GSAS Policies

GSAS Policies detail the regulations, rules, and procedures that apply to students, including departmental-specific requirements. Students are responsible for familiarizing themselves with the policies and following the procedures outlined.

GSAS strives to provide students with timely, accurate, and clear information. If you need help understanding a specific policy, please contact the office that administers that policy (listed at the bottom of every page).

Policies and procedures are reviewed and updated annually. At times, a review of academic, financial, or other considerations may lead to changes in policies mid-year. The Faculty of Arts and Sciences and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences reserve the right to make changes at any time.

COVID-19 Policy 

The public health crisis occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented social and economic disruption worldwide, in the United States, and in the Boston/Cambridge area. Anticipating that continued in-person, on-campus instruction would increase the risk of infections in our community, the University acted promptly in March 2020 to “de-densify” its campus and transition to online instruction. Harvard reached this decision after careful (but time-pressed) deliberation, drawing on insights and expertise from public health experts worldwide—including Harvard faculty. 

As we look ahead to the fall and beyond, we are planning for several contingency scenarios that would protect the health and safety of our community, preserve our ability to adapt to evolving circumstances, and ensure the continuity of our teaching and research mission. GSAS continues to retain the discretion to apply its considered judgment to the question of how best to pursue its educational programs during the COVID-19 crisis, which may include, among other things, making recourse to online instruction and instituting compulsory testing and tracing programs as required conditions for accessing the Harvard campus or Harvard facilities.