skip to main content
Graduate School
The University of Mississippi

The End Game – Preparing to Graduate

Please note the dates listed below. No exceptions are made to the deadlines, so plan accordingly.

Important Dates

Step December 2020
Graduation Deadlines
May 2021
Graduation Deadlines
August 2021
Graduation Deadlines
Submit GS8 Application for Graduate Degree October 5, 2020 February 19, 2021 February 19, 2021 (To participate in May ceremony)

June 15, 2021 (If NOT participating in May ceremony)

Submit your thesis/dissertation to ProQuest/UMI and pay the fees. Submit the thesis/dissertation signature page and the Survey of Earned Doctorates (PhD only) to the Graduate School. December 4, 2020 May 7, 2021 August 6, 2021
Graduation Date December 11, 2020 May 1, 2021 Aug. 14, 2021
Commencement Ceremony N/A May 1, 2021 (Class of 2021)

May 8, 2021 (Class of 2020)

Doctoral Hooding Ceremony N/A April 29, 2021 (Class of 2021)

May 6, 2021 (Class of 2020)


*The Registrar’s Office will begin mailing diplomas AFTER final degree audit results have been received.

The steps below must be completed during your last semester. While some deadlines are given, we encourage you to complete the steps as early as possible.

The table below shows the steps for doctoral degree candidates and master’s degree candidates, both those that require a thesis and those that do not. The steps for a specialist degree are similar to those for a nonthesis master’s student.

Step by step…


Master’s Thesis


1 Application for Graduate Degree: Complete a GS 8-Application for Graduate Degree Form. The deadline to do this is near the beginning of each fall, spring or summer semester and is announced on the university’s Academic Calendar and on the myOleMiss front page. This form requires the signature of the department chair. You will then be authorized to complete step 2.

2 Diploma Application: A diploma application notification will be sent to you via your email. Complete the online Diploma Application. This email comes from the and once you start filling out the application, you cannot stop and return. If you have a problem, contact the supervisor of records at the Graduate School.

3 Schedule Final Examination: Set up your final oral/written exam by completing a GS7-Authorization of Final Oral/Written Examination Form. This form must be received by the Graduate School no later than 14 calendar days before the intended date of the exam. You must complete your final exam by the last day of the semester, and a final exam cannot be given during the university’s examination period or when the university is closed.


4 Obtain information about formatting and uploading an ETD and the ETD Rights, Permission and Contact Form.***FAQs regarding FORMATTING can be found HERE*** It is the student’s responsibility to:

5 Survey of Earned Doctorates: Doctoral students must complete a Survey of Earned Doctorates (PhD only). This should be done 3-4 weeks before the last day of classes.

6 Complete Thesis/Dissertation and Final Examination

7 Report of Final Oral/Written Examination: After you successfully complete your final oral/written examination, your adviser or department chair must submit a Report of Final Oral/Written Examination to the Graduate School.


8 Final Visit to the Graduate School: Before the last day of classes, bring to the Graduate School:

The above Report of Final Oral/Written Examination (if not already sent, check with your department)

The completed ETD Rights, Permission and Contact Form

For doctoral students only, the completed Survey of Earned Doctorates (PhD only) (or provide evidence of completing this form online)




9 Electronically Submit Thesis/Dissertation: Following the directions given in this link, electronically submit your completed thesis/dissertation into the ProQuest/UMI repository system. Before this submission is finalized (published), the supervisor of graduate records will review the document for completeness and formatting. If revisions are needed, you will be contacted.

10 Select Publishing, Copyright and Binding Options:

  • While uploading your thesis/dissertation, you will be asked to select between the Traditional and Open Access Publishing options. What you enter should correspond to the decision on the ETD Rights and Permission Form.
  • You will need to determine if you would like to register a copyright for your document, which is optional. Click HERE for more information.
  • You will have the opportunity to have ProQuest/UMI produce and mail to you bound copies of your thesis/dissertation during the online submission. *Note: The university no longer requires bound copies to be submitted to the Graduate School and University Libraries.

11 Pay Fees to ProQuest/UMI: While uploading your thesis/dissertation, you must pay (online via credit card) the fees for the ProQuest/UMI publishing type you have selected (e.g., no charge for Traditional publishing; $95 for Open Access publishing). Note that there are extra fees for copyright registration ($55) and producing bound copies ($56 apiece).

12 Pay Graduation Fee to UM: After you apply to graduate (step 1), you will be assessed a graduation fee of $50. You must pay this fee, as well as all other outstanding university bills, in order to receive your diploma.

13 Celebrate. Sleep. Glow. If you have completed the above steps and if you have successfully passed all required courses (e.g., can pass a degree audit for your program) during your final semester, then you will be certified by the Graduate School and Registrar’s Office for graduation. You may officially graduate at the end of a December, May or August semester. A commencement ceremony, including a doctoral hooding ceremony for doctoral graduates, is held only in May. The process of mailing diplomas will begin approximately 8 weeks after each graduation date. If you wish to participate in a commencement and/or hooding ceremony, you will need to rent regalia.

* Most nonthesis master’s programs require a final oral/written examination. A few master’s programs do not require this examination. Check with the catalog and your graduate program coordinator.


Publishing Guides: Formatting Directions for ProQuest/UMI

Instructions for Uploading a Thesis or Dissertation to ProQuest/UMI

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Overview of Publishing with ProQuest/UMI

Formatting Manual for Theses and Dissertations – click HERE for a PDF version