Petitioning to Graduate
Everyone who receives a bachelor's degree from Weinberg College must first submit a Graduation Petition to the Northwestern Registrar's Office.
- If you plan to graduate in June of your fourth year: submit a petition during the spring quarter of your third year. If you are away from campus in spring of your third year—studying abroad, for example—then you should petition during the fall of your fourth year.
- If you plan to graduate early: submit your petition a full calendar year before your expected graduation date. This may enable you to register with the highest-priority group for your final three quarters; see the registration information posted by the Registrar's Office for details and/or talk with your College Adviser.
Detailed information on the petition process, including submission deadlines, is available through the Registrar’s main Graduation website.
Completing your Graduation Petition is important for making sure that you haven’t overlooked or misunderstood any graduation requirements—and that you and the degree auditors in the Registrar’s Office agree on how your courses fit department, college, and university rules. It is also a good opportunity to think about how you’d like to spend your final year as an undergraduate student.
Completing the Graduation Petition
1. Fill out portions of the petition.
- On the first page of your Graduation Petition, you will indicate where you think you stand on your general WCAS degree requirements (first-year seminars, distribution requirements, foreign language, and writing proficiency). If you’re unsure, check your Academic Requirements report on CAESAR or contact your College Adviser.
- You should also list all major(s), minor(s) and concentration(s) you are doing.
2. Meet with an adviser in each of your major(s) and minor (s) to complete the remainder of the petition.
Take a copy of your CAESAR Academic Requirements report to these meetings; the pdf version may be easiest to work with. For each major and minor, you will indicate what additional courses you plan to take, and the relevant adviser will sign off on your plan. The adviser can indicate any special approvals or substitutions directly on the petition form or on a separate page that can be attached. If there is anything complicated or potentially confusing about your situation, it’s fine to attach an explanatory cover letter to your petition.
After the Registrar's Office reviews your petition, you will receive a confirmation email.
Look carefully at this feedback and at your updated Academic Requirements report on CAESAR! If their assessment of your remaining requirements disagrees with your own, you need to figure out why. If you do your Petition to Graduate when you are supposed to, you will have plenty of time to resolve any discrepancies, and you will have two or three quarters for finishing any remaining requirements.
Changes to your graduation plans
What if you file a petition saying you plan to graduate at the end of a certain quarter and then you decide to graduate later? Be sure to notify your degree auditor at the Registrar’s Office. Postponement usually presents no problems, but you need to keep people informed.Back to top