Graduation Frequently Asked Questions
Note: The questions and answers found in this Frequently Asked Questions section are directed to undergraduate students. Graduate students who have graduation questions should contact Graduate Affairs.
- What is the process for graduation?
- Once you have determined that you are eligible to graduate, you need to submit a graduation application during the published filing period and the nonrefundable application fee, if applicable. After your graduation application is processed, a graduation evaluation will be mailed to you in approximately eight weeks. Graduation is based on the successful completion of all of your degree requirements by the last day of the semester of the graduation term you have applied for (i.e. if you apply for May graduation, you must complete all degree requirements by the end of the spring semester).
- When does the university graduate students?
- SDSU officially graduates students at the end of the fall, spring, and summer terms. Students apply to graduate for the term in which they plan to complete all requirements for the degree. Students completing all requirements for the degree by the end of fall apply for December graduation. Students completing all requirements for the degree by the end of spring apply for May graduation. Students completing all requirements for the degree by the end of summer apply for August graduation.
- How do I know if I'm eligible to graduate?
- There are numerous resources available to help you determine if you are on track to graduate. You are encouraged to meet with your major adviser and your minor adviser (if applicable) to discuss how well you are progressing towards the completion of your major and minor requirements. In addition, academic advisers are available at the Academic Advising Center who are specially trained to answer questions about the university's graduation requirements.
- How do I apply for graduation?
- You must submit a graduation application for the term you anticipate completing all of your requirements. Enrolled students must apply online through the SDSU WebPortal by clicking the Apply to Graduate menu option. If you are not a current undergraduate or second bachelor's degree student and are unable to apply online, you may send an email, including your full name at the time of enrollment and RedID, to the Office of Advising & Evaluations at [email protected] to request a paper version of the application. The completed graduation application, along with a one-time $100 nonrefundable filing fee, must be submitted to the Office of Advising & Evaluations by the published filing period deadline. Checks and money orders should be made payable to SDSU. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are applying for the correct term in which you believe you will have met all of the graduation requirements.
- When do I submit the graduation application?
- Each application term has a separate application with a published filing period. Applications for May and August graduation are accepted from July 1 of the previous
year until the spring semester's schedule adjustment deadline. Applications for December
graduation are accepted from February 1* of the current year up until the fall semester's
schedule adjustment deadline. You are encouraged to submit the application for graduation
as early as possible, but at least one semester prior to your planned term of graduation.
Late applications will not be accepted.
*Applications for December 2019 graduation are accepted from February 6.
- How do I get a graduation application?
- Graduation applications are available through the SDSU WebPortal by clicking the Apply to Graduate menu option for enrolled students. If you are not a current undergraduate or second bachelor's degree student and are unable to apply online, you may send an email to the Office of Advising & Evaluations at [email protected] to request a paper version of the application. The completed graduation application, along with a one-time $100 nonrefundable filing fee, must be submitted to the Office of Advising & Evaluations by the published filing period deadline. Checks and money orders should be made payable to SDSU.
- How much does it cost to file a graduation application?
- Beginning with the December 2019 graduation application, the cost is a one-time $100 nonrefundable filing fee.
- I applied for graduation once before and paid the fee. Do I need to pay the fee again?
- Anyone applying to graduate for December 2019 or later, must pay the one-time $100 nonrefundable filing fee. If you previously paid the one-time $100 filing fee, you do not need to pay again.
- Who can I contact with questions about when and how to file a graduation application?
- Staff in Academic Advising Center are available in person or by phone to answer questions on when and how to file a graduation application.
- How do I apply for concurrent graduate credit?
- If you complete work in excess of graduation requirements during the semester or summer session in which your graduation occurs, you may petition for concurrent graduate credit. You will not be awarded concurrent graduate credit automatically or for credit earned in semesters prior to graduation. Petition forms are available from Graduate Affairs and must be submitted to the Office of Advising and Evaluations by the schedule adjustment deadline of the term in which the concurrent credit is earned.
- What happens after I apply?
- Once your application has been submitted and application fee processed, you'll receive official notification to your email address on file with the university confirming the receipt of your application and the graduation term you've applied for. The application is then forwarded to your assigned graduation adviser who will prepare a graduation evaluation for you. The evaluation will then be mailed to you in approximately eight weeks. The evaluation will list all requirements you must complete prior to graduation, as well as, the term you've applied to graduate for and the contact information for your assigned graduation adviser.
- What is a graduation evaluation?
- A graduation evaluation is a document prepared by your graduation adviser that lists your remaining degree requirements. The evaluation will show the remaining units needed to complete the degree as of the date the evaluation is prepared. Units in progress are included in the total units remaining. This is the official document that is used to determine whether you can receive your degree, so make sure you read it carefully and follow up on any issues that the graduation adviser brings to your attention.
- When do I have to complete all of my graduation requirements?
- All requirements must be completed by the graduation date that coincides with the term you apply for graduation. Grade changes, make-up of incomplete grades, petitions, test scores, waivers, and transcripts from other institutions must be on file with SDSU no later than the last day of the semester in which you are graduating. Official transcripts for work taken at another institution during your final semester must be received at SDSU no later than six weeks after the last day of the semester in which you are graduating.
- Why does my graduation evaluation still say I need to complete a particular requirement even though my adviser told me the requirement is okay?
- The graduation requirements found on your evaluation are from the SDSU General Catalog. Students are required to complete these requirements. In some cases, departments will allow an exception or adjustment to the requirements found in the General Catalog. In these instances, a Request for Adjustment of Academic Requirements (RAAR) form must be filed with all the appropriate approvals before an adjustment can be made to a student's evaluation. The RAAR form is available in the Academic Advising Center or online.
- My graduation evaluation says I have to send my high school transcript. Do I really need to send my high school transcript?
- Yes. If your graduation evaluation indicates transcripts are required, then you must comply with this requirement. All official transcripts should be sent to:
- San Diego State University
5500 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182-7455
- Or electronically, if possible to:
- My graduation evaluation says I have to send a college transcript. Do I really need to send my college transcript? What if I dropped the course? What if I decided not to attend the institution?
- Yes, all SDSU students are required to file official college transcripts from every institution they attended prior to graduation. If you decided to withdrawal from coursework or not take classes from an institution you reported as attending, then you must still submit an official college transcript or official Letter of Non-Attendance prior to graduation.
- If I have an Incomplete (I) in one of my courses, will that prevent me from graduating, even if I do not need the course for any remaining requirement?
- In order for your degree to be conferred, all graduation requirements must be completed, all undergraduate transcripts must be on file and considered final with the Office of Advising and Evaluations, and final grades must be issued for all courses.
- What if I study abroad during my last year at SDSU prior to my graduation?
- Students who study abroad are required to have official transcripts sent from the institution attended before the completion of all degree requirements can be verified. SDSU is not able to accept electronic transcripts from institutions outside of the United States, so it is important to understand that some institutions located abroad can take several months to send a transcript. Therefore, students who have applied to graduate and have studied abroad in their last year might experience a delay in the finalization of their graduation.
- I think I might be eligible for graduating with honors and distinction. How will I know for sure?
- Graduating with honors is granted to undergraduate students who achieve high grade point averages. The determination of honors will be done at the time the bachelor's degree is conferred. Distinction in the major is granted to students who meet the GPA qualifications and who have received their major department's recommendation. Candidates for a second bachelor’s degree are not eligible to graduate with honors. Your graduation adviser will automatically do the calculation of honors and distinction. However, to be considered for distinction, all removal of incompletes and grade changes must be submitted by the end of the fifth week of your final semester. All changes for summer term graduates must be received by the end of the fifth week of the spring semester prior to graduation.
- I did not receive my graduation evaluation. What should I do?
- The graduation evaluation is mailed to the address that the graduation candidate has on file in their SDSU WebPortal. Students are notified via email when the graduation evaluation has been mailed. If you have not received your graduation evaluation within two weeks of receiving the email notification, then you should contact the Office of Advising and Evaluations.
- Who can I contact with questions about my graduation evaluation?
- Students who have questions concerning their graduation evaluation should contact their graduation adviser. Your graduation adviser's name and contact information is on the front page of your graduation evaluation.
- I applied to graduate but I won't be able to complete my requirements in time. What should I do?
- If you realize that you will not complete the graduation requirements by the end of the term for which you applied to graduate, then you will need to reapply for the term that you plan to complete all requirements. If you would like to transfer your projected graduation date from May to August, visit the SDSU WebPortal, click on Apply to Graduate, and pay the nonrefundable transfer fee, if applicable. If you are having trouble changing your graduation term through the SDSU WebPortal, send an email to the Office Advising and Evaluations at [email protected] to request a paper version of the transfer form. Changes from December to May or August graduation, or changes from May or August to December graduation, require a new graduation application and the nonrefundable $100 fee, if applicable. It is highly recommended that you consult with your graduation adviser as soon as possible to discuss your particular situation and the best possible course of action.
- I applied for graduation, but I need one more semester to complete my requirements. How can I get a registration time?
- If you do not complete all degree requirements by the end of the term for which you applied to graduate, then you will need to reapply for graduation for a future term during the published filing period. After the current application has been cancelled and processed, it will take 24-48 business hours for the Office of the Registrar to assign you a registration date and time for the next term.
- I'll have my degree requirements satisfied with the exception of my minor. Can I graduate and come back at a later date to complete my minor?
- No. If you wish to earn a minor or if a minor is required by your major, you must complete all requirements for your major and minor by the graduation date for which you applied.
- How do I cancel my graduation application?
- If you are an enrolled student, you can cancel your graduation through the SDSU WebPortal by clicking on the Apply to Graduate menu option. Other students must submit a Graduation Cancellation form to the Office of Advising and Evaluations.
- What is a Graduation Adviser?
- A graduation adviser is a specially trained academic adviser who assists graduation candidates with completing the requirements for the degree. Each graduation adviser works with specific departments and majors. The graduation advisers review records, complete graduation evaluations, review petitions, and confer degrees. Once you have applied to graduate, the assigned graduation adviser for your major will answer any questions you have with regard to completing the requirements for your degree.
- How do I know who my Graduation Adviser is and how do I contact them?
- Your graduation adviser's name and contact information is on the front page of your graduation evaluation. Appointments are not necessary to speak with your graduation adviser; each graduation adviser provides convenient telephone and/or email advising to all graduation candidates. Please make sure you provide your RedID when contacting a graduation adviser so that they can access your record and respond to you promptly.
- When can I participate in the commencement ceremony?
- Commencement ceremonies are held once a year at the end of the spring semester for students who graduated in December of the previous year, and candidates for May or August graduation of the current year.
- When will I receive information about the commencement ceremony?
- Commencement information is available on the SDSU Commencement website in the middle of the fall semester. The Commencement brochure will be mailed to the address listed in the SDSU WebPortal in early spring.
- Will I receive my diploma at the commencement ceremony?
- No. Diplomas will be mailed to the diploma address indicated in your SDSU WebPortal at the time the order is placed. Diplomas are ordered only after the degree has been officially posted to the SDSU record.
- Will my name be listed in the commencement program if my information is confidential?
- Your name will NOT be listed in the commencement program if you have confidential directory information.
- When will I receive my diploma?
- At the end of the term for which you have applied to graduate, the Office of Advising and Evaluations will review your records. Once we have confirmed completion of requirements, your degree will be posted to your academic record. Approximately one to two weeks after the end of the term, you will receive an email notification from the SDSU Office of Advising and Evaluations of the status of your degree. In most cases, diploma orders are processed and mailed between two to three weeks from the date a bachelor’s degree is conferred to the diploma address listed in your SDSU WebPortal.
- How can I check on the status of my diploma?
- Once your bachelor's degree is conferred, your diploma order will be processed. You will receive an email from SDSU's official diploma vendor, the Michael Sutter Company, to inform you of when your diploma was mailed. You can also check on the status of your diploma by going to the Michael Sutter Company website.
- Will my minor print on my diploma?
- No. SDSU only prints majors on the diplomas. Students who earned a minor may find the minor information on their official and unofficial SDSU transcripts.
- Will I receive two diplomas since I completed two majors?
- No. Both majors will be listed on one diploma. The degree is associated with the first major. The diploma and transcript issued will note the one degree earned with all majors completed.
- Do honors and distinction print on my diploma?
- Yes. Any honors and distinction you receive in your major will be printed on your diploma and transcript. Students earning a second bachelor’s degree may be considered for major distinction, but are ineligible to receive honors.
- What name will appear on my diploma?
- The name on your diploma is the same as the name on your SDSU record. If you wish to change your diploma name, you must officially change the name on your SDSU record by submitting an SDSU Change of Legal Name card to the Office of the Registrar. For more information, visit the Name & Gender Change Procedures web page.
- What if I haven't received my diploma and need proof that I graduated?
- Once your degree has been granted, you can obtain transcripts that indicate your degree information. Official and unofficial transcripts are available in the SDSU WebPortal. In addition, potential employers may contact the National Student Clearinghouse at (703) 742-4200 for degree and enrollment verification.
- Can I order another copy of my diploma?
- To request an additional copy of your diploma, complete a Reissued Diploma Order Form and submit it to Student Account Services. The cost for a reissued diploma is $12.
- Can I request for my diploma to be notarized?
- Yes. For information on how to request a notarized diploma, review the Notarization of Documents web page.
- Can I complete a second undergraduate major after I have graduated?
- No, unless you have been admitted into a second bachelor's degree in Nursing.
- Can I complete a minor after I have graduated?
- No. If you wish to earn a minor or if a minor is required by your major, you must complete all requirements for your major and minor by the graduation date for which you applied.
- Can I register for classes after I have graduated?
- Not as a regularly enrolled undergraduate student. As a graduated student, you are only eligible to register for classes if you are admitted to SDSU as a graduate student or are enrolling in classes through the College of Extended Studies.
- Will I still be able to receive a degree evaluation after I've graduated?
- No. Degree evaluations are only accessible to current undergraduate students. Students are encouraged to print off a copy of their degree evaluation during their final semester for future reference.