Graduation Checklist for Doctoral Students

CSULB offers two independent doctoral degrees:

And a joint degree at the doctoral level:

Use the Graduation Checklist on this page to advance toward your Doctoral degree, avoid common roadblocks and graduate in a timely manner. If you have not yet applied for your Doctoral degree, see Apply to Graduate Online for more information. 

If you have additional questions after reviewing the Graduation Checklist, please contact:


Refer to the University Catalog for a complete list of requirements. In addition to the specific program requirements, you must satisfy the following general requirements in order to be awarded a Doctoral degree from CSULB (students in joint programs should check with both institutions):

  • Complete Coursework Complete the specific course and unit requirements for your doctoral program. No course with a grade lower than a "C" may be applied toward the fulfillment of a degree requirement. Some degree programs require higher minimum grades for specific courses.

  • Maintain Minimum Overall GPA of 3.00
    You must maintain at least a B average in all courses completed during your graduate career at CSULB.

  • Maintain Minimum Major GPA of 3.00
    You must maintain at least a B average in all courses completed to fulfill your major requirements.

  • Complete Your Dissertation, Final Comprehensive Exam and/or Project

  • Satisfy Requirements within 5 Years
    All degree requirements must be completed within 5 years of the semester in which you attempted the first course for your program.

  • Advance to Candidacy
    You must advance to candidacy, which is when you receive approval of your program of study from your Graduate Advisor. You must be enrolled when advanced to candidacy.

  • Maintain Continuous Enrollment at CSULB
    Each fall and spring semester, you must enroll in courses or receive an approved educational leave.

  • Be Enrolled in Your Graduation Semester
    You must be enrolled at CSULB during your graduation semester. If you have completed all coursework, you may enroll in the Graduate Studies 700 course through the College of Professional and Continuing Education (CPaCE) if authorized by your department.

  • Receive Formal Faculty Approval
    This does not require any action on the part of the student. Your department will notify you if your degree program is not approved. 

Contact your Graduate Advisor for more information regarding the above requirements.

  • Incomplete “I” grades at CSULB must be resolved within one calendar year of receipt and prior to your planned graduation date. 
  • Report Delayed “RD” and Report in Progress “RP” grades must also be resolved prior to graduation. 

You must complete all degree requirements before your degree will be awarded. It takes approximately 3 to 4 weeks after the last day of the semester before degrees are posted.  

What does my “Graduation Status” mean?

Graduation Status Definitions



Not Applied

You have not yet applied to graduate

Eligible to Apply for Graduation You are eligible to apply for graduation online through your MyCSULB Student Center

Applied for Graduation

You have successfully submitted your Graduation Application


You have been denied graduation

Degree Requirements Incomplete

Your Graduation Application has been reviewed by a Graduation Evaluator and you are not yet on-track for graduation due to missing requirements (such as a missing course or an "I" or "RD" grade. See Understanding Grades for detailed grading information.) 

On Track with Course Work in Progress

A Graduation Application has been reviewed by a Graduation Evaluator and you are on track for graduation with current course work in progress.

Degree Awarded

Your degree has been conferred


Contact your Graduate Advisor or Enrollment Services for additional information. If you have additional questions refer to Apply to Graduate Online.

If you are a graduate student and have already applied to graduate and need to change your graduation term, you will need to submit a Request to Change Graduation Term - Graduate Students (DocuSign).

You can view any holds you may have in your MyCSULB Student Center, as well as additional information pertaining to clearing the hold and the appropriate contact information for that specific hold. See Registration Holds for more information.