Graduation and convocation

convocation booklet being viewed at a convocation ceremony

Prepare in advance

Prior to your last academic term, review your unofficial transcript in Quest to verify the degree and academic plan(s) you are currently enrolled in. Your Application to Graduate should be a confirmation of what's already listed in Quest; it is not the appropriate time to add/remove plans (exception: certificates and diplomas). Need to make a change? Submit a Plan Modification Form.

Review the following graduation checklist for undergraduate students to ensure everything is in order.

Office of the Registrar graduation checklist

  1. Verify your legal name
  2. Submit an Application to Graduate
  3. Verify your mailing address
  4. Pay outstanding University accounts
  5. Verify your degree status
  6. Review convocation ceremony details

Have questions about any of these steps? Contact the Office of the Registrar.

All communications relating to convocation will be sent to your Waterloo email account - check it often.

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Step 1: Verify your legal name

Your legal name (first, middle, last) - exactly as it appears in Quest - is the name that will be used for convocation: it is the name printed on your diploma, the official ceremony program, as well as the ceremony name card.


    Sign in to Quest to verify that your legal name is as it should be (see the Names page under Personal Information).

    • Check for: missing names, repeated names, incorrect title case/capitalization, spelling errors, etc.
    • Any accents, hyphens, apostrophes, and spaces must be included on your Application to Graduate as they are not recorded in Quest.
    • Note: If you request an updated name on your diploma after convocation - for any reason - you will be required to submit a request for a replacement diploma and pay the associated fee.

    To make changes to your legal name, complete and submit an Update Legal Name form with the required documentation by the following deadlines:

    • May 1 for spring convocation
    • September 1 for fall convocation

    Contact The Centre with any questions about how your name is recorded in Quest.

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    Step 2: Submit an Application to Graduate

    Submit an Application to Graduate during the application window listed below for your desired convocation ceremony. Do not wait until you have received your grades for your final academic term - should you not complete your degree requirements, your application will be cancelled and our office will reach out to you.

    You will receive an automated email copy of your application; this is your confirmation that your form has been received for processing.

    Note: Refer to your responsibility as a student regarding convocation and your application to graduate.


    Verify your application status

    In Quest, you can view the degree and plan information you provided on your application to check and ensure that it is correct. For step-by-step instructions, view the How do I view my application to graduate information? page. The timing of appearance will vary depending on the time of year you submitted the application, the volume of submissions, and the status of your degree completion.

    Important: If your degree requirements are not met and our office is unable to reach you, your Application to Graduate will be cancelled.

    Convocation Ceremony Students Application Window
    Spring - June 2024 If courses/degree requirements are completed during the fall 2023 or winter 2024 terms October 23, 2023 - March 1, 2024
    Fall - October 2024 If courses/degree requirements are completed during the spring 2024 term June 17, 2024 - August 15, 2024

    Cancel my application to graduate

    If you have decided you no longer want to graduate after submitting your Application to Graduate, email the applicable convocation contact in the Office of Registrar so your Quest record can be updated. All existing convocation-related processes will be terminated and you will need to reapply again when you are ready to graduate.

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    Step 3: Verify your mailing information

    In Quest, you need to confirm your Mail address - this is the address that will be used to send your diploma after convocation (if you are unable to attend convocation).

    The accuracy and format of your listed address in Quest is important for postal and courier services. To avoid information being sent to the wrong address or not being accepted by courier services, review our detailed instructions for reviewing and updating your address. Updates should be made by:

    • June 1 for spring Convocation
    • October 1 for fall Convocation

    Additionally, ensure you have an up-to-date telephone number listed in Quest (needed for courier services).


    Important: If you move any time before convocation, log in to Quest and update your Mail address to keep it current.

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    Step 4: Pay outstanding University accounts

    In Quest, check whether you owe the University money (for parking fines, library fines, tuition balances, etc.). Your diploma and transcript may be withheld if outstanding fees aren't paid by:

    • June 1 for spring Convocation
    • October 1 for fall Convocation

    Learn more about holds on your student account. If you have questions about your holds, contact The Centre.

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    Step 5: Verify your degree status and review your record

    When you have been recommended to graduate, two things will happen in Quest:

    1. Your application to graduate information will disappear from the My Undergraduate Program page.
    2. Your degree will be listed at the beginning of your unofficial transcript in a newly added Degrees Awarded section.

    After you see your degree listed - but at least one week before convocation - is your window of opportunity to:

    • Ensure all desired credentials (specializations, options, minors, certificates/diplomas) and co-operative education are present.
    • Ensure any petitions or other outstanding changes to your record have been made.
    • Note: Per your responsibility as a student, student-initiated changes to your record will not be made once you accept your degree.

    The timing of the appearance of your degree will vary; the process to become recommended to graduate is a multi-step process that begins once all grades have been submitted to the Office of the Registrar for your last academic term (e.g., early May for June ceremony, early September for October ceremony).

    Important: If your degree requirements are not met and our office is unable to reach you, your Application to Graduate will be cancelled.

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    Step 6: Review convocation ceremony details

    Up-to-date information about upcoming convocation ceremonies is available on the Convocation event website, review it frequently. Some details you will find on the website:

    • Your ceremony date and time
    • Convocation checklists, including key deadlines and what to expect at your convocation ceremony
    • Convocation ceremony registration information: Although you have applied to graduate, you are not yet registered for a convocation ceremony. Registration is mandatory to obtain tickets and participate in convocation.

    Watch for emails from beginning 1.5-2 months prior to the ceremony with specific details for that ceremony.