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5.2 - Graduation Guidelines

Below are the Policy Guidelines for Implementing Graduation:

  1. A deadline to complete the Application for Graduation has been established for each semester and summer session. The dates are: October 1 for Fall graduates, March 1 for Spring graduates, and July 1 for Summer graduates. Candidates must apply for graduation prior to receipt of the diploma. It is the responsibility of the college and the student to make sure that the appropriate application is submitted to the Office of Admissions and Records by the published deadline.
  2. Neither an official transcript nor a diploma will be issued until a student has met all of his/her obligations to the University and all holds have been cleared.
  3. Students declared as degree candidates after the deadline date will not appear in the Commencement Program of Degree Candidates.  However, all students who complete their degree requirements during a given term will appear in the official publication of Degrees Awarded.
  4. The Office of Admissions and Records prints diplomas following submission of the Certified Graduation Report from each college.
  5. The date of graduation for each term will normally be the last day of examinations in the fall, the date of commencement in the spring, and the last day of classes in the summer (Refer to Academic Calendar for specific dates).
  6. To entitle the student to graduate as of the established date, all academic work required for the degree must be satisfactorily completed prior to the first day of classes of the next semester or summer session, with the following exceptions:
    1. Students completing degree requirements by enrollment in an internship or a Health Sciences Center professional program which are in session during the graduation term and extend beyond the University's cutoff date.
    2. Students completing degree requirements by enrollment in another institution during the graduation term when the other institution's semester or session runs concurrent with, but extends beyond the University's cutoff date.
      1. Such students will be counted with the graduates of that term, but their diplomas will be held until the official records of the required work have been filed with the University and the student is officially cleared for graduation.
  7. All students shall be required to have all work needed for graduation submitted to the Office of Admissions and Records no later than ten (10) working days following the last day of finals for the term in which the student wishes to graduate. This would include transfer work from another institution, correspondence courses, incomplete grades, and any other correction or addition to the student’s academic record. This deadline does not take the place of the existing deadline for all work to be completed, which is “all work required for the degree must be completed satisfactorily by the last day of finals of the semester or term.” This is an additional requirement that the notification of the completion of this credit must be submitted in a timely fashion in order for the student to graduate within that term. The appropriate deadline for receipt of that notification is within ten (10) working days after the last day of finals.
  8. All official records required for clearance of graduation requirements must be filed with the Office of Admissions and Records prior to degree clearance.
  9. Diplomas will be printed under the name appearing on the student's official academic record at the time of graduation or as submitted on the application for graduation. Variations are allowed, such as adding a maiden name and/or dropping the full middle name and using an initial; however, the first and last name must be spelled out so that the name on the diploma and the academic record can always be matched.
    1. The adding of a suffix is acceptable providing the student completes a name change form with evidence of the suffix being part of the legal name.
    2. Students who want to make changes as to how their name appears on their diploma must file a new application for graduation with the Office of Admissions and Records at the beginning of the term in which they anticipate graduation. Students who request a legitimate name change after diplomas have been printed will be required to pay an additional cost for the reprinting of the diploma.
    3. Married names cannot appear on the diploma if the marriage has not taken place at the time of the diploma printing. Students who change their names after the graduation date may request a new diploma at their expense.
  10. Should a student complete all academic requirements for graduation and apply for the diploma before the end of the term, the student will be entitled to receive a certified statement of completed degree requirements bearing the date academic requirements were completed from the graduating college. Such a statement will be entered on a student's permanent academic record when the Office of Admissions and Records receives notification from the college.
  11. Should a degree candidate fail to successfully complete graduation requirements as of the graduation date for which the student applied, the student will need to contact the appropriate college to move the graduation date forward and then reapply for graduation during the appropriate term.
  12. Students who qualify for graduation with both college distinction and University honors will be graduated with honors. Degrees can be awarded with the following designations:  Distinction, Special Distinction, Outstanding Distinction, Cum Laude, Magna cum Laude, and Summa cum Laude.
  13. A lost, stolen, or damaged diploma may be replaced by submitting a notarized affidavit and a $50 replacement fee to the Office of Admissions and Records.  If possible, the original diploma must be returned prior to release of the new diploma.

For additional information, contact the Office of Admissions and Records at (405) 271-2359 or visit the OU Commencement Website.

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