Graduation Guide (Checklist & Deadlines)

Graduating students on Main Yard

Everything you need to prepare

Congratulations on completing your journey at Howard University Graduate School! Below is information to help you complete the final step and make it through your graduation ceremony.

Get excited for your big moment as you prepare for Commencement celebrations!  It’s your moment to be recognized for all you’ve accomplished at Howard, and we’re here to help you do it. Everything you need for your big day is right here. From making sure you’re eligible to graduate to requesting accommodations for your guests, find everything you need to prepare for Commencement. Be sure to complete these tasks and view corresponding due dates, so you don't miss any deadlines.

Share your graduate journey in photos

You've been on a journey, along with those who have supported you along the way! We invite you to submit up to 4 photos that embody your graduate academic journey at Howard and the people who have supported you along the way  (i.e., a photo of you and your family/friends/mentors) and to share a few words of advice for fellow graduates. We'll include it in a rolling video gallery during the Graduate School Ceremony on May 11th. 

Your Graduation Checklist

Order Your Cap, Gown & Hood

Sunday, April 16 is the last day for graduates to order academic regalia (cap, gown, and hood) online from the HU Bookstore to guarantee delivery in time for Commencement week. Regalia is required at all related events. Students may also order announcements, stoles, and diploma frames. You are encouraged to order earlier. 

Order Regalia

RSVP for 2023 Graduate School Ceremony

RSVP by April 15, at the link you received via your HU Bison email, for the Graduate School's Spring 2023 Hood Presentation and Recognition Ceremony on Thursday, May 11, 2023, at 2:00 p.m. (EDT) at Cramton Auditorium. The Annual President’s Reception for graduates and their families will follow at the UGL Terrace.

Check Your Eligibility 

Talk with your advisor(s) to ensure you are on track with degree completion requirements and to determine your eligibility to graduate in the Spring 2023 semester. Prospective spring 2023 graduates must be registered as full-time or part-time students in the semester of their intended graduation.


Apply to Graduate via BisonWeb

Friday, April 14th is the deadline for prospective Spring 2023 graduates to apply for graduation via BisonWeb. If you are a spring 2023 prospective graduate, to participate in commencement activities, you must apply to graduate. Please ensure that the name you indicate on your graduation application (printed on your diploma) is accurate. 

Apply via BisonWeb

Check Your Transcript via BisonWeb

Check your unofficial transcript for missing or incomplete grades from a prior semester and reach out to your professor(s) to submit a change of grade request. You are responsible for resolving any holds on your record or outstanding grades that may impact the release of your diploma or transcript(s).


Submit Your Thesis/Dissertation (ETD) via ProQuest

Upon completion of your academic requirements and submission of the GS-EA-6 Form (Certification of Completion of Graduate Academic Requirements), candidates will receive instructions from the Graduate School Office of Academic Affairs to submit an electronic thesis or dissertation (ETD) via ProQuest by Friday, April 28, to be cleared for graduation.

Complete the Survey of Earned Doctorates

Upon completion of your academic requirements and the submission of the GS-EA-6 Form, doctoral candidates will receive a link to complete the National Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED), which gathers data annually about research doctorate graduates across the U.S. regarding educational history, funding sources, and postdoctoral plans.

Complete the Graduate Student Exit Survey

Upon completion of your academic requirements, we would like to request your help in completing a short survey concerning your plans after graduation. The survey should take approximately 5 minutes to complete. Your responses will be kept confidential.

Graduate Exit Survey

Check Your Financial Status

Log on to BisonWeb > Student Account > View and Pay Your Bill and ensure that you have no outstanding obligations, financial charges, or financial holds that would prevent you from participating in Commencement ceremonies. You must satisfy all debts or obligations owed to the University to participate.


Complete Financial Aid Exit Counseling

Complete the online loan exit counseling required of all borrowers of federal and University-administered student loan programs. Exit counseling provides information regarding the rights and responsibilities of a borrower and a lender/servicer and information about repayment, deferment, and loan cancellation.

Complete exit counseling

Accessibility Accommodations

The University's Commencement organizers will provide services to graduates and guests who need accommodations. Sign language interpreting services will be provided at the Graduate School Celebration at Cramton Auditorium and University Commencement on the Main Yard. 


Order Gifts & Announcements

Sunday, April 16 is the last day for graduates to order academic regalia (cap, gown, and hood) as well as announcements and gifts online from the HU Bookstore to guarantee delivery in time for Commencement Week celebrations. Students may also order stoles and diploma frames online from the HU Bookstore.

Order Gifts