Master's Degree Graduation Requirements

Master’s degree students must have a cumulative graduate GPA of 3.0 or higher to graduate.  Refer to the Academic Catalog for the semester/academic year for which you were admitted for specific graduation and degree requirements.

Applying for Graduation
An application for graduation should be filed according to the instructions provided with the application.  Dates are also specified on the Registrar Services Office web page.  A non-refundable graduation fee must accompany the application.  Upon evaluation of the graduation application, the student will receive a response from the Graduate Records office indicating outstanding requirements and whether or not there is a possibility for completion of all requirements to graduate in that semester.

Students must submit both an Application for Graduation and a completed Academic Course Record form to the Graduate Records Office (D-101D).

Students completing a master's thesis must submit it electronically through ProQuest's Submission Process.

  • Preliminary Thesis Deadline: Students planning to defend and submit their thesis should create their ProQuest ETD account and enter their background information into the system at least four weeks before the last day of finals of the semester in which the student plans to graduate.  To create an account, go to http://www.etdadmin.com/neiu and follow the instructions.  Contact the College of Graduate Studies and Research Dean's Office at graduatestudies@neiu.edu with any questions you may have.
  • Thesis Deadline: The thesis must be submitted via ETD for review by the College of Graduate Studies and Research Dean's Office at least three weeks before the last day of finals of the semester in which the student plans to graduate.  This will allow sufficient time for corrections and/or adjustments.  The submission deadline will be publicized at the beginning of each semester.

Master's Graduation Application Filing Deadlines

Month of Anticipated Completion of Degree Requirements Filing Deadline
May 2018 September 1 until Nov. 1
August 2018 Feb. 1 until April 1
December 2018 March 15 until May 15


A student who files the required forms but fails to complete all graduation requirements by the appropriate date will be dropped from the graduation list and must reapply for a later graduation date by completing a Change of Graduation Date form available in the Graduate Records Office.

Diplomas and final transcripts are not released to graduates until they have paid the graduation fee and all holds and/or indebtedness to the University have been resolved.

Commencement Ceremony Participation

Students who apply for December graduation are eligible to participate in the December commencement ceremony.  Students who apply for May graduation are eligible to participate in the May commencement ceremony.  Students who apply for August graduation are eligible to participate in the following December commencement ceremony.