Doctoral Students

Here are steps to follow for the semester you expect to graduate:
  1. Maintain continuous registration by registering for three dissertator credits.

  2. Complete the Doctoral Graduation Application in PAWS by the posted deadline.
    • The Bursar’s Office will bill you the $40 graduation application fee during the term you expect to receive your degree. The billing cycle runs monthly in your term of graduation, so your charge will appear in the next monthly cycle after you apply.
    • Degrees are conferred in May (Spring), August (Summer), or December (Fall). Applications do not carry forward; you must re-apply if you did not graduate in the semester you anticipated.

  3. Follow the formatting review, defense, and dissertation submission deadlines. For more information call (414) 229-6569.

  4. Submit your final dissertation by the posted submission deadline. Submission to the Graduate School must include:
    1. An electronic submission of the dissertation to ProQuest. To submit your dissertation, and for more information on the submission process, visit the UWM ETD Webpage.
    2. Thesis & Dissertation Approval and Publishing Options Form with an original signature from you and your major professor. Submit completed form to Mitchell Hall 261 by 4pm on the day of the submission deadline.
    3. Complete the online Survey of Earned Doctorates.

  5. Obtain commencement information from the Secretary of the University Website, or contact them directly:, (414) 229-4163. Ceremonies are optional and are held in May and December; August graduates are invited to the December ceremony. You can order graduation regalia on the Web site as well.

    If you want your name to appear in the commencement bulletin, be sure that your directory information with the University is not restricted. If you restricted the release of your address, phone number, and other limited information, contact the Department of Enrollment Services Information Center, Mellencamp 274. This should be done by the second week of the semester in which you expect to graduate to ensure that your name will appear in the bulletin.

    Removal of the restriction will allow your directory information to be released for all publicity purposes, as well as the commencement booklet.
If any of these deadlines are not met, you must apply and graduate in the next semester. You will not be required to register for the next semester if the dissertation has been defended, passed, and accepted by the Graduate School before the first day of classes for the next semester. The date of graduation, however, will be the next semester.


Your name will appear on your diploma as it appears on your UWM transcript. Please review your transcript and make any necessary name changes in Mellencamp 274 at least one month prior to the conferral date. Diplomas will be sent to the mailing address listed in PAWS approximately 8 to 10 weeks after the conferral date. The conferral date is listed in the registrar’s calendar.


If you have a hold on your record, you must clear it before your transcript and diploma will be released. Once your hold is removed, you must contact the Registrar’s Office- Graduation Processing, in Mellencamp 290, or call (414) 229-6571 to arrange mailing or pick-up of your diploma.