GRADUATION AND COMMENCEMENT PROCEDURES
GRADUATION INFORMATION AND HOW TO APPLY FOR THE BACHELOR'S DEGREE
A well-planned course of study as well as a clear understanding of requirements will help
the student avoid graduation problems and delays. While each student is responsible for
meeting all degree requirements and graduation deadlines, assistance is available from
faculty advisers assigned through the major department, from staff in the Advising
Center, and from evaluators in the Office of Admissions and Records.
OVERVIEW OF THE STEPS TO GRADUATION
- Students should meet with the major adviser at least one semester before they plan to
apply for graduation. They should review their academic records including unofficial
transcripts and Advanced Standing Evaluation, if a transfer student. Attendance at a
Graduation Review Workshop in the Advising Center (ADM 212) is also strongly
- Obtain an SFSU Application for Baccalaureate Degree at the Registrar's counter (ADM
253) at the beginning of the semester in which all degree requirements will be
- If a student is completing a minor, s/he must submit two separate application for
graduation forms—one for the minor and one for the major. Only one application fee is
required. A minor can only be awarded in conjunction with a major. Students may not
complete a minor after they have received their B.A./B.S. degree. The application for
minor must be filed at the time the application for graduation is submitted to the
- Pay fees for graduation at the cashier's office (ADM 155).
- Complete all forms in the graduation application packet, including the major and GE
worksheets. These forms must be typed.
- Obtain the signatures of the major adviser and the department chair for the major
program on the application for graduation.
- Submit the graduation application to the Registrar by the end of the fourth week of
- Participate in commencement ceremonies held at the end of every spring semester if
- Either a diploma or a graduation denial letter will be sent by Records and Registration.
COMMENCEMENT CEREMONIES AND GRADUATION APPROVAL
Formal commencement ceremonies occur once a year, usually at the end of May.
Spring, summer, and fall graduation candidates are invited to participate in the May
ceremonies. Students needing information regarding special permission to participate in
ceremonies can check with the Conference Programs and Commencement Office, 800
Font Blvd. Cap and gown rental is available in the Bookstore at an additional cost.
Participation in commencement does not mean that the student has officially
graduated and is qualified for the bachelor's degree. If, in the final semester, students do
not complete a course or earn a grade as anticipated, they will still need to complete all
courses and credit requirements required for the degree. Students will need to refile for
graduation in the semester of actual completion of the outstanding requirements.
Official Graduation Clearance
There are three graduation cycles and official graduation dates—one in the fall, one in
the spring, and one in the summer. To qualify for graduation, the student must complete
all requirements for the bachelor's degree by the official graduation date listed in the
University Calendar published in this Bulletin and in the Class Schedule.
APPLYING FOR GRADUATION
The application for graduation and filing fee entitle students to a graduation check
("grad check"). If they qualify for graduation, they may participate in the annual
commencement and diploma award ceremonies. The grad check is an official
evaluation of progress toward meeting baccalaureate degree requirements.
Graduating with Multiple Majors and Minors
Graduation applications must be submitted for each major and minor that students
declare for graduation. If they are applying to graduate with two majors, the following
apply: (1) if the two majors are under the same degree (e.g., both under the B.A. or both
under the B.S.), they can graduate with both majors in the same semester; (2) if each
major is under a different degree (e.g., one under a B.A. and one under a B.S.), only one
degree can be awarded at one graduation, and the second degree will have to be
awarded at a subsequent graduation.
COURSES IN EXCESS OF BACHELOR DEGREE REQUIREMENTS
It is the general policy of this university to consider courses taken prior to the award of the
baccalaureate degree as undergraduate courses. However, a student may request on
the Application for Award of Baccalaureate Degree that up to twelve (12) semester units
of upper division and/or graduate level work, taken in the final semester before the
award of the baccalaureate degree be granted provisional post-baccalaureate status,
providing these units are in excess of those required for the baccalaureate degree. It is
preferred that such courses taken at this time be upper division courses, leaving
graduate course work to be taken after the baccalaureate degree has been officially
completed. Seniors may enroll in graduate courses only with special permission of the
If such a request is filed, the total unit load taken, in all institutions and for all purposes, by
the student during that final semester must not exceed the maximum unit load in effect
for graduate level students as outlined in the section "Maximum Unit Load." Any
exceptions must have the approval of the dean of the Graduate Division in advance of
registration for the final term. If the baccalaureate degree is not completed at the end
of the term in question, all the work taken is subject to being counted as undergraduate
work and the provisional post-baccalaureate status for specified courses voided.