Posthumous Degree Policy

Policy Approval Authority President
Responsible University Office Registration and Records
Responsible Officer(s) University Registrar
Contact Person Cody Schmitz
Primary Audience Faculty
Status Active
Last Review Date 01-22-2024
Policy Category/Categories Faculty & Academics
Student Affairs

A degree may be awarded for a deceased student with approval of the Office of the Provost.

A student who dies while actively pursuing a degree may be considered for a posthumous degree if they were in good academic standing and had made substantial progress towards the degree. Unless exceptional circumstances exist, students should have completed at least 75% of the coursework required for their academic program. For graduate degrees requiring a research product (e.g., dissertation), the student should have made substantial progress toward the completion of that research product.

For undergraduate students, the final determination of student eligibility rests with the Dean of the student’s college. For graduate students, the final determination of student eligibility will be made by the Dean of the student’s college in conjunction with the Dean of the Graduate School.

The University will post a posthumous degree on the student transcript and award a diploma.

In cases where it is determined the student did not meet the requirements for a degree, a posthumous certificate may be awarded, if appropriate. The posthumous certificate recognizes a student's progress toward the attainment of a degree. This may be a certificate of attendance, participation, or completion of some core element of the student's program. The certificate is not posted on the student transcript.

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