Academic Process


Faculty members are selected on the basis of experience in their profession, expertise in teaching theoretical and applied subjects, research and thesis and dissertation supervision capabilities, scholarly publications in her or his respected academic discipline, involvement in community and professional affairs, as well as leadership and role model capabilities essential to student advisement and professional growth.

Enrollment Agreement

The Enrollment Agreement is processed on a quarterly basis. Enrollment always starts on the first day of scheduled classes. Enrollment begins only after the applicant has been formally accepted by the Admissions Committee and has paid or made satisfactory arrangements to pay the fees and tuition.

Attendance Policy

The institute set the following attendance policy. However the institute encourages students to participate all class sessions.

1. Each student is expected to attend all class sessions.
2. The minimum required attendance is 75% class and some courses may require more attendance to complete. Students who have not completed a course and do not officially withdraw will receive a grade of “NC” (No Credit) unless they are eligible to receive an “I” (Incomplete) grade.
3. Students are encouraged to notify her or his instructor in advance if a class session must be missed by the student.
4. Using the Institute’s attendance sheet, Faculty routinely record student attendance for all class meetings. The original attendance sheet is placed in the coordinator’s file while the instructor retains the copy of the attendance sheet for her or his class records.
5. It is the student’s responsibility to make arrangements with her or his instructor for making up examinations and other relevant course work that has been missed due to either an excused or unexcused absence.
6. Missing more class hours than the institute’s guideline because of an unforeseeable or anunavoidable event, a student may request an arrangement for its makeup with the instructor.
7. Instructors have the right to issue a warning to any student who shows excessive tardiness, i.e. three instances of arriving at class 30 minutes beyond the start of the class and/or three instances of prematurely leaving class, i.e. leaving the classroom at least 30 minutes prior to the end of the scheduled class session. Continued violation of these class arrival or  departure standards will result in an academic advising and counseling meeting with the Dean of Academic Affairs, whereby an appropriate disciplinary or corrective action will be determined. 

Leave of Absence

A student may petition for a leave of absence. Circumstances requiring a leave of absence are documented by the student in writing, and then submitted to and evaluated by the student’s Program Director. A leave of absence may be granted for a maximum of one year.

Residency Requirements for Online Degree Programs

The M.A. thesis (if required) and Ph.D dissertation must be defended at the Institute in Encinitas, California, U.S.A.

Most coursework for the Institute’s doctoral programs may be taken online. Some courses may only be taken on campus. Students will be advised accordingly.

Online doctoral students in Clinical Psychology may earn academic credit for pre-doctoral internship hours only if the internship facility and program is approved by the CIHS Psychology Program Director. All doctoral dissertations must be defended in person at the Institute in Encinitas, California, U.S.A.

Grading System

All students of the Institute will have course work evaluated and reported by the faculty using letter grades or administrative symbols. Grades and symbols are listed below together with grade point values.

Grades and Symbols:


A – Outstanding performance                         4
B – Above average performance                     3
C – Average performance                               2
D – Below average performance                     1
NC – Student did not meet course requirement to receive a passing grade.     0
P – Pass (does not enter into GPA calculations)

Administrative Symbols:

AU – Audit/No Credit
I – Incomplete. A student whishing an “I” grade is required to advise the instructor in writing for approval. If the remaining course requirements are not completed by the end of the subsequent academic quarter, the “I” is changed to an “NC”.
W – Official withdrawal from course.

Unit of Credit

A quarter unit of academic credit is defined by the BPPVE in the following manner (Article 1, Section 71000, P.5, California Code of Regulations):

(1) At least ten (10) hours of college or university level instruction during a quarter plus a reasonable period of time outside of instruction which an institution requires a student to devote to preparation for planned learning experiences, such as preparation for instruction, study of course material, or completion of educational projects; or

(2) Planned learning experiences equivalent to the learning and preparation described in paragraph (1) as determined by duly qualified faculty responsible for evaluating learning outcomes for the award of unit credits.

Course Numbering Code

100-499     Undergraduate courses
500-699    Graduate courses organized primarily for graduate students at the master’s level.
700-900   Graduate courses organized primarily for graduate students at the doctorate level.

Challenge Examinations

Newly admitted students who have previously earned a substantial number of graduate education credits (from another state approved or accredited graduate school) beyond thirty (30) semester or forty-five (45) quarter units may have an opportunity to earn a limited number of graduate units, not to exceed eight (8) quarter units at the master’s level or sixteen (16) quarter units at the doctoral level, through the challenge examination process.

The challenge examination assesses the graduate student’s range of the theoretical and applied knowledge on relevant subject areas that are represented in the content of the curriculum.

Eligibility for a challenge examination is evaluated by the student’s Program Director and Dean of Academic Affairs. The Program Director will review the student’s transcripts and other supporting documents and conducts an interview to determine the student’s preparedness for the challenge examination.

The fee for the challenge examination is $300 per four units course, and must be paid prior to the faculty’s construction of the challenge examination format.

The Program Director notifies the student in writing about the results of the challenge examination within two weeks from the date of the exam. The challenge examination is graded on a Pass/Fail basis.

If students are unsuccessful in achieving a satisfactory performance on the first challenge exam administration, they have an opportunity for a second and final attempt, which must be completed within one month of the first unsuccessful challenge examination at no charge to the student.

Independent Study

Independent Studies can be an integral part of any academic program, allowing the student to pursue areas of interest that are personally and professionally relevant. This allows the California Institute for Human Science and the student collaboratively to tailor a program of study to the specific needs of each student. Students will be allowed a maximum of three Independent Studies in each degree program totaling 15 units at the Bachelor’s level and 12 units at the graduate levels. All Independent Studies must be approved by the program director / dean of Academic Affairs/ Academic Committee before the study can proceed.

Academic Counseling

Initial academic counseling is provided by Program Directors. Academic advising for continuing students is provided by the assigned core faculty, the Program Director and the Dean of Academic Affairs. Appointments need to be scheduled in advance.

Advisement Process

The Program Director tracks each student’s progress toward his/her degree on a quarterly basis. Advisement takes place on a continuous ad hoc basis and formally towards the end of each quarter when the Program Director reviews each student’s progress and advises the student on course selection for the upcoming quarter.

Academic Honesty

Plagiarism or presenting ideas, words and views of another as their own is considered unethical conduct. The use of another’s published or unpublished words, ideas, or views in a paper, report or oral presentation must be accompanied by the necessary acknowledgement and specific citation and by the necessary references. The consequence of plagiarism or any other form of academic dishonesty may result in the non acceptance of the student’s work or in disciplinary action including dismissal.

Administrative Withdrawal

A student may be administratively withdrawn from the program or a course because of excessive class absence, disruptive behavior, inappropriate professional or ethical conduct, unfulfilled academic requirements, or unpaid tuition or fees. Refunds will be made in accordance with the Institute’s policy.

Students have the right to appeal certain disciplinary actions taken by appropriate Institute authorities. Regulations governing original hearings and appeal rights and procedures are provided to give maximum protection to both the individual charged and the Institute community.

Academic Progress, Probation & Disqualification

For purposes of determining a student’s ability to remain in the Institute, both quality of performance and progress towards the educational objective will be considered.  A graduate student shall be subject to academic probation if he or she fails to maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0.

Right of Petition

Students may petition for review of certain Institute academic regulations when unusual circumstances exist.

Student Grievance Procedure

Any student who cannot settle her or his differences with a faculty member may file a complaint in writing to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A committee shall be established to review the grievance and mediate the conflict. The committee shall include up to four (4) members; 1) the aggrieved student; 2) the target faculty; 3) a faculty member chosen by the student; and 4) a faculty member chosen by the Dean of Academic Affairs.

Probationary Status

Probation indicates that a student has one term to complete the necessary requirements specified by her or his Program Director. If satisfactory progress is not achieved by the end of the probationary term, the student is subject to dismissal.

Provisional Status

A student may enter the Institute as a provisional student and take up to 16 quarter units. Upon completion of the 16th unit, a student must have met all requirements for full admission before any credit may be applied toward the degree.

Evaluation of Faculty

The student will be required to evaluate the quality of instruction provided by each faculty member with whom a class is taken. This evaluation is confidential, but will be made a part of the administrative record.

Dissertation Process

This begins with advancement to candidacy after the completion of the comprehensive examination  and is completed with the unanimous approval of the committee of the dissertation after their oral presentation.

Advancement to Candidacy

Doctoral programs require the successful completion of a comprehensive written and in some instances oral examination prior to the student’s advancement to candidacy and before undertaking any pre- dissertation or dissertation courses. This examination is usually undertaken upon completion of the required 68 units of course work before beginning the dissertation courses. In some instances it can be taken earlier, for example doctoral students in the Clinical Psychology doctoral program who are required to advance to candidacy before they are permitted to register with the Psychology Board before commencing an internship are permitted to undertake the examination after completing 48 units of coursework which must include at least 36 units of clinical courses.

Comprehensive  Examination

The examination is intended to demonstrate the student’s integration of their coursework particularly in the area that will be the basis of their dissertation   The examination is arranged with the academic dean and program director.

Dissertation and Thesis Guidelines

An overview and guidelines for undertaking a dissertation or thesis is provided at the following link: Dissertation and Thesis Guidelines

Graduation Requirements

Graduation requires that students successfully completes the course of study prescribed in their program by the Institute, meet all financial obligations, and have been recommended for graduation by their program director.


    Discover books by CIHS Faculty, including the many books by CIHS Founder, Dr. Hiroshi Motoyoma.

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