Commencement is a part of the academic process. Graduating in absentia, when students cannot attend, requires approval of an acceptable excuse from the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Requests to graduate in absentia should be sent to the Office for Academic Affairs.


The normal time required to complete degree requirements is four academic years when the student carries a full load, 15 to 16 semesters, and no remedial courses. The maximum time allotted for completing degree requirements is six academic years or 12 semesters. Beyond this period, approval must be obtained on a term-by-term basis from the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Students changing programs will be required to meet the requirements of the department to which the change is being made and must follow the course of study indicated by that department.


The normal credit load is from 15 to 16 semester hours. Students desiring to carry more than a normal load must have the approval of their advisor, department chairperson and dean of the respective school. Permission to carry 17 or 18 hours will require a 3.0 or above cumulative grade point average. Permission to carry more than 18 hours will require a 3.0 or above cumulative average and a 3.0 semester GPA during the last semester of residence. A graduating senior can carry an overload with a 2.5 cumulative GPA one semester (only) during the senior year. In special cases, students may be permitted to carry more than 20 hours per term provided permission is granted by the Vice President for Academic Affairs. No student will be allowed to carry more than 23 hours during any one semester.