To officially complete your program, you MUST apply to graduate even if you don't plan to attend the commencement ceremony. You are eligible to apply for graduation if you have completed or will complete ALL of your program's graduation requirements, including internship, comprehensive exam, product of learning, and thesis/dissertation, by the end of the term.

Graduation Requirements

It is your responsibility to monitor your DegreeWorks record to make sure you have met all of the requirements for your graduate program. Your advisor's role is to assist you. Once you apply to graduate, the Graduate School will perform a graduation audit and you will receive an email explaining what remains to be completed if there are shortages. If you see unexpected shortages in your record, you should talk to your program director.

The University of North Carolina requires that graduate degree-seeking students be enrolled for at least one credit hour during the semester in which they graduate. If you are not enrolled during the semester in which you plan to graduate, the Graduate School will automatically enroll you for one hour of graduate research credit (GRD 5989/7989). The tuition and fees charged for this one-credit course will be based on your student status and your program's campus location (i.e., tuition depends on whether you are a North Carolina resident.  Fees depend on whether your program is a Boone campus program or an online program.  Where applicable, the tuition differential for selected programs applies. Non-residents will be charged at the out-of-state tuition rate).

Applying to Graduate

All students must submit an application to graduate from a degree or certificate program. If you are graduating from multiple programs, you MUST submit a separate application for EACH program. Follow these instructions to submit your application in AppalNet by the below application deadline.

If you will not finish all requirements in the term for which you applied and need to move your graduation application, or if you need to make any changes to your application after it has been submitted, please contact

Deadlines and Fees

It is recommended that students apply early in the semester in which they plan to graduate. Each application requires a non-refundable/non-transferrable application fee of $20. A late fee of $5 will be assessed on all applications submitted after the initial deadlines. Applications submitted after the final deadline WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED and graduation will be deferred to a later term. Note: The application for graduation will be closed for billing purposes on the first business day following the deadline dates noted below.

TermInitial Deadline for GraduationFinal Deadline for Graduation
Spring 2024Last weekday of February (February 29, 2024)April 8, 2024
Summer 2024Last weekday of June (June 30, 2024)July 8, 2024
Fall 2024Last weekday of September (September 30, 2024)TBD

The signed paperwork documenting successful completion of the comprehensive exam and the product of learning must be received by the Graduate School at least 1 day before final exams begin in the semester of graduation. All other work (classwork, internship, proficiency, etc.) must be completed no later than the official date of graduation for that semester, as set by the Registrar.

Graduating with Honors

Eligible honorees for the Cratis D. Williams Society of Outstanding Graduate Students are those who have:

  • maintained a 4.0 GPA
  • been nominated by their program
  • been selected by the review panel as representing the top 2% of graduate students

There are no Latin honors (e.g., cum laude) at the graduate level.


If you are a degree-seeking graduate student, attending the commencement ceremony is optional, however, we hope you will choose to participate. Certificate-only students are not eligible to participate in commencement. Please visit the commencement website for the official information on times and locations, how to order regalia, travel tips including area accommodations and parking, seating information, and more.


For each certificate or degree applied for, a diploma will be mailed to the address provided by the student on the graduation application. Should you need to change the address for your diploma mailing, please contact the Graduate Records staff at Note: Changing your diploma address does not change any addresses in the Banner student system. Be sure to update your Banner address after graduation through your AppalNet account.

Orders for graduate student diplomas are placed four times per year. It takes approximately 3-4 weeks from the time the order is placed for the diplomas to be mailed to the student. Note: Per state law, a student's account must be clear of all charges before a diploma or transcript may be released. Should you need to order a replacement or duplicate diploma, please complete this order form. For more information about diplomas, please visit the Registrar's website.

Diploma OrdersRecipientsLast day to clear your student account before order is placed
JuneFor May graduatesJune 15
SeptemberFor August graduatesSeptember 15
JanuaryFor December graduatesJanuary 10
MarchFor any student with a clear accountMarch 15


For more information about graduation and commencement, first visit the Registrar's website. If you have questions regarding your application to graduate/graduation readiness (academic audit), please contact Charity Chicoine at 828-262-6438 or For questions regarding commencement information, please contact Stefanie Heinrich at