Steps to Graduate

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Commencement vs Graduation


A commencement ceremony is often referred to as "Graduation", but they are not always the same thing. For San Diego Miramar College, the commencement ceremony is the end-of-year celebration in May for students that have completed or are expected to complete their graduation requirements. Students who have completed their graduation requirements in the prior Fall or Summer semesters can also participate in the May commencement ceremony.

Students do not receive their diplomas at the commencement ceremony. Diplomas for summer, fall, and spring graduates are mailed directly to the students after they complete their graduation process. 


Graduation, on the other hand, is a multiple step process of developing an educational plan, completing your course requirements, and Applying to Graduate through mySDCCD. The term in which you have officially and successfully completed all of your graduation requirements is when you graduate.

For instance, if you complete your coursework in Fall of 2018, you will be considered all Fall 2018 graduate, however, you may walk in the Spring 2019 Commencement. Same for Summer 2019, you would walk during Spring 2019.

Petition to Graduate

Graduation is not automatic upon completion of requirements. Students who expect to receive an Associate Degree or Certificate of Achievement are encouraged to submit a Petition for Graduation up to one year in advance of anticipated graduation. Click here to review a sample Graduation Evaluation and how to interpret it.

Make sure to be aware of the deadline dates for filing a Petition for Graduation which can be found in the Academic Calendar and on the SDCCD Evaluations website.

When to File the Petition for Graduation

Associates Degree

Students are encouraged to file a Petition for Graduation for an Associate Degree the semester prior to their expected graduation date. If you have not met the proper requirements to qualify to Apply to Graduate the link will not appear in your mySDCCD Portal.

Certificate Of Achievement

Students working toward a Certificate of Achievement should file the Petition for Graduation prior to the beginning of the semester in which they plan to complete the requirements of their certificate program.

Filing the Petition for Graduation

All students must Apply to Graduate with an Associates Degree or Certificate of Achievement through their mySDCCD Portal. Students' majors will be listed under the Apply to Graduate Tab. If you do not see the correct major, you should meet with a counselor in order to make sure you have the proper Education Plans in place. Counselors cannot Apply to Graduate on behalf of a student, they can only guide students and ensure EdPlans are in place.

Click here for important Graduation Deadlines

Please note: Only coursework completed in the San Diego Community College District may be used to complete certificate requirements.

Register for Commencement

Date: TBD

Time: 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Location: San Diego Miramar College - Hourglass Field House (Gymnasium)

When Commencement Registration goes live for Spring 2020, you will be able to access the application here.

Apply to Speak at Commencement

If you are receiving an AA/AS and have a 3.25 or better cumulative GPA, please consider sharing your unique experience with your peers at commencement.

Speakers Wanted!

Graduation with Honors

Graduation with honors distinction is based upon all coursework that is associate degree and lower division baccalaureate degree applicable or coursework applicable to the certificate of achievement.

  • Honors is granted to students who achieve an overall 3.5 GPA.
  • High Honors is granted to students who achieve an overall 3.75 GPA.
  • Highest Honors is granted to students who achieve an overall 4.0 GPA.

Students will be notified that the honors distinction is pending at the time of the graduation ceremony, when the GPA is calculated based upon degree or certificate applicable coursework completed through the fall semester of the year of the ceremony. The final honors distinction will be determined upon completion of all coursework completed through the spring semester for spring graduates or the summer term for summer graduates and fall semester for fall graduates.

An honors notation is placed on the student's official transcript and diploma.

Honors is not based on a student's overall GPA but rather the degree or certificate specific coursework's GPA. Students should refer to Counseling or Evaluations to determine if they have met the above criteria.

In order to exchange tassels, students must first purchase their cap and gown from the Bookstore (619) 388-7866. Students can exchange their teal tassels for a gold Honors tassel and cord in Evaluations (K1-207).