Undergraduate students must apply for graduation with an Academic Advisor. Once their application has been completed and received by the Registrar’s Office, undergraduate students are then eligible to complete the Commencement registration form.
Graduate students must contact their graduate program advisor to notify them of the intent to graduate. The advisor will notify the Office of the Registrar of eligibility. All graduate students must complete the Commencement registration form so that you can order apparel even if only participating in your department's hooding ceremony.
Does completing my graduation application automatically register me to participate in Commencement (or vice versa)?
No. Applying to graduate and registering to participate in Commencement are two separate steps. You must apply to graduate with your Academic Advisor first and then register for Commencement. Please note there may be a 1-2 day delay in accessing registration forms if applying beyond the deadline.
Am I eligible to participate in Commencement?
All undergraduate and graduate students who earned a degree in autumn 2022, or an undergraduate who has applied to graduate with an academic advisor for winter 2023, spring 2023 or summer 2023 by the deadlines are eligible.
Graduate students must contact their graduate program advisor for eligibility. You will then be eligible to register for Commencement when it opens online.
Is there a difference between graduation and Commencement?
Yes. Graduation is the final confirmation that you have completed all of your degree requirements and your diploma is granted. Commencement is the formal ceremony to celebrate your graduation.
When is the Commencement ceremony?
The 2023 Commencement Ceremony will be held on Friday, June 9, 2023. Doors open for guest at 8:30 a.m. Procession will promptly begin at 9:30 a.m.
How long does the ceremony last?
Approximate duration is 2 hours and 30 minutes
Is there a fee for Commencement?
At no cost, all eligible students can participate in Commencement. Guest tickets are free but the number of tickets is limited to 10 tickets per graduate ONLY. Graduates are required to purchase a cap and gown in order to participate in the ceremony.
I'm eligible for an honor cord. How can I get one?
You can purchase an honor cord with your other regalia after registering to participate in Commencement.
Diplomas, diploma covers, and programs
Will I receive my diploma at Commencement?
No. Diplomas are mailed approximately 12 - 16 weeks after the end of the quarter in which you graduate. (Autumn and Winter quarter graduates will likely have already received their diplomas before Commencement)
How do I update my address for my diploma?
There are two options to update your diploma mailing address. This should be completed during your final quarter.
Option #1 Login to MyUW to change your permanent or diploma mailing address. Your diploma will be sent to the mailing address we have on file for you at the time you are cleared for graduation.
Option #2 You may use the Diploma Name and Address form to provide a desired mailing address. Please note that this only changes the mailing address for your diploma. If you wish to permanently update your address for mailing purposes, please complete Option #1 immediately.
How will I know if I'm listed in the program?
The Commencement program lists the names of graduates from autumn 2022 through summer 2023. Note: Spring and summer 2023 bachelor's degree candidates must have their application to graduate submitted and received by Friday, April 14, 2023 deadline in order to have their names listed. Master's and doctoral degree candidates must contact their graduate program advisor by Friday, April 14, 2023 in order to have their names listed.
Can I change how my name is listed on my diploma or in the commencement activities?
Yes. Please note these are two separate processes.
Your diploma name no longer has to match your UW record name. Instead, you can have your diploma issued in the name of your choice by entering your information into the Diploma Name and Address form. You may also use the form to provide a desired mailing address. Be advised that if you have not entered information in the form by the time our office places the diploma order for your quarter of graduation (usually 2 weeks from the end of quarter), the information from your student record will be used.
To indicate a name to use for commencement activities (program booklet, display at ceremony, t-shirt & newspaper) complete the Commencement Name Form no later than April 16, 2023.
Can I have my name appearance removed from Commencement activities?
I requested special accommodations, what happens next?
If you have submitted the request via the Commencement registration form, someone from Disability Resources for Students will reach out to you to ensure we can meet your needs on Commencement day. This will include instructions on which gate to enter, where to check in, and accessing marshals should you have additional questions.
Not attending the ceremony, but want to purchase apparel?
Students can still purchase their graduation apparel regardless if they are participating in the ceremony or not. However, registration for commencement is still required in order to receive their access code and instructions on how to purchase their apparel.
One or more of my guests has specialty accommodations indicated on their ticket, where do they go to check in?
Students should request special accommodations for their guests ahead of time when registering to participate in Commencement. If a student has requested special accommodations for one or more of their guests, they will receive an email before Commencement with instructions on where their guests should enter the Dome, where to check in, and how to find their accommodation seating. Designated ushers will be on-hand to help direct your guests to where they need to go. Anyone who is in special accommodation seating is allowed one attendant to sit with them.