Commencement & Graduation
University of Michigan has three graduation periods each year (after Winter, Summer and Fall semesters), but only two commencement ceremonies each year (after Winter and Fall semesters). Commencement is a time to celebrate your accomplishments but it's important to note that attendance at this ceremony does not mean you have graduated.
Since most grades are not submitted until after the commencement ceremony, and since the academic auditing offices need to wait until all final grades are posted before we begin doing our final graduation evaluations, degrees are not conferred to students' official transcripts, nor are diplomas mailed, until several weeks after commencement.
When applying to graduate, you should choose the semester in which all requirements are complete, regardless of which commencement you plan on attending. One of our most common reasons for denying students is because they chose the wrong graduation term. Once you've applied, you are always able to change your graduation date by sending an email to your auditing office (Honors — email@example.com, Residential College — firstname.lastname@example.org, or mainstream LSA students — LSA.email@example.com).
Here's a guide that can help you determine which commencement ceremony you are eligible to attend:
- Students who have applied for Winter term graduation are eligible to attend the ceremony that May or the previous December.
- Students who have applied for Summer term graduation are eligible to attend the ceremony the previous May or the following December.
- Students who have applied for Fall term graduation are eligible to attend the ceremony that December or the following May.
Please note that May commencement requires tickets, while December commencement does not. For more information about this and other commencement related issues, go to their webpage at: commencement.umich.edu
The College of LSA does not have a separate Commencement ceremony, but many departments offer celebrations for their graduating students. To find out if your department is doing this, contact them directly.
A Commencement Book is provided to students and family members attending Commencement. This book includes the names of LSA degree candidates for that graduation period. Because there is no August commencement ceremony, August candidates who applied in time will be noted in the previous May Commencement Book, and all August graduates will be listed in the following December Commencement Book.
Please remember that the Commencement Book is not an official list of graduates. Instead, it is a list of those who have applied to graduate prior to the printing of the book. To make sure your name is in the book, it's best to apply at least two months prior to commencement. (Ideally, you should apply well before that to make sure you've had a chance to receive your official audit!) For exact cut-off dates, please click on Deadlines & Timelines.