Clearance Process for Graduation & FAQs

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The degree conferral process is initiated when a graduate student applies for graduation in CaneLink. Once a graduate student applies for graduation, the student's graduate department must review and approve the application to then be reviewed by the Graduate School. The Graduate School then reviews and clears approved graduate students for degree conferral. Degrees are then awarded by the Office of the Registrar.


Q. How does a graduate student apply for graduation?
A: The student must apply for graduation via CaneLink by the deadline set by the Office of the Registrar for the semester in which they intend to graduate. Please note that the student's name will not appear in the Commencement Book unless they apply for graduation and indicate that they want their name to appear in the Commencement Book.

Q. Once the graduate student applies through CaneLink, how do they know if their department has approved their application for graduation?
A: The student should first contact their department directly. Their department will be able to confirm if they have been approved for graduation, and/or if any further action is required on the student's part.

Q. The department has confirmed that a graduate student is eligible for graduation, but CaneLink won’t let the student apply. Who should the student contact?
A: The student should contact their department to ensure they are eligible to apply for graduation. For technical assistance, the student should contact the CaneLink Help Desk at 305-284-6565. If they have applied for graduation during a previous semester, but did not graduate, CaneLink will not allow them to apply for a current semester. The student should notify their department for assistance in updating their application for graduation semester.

Q. If the student missed the application for graduation deadline, can they still be considered for graduation?
A: It is important that the student submits an application for graduation in CaneLink by the deadline so that they are eligible to participate in the Commencement Ceremony and are considered for timely degree conferral. If a student missed the deadline, they should notify their department.



Q. If a student participated in the Commencement Ceremony, or plans to participate in an upcoming Commencement Ceremony, does this mean that they are cleared for graduation?
A: No. The listing of a student's name in the Commencement Book and/or the student's participation in a Commencement Ceremony, in no way implies or ensures graduation. The awarding of degrees to a student is contingent upon satisfactory completion of the appropriate requirements by each candidate. The student must also have a complete student file on record in their department. 

Q. If the student was cleared to graduate last semester, but wasn’t able to walk in the Commencement Ceremony, can they walk during the upcoming Commencement Ceremony?
A: The University of Miami Office of Commencement website includes information on who can participate in a given Ceremony. Any questions regarding commencement should be directed to the Office of Commencement at 305-284-1824 or


Q. Is there anything else that a graduate student with a dissertation or thesis needs to do?
A: If a student is completing a doctoral dissertation or master's thesis, they will also need to have their dissertation/thesis reviewed by the Graduate School's Dissertation Editor and approved for submission in the Electronic Thesis and Dissertation (ETD) repository. Students are required to follow each of the ETD deadlines and requirements posted on our website for the semester in which they intend to graduate.


Q. If the graduate student was advised that their student file is not complete, what do they do?
A: The student must submit the missing and/or requested documents directly to their department.



Q. The graduate department has approved a graduate student's application for graduation, when will their degree be conferred?
A: Once the graduate department approves a student's application for graduation, their file must be reviewed and approved by the Graduate School. The Graduate School reviews student files after final grades are released for the semester. This review process can take several weeks. Once the Graduate School has reviewed and approved the student's file, the degree will be conferred by the Graduate School. The Graduate School then requests that the Office of the Registrar award the degree. After the degree is awarded by the Office of the Registrar, the student is considered as having graduated from their program.

Q. How can a graduate student check if their degree has been awarded?
A: Students may verify that their degree has been awarded by logging into CaneLink. Then, under the Student/Academic tab, they can select Degree Information under Graduation Information. If the student's degree is not displayed under “Degrees Previously Earned”, then the student's degree has not yet been awarded. Students must contact their department regarding the status of their degree.



Q. When will a graduate student get their diploma?
A: After the Graduate School confers a student's degree, the Office of the Registrar will award the degree. The Graduate School does not process, issue, or mail diplomas. Diplomas are typically mailed within 14-21 days of the degree being awarded by Office of the Registrar. Students must ensure their diploma address in CaneLink is correct. On the Office of the Registrar website, students may update the diploma name, track the status of mailed diplomas, and order a diploma replacement. If a student's degree has been awarded, but they have not received their diploma and believe they should have, the student should contact 'Canes Central.