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Doctoral Candidate Graduation Overview

  1. Supervisory Committee

    Talk to your department coordinator about forming your supervisory committee. In general, your committee should be formed by the beginning of the second year of your graduate program, although this varies by department.
  2. Graduate Student Summary

    When your committee is formed, a Graduate Student Summary is established and approved by The Graduate School. See the Graduate Student Summary Tutorial for instructions on how to access the summary.
  3. Program Of Study

    Your department coordinator will enter your Program of Study into your Graduate Student Summary. Your supervisory committee should approve this Program of Study no later than one semester before graduation.
  4. Graduation Application

    All candidates for graduation must complete an Application for Graduate Degree with the Graduation Division of the Office of the Registrar.

Graduate School Protocol

Although your department coordinator will complete each of the items in your Graduate Student Summary, you should be aware of the following deadlines to ensure graduation in a specific semester.

If you have any questions about this protocol or whether your Graduate Student Summary has been completed by the given deadlines, please consult with your department coordinator.

Thesis Office Requirements

Additionally, the Thesis Office has further requirements to obtain a Thesis Release (required prior to graduation).

An overview of these requirements and their deadlines, as well as information about submission of theses and dissertations, format samples, and required forms, are available from the Thesis Office.

Questions regarding theses and dissertations should be directed to the Thesis Office.


Thesis Target Dates


  • For graduation within a given semester, all graduate program requirements must be completed and processed by the Graduate Records Office and Registrar’s office within two weeks following the published final examination period. Refer to Final Exam period on the Academic Calendar
    • It is the student’s responsibility to observe all deadlines and to check with his or her home department if anything on the Grad Student Prog Plan Audit page is incomplete (see the Graduate Student Summary tutorial for details). 
    • Deadlines for all requirements are clearly stated on The Graduate School website.
    • If any requirement is not met, the student must reapply for graduation in the following semester.
  • Each department should confirm the posting of student degrees after each graduation.
Last Updated: 4/15/22