Jul 25, 2024  
Graduate Catalog 2019 - 2020 
Graduate Catalog 2019 - 2020 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

About the University

The University

Cleveland State University is a state-assisted, metropolitan university whose mission is to recruit and instruct a diverse student population, provide strong arts and sciences programs, support excellence in education, reaffirm its commitment to basic and applied research, and provide a supportive and nurturing educational environment for members of the community.

Cleveland State has some 17,400 students enrolled in more than 1,000 courses and 175 major fields of study at the undergraduate and graduate levels as well as professional certificate and continuing education programs. These include: 70 undergraduate programs, over forty master’s-level programs, two law degree programs, three specialist degrees (two in education and one in school psychology), eight doctoral programs, and joint programs including law-business, law-public administration, and law-environmental studies. The University also offers over two dozen graduate certificate programs. Approximately one-third of Cleveland State’s students are enrolled in graduate or professional programs and about half attend on a part-time basis.

The University’s 10 Colleges/Schools are the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law; the College of Education and Human Services; the College of Graduate Studies; the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences; the College of Sciences and Health Professions; the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Honors College; the Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs; the Monte Ahuja College of Business; the Washkewicz College of Engineering; and the School of Nursing. Descriptions of the University’s baccalaureate programs are contained in the Cleveland State University Undergraduate Catalog, which can be found at http://catalog.csuohio.edu/. Programs in the College of Law are described in the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law web site at https://www.law.csuohio.edu/programs.

Other important academic divisions of the University are Continuing Education, which offers a variety of special, non-credit learning opportunities; the English as a Second Language Program, and the Division of University Studies, which provides comprehensive academic and student support  services, including orientation programs, academic advising, tutoring, assistance to students with disabilities, mentoring services, and career development and planning.

Project 60/Active Minds offers senior citizens the opportunity to take undergraduate and graduate courses on a tuition-free, non-credit, and space-available basis. Students can sample undergraduate and graduate courses without being admitted formally to a degree program.

Cleveland State’s faculty is among the best anywhere, with more than ninety-three percent holding the highest degree in their field. Four out of five hold the Ph.D., a figure unmatched by any other Ohio university. And faculty have received fifty-five prestigious Fulbright Scholar Awards, including twenty awards over the last four years. Our faculty members create an atmosphere that promotes intellectual growth, the creation of new knowledge and an engaged learning experience.

The University has more than 120,000 alumni, most of whom have remained in the Northeast Ohio area to establish careers, give back to the community, and raise their families. Recent research shows that at nearly 1,000 businesses across the country, a Cleveland State graduate is at the helm as founder, chairman, CEO, president, or top executive.

Cleveland State is a metropolitan university that provides a rich environment for engaged learning in an exciting and dynamic location. Our students are fond of claiming that the entire city is their campus for study, practical experience, and recreation. And our pledge to each student is an engaged learning experience in the real world, for the real world, among a diverse and engaged student body.

University Mission Statement

Empowering Students. Creating Knowledge. Engaging Communities. Shaping Our World.

University Vision Statement

We will be a nationally recognized and student-focused public research institution that provides accessible, affordable and Engaged Learning opportunities for all. We will be both:

  • An anchor institution for Northeast Ohio, recognized for cutting-edge research, creative activity and innovative collaborations that drive economic development and enrich the lives of our students and citizens, and;
  • A beacon institution whose vitality attracts diverse and talented students, faculty and staff from within and outside the region, thereby enhancing our distinctive and inclusive living, learning, and working environments.


Established as a state-assisted university in 1964, Cleveland State was created out of the buildings, faculty, staff, and curriculum of the former Fenn College, a private institution of 2,500 students that was founded in 1929.

Cleveland State University’s historical roots go back to the 19th century. During the 1880s, the Cleveland YMCA began to offer day and evening courses to students who did not otherwise have access to higher education. The YMCA program was reorganized in 1906 as the Association Institute, and this in turn was established as Fenn College in 1929. A significant contribution of Fenn College was its pioneering work in developing internships for students in engineering and business. These internships, as joint ventures between the College and local businesses and industries, provided students with professional contacts and experience, as well as an affordable education. Historic Fenn Tower, now student housing, stands as a reminder of these early years, when the University already had a strong commitment to equal access to higher education

The Cleveland-Marshall College of Law traces its origins to 1897 when the Cleveland Law School was founded. It was the first evening law school in the state and one of the first to admit women and minorities. Another evening law school, John Marshall School of Law, was founded in 1916. In 1946, the two schools merged to become the Cleveland-Marshall School of Law. Cleveland-Marshall became part of Cleveland State University in 1969.

Evening and Weekend Classes

Most graduate programs are available in the evening. During a typical term, more than 5,500 undergraduate and graduate students attend the hundreds of classes offered during the late afternoon and evening hours. Many classes meet once a week or on Saturdays, thus providing multiple scheduling alternatives.

A Dynamic Campus Environment

Strategically located in downtown Cleveland, the University sits in the midst of major businesses and institutions that provide students with internships and other career opportunities. Nearby neighbors include The Plain Dealer (Ohio’s largest newspaper), Playhouse Square Center (home of the Cleveland Opera, the Great Lakes Theater Festival, and touring Broadway productions), Tower City Center, Progressive Field, Quicken Loans Arena, and the North Coast Harbor, which is the home of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, the Great Lakes Science Center, and Cleveland Browns Stadium.

The Cleveland State campus consists of 85 acres-the largest footprint in downtown Cleveland-with forty buildings used for teaching, research, housing, administration, and recreation.

A $500 million architectural reboot has reinvigorated our campus, complete with new buildings and inviting spaces that reflect and embrace the excitement of the urban landscape. In the new Center for Innovation in Medical Professions, future doctors, nurses, pharmacists, occupational therapists, physical therapists and other health-care professionals are training to work together by learning together, side by side. A 100,000-square-foot addition to the Washkewicz College of Engineering will include research labs, teaching labs and simulation labs, as well as the Dan T. Moore MakerSpace, where prototyping and fabrication technology will provide a proving ground for creativity and entrepreneurship. The revitalization evident across CSU is having a dynamic ripple effect and sparking neighborhood development in and around Cleveland’s bustling Campus District.

Within easy reach of the University are the Cleveland Clinic, Severance Hall (home of the Cleveland Orchestra), the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, the Cleveland Play House (the oldest repertory theater company in the country to have a continuous existence), Karamu House (America’s oldest African American community theater company), and the Western Reserve Historical Society.

We believe that a first-class education benefits not only the graduates of Cleveland State but the rest of society, as well. Public and private institutions, corporations, and businesses have joined as our partners in a dynamic and engaged learning experience. With their help, the University has created an environment in which the individual, the curriculum, and the community interact to achieve the highest levels of learning.

Student Learning Assessment Policy

All academic programs and student service units on campus assess student learning outcomes in order to improve the quality of our curricula, instruction, support systems, and the overall campus life. Systematic, ongoing assessment efforts focused on student learning are coordinated by the Office of Student Learning Assessment. There are several measures used to determine whether the University’s expectations and goals for learning are being achieved. In this light, we evaluate a combination of theses, papers, projects, portfolios, pre-and post-tests, licensure, and other formal examinations. Additionally, current and former students’ views about the learning process are also solicited through questionnaires, interviews, and focus groups. Upon completion of the process of reviewing all academic program as well as student service unit assessment reports, the Office of Student Learning Assessment provides constructive feedback to the reporting programs and units as a way for the University to continuously meet the needs of our diverse student population.

University Ombudsperson

The University Ombudsperson has the official role of protecting the interests and rights of all members of the Cleveland State University community by being an impartial, trustworthy person to oversee conflict-resolution procedures and assure due process for all parties involved in a conflict. The ombudsperson strives to achieve informal resolutions of disputes; provides informal, confidential mediation; advises complainants of their rights; identifies the correct bodies to which petitions and requests should be addressed; helps complainants prepare supporting paperwork in clear and concise form; and offers an avenue through which persons with grievances can express their concerns and develop a constructive perspective on their situation.

A major goal of the ombudsperson is to serve as a reliable, comprehensive source of information about university rules and procedures at all levels in order to assure that all members of the institution have full knowledge of, and access to, all appropriate conflict-resolution processes. Achieving informal resolutions depends substantially on aiding disputants to appreciate the various factors that affect their situation and to understand the options available to them.

The ombudsperson maintains strict confidentiality regarding all interactions related to the role. The parties involved in a dispute are assured that all disclosures to the ombudsperson are confidential and that they retain control over information shared with the ombudsperson as well as actions taken by the ombudsperson on their behalf. Neither party is obligated to accept either in full or in part the recommendations of the ombudsperson; the parties always retain the right to pursue other options.

The ombudsperson’s purpose is to protect the rights of the individuals on both sides of the conflict and help them acquire the full benefit of due process; it is not the purpose of the office to initiate actions to achieve institutional ends. The ombudsperson strives to maintain an atmosphere of fairness and due process for all parties and to promote an environment conducive to learning, reasoned discourse, and mutually acceptable conflict resolution.

Jill Rudd
University Ombudsperson 
2121 Euclid Ave., MU 245
Cleveland, OH 44115