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Header Completing Program

Establishing the Graduate Faculty Committee
Recruiting External Advisors
Building the Study Plan
Accessing the Study Plan Form
Tuition Agreement
Course Enrollment
Pursuing Your Courses
Comprehensive Final Examinations
Research Proposals
Conducting the Final Projects
Physical and Oral Review of Research
Finishing Activities
Final Approval
Official Dates of Acceptance, Enrollment, and Graduation

All graduate students are assigned a committee graduate faculty to govern the expectations for the degree.

Committee Size
Committee Responsibilities
Master's Committee Schedule
Doctoral Committee Schedule
External Advisors

Graduate Committee Size
Bachelor's students are assigned a faculty advisor to guide their study plan. Master's students have a Graduate Committee of two graduate faculty and doctoral students have a Doctoral Committee of three.

Committee Responsibilities
The primary responsibilities of the committee under the leadership of the Graduate Committee Chair, are as follows:

Directing the preparation and approval of the student's study plan

Providing direction regarding the student's major and minor coursework

Providing leadership by integrating needed research preparation coursework within the Study Plan, distributing the coursework to the primary and secondary mentor, as most appropriate

Providing leadership for the written and oral components of the student's comprehensive final examination

Providing oversight, direction, and mentorship during the conduct of the student's research project and manuscript preparation

Providing leadership for the physical and oral reviews of the research manuscript

Assisting the student make formal changes in the study plan by addendum

Providing final approval for the students/dissertation and overall degree program and overseeing building the appropriate archival records for the University.

Master's Committee Schedule

Primary Advisor Appointed at the time of the Master's student's Registration.
Secondary Advisor Appointed just prior to commencing the written component of the Master's student's Final Examination.

Doctoral Committee Schedule

Primary Advisor Appointed at the time of the doctoral student's Registration.
Secondary Advisor Appointed just prior to commencing the written component of the doctoral student's Final Examination.
Tertiary Advisor Appointed just prior to commencing formal review of the doctoral student's dissertation proposal.

At Akamai, graduate students are allowed to recruit external advisors in support of content, quality, and rigor in conduct of their research project. There are some points of clarity that graduate students should understand before they proceed.

External advisors must qualify at the same level, as existing Akamai faculty, such as those serving on faculty at an accredited institution or a licensed professional who has knowledge of the student's field of research. The University administration gathers the docyumentation and validates the eligibility of the candidate for acceptance as an external advisor.

Akamai maintains no budget item for compensation of external advisors, on behalf of our students. We compensate only our own faculty who have an instructional role or serve as an official member of a student's graduate Committee.

There is one option for approaching external advisors who wish to be compensated. They could be considered as your secondary or tertiary advisor. The advisor MUST join the Akamai adjunct faculty, meet the expectations of the Program Director and the University administration, by completing the documentation requested by our policies published online at Faculty Applications.

The student must complete the following form, sign, and submit, with the requested information and attachments, to the University administration for processing:

Request for Approval of External Committee Member

Immediately following registration, graduate students begin work with their primary advisor in structuring their formal Study Plan. The Study Plan process determines the following elements of the student's graduate program:

The appropriate degree major and degree minor for the Study Plan
The required subjects for the academic major, academic minor, and research preparation coursework.
The acceptable transfer courses and course waivers for the student's program.
The acceptable areas for prior learning assessment, as an acceptable alternative for assignments and grading individuals courses.
The timeline for completion of the degree program.

These activities require active participation in program planning by the student and primary faculty advisor and may take considerable time to complete the dialog and exchange of information. Students are strongly advised to discuss in detail the Study Plan elements including the major and minor, the research preparation coursework, the final examination, research proposal, conduct of the research project, and physical and oral review of the research manuscript.

Once all of the decisions have been made concerning the Study Plan, the student will prepare the formal document, sign and send to the primary faculty advisor for approval. Copies of the draft document are signed and sent to the Center Director and the University headquarters for entry to the permanent student record. The Study Plan then becomes the document that determine effective progress toward the degree, and when the expectations laid out in the Study Plan have been successfully accomplished, the student is recommended for the degree by the Chair of the Graduate Committee.

before the formal approval of the Study Plan, students are permitted to enroll for mandated courses expected to be incorporated as part of the official Study Plan. However, students are alerted that the University can make no commitment to inclusion of courses and assignment of instructors to a student program until after the study Plan document has been full processed and approved by the student, primary faculty advisor and the University administration.

The Study Plan Form with Instructions is available for download in the University's Online Forms Archive.
View Study Plan Form

Following approval of the Study Plan, the University administration shall calculate tuition reduction allowances, if any, and adjust the balance of the student's tuition accordingly. The student will then be provided the formal Tuition Agreement for signature.

At this stage in program planning, our students also receive authorization to prepare and submit their first course enrollment form. Students are expected to submit a new course enrollment for each course (or set of courses) in which they enroll at least 30 days prior to the expected course start date. This system allows our students to pursue coursework at their own pace (within guidelines provided by the University) according to their ability to progress.

The Course Enrollment Form with Instructions is available for download in the Forms Archive.
View Course Enrollment Form

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As part of the Study Plan process, qualified faculty members are assigned to instruct students through each of their courses. At the beginning of each course, the instructors provide an approved course syllabus to guide the activities of the subject. Each assignment will be clearly outlined, and the examinations and learning resources identified. Among other appropriate modes of assessment, students will prepare (and submit for evaluation) scholarly papers, essay examinations, and project reports, and they may be asked to participate in oral examinations by telephone or online chat.

Students must maintain personal initiative in their studies and persevere in their schedule of communications with the instructor, and arrange to finalize your course requirements within the 17 weeks allowed. At the completion of each course, the instructor will submit a formal grade report to the student and the University headquarters.

The University's Grade Report is available for download in the Forms Archive.
View Grade Report Form

Once our students have completed their subject coursework related to their academic major and minor, and the foundational research preparation, they are authorized to schedule their Comprehensive Final Examination. This final examination has both written and oral components and is conducted by the primary faculty advisor and at least one other qualified member of the faculty. Upon successful completion of both elements of the examination, graduate students receive instructions for follow-up. This may involve expectations that the student completes additional reading or further preparatory coursework.

The guidelines governing Comprehensive Examinations can be found in the University's Program Handbook.
View Guidelines for Comprehensive Examinations

Upon successful completion of the Comprehensive Examination, our graduate students are authorized to enter the formal research proposal phase of their program. A special course is designed to guide the proposal process and specific formats, guidelines and timelines are expected

The guidelines governing Research Proposals can be found in the University's Program Handbook.
View Guidelines for Research Proposals

Once the graduate student's proposal is approved, they are authorized to begin their research project. Students complete a special research course designed to govern effective conduct of the final project.

Students are expected to maintain close contact with their graduate committee for the duration of their project and during preparation of their project manuscript. They are required to follow their approved research proposal or formally modify the proposal under the direction of their Committee Chair. Students are also expected to conform their manuscript to an approved style manual and the University's manuscript preparation requirements.

The guidelines governing conduct of Research Projects can be found in the University's Program Handbook.
View Guidelines for Research Projects

Once our graduate students have prepared their manuscript, they may be authorized by the Committee Chair to submit the document for review by the graduate committee. While reviewing the research manuscript, each member of the committee will prepare a set of questions and concerns for later discussion. While the manuscript is being reviewed, the primary advisor will guide the graduate student to schedule the oral review of the research project. Upon completion of the oral review students receive a score and a set of instructions for follow-up (and re-examination, if necessary).

The guidelines governing Physical and Oral Review of Research can be found in the Program Handbook.
Review Guidelines for Oral Review of Research

Upon successful completion of the oral review of research, our graduate students are guided in making the final corrections to their manuscript. Once the final document has been approved, students must send the manuscript with to an approved bindery and then ship the bound manuscript to the University headquarters for inclusion in the University Research Archive.

The guidelines governing Finishing Activities can be found in the Program Handbook.
Guidelines for Bindery and Finishing Activities

Upon receipt of the bound manuscript, the University administration will gather the formal degree records and oversee the preparation of the official transcript and diploma. Students receive a formal written notification that they have successfully completed the degree and an official copy of their transcript and diploma. Our graduates receive information concerning graduation ceremonies and alumni activities to encourage their continued participation in the mission of the University.

Upon successful completion of the degree program, the student's primary advisor will issue the Degree Record Form to the University administration, providing the record of successful completion of each stage of the degree program. This is the official form used by senior faculty to notify the University of the student's completion.

The guidelines governing issuance of the Degree Record Form is provided online.
Review the Degree Record Form and Instructions


Official Date of Acceptance
Official Date of Registration
Official Date of Graduation

Official Date of Acceptance
The official date of acceptance at Akamai shall be recorded as the date shown on the official letter of acceptance issued to the student. This letter is issued in a timely manner once all application materials and admission fees are received, evaluated and approved by the Akamai

Official Date of Registration
The official date of enrollment and registration at Akamai shall be that date when a letter of acknowledgement of registration is issued to the student. This letter is issued in a timely manner once all registration materials and tuition fees (or tuition installment agreement) are received, accepted and approved by Akamai University

Official Date of Graduation
The official date of completion and graduation at Akamai shall be that date when Akamai issues a letter of completion indicating final approval. This letter is issued in a timely manner once all finishing documents and materials verifying successful degree completion have been received and approved at Akamai.

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Akamai University is internationally accredited by the Accreditation Service for International Colleges (ASIC). The University has earned Premier status with ASIC for its commendable areas of operation. ASIC is an approved accrediting body for the purposes of compliance by the UK Border Agency (UKBA) is a member of the British Quality Foundation (BQF), sits on the Quality Standards Group of UK NARIC, and is one of a number of international accrediting bodies listed in the international directory by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) in the USA and is a member of the CHEA International Quality Group (CIQG).


Akamai University
110 Haili Street
Hilo, Hawaii 96720 USA