General Information

University Organization

Texas State University is organized into the College of Applied Arts, the Emmett and Miriam McCoy College of Business, the College of Education, the College of Fine Arts and Communication, the College of Health Professions, the College of Liberal Arts, the College of Science and Engineering, Honors College, and The Graduate College.

Overview of Graduate Studies


The establishment of The Graduate College at Texas State was authorized by the Board of Regents at its meeting on June 15, 1935. Graduate courses were first offered during the summer of 1936, and the first master of arts degree was conferred at the 1937 spring commencement. The first doctoral programs were authorized by the Board of Regents in 1996 in geographic education and environmental geography. The first doctorates were awarded in 2000.

Mission of The Graduate College

The mission of The Graduate College is to provide vision, leadership, and direction for achieving excellence in graduate education at Texas State University with the goal of offering the optimal infrastructure and learning environment for the training of innovative and successful scholars, teachers, and professionals. The Graduate College does so by:

  • articulating, promoting and supporting the highest standards of quality in graduate education in keeping with the University’s overall mission of teaching, research and public service
  • constructing and maintaining an environment conducive to successful graduate education in concert with all graduate programs
  • supporting programs’ efforts to foster a diverse student population who actively participate in a global society
  • promoting and supporting rigor in graduate education
  • providing key process and procedure guidance and support to graduate programs from admission to graduation
  • aiding in student recruitment, application processing, policy monitoring and degree auditing
  • leading initiatives designed to provide best practices in graduate education leading to timely degree completion
  • providing graduate student support for creative and scholarly activities
  • offering professional development opportunities for graduate students at key stages in their graduate career
  • engaging in research on graduate education.

Characteristics of Graduate Study

Graduate study affords students of exceptional academic ability many opportunities to continue their intellectual growth and development. Doctoral study in particular seeks to integrate students into the professional community of scholars in a manner that emphasizes the completion, presentation, and publication of original research.

Graduate education differs from study at the undergraduate level in at least the following respects:

  • Graduate students are expected to assume greater responsibility and demonstrate more self-initiative in meeting their academic goals;
  • Graduate students are expected to engage in more extensive reading, emphasizing primary source material in a specialized field;
  • Graduate students are expected to become familiar with the current literature in their fields, with emphasis on recently published developments in research methods and results;
  • Doctoral students are expected to assume responsibility for the planning, completion, and presentation of original scholarly research;
  • Doctoral programs utilize seminar courses that stress active participation by students in intellectual exchange with both faculty and peers and in the critique of published research;
  • Doctoral course-work emphasizes integrating student research into the norms of an academic discipline; and:
  • Master's courses differ from undergraduate courses, and doctoral courses differ from master's courses in their learning outcomes and in the breadth and depth of readings and assignments.