Graduation Candidacy for Online Master's Students

This is it! Is this the semester you’re going to be able to complete all of your degree requirements and graduate? Let's make sure you meet all the requirements and deadlines, and then follow the right steps to graduate.

Step 1: Go through the checklist

Please go through the candidate student checklist for your degree program below, and make sure you’ve met or will meet all the requirements by the deadlines your final semester:

Step 2: Register for Candidacy

In order to graduate, you must declare candidacy for the semester in which you intend to graduate by the designated deadline (you can find the deadline calendar on the Grad School website). You declare candidacy by using the scheduling assistant within myPurdue and registering for CAND 991.

CAND 991: The only candidacy in which you can be registered for any other courses and/or research.

Please note:  If you don’t register for candidacy by the deadline, there is a possibility we can still get you added for the semester with an extension request to the Grad School, but if approved there will be a $200 late fee charged. If you need to request an extension, please reach out to for instructions.

Step 3: Register for Commencement

Being registered as a candidate does not automatically register you for the commencement ceremony itself. If you plan to participate in commencement, you must respond by using the Commencement tab on myPurdue. It will be added to your myPurdue account after a specified date in the semester you have registered as a candidate.

Please watch this video on How to Complete the Commencement Task List, whether you’re planning on participating in commencement or not, as there are certain areas that all graduates need to complete.

For information about the commencement ceremony; all Grad School commencement-related activities; how to request a Letter of Invitation for International Students’ Families; how to request special accommodation for family members; and much more, please visit

For specific semester graduation deadlines, see the deadline calendar on the Grad School website.

Please note:  There are no extensions to register for commencement if you miss the commencement registration deadline.   You can, however, request to participate in a future summer or fall graduation ceremony; contact

Step 4:  Complete the required Grad School Exit Survey

The Graduate School Exit Questionnaire will open up on myPurdue about the same time the commencement tab opens for the semester. You MUST complete the Graduate School Exit Questionnaire by the last day of classes. The questionnaire is accessed by logging on to myPurdue. (Click on the “Academic” tab, then the “Graduate School Plan of Study” link. Once you log-in there, you’ll see the link to your questionnaire.)

Step 5: Complete the Required ME Exit Form

All ME grad students are required to complete the ME Exit Form and return to before the end of the semester in which they’re graduating. (Please note: Not returning the Exit Form may result in a delay in the posting of your degree.)

Things to Remember

Non-thesis Master’s students need to declare candidacy by the deadline designated by the Graduate School, but preferably during registration before the start of classes (see the deadline calendar on the Grad School website).

  • Attend the virtual Graduate Office Candidate Meeting held in the semester prior to your expected candidate semester (details/link can be found on the ME Grad Blog/Announcement page).
  • Register for candidacy (CAND 991) through the scheduling assistant within myPurdue and register for coursework.
  • Make sure your Plan of Study has been approved and is current; your titles and course numbers on your plan of study precisely match your transcript; you degree type is correct (MSME non-thesis option); and your committee members are current and meet the degree requirements.

It will be your responsibility to make the above changes to your Plan of Study. If grades for courses you have completed are not showing in your Plan of Study, and you’ve confirmed that your course title and number match what is on your transcript, please follow up with the Graduate School at

For students admitted in the summer 2022 term or later, your GPA must be 3.0 or higher to graduate, and you can have no lower than a ‘C’ grade on your POS; for students admitted spring 2022 term or earlier, your GPA must be 2.85 or higher to graduate, and you can have no lower than a ‘C-‘ grade on your POS. If you know you will be receiving an “I” (incomplete) in a course, notify the ME Graduate Office immediately. Failure to do so may require additional registration and fees. You will not be able to graduate until all coursework is complete.

Diplomas are mailed out 6-8 weeks after commencement ceremonies are held.  If you need certification of your anticipated graduation date, contact Office of the Registrar. You can also request a Certified Electronic copy of your diploma, once Purdue has requested printing... usually 3-4 weeks after commencement.  Please see for more information.

Final Thoughts

ME Graduate Reception

ME holds a reception for all their graduates during commencement weekend.  Watch for email notifications, and be sure to RSVP whether you’re attending or not.  Family and friends are welcome to attend, as long as you include them in your RSVP attendance confirmation.  All graduates will receive a ME Alumni pin at the reception.

What should I expect regarding my Purdue email and access to programs, once I graduate?

Your Purdue email will stay active for a little while after graduation, but please check out ECN’s page that outlines expectations for access to various tools and options for Purdue email after you graduate.

It’s possible to set up a free Purdue University alumni email address: please see for details.  But don’t set this up until at least a month or so after graduation; once this is established, your email goes away and you may lose out on notifications sent to your student email address.

Purdue Alumni Association

Check out the benefits of becoming a member of the Purdue Alumni Association, including the ability to join Purdue Ties, a premier networking and mentoring platform to connect with fellow Boilermakers!

Purdue Center for Career Opportunities

Check out the lifelong free access to resources and services offered to Purdue alumni from the Center for Career Opportunities!


ME Graduate Office
516 Northwestern Ave. (4th floor of Wang Hall)
West Lafayette, IN 47906
(765) 494-5730
Virtual office hours available every Tues/Wed/Thurs