Degree Conferral | Overview

December Master's Graduation Checklist

Below is a list of items to complete in preparation for the December degree conferral and ceremony. Please note that this is NOT a complete list of things that need to be done; your department or the Office of the Registrar might require other items to prepare for graduation. Please keep in touch with your graduate administrator for all activities surrounding degree conferral and graduation

All degree candidates:

  • Let your graduate administrator know that you plan to graduate this semester. Verify that all necessary degree requirements have been or will be met. Typically this would happen at the beginning of summer.
  • Submit your Petition for Candidacy Form by the deadline.
  • Verify with your graduate administrator that you have petitioned for candidacy. If you have not, petitions are available here. Please note, that this petition may have been completed at an earlier date.
  • Submit an Application for Degree (available in ESTHER) to the Registrar’s Office by the deadline.

Thesis Master's degree candidates: defend and submit your thesis:

  • Defend your thesis. Complete instructions can be found here.
  • Submit your final thesis by the deadline.
  • Complete instructions can be found here; a last-semester timeline here.

Graduation Ceremonies and Degree Conferral

Degrees will be conferred in late December (and dated December). Diplomas will be mailed no later than the end of February. Occasionally a degree recipient may require an official document on letter-sized paper confirming their Rice degree. In these instances, a Rice University degree recipient may request a miniature facsimile diploma. Facsimile diplomas are only available after degrees have been conferred in late December.

If you wish to walk in December, please visit for complete information. Those who elect to participate in the December ceremony will not have the option to participate in the spring advanced degree commencement ceremony.