Earning a Second Master's Degree

When an individual seeks to earn a second Master's degree in a discipline closely related to that of his/her first Villanova Master's degree, it is not uncommon for the individual to request that he/she be allowed to apply some of the credits earned in the first program toward the requirements in the second program. However, the University has an obligation to ensure that each of its degrees reflects a significant immersion of the individual in a relevant, concentrated course of study. To this end, a student may not apply more than 25 percent of the credit hour requirements from the first degree to the credits required for the second degree. Furthermore, the individual must formally apply and be accepted for admission to the second graduate program and must obtain that program's approval for the courses to be "accepted" from the other degree because certain course credits (e.g., internships) may not be sufficiently relevant to the second degree. That is, the second program will determine which courses from the first program, up to a maximum of 25 percent of the credits from the first program, will be accepted toward the second Master's degree. Finally, any specific requirements beyond coursework in the second program (e.g., comprehensive exams or a thesis) must be completed.  Any credits considered for the second program must have been completed within the previous six calendar years prior to the first semester of enrollment in the second program. 

For example, if a student completes a 30 credit graduate degree, and then returns to Villanova for a second graduate program, s/he may apply up to 6 credits from the first program towards the second program, with the approval of the second program’s director, as long as the time frame is acceptable. 

This policy also applies to students pursuing certificate programs with or without simultaneous enrollment in a degree program.  

Should a student decide to pursue a third credential at Villanova, no course may be triple-counted.

[Revised, December 6, 2016]