Commencement Information

Latest Update

SDSU will soon announce plans for the 2021 Commencement celebration. Continue to visit this site. It will be updated with information as it becomes available.

On Oct. 1 SDSU announced that due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the continued restrictions against hosting large gatherings, we are unable to move forward with the postponed December 2020 in-person ceremonies. 

This decision was made with careful consideration. The COVID-19 pandemic continues to pose a real and significant public health risk and, for that reason, we absolutely must adhere to the county, state and federal public health guidelines and our state’s public health order. The health and safety of our graduates, their families and friends, and everyone in the SDSU community continues to be the university’s guiding principle.

Frequently Asked Questions - Classes of 2020 and 2021

2021 Commencement Activities

SDSU officially graduates students at the end of the fall, spring, and summer terms. Students apply to graduate for the term in which they plan to complete all requirements for the degree.

Enrolled students must apply online through the SDSU WebPortal by selecting the Apply to Graduate menu option. Additional information can also be found on the Apply to Graduate website.

Commencement ceremonies are held once a year at the end of the spring term for students who graduated in December of the previous year, and candidates for graduation in May and August of the current year.

If you received a degree in December 2020 or applied for May or August 2021 graduation by the February 2, 2021 deadline, you will be eligible to participate in the May 2021 ceremonies. 

Master’s and doctoral students should visit the Graduate Studies website for information on applying to graduate.

Class of 2020 graduates (December 2019, May 2020 and August 2020) are also invited to participate in the May 2021 ceremonies.


The graduation fee covers the costs of the diploma, diploma cover and administrative graduation conferral and processing. The fee also partially funds the commencement ceremony.

A partial refund was offered to Class of 2020 graduates who do not plan to participate in the May 2021 ceremonies (the deadline to submit the refund request was November 1, 2020).


If you have applied to graduate for December 2020, May 2021 or August 2021, you will be eligible to participate in the May 2021 ceremonies and your name will be listed in the program.

Candidates’ names will be listed whether or not they elect to participate in commencement. The presence or absence of your name in the program does not, in itself, indicate whether you have completed degree requirements. 

Your name will not be listed in the commencement program if you have placed a confidential hold on your record. To remove your confidential hold, log onto your WebPortal account and follow the instructions to release your information or call 619-594-6871. 

The Class of 2020 commencement programs by college can be found on the commencement website.

Updates will be posted on the SDSU Commencement website as soon as they are available, and current students will receive information via their official SDSU email accounts. Students are encouraged to check their official SDSU email accounts frequently. If you have questions, you may also email [email protected].
Graduation with honors is granted to undergraduate students who achieve high grade point averages. Excellence is recognized at three levels: 
  • Cum laude (3.50-3.64)
  • Magna cum laude (3.65-3.79)
  • Summa cum laude (3.80-4.00)

For determination of eligibility, two grade point averages are computed; both must satisfy the minimum grade point average for appropriate honors designation. They are the GPA calculated on all units taken at this institution (a minimum of 24 graded units), and the overall (cumulative) grade point average (including both SDSU and transfer units).

Only summa cum laude students will be awarded an honors cord to be worn during the commencement ceremony. Students will be notified via email in April by the Office of the Provost regarding instructions on summa cum laude honors cord distribution.

Regalia, Diplomas & Diploma Covers

Regalia can be ordered through the SDSU Bookstore. You will also be notified of a virtual event prior to commencement where you will receive special pricing on regalia and diploma frames, as well as information regarding photography and other graduation-related items. 

Diplomas are not distributed at commencement. The diplomas are issued by the University after verification has been made that all degree requirements have been completed. Graduates will be mailed their diploma from SDSU vendor, Michael Sutter, approximately 6-8 weeks after their degree has been granted.

Diploma frames are available through the SDSU Bookstore.

Diploma covers are traditionally distributed at commencement. 

Class of 2020 graduates (December 2019, May 2020 and August 2020) were mailed a diploma cover. Please email [email protected] if you have not received yours yet.


Undergraduate students may contact the Office of Advising & Evaluations at [email protected]. They will need to include their full name and RedID in the email. Graduate students will need to connect with Graduate Studies at [email protected].

Other Questions

Please email [email protected] with any additional questions.

Students in full regalia for commencement

Academic Traditions

Instagram #sdsugrad channel