Requirements for Graduation

Semester Hours and Quality Point

  • A minimum of 120 credit hours of college credit must be completed for an undergraduate degree.
  • A student must earn a quality point average or GPA of at least 2.00 for all college courses attempted.
  • A student must have grades of "C" or better in all courses offered to fulfill the major requirements.

Residence Requirement

A candidate for graduation must earn, in residence, the last thirty (30) semester hours that are offered for the degree. Some instructional units have additional residency requirements. 

A transfer student from another institution must (1) spend at least two semesters in full-time residence work; (2) secure credit in residence for at least 12 semester hours of upper division courses in his or her major and six hours of upper division courses in his or her minor or 18 semester credit hours at the junior/senior level for a composite major.


Graduation under a Particular Bulletin

A student has the choice of meeting the graduation requirements listed either in the latest bulletin at the time of admission or in any later bulletin prior to the date of his/her graduation, provided he/she meets all graduation requirements not later than six years from the ending date of the bulletin selected. The University reserves the right to impose changes in academic requirements upon any student in residence.

Financial Clearance

Students who are indebted to the University will not be allowed to participate in commencement exercises. Such obligations include traffic and parking fines, library fines, housing fees, and any miscellaneous fees. Students who are not sure about the status of their indebtedness should check with the Bursar prior to final examinations. If there is a dispute concerning payment of a bill, receipts should be presented to verify payment.

Application for Graduation

Students expecting to graduate must file an application for graduation. The application should be filed the semester preceding the semester he/she intends to graduate. The student should be within 30 hours of completion of the required hours for graduation. The deadline for filing graduation applications is printed each semester in the schedule of courses. Prior to applying for graduation, the student should review his/her academic records with an academic advisor to determine if he/she is eligible to apply for graduation. An application, with instructions for completion, can be obtained from the Office of the University Registrar or the office of the faculty chair in the respective major department in which the student is enrolled.

Graduation with Honors

Special honors in four grades are awarded in recognition of superior scholarship in the work leading to the bachelor's degree. These honors are awarded at commencement and are shown on the diplomas of the recipients. To be eligible for graduation honors, a student must have completed (exclusive of correspondence and extension work) at least 60 semester hours in the upper division of the University. The quality point average, which shall be used for awarding graduation honors, shall be the smaller of the following two quality point averages:
  • The quality point average for all work taken in all colleges attended.
  • The quality point average for all work taken at Texas Southern University.
The three grades of honors and the quality point averages for each are as follows:
  • Summa Cum Laude is awarded to the candidate for graduation whose quality point average is 3.75 or above.
  • Magna Cum Laude is awarded to the candidate for graduation whose quality point average is between 3.50 and 3.74 inclusive.
  • Cum Laude is awarded to the candidate for graduation whose quality point average is between 3.25 and 3.49 inclusive.


Commencement exercises are held twice each year, during the months of December and May, for students who qualify for graduation from Texas Southern University. All such students are expected to participate in one of these two exercises, as deemed appropriate. 

Commencement is a solemn and special occasion in the lives of students, and they are expected to behave in a manner commensurate with the magnitude of the occasion. While attending commencement exercises, students and their guests are expected to maintain decorum that is reasonable and befitting of a public event of special significance. Since commencement exercises are formal events, graduates are expected to abide by the University's policy on appropriate attire that is announced in advance of the ceremonies.