Master’s Student FAQs

What are the HCP MS degree requirements?

As a part-time master’s student, you are required to:

  • Enroll in a minimum of 3 units in each academic quarter (not including summer quarter). Each course is typically offered for 3-5 units.
  • Maintain a course load of between 3 to 10 units per quarter to make steady progress toward your degree. Exceeding 10 units during an academic quarter will automatically place you into a full-time tuition category.
  • Complete a minimum of 15 courses.
  • Earn 45 units of credits within 5 years (for most disciplines) to earn a degree. 
  • Review your specific department’s degree requirements, which can be found on

Note: If you choose to enroll in courses during summer quarter, you may take less than 3 units, but you will be charged for 3 units per university policy.

Can I earn a graduate certificate while pursuing my master's degree?

No. Units earned as part of a matriculated program cannot be transferred or counted toward a non-matriculated program, such as a graduate certificate. These units can be counted only toward a degree. However, if you have already earned a graduate certificate as a non-degree student, you may transfer up to 18 units towards your master's degree if approved by the department.

Can I complete the program entirely online?

While some master’s degree programs can be completed online, many degrees require your attendance on campus. This depends heavily on your program plan, area of focus, and the course offerings for any given academic quarter. You may find it helpful to compare the degree requirements with available online graduate courses to see how much of your degree can be completed online.

As an HCP student, how do I register for a course?

You will be able to enroll in courses through Axess before each quarter begins. 

Personal Profile Information and Study Lists

As a part-time master’s student, you are responsible for entering and maintaining your personal profile and your study list in AXESS by the Preliminary Study List Deadline (see academic calendar). If you miss this deadline, your program participation will be discontinued and you will need to submit a petition to the university registrar’s office for reinstatement. You will also be charged a late study list fee which will appear on your statement in AXESS.

You are also responsible for entering and maintaining your personal profile in mystanfordconnection, our registration system.  The email that you enter here will be used for individual course communications as well as communications from the university.

Our team will transfer your enrollment information from AXESS to your mystanfordconnection account, where your course(s) and tuition and fees will be displayed.

Adding and Dropping Courses or Units

You may add or drop courses via Axess before the final study list deadline. Dropped courses will not remain on your transcript.

You may add or drop courses or units after the final study list deadline by submitting a late study list add petition.

After the final study list deadline, you may withdraw from a course until the withdrawal deadline. In this case, your transcript will show a “W” (Withdraw). The university will charge a per diem rate for course withdrawals after the Financial Add/Drop Deadline.

To drop all courses for a quarter, you must request a Leave of Absence (see below).

Leave of Absence

To obtain a leave of absence during a quarter, complete the form in Axess by following these instructions. Once approval is received, send the approved copy to

You can view the full refund policy under "Taking a Voluntary Leave of Absence" on the Grades & Policies page.

While the university allows a total of up to 2 years (8 quarters) for a leave of absence,a maximum of one year’s leave can be submitted at any one time.

If you need to extend your leave beyond the approved period, you must submit a new request form to gain approval.

Please email us when you return from a leave of absence.

Annulment of Summer Registration

An annulment of summer registration is required if you withdraw from all summer courses in which you enrolled. Please submit the Annulment of Summer Registration form in the Axess eForms portal and email an approved copy to Be aware that the university will charge students a per diem tuition amount for classes attended.

May I take courses outside of my graduate program?

Please check with your academic department about whether courses outside your program will count as progress towards your degree.

As an HCP student, how do I access my courses?


Courses are offered by the Stanford Center for Professional Development through an online classroom format:

  • Delivered via streaming video, courses are posted to your mystanfordconnection account within 30 minutes of the completion of the live class at Stanford University.
  • Online courses are available only until the end of the quarter’s exam period.
  • If you are taking courses remotely, you are required to adhere to on-campus deadlines for homework and exams. Establishment and enforcement of course deadlines are at the sole discretion of the instructor. Schedules will reflect the university calendar for final exams.

Viewing Courses Online

Access to all graduate courses requires enrollment via AXESS. Some course previews are available on the course pages on Stanford Online.

After you have enrolled, you can view your courses online by logging into mystanfordconnection and clicking ‘Online Videos’, or by going directly to Canvas and clicking on your course's Canvas page.

For system requirements, software downloads, technical support, or answers to frequently asked questions, please email

As an HCP student, where can I find more information about course logistics?

Course Readers and Textbooks

You may purchase course readers and textbooks directly from the Stanford Bookstore or call (650) 329-1217, extension 8356. Course readers and textbooks are not available through the Stanford Center for Professional Development or Stanford Online. The bookstore will not accept vouchers from your company.

Stanford University Network (SUNet) Computer Accounts

Your SUNet ID will provide access to Stanford computer resources and an email account. Instructions are provided in your graduate admission package from the university.

For questions regarding the activation or use of a new or existing computer account, please contact a Stanford IT Help consultant at (650) 725-4357 (5-HELP) or submit a help ticket online.

SUNet ID Password Reset Feature

The SUNetID password reset feature can be found here. If you have forgotten your password you may reset it at any time without calling the HelpDesk. You may change your SUNetID password at any time through StanfordYou.

Course Materials Available Online

Your mystanfordconnection account links to the course lecture videos; additional course materials may be distributed by the course teaching team through a variety of online platforms (Edstem, Canvas, etc.). It is your  responsibility to check for provided course materials. 

Where can I find information on tuition, fees, and financial aid for the HCP Program?

View tuition and fees for the HCP program, and information about financial aid.

Where can I find important dates for the quarter such as add/drop deadlines?

You can find important dates and deadlines on our academic registrar calendar.

How do I transfer from the HCP to become a full-time, matriculated graduate student in an MS program ?

If you are a part-time master’s student and wish to transfer to the full-time program or if you are a full-time student seeking to transfer to the part-time HCP, you must submit a student transfer request at least 3 weeks before the beginning of the quarter. You will be notified once a decision has been made by the academic department.

Please review your department’s policies on transferring before submitting your transfer requests. Departments may have different policies on transferring between full-time and part-time status.

You are allowed a maximum of two transfers per degree program. Please notify us of any status change by forwarding your approval to

If you are a MS in Electrical Engineering student, please review additional transfer request policies on the Electrical Engineering website.

If you are a Biomedical Informatics MS student, please review additional transfer request policies at their checklist for HCP MS students.

Note on Terminal Graduate Registration:

Terminal Graduate Registration (TGR) and Graduation Quarter Status

Terminal Graduate Registration (TGR) allows you to register at a reduced tuition rate while you work on a dissertation, thesis, or department project. If you are registered in TGR status, you must enroll each quarter in a TGR course, either 801 or 802. If you are not registered for courses during the last quarter before you graduate, you will need to apply for Final Registration (last option on the University’s TGR form). Please note that a TGR tuition rate applies to each course that you take within the academic year.

Graduation Quarter (GQ) status allows you to be assessed a special tuition rate for the quarter in which you are receiving a degree, assuming you meet a certain set of conditions. This includes having completed all course work, degree requirements, and residency requirements for all graduate degree programs, including joint degree programs, prior to the start of the requested Graduation Quarter.

When you transfer your status to TGR or GQ, or enroll in an 801 or 802 course, your HCP status will be removed, as only one can apply to your student record. 

As a result of the removal of your HCP status, health insurance through Vaden will no longer be waived. Please review the TGR and GQ rules, options, and fees via the Registrar's website and submit any questions to

What are the HCP healthcare and immunization requirements?

Regardless of your category or location, you must upload proof of immunization records into the Vaden portal in order to be considered compliant with university requirements.

If you have any questions or wish to enroll in the health insurance program through the university, contact the Vaden Health Center.

As an HCP student, will I receive a Stanford University ID card?

An ID card is available to you as a matriculated student through the Stanford Card Office. If you are not in the local area and do not plan to come on campus, an ID card is not required.

As an HCP student, will I have access to Stanford University libraries?

Yes, as an HCP part-time master’s student, you will have the same privileges and access to all university libraries as a full-time graduate student.

Who can I contact for accessibility accommodations?

For questions and information on student accessibility matters - please contact the University office of accessible education.

Who can I contact if I have more questions?

For any additional questions, please reference the chart below.

Question Who to contact
Course content or logistics questions Course teaching team (teaching team contact information will be listed in course syllabus)
Payment, enrollment, or program policy questions
Exam questions
Technical questions
Stanford IT Help Submit a Ticket
Explore Degrees Find Degree Requirements Here
Student Services Center Submit a Ticket
Student Financial Services Submit a Ticket
Stanford Libraries
Stanford Bookstore
Other questions