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December 17, 2010

Are you ready to graduate?

Application for Degree

Students are required to file a formal Application for Degree. Undergraduate and Graduate Students MUST apply online through the myUK portal.

You should apply for graduation if ALL of your degree requirements will be completed at the end of the term for which you apply.

View your progress toward degree completion via Degree Planner (APEX).
Application Deadlines

The application deadline for undergraduate students is:

  • May degree –November 30
  • December degree –June 30
  • August degree –February 28

The deadline for Graduate and professional students is different than the deadline for undergraduate students and is published each year in the Official Academic Calendar:

Reapplication for Admission

If you have been away from UK for one semester or more (excluding summer), you must reapply for admission to UK. The University has a condensed readmission application (PDF) for this purpose. Please note you must still supply official transcripts from all institutions where college-level work was attempted since your last enrollment at UK. We will waive the $50 application fee and will work quickly to get the necessary updates made to the system so that your degree application can be processed. Please note, this reapplication process must be completed before the end of the semester in which you have applied for a degree. If it is delayed past that date, your application for degree will be postponed to the next semester.

Withdrawing an Application for Degree

If you wish to postpone your graduation or withdraw your application for degree, you must contact your college dean’s office or speak with your advisor.

Graduation Honors

Students who have received graduation honors or who are eligible to receive graduation honors will be listed in the Commencement Program. The current cumulative GPA is used to determine the student’s eligibility. However, the final decision will be based on the final cumulative GPA after all grades have been recorded.

The following criteria is used to determine an undergraduate student’s eligibility to receive graduation honors. If you have questions, please speak with your advisor.

  • Students who attain a grade point average of 3.8 or higher for at least three years of work (90 hours) at the University of Kentucky (excepting correspondence study) shall be graduated "Summa Cum Laude"
  • Students who attain a grade point average of 3.6 to 3.799 for at least three years of work (90 hours) at the University of Kentucky (excepting correspondence study) shall be graduated "Magna Cum Laude"
  • Students who attain a grade point average of 3.4 to 3.599 for at least three years of work (90 hours) at the University of Kentucky (excepting correspondence study)s hall be graduated "Cum Laude".
  • Students with a minimum of two but less than three years of work (60-89 hours) at the University shall receive the appropriate commencement honors if they attain a grade point average of 0.2 greater than the above.

The Graduate School does not award graduation honors. Some professional programs do award honors; speak with your dean’s office regarding the criteria used to determine eligibility.

The University holds two commencement ceremonies each year – December and May. Information about the ceremony and ordering academic regalia is available online at: Students and their families are encouraged to attend the University Commencement.

Students at the graduation day

Names printed in the Commencement Program for December will include the degrees awarded to students in August and and those students who have applied for graduation in December. Names printed in the Commencement Program for May will include students awarded a degree in August and December and who have applied for a May degree. The inclusion of a name in the program does not guarantee nor serve to validate that a student will graduate. This is not confirmed until degree checkout has been complete by each college. See information below regarding degrees and diplomas. The University does not print the names of students who have a Privacy Flag on their account. See Privacy Flag information below.


Students do not receive their diploma at Commencement. Diplomas are mailed approximately 8-12 weeks following the conclusion of each semester. The colleges complete a degree checkout on each student and this cannot be conducted until the close of the semester and all grades have been received. The size of the diploma for a doctoral degree is 12” x 15”. The size of the diploma for a master’s degree and an undergraduate degree is 8 ½” x 11”. The size of all profession diplomas, except Medicine is 12” x 15”. The Medicine diploma is 14” x 16”.

The following information is included on the University of Kentucky diploma:

  • Student’s name
  • Degree awarded
  • Major or majors
  • Graduation Honors (if applicable)
  • Honors Program (if applicable)
  • Departmental Honors (if applicable)

Diploma Address

The diploma is mailed to the address provided on the Application for Degree. If the address changes before the diploma is mailed, the student must notify the Registrar’s Office of the new address. The diploma address is separate from the Permanent address and changing one does not update the other. The Registrar’s Office is not responsible for diplomas lost or not returned due to insufficient address or if the student has moved and not left a forwarding address.

Diplomas are mailed using standard postal delivery. If the student wishes to have the delivery of their diploma expedited, they may contact the Registrar’s Office. The student must assume the costs of expedited delivery. Diplomas mailed to international addresses do take 2-3 weeks longer to be received.

Post Office Boxes - Having a diploma delivered to a post office box is not generally a good idea. The post office frequently folds the diploma to place in the box. If you do not have a street address, you may wish to see if a relative or friend can accept the diploma for you.

Privacy Flag

The University does not include the names of students who have a privacy flag in any information being released regarding graduation, including the Commencement Program. If you have a privacy flag and wish to have your name listed in the Commencement Program, you may complete the Release of Privacy Flag for Commencement form. This form must be received in our office at least 6 weeks prior to the commencement ceremony.

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