Jul 16, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

General Graduate Admission Requirements

Master’s Degree and Certificate Programs

The Master’s Degree Program at Bowie State University designed to launch a career in the students’ field of specialization prepares them to engage in the technical and research work of today’s complex computer-driven industries. It equips them with a strong foundation of advanced analytical skills, provide them with professional training and retraining in their different areas of interest. It prepares graduate students for responsible leadership positions in public, private and non-profit organizations which creates a problem-solving environment that presents real organizational challenges through which students learn to apply fundamental organizational/societal theories. 

Applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and have a cumulative grade point average of 2.5 or better on a 4.0 point scale. Those with a 2.0 and 2.49 may be granted conditional admission, which will be removed with the attainment of a 3.0 or better after the completion of the first nine credit hours.

Some master’s program require additional qualifications for admission.


Doctoral Programs 

The Doctoral Degree Programs at Bowie State University are designed to promote and produce competent and caring educators who become skillful and reflective educational leaders in the institutions and community they serve. The doctoral degree program prepares and qualifies the holder to teach at the university level in the degree’s field, or to work in a specific profession. These academic leaders as facilitators of learning, become change agents in the social, educational and multicultural environment of the ever changing society. Our doctoral programs prepare leaders who have the vision and skills to move the society to prominence in both the establishment and accomplishment of innovative initiatives and partnerships linking the learner, the faculty, and professionals in the field with the evolving system in our society driven by technological advancement. 

Computer Science:

Applicants must hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree, have an overall GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in previous undergraduate or graduate studies, and have a background in the following courses:

  • Computer organization
  • Data structures
  • Discrete structures
  • Design and analysis of algorithm.

Some doctoral programs require additional qualifications for admission. 

Educational Leadership

Applicants must have:

  • A master’s degree in school administration or a closely related field
  • An overall GPA of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale in previous graduate studies
  • At least three years of recent successful administrative experience in an elementary or secondary school setting
  • A certification in Administrator I/II

Some doctoral programs require additional qualifications for admission. 


Persons seeking to take graduate classes on a degree or certificate basis must complete a graduate application, pay the application fee, and have official transcripts from all colleges or universities that he or she has attended, be sent directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions at Bowie State University, including the institution that will confirm the completion of the bachelor’s degree.  Continuing students who have not been enrolled at Bowie State for more than one year but less than seven years are required to complete a Readmission Application.   

Priority dates have been established for the submission of applications for each entering term.  These dates insure the timely processing of graduate applications.  Applications submitted after this date will not receive the same guarantee of timely processing and in the case of some programs, acceptance will not be made due to enrollment capacities.  The priority date for the admission application packets for Graduate School should be completed by the following dates: 

Master’s Degree and Certificate Programs

The priority deadline for graduate applications:

  • Fall Semester and Summer Session - April 1
  • Spring Semester - November 1

Doctoral Programs

  • Fall Semester and Summer Session - February 15
  • Spring Session (doctoral program in computer science only)- November 1

*Admission requirements may vary by graduate program. Review the specific admission requirements relevant to each degree program. 

Send the application and all required materials to: 

Office of Graduate Admissions 
Bowie State University 
Henry Administration 
14000 Jericho Park Road 
Bowie, Maryland 20715-9465 

Residency Requirements


(Approved by the Board of Regents August 28, 1990; Amended July 10, 1998; Amended November 27, 2000; Amended April 11, 2003; Amended June 23, 2006, Amended February 15, 2008)  


A. Purpose
To extend the benefits of its system of higher education while encouraging the economical use of the State’s resources,1 it is the policy of the Board of Regents of the University System of Maryland (USM) to recognize the tuition categories of in-state and out-of-state students for the purpose of admission and assessing tuition at USM institutions.  

B. Burden of Proof  
The person seeking in-state status shall have the burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence that he or she satisfies the requirements and standards set forth in this Policy. Assignment of in-state or out-of-state status will be made by the applicable USM institution upon a review of the totality of facts known or presented to it. 

C. In-state Status  
To qualify for in-state tuition, a student must demonstrate that, for at least twelve (12) consecutive months immediately prior to and including the last date available to register for courses in the semester/term for which the student seeks in-state tuition status, the student had the continuous intent to:  

1.  Make Maryland his or her permanent home; and 
2.  Abandon his or her former home state; and 
3.  Reside in Maryland indefinitely; and 
4.  Reside in Maryland primarily for a purpose other than that of attending an educational institution in Maryland. 

Satisfying all of the requirements in Section II (and Section III, when applicable) of this policy demonstrates continuous intent and qualifies a student for in-state tuition. Students not entitled to in-state status under this policy shall be assigned out-of-state status for admission and tuition purposes.  

D. Presumption  
Either of the following circumstances raises a presumption that the student is residing in the State of Maryland primarily for the purpose of attending an educational institution and therefore, does not qualify for in-state status under this policy:  

  1. A student is attending school or living outside Maryland at the time of application for admission to a USM institution, or 

  2. A student is Financially Dependent on a person who is not a resident of Maryland. This presumption may be rebutted. The student bears the burden of rebutting the presumption. See “III. Rebuttal Evidence” below.  


Before a request for classification to in-state status will be considered, a student must comply with all of the following requirements for a period of at least twelve (12) consecutive months immediately prior to and including the last date available to register for courses in the semester/term for which the student seeks in-state tuition status. The student must demonstrate he or she:  

  1. Owns or possesses, and has continuously occupied, including during weekends, breaks and vacations, living quarters in Maryland. The student must provide evidence of a genuine deed or lease and documentation of rent payments made. In lieu of a deed or lease, a notarized affidavit from a landlord showing the address, name of the student as occupant, term of residence, and history of rent payments made will be considered. As an alternative, a student may demonstrate that he or she shares living quarters in Maryland which are owned or rented and occupied by a parent, legal guardian or spouse.  

  1. Has substantially all of his or her personal property, such as household effects, furniture and pets in Maryland. 

  1. Has paid Maryland income tax on all taxable income including all taxable income earned outside the State and has filed a Maryland tax return. 

  1. Has registered all owned or leased motor vehicles in Maryland. 

  1. Possesses a valid Maryland driver’s license, if licensed. 

  1. Is registered to vote in Maryland, if registered to vote.  

  1. Receives no public assistance from a state other than the State of Maryland or from a city, county or municipal agency other than one in Maryland. 

  1. Has a legal ability under Federal and Maryland law to live permanently without interruption in Maryland.  

  1. Has rebutted the presumption that he or she is in Maryland primarily to attend an educational institution, if the student’s circumstances have raised the presumption.  


Satisfying the requirements listed in paragraphs A through I of Section II, does not rebut the presumption that a student is in Maryland primarily to attend an educational institution. To overcome the presumption, a student must present additional evidence.  

To determine a student’s intent, the University will evaluate evidence of a student’s objectively verifiable conduct. Evidence that does not document a period of at least twelve (12) consecutive months immediately prior to and including the last date available to register for courses in the semester/term for which the student seeks in-state tuition status is generally considered an unfavorable factor under this policy. Evidence of intent must be clear and convincing and will be evaluated not only by the amount presented but also based upon the reliability, authenticity, credibility and relevance of the evidence.  

The absence of objective, relevant evidence is generally considered an unfavorable factor.  A student’s statement of intent to remain in Maryland in the future is generally not considered to be objective evidence under this policy.  

Additional evidence that will be considered includes, but is not limited to, the following:  

  1. Source of financial support:  

  • Maryland employment and earnings history through sources beyond those incident to enrollment as a student in an educational institution e.g., beyond support provided by work study, scholarships, grants, stipends, aid, student loans, etc.(Tuition costs will be considered as a student expense only to the extent tuition exceeds the amount of any educational scholarships, grants, student loans, etc.), or  

  • Evidence the student is Financially Dependent upon a person who is a resident of Maryland.  

  1. Substantial participation as a member of a professional, social, community, civic, political, athletic or religious organization in Maryland, including professionally related school activities that demonstrate a commitment to the student’s community or to the State of Maryland. Registration as a Maryland resident with the Selective Service, if male.  

  1. Evidence showing the student uses his or her Maryland address as his or her sole address of record for all purposes including on health and auto insurance records, bank accounts, tax records, loan and scholarship records, school records, military records, leases, etc. 

  1. An affidavit from a person unrelated to the student that provides objective, relevant evidence of a student’s conduct demonstrating the student’s intent to live permanently in Maryland.  


In addition, persons with the following status shall be accorded the benefits of in-state status for the period in which they hold such status:  

  1. A full-time or part-time (at least 50 percent time) regular employee of USM or a USM institution.  

  1. The spouse or Financially Dependent child of a full-time or part-time (at least 50 percent time) regular employee of USM or a USM institution.  

  1. A full-time active member of the Armed Forces of the United States whose home of record is Maryland or one who resides or is stationed in Maryland, or the spouse or a Financially Dependent child of such a person. Students that qualify under this provision will retain in-state status for tuition purposes as long as they are Continuously Enrolled regardless of a change in military assignment or status of the active member of the military.  

  1. A veteran of the United States Armed Forces with an honorable discharge who, within one year of discharge, presents documentation that he or she attended a secondary school in the State for at least three years, and graduated or received the equivalent of a high school diploma from a secondary school in the State. The veteran must present documentation and register at a USM institution within one year of discharge for this provision to apply.  

  1. For UMUC, a full-time active member of the Armed Forces of the United States on active duty, or the spouse of a member of the Armed Forces of the United States on active duty.  

  1. A graduate assistant appointed through a USM institution for the semester/term of the appointment. Except through prior arrangement, this benefit is available only for enrollment at the institution awarding the assistantship.  



  1. An initial determination of in-state status will be made at the time of admission. The determination made at that time, and any determination made thereafter, shall prevail for each semester/term until the determination is successfully challenged in a timely manner.  

  1. A change in status must be requested by submitting a USM institution’s “Petition for Change in Classification for Tuition”. A student applying for a change to in-state status must furnish all evidence that the student wishes the USM institution to consider at the time the petition is due. The due date is based on the deadline set forth by the USM institution at which the student seeks to enroll. If the applicable USM institution has no such deadline, the due date is the last published date to register for the forthcoming semester/term for which the change in classification is sought.  

  1. The student shall notify the USM institution in writing within fifteen (15) days of any change in circumstances which may alter in-state status.  

  1. In the event incomplete, false, or misleading information is presented, the USM institution may, at its discretion, revoke in-state status and take disciplinary action provided for by the institution’s policy. Such action may include suspension or expulsion. If in-state status is gained due to false or misleading information, the institution reserves the right to retroactively assess all out-of-state charges for each semester/term affected.  

  1. Each USM institution shall develop and publish additional procedures to implement this Policy. Procedures shall provide that on request the institution President or designee has the authority to waive any requirement set forth in Section II if it is determined that the application of the requirements creates an unjust result. These procedures shall be filed with the Office of the Chancellor.  


  1. Financially Dependent: For the purposes of this policy, a financially dependent student is one who is claimed as a dependent for tax purposes.  

  1. Parent: A parent may be a natural parent, or, if established by a court order recognized under the law of the State of Maryland, an adoptive parent.  

  1. Guardian: A guardian is a person so appointed by a court order recognized under the law of the State of Maryland.  

  1. Spouse: A spouse is a partner in a legally contracted marriage.  

  1. Child: A child is a natural child or a child legally adopted pursuant to a court order recognized under the law of Maryland.  

  1. Regular Employee: A regular employee is a person employed by USM or a USM institution who is assigned to a State budget line or who is otherwise eligible to enroll in a State retirement system. Examples of categories NOT considered regular employees are graduate students, contingent employees, and independent contractors.  

  1. Continuous Enrollment:  

  1. Undergraduate Student - An undergraduate student who is enrolled at a USM institution for consecutive fall and spring semesters, until completion of the student’s current degree program or unless on an approved leave of absence or participating in an approved program off-campus.  

  1. Graduate and Professional - Continuous enrollment for a graduate or professional student is defined by the institution in accordance with program requirement.  


This policy as amended by the Board of Regents on February 15, 2008 shall be applied to all student tuition classification decisions made on or after this date. 

1 Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article, §12-101.  


Candidates for Degrees at Other Institutions 

Students who are candidates for a graduate degree at another college or university may take graduate courses at Bowie State University. At least two weeks prior to registration, such a student must present a letter from the graduate dean of the home institution indicating that the student is in good standing and that the credit earned at Bowie State University is acceptable towards the student’s degree. The student must complete Bowie State University’s Non-Degree Application or register using the Inter-Institutional registration process. 

Transfer Credits  

Graduate credits from other institutions are transferrable under the following conditions:  

1. Courses accepted for transfer must have been earned at a college or university that is accredited by a regional accrediting body authorized by the U.S. Department of Education.    

2. Courses for transfer have to be designated as graduate level courses by the institution at which it was taken.  Courses offered as a workshop or as continuing education at other institutions and are not designated as a graduate level course are not acceptable for transfer.  

3. Twelve credits may be transferred into Master of Education programs, Counseling Psychology programs (Eclectic and Adlerian), and Human Resource Development. Thirty graduate credits in Computer Science may be transferred into the Computer Science doctoral program. No more than six credits may be transferred into all other programs.  

4. Number three above is also applicable to courses taken here at Bowie State University under the continuing education program.  

5. The courses for which transfer is sought must have been completed with a grade of “B” or better and must be relevant to courses and degree requirements offered in the degree program to be pursued by the student.  A course accepted for transfer credit can only be viable for use to satisfy program requirements seven years (or 12 years from the doctoral program in Computer Science) from the date of completion.  The seven years (or twelve years) will include the date on which the master’s (or doctoral) degree program in which the student enrolls at Bowie will be completed.  A representative of the graduate degree program makes the decision on the transferability of a course.  

6. Transfer of credits into a degree program may not be used to offset required practicum or seminar courses.  

7. Credits used to satisfy the requirements for one master’s degree may not be used for satisfying the requirements of another master’s degree.  

8. Credits are not to be used for two degrees at either the graduate or the undergraduate level. However, graduate credits received may be used towards a doctoral degree depending on the program. 


I. Submit the following to the graduate advisor  

  • a. Copy of the course description of course to be transferred into Bowie State  University  
  • b. Official copy of transcript from institution at which the course was taken reflecting the final grade earned in the course.  

II. The student’s advisor will review the course description to determine if it will satisfy requirements of the degree program and falls within the number of credits allowed for transfer.  

III. The advisor will include the course on the student’s Program of Study if the determination is made at the time the student is starting the program.  If a Program of Study has been completed and accepted by the Graduate School, then a Change of Program form will be used to accept and reflect the transfer course.  

IV. To accept a course for transfer taken after a student has begun the degree program, the student must get prior approval from the advisor using the Request for Permission to Take a Course at Another College/University form.  

V. The completed forms must be submitted to the Graduate School for approval.  

VI. The approved forms will be submitted to the Office of the Registrar for placement in the students file.  


Taking Courses at another Institution  

Students admitted to a graduate program who wish to pursue a course(s) at another college or university and apply the credit towards a graduate degree at Bowie State University must:  

1. Complete a Request for Permission to Pursue a Course at Another College/University form and attach a copy of the course description from the other institution.  

2. Obtain the Advisor’s approval and signature on the Request Form.  

3. Submit the request form to the Graduate Dean for approval.   

The approved request form will serve in place of a Change of Program form.  


I. A student will obtain a copy of the Request Permission to Take a Course at Another Institution form.  The form is available on the Graduate School website or in the Graduate School.  

II. The student will complete the form and submit to his/her advisor with a copy of the description of the course from the institution at which the course is to be taken.  

III. The form signed by the advisor will be forwarded to the Graduate School for signature by the Dean of Graduate School.  

IV. The approved and signed form will be sent to the Office of the Registrar with copies sent to the student, the advisor and the Graduate School.  

Admission of International Students:  

Admission to the Graduate School may be granted to international students whose academic and personal qualifications promote success in a graduate program of study. Applicants must hold the equivalent of a four-year U.S.  Bachelor’s degree and a grade point average equivalent to a 2.5 or better on a 4.0 scale. International students are expected to read, speak, understand and write English fluently. Applicants whose native language is not English must submit results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a minimum score of 550 (213 computer-based), and Test of Written English (TWE) with a minimum score of 4.0.  Students who have completed two (2) full academic years of study at an accredited U.S. higher education institution with a minimum of 18 credits completed with a grade of B or higher may have the TOEFL requirement waived.  

The following items must be submitted to the Graduate Admission Office:  

1. Applicants are required to submit an Application for Admission, along with a nonrefundable application fee. The University is able to accept only U.S. currency.  

2. An official copy of the undergraduate transcript indicating type of degree (BA or BS) and a notarized translation of this transcript if it is not in English. The Graduate School requires an applicant to submit the transcript to an official evaluation center at the applicant’s expense for a course by course review.  The University will provide the names and contact information of evaluation services.  

3. A notarized statement (Affidavit of Support) indicating the sponsor’s willingness and ability to provide full financial support for the student. The I-20 AB will indicate the estimated annual educational expenses.  The estimated annual cost of education will be established each year and will be available in the Office of Admissions.  

4. A statement from the sponsor’s bank indicating current balance sufficient to carry out sponsorship for one academic year. Students also may sponsor themselves by submitting their personal bank statement indicating sufficient funding, and a letter to the University indicating the self-sponsorship. Affidavits of support as well as bank statement may not be older than six months.  

5. All international student applicants must present an official record of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).  

Non-native speakers of English will be required to meet with a graduate school advisor prior to enrolling in any graduate courses.   

After receipt of the required documents and after clearance by the International Student Advisor, the Graduate School will make an admission decision. If accepted to the Graduate School, a SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) I-20 (Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant F1 Status) will be issued. A student visa may be obtained by presenting a payment receipt for the SEVIS I-20, along with the SEVIS I-20 and documentary evidence of financial support to the U.S. embassy in the student’s home country. Information concerning the SEVIS I-20 fee can be found at www.fmjfee.com.  Please note that F-1 students must attend school full-time. Registration for nine (9) credit hours is considered full-time enrollment at the graduate level. F-1 students may not be eligible for state or federal financial support, including scholarships, grants, and fellowships. The applicants may rely fully on private sponsors (family, friends, etc.) or on personal sources of income.  

To ensure adequate time for admission review, applicants inside the U.S. must apply four months before the application deadline.  Applicants outside the U.S. must apply 10 months prior to the date of entry to allow time for the exchange of correspondence, evaluation of all necessary documents and the settling of financial, immigration and housing matters. Applicants may contact the International Student Advisor 301-860-3830 or Graduate Admissions 301-860-3448 for information concerning graduate admission to Bowie State University.  

Certificate Program Application 

Students in an approved certificate program must complete a Request for a Certificate Application upon completion of the requirements for a certificate in the following certificate programs: 

Addiction Counseling 

Applied and Computational Mathematics  

Computer Science  

Information Systems Analyst 

Organizational Communications 

Public Management 


School Psychology 

An application may be obtained from the Graduate School Office and the completed form should be returned there. Certificates will be awarded upon completion of the required courses with a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better and issued at the end of the semester. 


  1. Students will complete the courses specified in the Graduate Catalog for a certificate program. 

  1. Once courses have been completed the student will obtain from the Office of the Registrar a copy of the Certificate application form.   

  1. The student will complete the form and submit it to the Office of the Registrar for processing. 

  1. Certificates will be printed at the end of each semester. 


Students admitted to the Graduate School will be permitted to register for classes during the regular registration period.  Conditionally admitted students may register through the Office of Graduate Admissions for a maximum of nine (9) credit hours of graduate study. Upon attainment of nine (9) credit hours with a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better, the conditional admissions may be removed and regular admission granted.  

Continuous Enrollment 

Should there be a lapse of two academic semesters, excluding summer school or the mini-semester, during which graduate courses are not taken, the student must file a Readmission Application. Readmit applications may be secured from the Bowie State University website or the Office of the Graduate Admissions and should be submitted at least two weeks prior to registration.  Readmission is only processed at the beginning of the semester.  Students returning to school during the second 8-week session must also submit the Readmission Application at the beginning of the semester. 


  1. Each semester a graduate student is expected to register for graduate coursework.  If a student drops out, he/she will have to be re-admitted to the University. 
  2. The student will obtain from the Office of Graduate Admissions or the Bowie State University website a Graduate Readmission form and fill out completely. 
  3. The readmission form is to be submitted to the Office of Graduate Admissions for processing. 
  4. The Office of Graduate Admissions will inform the student of the results from the processing of the readmission form. 
  5. If the student is readmitted, he/she may go online and register for courses. 

Veterans Benefits and Transition Act of 2018, Section 103 of Public Law 115-407 

Veterans follow the same procedure in paying bills as do other students. The Veterans Administration makes reimbursements after students have registered for courses. Veterans claiming benefits must have an approved program to be eligible for benefits.  Following is a summary of Bowie State University’s credits and training time for graduate veterans/dependents:  

9 credits Full time   

6-8 credits 3/4 time   

3-5 credits 1/2 time 

1-2 credits 1/4 time or less  

Training time will be adjusted for accelerated sessions (i.e., summer school). 

As required by 38 USC 3679(e), students (or” covered individuals”) receiving educational assistance under Chapter 31 VR&E, or Chapter 33, Post-9/11 GI bill benefits will not be assessed late payment fees or have a registration hold placed on their account. Covered individuals receiving chapter 31 or chapter 33 benefits will not be required to secure alternative or additional funding to cover the VA benefit amount by the tuition due date and will not be denied access to any school resources due to delayed VA payments. 

Effective August 1, 2019, section 103 of P. L. 115-407, requires the State Approving Agency (SAA), or the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), when acting as the SAA, to disapprove programs of education that do not permit individuals using benefits under either chapter 31, or 33, title 38, United States Code, to attend or participate in courses while awaiting payment from the VA.  

Educational institutions must have a policy in place that will allow an individual to attend or participate in a program of education if the individual provides the school with a “Certificate of Eligibility (COE).”  VA interprets “certificate of eligibility” to be any documentation provided by VA that serves as verification of an individual’s eligibility to benefits under chapter 31 or chapter 33.  

SAAs are not required to immediately disapprove non-compliant schools on August 1, 2019. Instead, if an SAA determines that a school is not in compliance, it will take appropriate corrective action, including suspension where warranted under 38 CFR 21.4259. This will give the school 60 days to come into compliance or receive a waiver. If the school does not come into compliance or receive a waiver within 60 days, the SAA should withdraw approval under 38 U.S.C. 3679. At the time an SAA determines a school in not in compliance due to reasons outside of the school’s direct control (for example, if action is required by the state legislature), the SAA may also recommend that the school request a waiver from the VA through the SAA. 

Office of Equity Compliance

Bowie State University is committed to the equitable and fair treatment of all employees and applicants for employment. View the equal employment opportunity non-discrimination statement.

The Office of Equity Compliance works with all members of faculty and staff, committees and departments throughout the university, to design and implement programs to increase diversity and ensure equal opportunity for students, employees and applicants for employment or admission.

The Office of Equity Compliance is responsible for the administration and implementation of the following Equal Employment Opportunities initiatives:

  • Affirmative Action
  • Discrimination, as outlined in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
  • Sexual Harassment
  • Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972
  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, as amended
  • Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
  • Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973
  • Training and Outreach

The Office of Equity Compliance investigates complaints of discrimination and sexual harassment; responds to complaints filed with external agencies; provides training on Equal Employment Opportunities programs and its relevant components; and assists management with providing reasonable accommodations, among other tasks.

The Office of Equity Compliance manages reasonable employment accommodations for persons with disabilities and/or religious accommodation for sincerely held beliefs. Reasonable accommodation is the key component of the reasonable employment accommodations. Individuals with disabilities may contact the Office of Equity Compliance for reasonable accommodations in employment, the application and hiring process. Request forms are available under the ADA section.

Any student, employee, or applicant who is concerned about affirmative action, equal opportunity, sexual harassment, racial harassment, or fairness in admissions or employment at BSU, either in a general sense or with respect to his or her own situation, is encouraged to contact the Office of Equity Compliance. All inquiries are treated in a confidential manner, as circumstances permit. Complaint forms are available under each Equal Employment Opportunities program link.