All graduate students who wish to graduate from Northern Arizona University must submit a graduation application.  

Please note that graduation and commencement are separate concepts and events.

  • Graduation refers to the fulfillment of degree requirements and the conferral of a degree. The graduation application will initiate the graduation process.
  • Commencement is the public ceremony to celebrate academic accomplishments.  Please visit the Commencement website for more information.

Participating in commencement does NOT guarantee you will complete degree requirements or receive a diploma.

Graduation Requirements and Policy

See the NAU official graduation policy, including graduate degree and certificate requirements, thesis and dissertation requirements, and academic recognition in the Academic Catalog.

Applying for Graduation

You must file a graduation application with the Graduate College to confirm all degree requirements have been met.  For students who wish to apply for graduation for a past term, please contact us at  

If you are an individual with a disability and need reasonable accommodation to complete any of these forms, please contact us at

Additional information about applying for graduation

Becoming Eligible to Apply for Graduation

To become eligible to apply for graduation, you must complete or be enrolled in the minimum required units for the degree or certificate and submit a department-approved Program of Study to the Louie-Student Service Center.  You will be granted access to submit the graduation application through your LOUIE-Student Service Center after you have met the required criteria.   

Total minimum units required for graduation (completed and/or enrolled):
  • Graduate Certificate: 1 unit
  • Master's degree: 24 units
  • Doctoral degree: 48 units

Submitting a Graduation Application

Once you are eligible to apply for graduation, please visit your LOUIE Student Service Center to complete the Online Graduation Application.  If possible, you should enroll in your final term courses before applying for graduation. 

Please view the Step-by-Step Guide on how to complete the online graduation application.

Changing Your Graduation Term

You will be unable to make changes to your graduation term once you submit your graduation application.  Please contact to withdraw your application.  You will need to reapply to the new term and attach an updated and approved program of study to your LOUIE-Student Service Center account.

Please note an application fee of $35.00 will be charged for each submitted graduation application, starting for students graduating in fall 2016.

Graduation Fee

Graduation filing fees:


  • $35.00 for each degree and/or certificate


Graduation fees will be charged to your LOUIE Student Center once you have applied. If you withdraw your application or your application is denied due to deficiencies, the $35 per degree/certificate fee(s) will NOT be refunded. If you re-apply for graduation, the appropriate fee(s) will be charged to your account.

Please note the graduation fee WILL NOT be waived due to low income status or other circumstances.


Graduation TermApplication DeadlineEnd of Term/Confer Date
Fall 2017     May 1, 2017December 15, 2017
Winter 2017May 1, 2017January 6, 2018
Spring 2018     December 1, 2017May 11, 2018
Summer 2018December 1, 2017August 7, 2018

Academic Recognition

At the time of graduation, if you have earned a cumulative grade point average of 3.90 or higher for all courses taken as a graduate student at Northern Arizona University, you will be recognized with the notation of "with distinction" on your transcript.

Cap and Gown for Master's and Doctoral Graduates

Cap, gown, hood, and announcement information may be ordered online or by visiting or calling the Bookstore at (928) 523-4041.

Posting of Degrees

Degree Posted to Transcript

Degree Posted to Transcript

Your degree is not official until the application has been reviewed and approved, and the degree is posted.  Posting refers to the process of entering a degree into the official student record-keeping system and connecting this information to the student's transcript.

The degree will post to your transcript after the end of the term in which all degree requirements have been met.  Degrees will not be posted to the transcripts until the Office of the Registrar confirms all grades for the semester.  Confirmation of grades usually occurs within two weeks after the end of term, and degrees are posted within four to six weeks after the end of term.  

If you do not complete certificate or degree requirements before the final day of the term, you may request the application be withdrawn.  Please note you must reapply for the next available graduation term.

Before you receive your diplomas or transcripts, you must clear an outstanding charges on your NAU account.  Please check your NAU LOUIE account to ensure there are no student account "holds."

Rush Requests for Degree Posting

Rush Requests for Degree Posting

To request a rush for degree posting, you must complete the Transcript Request form with the Office of the Registrar. For more information about rush requests, please refer to the official graduation policy.

Verification Letters

Verification Letters before your Degree is Conferred

If you have an approved graduation application on file, you may request a letter of verification indicating that:

  • “Fulfillment of degree requirements is in progress”
  • “All degree requirements are completed” (if all coursework is completed after Summer Session I, or are a statewide student finishing coursework mid-fall or mid-spring term)

The Graduate College will not provide a letter stating the degree is conferred.  Please note the Graduate College will not provide verification letters during degree posting each semester.  If you need a verification letter during this time, please submit a rush request for degree posting.

Please include the following information in your request:

  • name
  • degree program
  • NAU ID number
  • the address and/or fax number to which the letter should be sent 
  • your telephone number and mailing address
Submitting Your Request  


By mail:
The Graduate College
Box 4125
Flagstaff, AZ 86011-4125


By e-mail 

Receiving Your Diploma

Receiving Your Diploma

Every effort is made to mail diplomas four weeks from the date your degree was posted to the transcript. Any financial hold placed by the Student and Departmental Account Services office will prevent the mailing of your diploma. If you have not received your diploma within 60 days of your graduation date, please contact the Graduation Program Coordinator at