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Student Handbook

Student Handbook: Welcome to HGSE!

Dear Student,

Welcome to the Harvard Graduate School of Education! We are thrilled that you have chosen to become part of our community. One of the first things you will discover is that all of us — faculty, staff, and students — are here for the same reason: we care deeply about education, and we believe in the importance of education for all. Regardless of background or identity, we believe in the worth of each person, and we know that the opportunities afforded by a good education are critical to creating thriving individuals and communities as well as addressing pressing challenges in the U.S. and across the world.

During your time at HGSE, we will help prepare you to become the future leaders who will expand educational opportunity, enhance academic achievement, improve student supports, and advance our understanding of how children and adults learn. You will be immersed in discussions of how best to accomplish the goal of educating all students, and you will benefit from interacting with colleagues whose differing perspectives will help you to engage in rigorous debate. Including a diverse set of backgrounds and perspectives at HGSE is essential to our ability to engage in meaningful teaching and practice, conduct relevant and pioneering research, and have a positive impact on the larger field. With each step we take together, we move closer to the day when all people have access to an education that enables them to reach their full potential.

We know that transitioning to graduate school requires many adjustments that can make it both an exciting and a stressful time. That’s true whether you are a recent undergraduate or returning to school after many years, and whether you majored in education or never had an education course. Remember that change can be hard, but it also offers opportunities. We are committed to supporting your transition and success at HGSE and beyond.

This Student Handbook is designed to provide you with information about HGSE and the University, including the policies and procedures that govern academic and student life, as well as the many resources and supports available to you, such as student support services including accommodations for a disability, Counseling and Mental Health Services, and many others.

We urge you to familiarize yourself with this Handbook, as it will be a helpful resource to you during your graduate studies. We also point out that it is your responsibility as an HGSE student to be aware of and compliant with all the policies, procedures, deadlines, and expectations detailed in the Student Handbook.

You enrolled at HGSE with a passion to contribute to the world through education, and you will leave with the knowledge, skills, and relationships that will make that goal a reality. We look forward to meeting you and wish you a productive and rewarding experience.


Bridget Long 
Saris Professor of Education and Economics

Martin West
Academic Dean
Henry Lee Shattuck Professor of Education