CALS students graduate with a bachelor’s degree when they have:
- Met all the university, college, degree program, and major requirements;
- Earned 120 credits (or 125 for the Biological Systems Engineering major); and
- Earned a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or higher on all courses carried for a grade at UW-Madison.
Students cannot graduate with temporary grades such as I or NR. Speak with the course instructor or your advisor to resolve temporary grades. The date when outstanding Incompletes (I) are resolved will determine the semester of graduation.
If a student has received permission to complete final coursework while not in residence, the student must notify CALS Academic Affairs when the official transcript has been evaluated by UW-Madison and appears on their record so their DARS can be certified for graduation.
Graduation will not be postponed for any incomplete certificates, additional majors, additional degrees, or study abroad programs.
Students are expected to plan their coursework, study abroad program, experiential learning, research, internships, etc., carefully; and regularly consult their DARS (Degree Audit Reporting System) in conjunction with their advisor to ensure all graduation requirements are met and align with this policy.
Appeal Process for Postponing Graduation
Failure to adequately plan coursework, failure to make time for or be accepted into a study abroad or experiential learning program, or late admission to a certificate or additional major/degree is not typically considered an extenuating circumstance. In rare situations, an extenuating circumstance may result from circumstances outside of the student’s control. For example, if a student’s study abroad program was cancelled due to political unrest, terrorism, natural disaster, etc., and the next option to study abroad will occur in a term after the student has completed all CALS degree requirements, the student has the option of submitting an appeal to request permission to postpone their graduation until the term of the study abroad program if the study abroad program is necessary to complete a certificate or additional major/degree requirement. If you feel that you have an extenuating circumstance:
- First talk with your advisor about your situation.
- Second consult with a Dean on Call in Academic Affairs to discuss whether your situation was caused by significant circumstances outside of your control. (Note: courses not offered in the terms you assume they will be does not necessarily warrant an appeal because course offerings are not a guarantee and subject to change.) A Dean on Call can provide you with information about submitting an appeal.
- Submission of an appeal does NOT guarantee approval.