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Graduation Procedures

All Indiana Law students must complete an application for graduation, available from the recorder’s office (Room 022). Enrolled students who are on track to complete their degree requirements will be notified of the application deadline by e-mail each semester. Students who are working on a thesis or dissertation may apply to graduate in any month that they complete their requirements, which include having two bound copies of the thesis or dissertation turned in to the recorder’s office.

Students who wish to change their expected graduation date should contact adlanham [at] indiana [dot] edu (recorder’s office) to update their information.

  • Download the Application for Graduation form
  • Download the Progress Report form
    The progress report should be completed by students in the LLM Thesis, SJD, and PHD programs. The student should meet with his or her dissertation advisor to complete the form and then submit it to the Graduate Legal Studies office within one month of the start of the semester. Students do not need to complete a progress report in their first semester in the program.
  • Download the Oral Defense application
    Students in the SJD and PHD programs are required to submit an application for the oral defense of the dissertation no later than 30 days before the requested date for the defense.
  • Download the Proposal Defense form
    Students in the SJD program are required to complete a defense of their dissertation proposal by the end of their first semester in the program. The student and his or her dissertation advisor complete arrangements for the defense and the notice of completion of the proposal defense form should be signed by the committee and by the student and submitted to the Graduate Legal Studies office.
Thesis and Dissertation Requirements

All students enrolled in the LLM Thesis and SJD programs are required to complete a thesis or dissertation. Following are Indiana Law’s specific policies concerning thesis and dissertation requirements:

  • Students who are researching or writing a thesis or dissertation should work with their advisor at the start of each semester to complete a progress report.
  • SJD students must schedule a defense of their dissertation proposal, normally by the end of the first semester that they matriculate into the program.
  • SJD and PhD students must schedule a defense of the completed dissertation when both student and advisor decide the writing is finished and ready for presentation. The defense must be scheduled at least one month in advance with lgradadm [at] indiana [dot] edu (Graduate Legal Studies Coordinator).

The Indiana University Graduate School provides detailed information about how the thesis and dissertation manuscripts must be formatted and presented.

The IU Graduate School also provides information for local bookbinderies. Students who complete the thesis or dissertation away from Bloomington may use the services of another bookbindery, provided the manuscript conforms to the Graduate School’s guidelines. Specific questions about the format for theses and dissertations may be addressed to the lgradadm [at] indiana [dot] edu (International Programs Coordinator).

A PDF of the final thesis or dissertation (including signed signature pages) must be submitted to the Law School, following the procedures outlined by the Graduate Legal Studies office.


Indiana University Bloomington holds two commencement ceremonies for graduates from the entire university, in May and December. In addition, Indiana Law hosts its own graduation ceremony in May, which can be attended by both May and December graduates. There are also many corresponding activities in May, such as a luncheon for graduates and their families and an awards ceremony.

Students who wish to attend either the university commencement or the Indiana Law graduation ceremonies are expected to wear the appropriate attire (cap and gown).

Requesting Transcripts and Diplomas

You may request unofficial transcripts at any time from the Law School recorder’s office, or find your unofficial transcript online using Indiana University’s Web-based student service system, OneStart. Transcripts on OneStart can be printed and used for unofficial purposes.

Students and alumni can order an official transcript through the university bursar’s office in person, by mail or fax, or online. Current students can request an official transcript by e-mail, mail, or fax.

Once you have completed your degree requirements and graduated, your official diploma will be mailed to the permanent address listed in OneStart by regular air mail approximately two months after your graduation date. Be sure to check the permanent address listed in OneStart before graduation to make sure that your diploma will be sent exactly where you want it to go. You can also request additional copies of your diploma from the Office of the Registrar.

Please remember that it can take up to four weeks after posting for mail to reach some countries.