youth and Community Development and have a minimum accumulated grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 (based on at least 45 earned credit hours, 15 of which shall be earned at Western Michigan University) and 3.5 GPA in the major (based on at least 12 earned credit hours ).

2. The student completes the online graduate application ( and within the application selects the application type “Accelerated degree seeking - only available to current WMU undergraduate student.”

3. International students must clarify their visa status with the Office of International Student and Scholar Services before submitting an application for AGDP.

Admission procedure

1. As early as possible in the academic junior year, the student contacts the graduate program advisor to discuss this AGDP option and review the requirements, timelines, and application procedures.

2. The student applies for a graduation audit and completes the online graduate application.

3. Upon acceptance into the AGDP, the student meets together with the graduate program advisor and an undergraduate academic advisor to prepare an appropriate program of study that meets the requirements for the undergraduate and graduate degrees.

4. The AGDP Course Approval Form that lists the graduate courses to be counted in both degrees will be sent to the student and to the registrar. A copy of this form will also be included in the student’s graduate file.

Requirements for continuing eligibility and graduation

1. Students must complete the requirements for the M.A. degree within 24 months from the completion of the bachelor’s degree. Students unable to meet this requirement must apply for an extension with the director of graduate studies in the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences.

2. In order to progress automatically into the graduate program, students must achieve a grade of “B” or better in each of the graduate courses being counted for the undergraduate degree, as well as maintain a 3.0 GPA overall and a 3.5 GPA in their major.  Students will be admitted as graduate students (with the relevant graduate credit) in the next semester or session after receiving the bachelor’s degree. Students who do not meet these requirements will have the earned grade applied to their undergraduate degree only and must apply for readmission into the graduate program.

3. Students in the AGDP must follow the program of study developed with the graduate director and the undergraduate advisor. Failure to follow this program of study may result in ineligibility for the AGDP.

4. Both undergraduate and graduate transcripts will show that the student completed the Accelerated Graduate Degree Program.


A student may withdraw from an approved AGDP at any time by informing the director of the undergraduate program and the graduate advisor in writing. A copy of this withdrawal statement will be forwarded to the Graduate College and the Registrar’s Office.

Designated Accelerated Degree Program Eligible Family and Consumer Sciences Courses (3 credit hours unless otherwise noted):

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