Advisors, departments, and programs may have additions or modifications to this list. These steps are provided as general guidelines of what to expect and discuss with your department advisor or program coordinator.
Step 1 - Register for Classes
Students must be registered every fall and spring semester in a credit-bearing course or enrolled in continuous registration (CR). If you are graduating in the summer, registration in a course or CR is required. Please review our Continuous Registration & Graduation Enrollment Policies page for more information and resources.
Step 2 - Select Your Advisor & Committee
Pick your advisor and your committee members in consultation with your department prior to filling out the GS6 Program of Study. Advisor & committee members must meet Graduate School requirements. Most coursework only programs (Plan C Master’s) will ask you to list one advisor and no committee members on your GS6 Program of Study.
Step 3 – Fill out your GS6 Program of Study Form
The GS6 Program of Study Form lists your intended coursework, the members of your committee, and any other requirements to complete your degree.
The form must be submitted to the Graduate School prior to your fourth regular semester. Visit our GS6 Program of Study page and forms page for more details. Familiarize yourself with the Deadline Dates for your anticipated graduation term.
The GS7 Request for Change of Department and/or Degree Program form is to be used when changing from one department to another or from one degree to another. Students may or may not complete the degree program from which they are changing. It should not be used when working on two degrees simultaneously. You will need to submit a new GS6 Program of Study form for the new program you are changing to — otherwise a hold will be placed on your registration. Once the GS7 has been approved, both you and your department will be notified via your CSU e–mail. Changing your class code Doctoral to Masters or Masters to Doctoral will create a new GPA for the current class at the end of the term.
Step 4 – Review Thesis Formatting Guidelines (for Students with a Thesis Requirement Only)
Prior to starting your thesis, please review the formatting guidelines for resources and requirements.
Step 5 – Apply to Graduate
To apply or reapply to graduate, you must submit the GS25 Application For Graduation Form to the Graduate School by the deadline date of the semester that you intend to complete your degree requirements. Access the GS25 Application for Graduation Form in RAMweb. You will complete the required information in RAMweb, follow instructions for printing the form, and then submit the form with all required signatures to the Graduate School Office.
Visit our GS25 Application for Graduation page and forms page for more details.
Step 6 – Petition for Committee Member Changes (if necessary)
The GS9A Petition for Committee Member Changes Form lists any changes that have been made to your committee since your GS6 Form, Program of Study was approved by the Graduate School.
You may change your advisor or committee member(s) after your GS6 Program of Study has been approved by the Graduate School, and prior to your preliminary (Ph.D. students) or final examinations.
Step 7 – Take your Final Examination/Defense (for Students with a Final Exam Requirement Only)
A final exam is required for Master’s students (except for coursework only, Plan C Master’s students). Exam must be completed by the deadline date of the semester that you intend to complete your degree requirements.
The GS24 Final Exam Results Form is signed by members of a student’s committee after the student has completed the final examination/defense. View additional procedures and information.
The form must be submitted to the Graduate School within two working days after the results of the examination are known, and by the deadline date of the semester that you intend to complete your degree requirements.
For Plan B Master’s students, use the GS40 Non-Thesis Plan B Master’s Requirement Form to clear your requirements. Plan B and Plan C (coursework only) Master’s students can skip to step 10.
Step 8 – Complete your Thesis/Dissertation Submission Form (for Students with a Thesis Requirement Only)
The GS30 Thesis/Dissertation Submission Form is signed by the members of your committee when your thesis is approved and ready for electronic submission. This form must be submitted to the Graduate School by the deadline date of the semester that you intend to complete your degree requirements.
Optional ETD Requests
The GS31 ETD Embargo Restriction Request Form is for students requesting to delay public release of their thesis in the event that the document contains material to be protected by patent or copyright. Form is submitted with the GS30 to the Graduate School by the deadline date of the semester that you intend to complete your degree requirements.
Step 9 – Submit Your Thesis Electronically through ProQuest/UMI (for Students with a Thesis Requirement Only)
As you finish your thesis, visit the Thesis/Dissertation pages for formatting requirements. Submit your thesis electronically to ProQuest/UMI. Your document must be approved for formatting prior to the deadline date of the semester that you intend to complete your degree requirements. You may have required formatting corrections in your document, it is recommended that you submit your thesis in advance of the deadline date.
Step 10 – Attend the Commencement Ceremony
Graduate School celebrates your achievements! Graduate students who are completing their degree requirements are welcome to attend the ceremony at the end of the semester (fall and spring only). Visit our commencement pages for more information about commencement event details.
Step 11 – Receive Your Diploma
The Registrar’s Office processes official transcript requests and handles diplomas. Diplomas are mailed to students approximately six – eight weeks after the last day of classes of the semester which all degree requirements were completed. Please refer to Registrar’s Office for details about transcript ordering or diplomas.