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Policies & Planning

Whether here for a master’s, doctoral, or professional degree, all students can benefit from understanding the academic policies that apply to their graduate careers. The VPGE office interprets and disseminates university-level policies, which are set by the Academic Senate and the Committee on Graduate Studies.

Planning Resources

Your Best Resource: Your Department or Program

Your department's policies and procedures, including current student handbooks, are your primary resource for academic questions about your degree. Your student services staff can explain requirements and procedures, and your dean’s office staff can explain school-level academic policies.

View Dean's Office Contacts

Stanford Bulletin: Explore Degrees

Stanford's schools, departments, and interdisciplinary programs list their academic policies and degree requirements in the Bulletin.

Visit Explore Degrees

Stanford Bulletin: Explore Courses

Stanford's course database can be searched by department, keyword, or quarter, time, or day offered. Take advantage of Stanford’s open course enrollment policies to explore beyond your department or school.

Visit Explore Courses

Funding Resources

There are many funding opportunities at Stanford and beyond that can help you finance your graduate education, research projects, internships, travel, and more.

Graduate Policies

Graduate Academic Policies and Procedures Handbook

The GAP describes university-wide academic policies that apply to all graduate students. The GAP can be a handy reference throughout your graduate studies.

Childbirth Accommodation Policy

This policy provides an academic accommodation period for registered and matriculated female graduate students (including students in professional schools) anticipating or experiencing a birth.

The Childbirth Accommodation Policy:

  • Maintains students' enrollment and progress to their degree
  • Supports students if they need to adjust assignments and academic milestones during the two quarters around the birth of a child, when the demands on the students’ time are directed to the child
  • Supports students if they decide to take a leave of absence based on a Childbirth Accommodation
  • Replaces RA or TA funding for a birth parent who would normally be funded by an RA or TA

The Childbirth Accommodation Policy does not automatically:

  • Extend funding
  • Extend time to degree

In April 2018 the Student Families Working Advisory Group recommended that funding for the birth parent who is funded on an RA or TA be extended from 6 weeks to one quarter. In May 2018 the Committee on Graduate Studies endorsed this change. The new policy begins in the 2018-19 academic year; the policy, linked below, will be updated to reflect that change. Contact Rebecca Jantzen in VPGE with questions via email or phone, 650-736-9793.

Research Policy Handbook

The Research Policy Handbook (RPH) describes policies, guidelines, and resources related to Stanford's research mission. Selected research-related policies directly affect graduate students.

Office of Community Standards

The Office of Community Standards upholds Stanford’s Honor Code, which articulates the university's expectations of students and faculty in establishing and maintaining the highest standards in academic work, and the Fundamental Standard, which sets the standard of conduct for all members of the Stanford community.