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Graduation and Commencement mark the successful completion of graduate school. Although both occur at the end of a graduate education, graduation and commencement are not the same.


Graduation is the completion of all degree requirements, as recorded on the official transcript, and the conferring of a diploma.

All students wishing to graduate must complete the graduation requirements, apply for graduation, and submit the appropriate paperwork.

See the Graduation and Commencement Deadlines for details.


Commencement is a ceremony that recognizes graduate students for the completion of their master’s, educational specialist, and doctoral degrees.

Commencement ceremonies held at the end of each fall and spring semester recognize and celebrate the achievements of graduating students. Students who graduate during the summer can participate in the following fall commencement ceremony. You must apply for graduation to participate in commencement.

Graduation & Commencement Timelines & Deadlines