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Counseling and Student Affairs

Student Affairs
Graduation & Comprehensive Exams

Applying for Graduation

When do I apply for graduation?

You are required to complete the application for graduation the semester prior to completing your program (i.e. if you are scheduled to graduate Spring or Summer 2018, you must apply for graduation Fall 2017). See the details below for more information on applying for the comprehensive exam.

Where do I apply for graduation?

The application for graduation and required fee ($55) must be submitted through TopNet. After you log in, go to Student Services > Student Record > .Application for Graduation. The WKU required fee covers the cost of printing, auditing your degree, and your cap and gown. This fee must be paid even if you decide not to participate in the commencement ceremony. For more information, visit:

Comprehensive Exams

Who is required to take the comprehensive exam?

All students in the master’s degree program are required to take and successfully pass "comps."

When do I take the exam?

The comprehensive exam can only be taken during the final semester of your program. Note that you must be enrolled in a course to take your comprehensive exam. Be aware of the deadlines, details, instructions, and the application process. An email may also be sent out on the listserv notifying you of the application deadline and the date, time, and place of the exam. You need to take care of any “Incomplete” (X) or “In Progress” (IP) grades on your transcript before you will be cleared to take the comprehensive exam.

To help you in planning, the dates below provide the tentative annual schedule for when the exams will be offered. Application dates are at the beginning of the semesters in which you plan to take the exam. The exams are typically conducted from 8:30am-1pm on the Saturdays indicated below:

  • Fall comps (December graduation)
    • Application due September 1
    • Exam on the last Saturday in September 
  • Spring comps (May graduation)
    • Application due February 1
    • Exam on the last Saturday in February
  • Summer comps (August graduation,
    even if you walk in the May WKU graduation ceremony
    • Application due May 1
    • Exam on the first Saturday in June

How do I prepare for comps?

  1. Complete the department application by the deadline.
    1. Save your application with your file name in the following format: LastName_CompsAppSp17
    2. Email your completed application to directly to Belinda Wisdom at belinda.wisdom@wku.eduor fax it to (270) 745-5031
  2. Once you have applied through the department, you will be notified of your approval to complete the comprehensive exam if all qualifications are met.
  3. As you await the exam date, review your materials from all classes to help prepare you for the exam. You may also talk to classmates who have previously taken them exam to find out what helped them prepare and successfully pass the exam. In addition, take part in group study sessions.

What should I expect from comps?

  1. Arrive at the testing center by 8:30am to sign in, identify your seat, and receive your test and instructions. The exam should begin by 9am.
  2. The comprehensive exam is comprised of a 100-question multiple choice exam and a written exam. You will be given four hours to complete this exam but most students finish in less time. A passing score will be determined based on an average of the two scores from each exam.
  3. You must successfully pass both portions of the comprehensive exam to graduate.  If a passing score is not received, you must meet with the program faculty to discuss the next step.

Dates & Deadlines

  • Feb 1, 2018 Deadline to register for spring comps (spring graduates only). Review the details and instructions at the center of this page and complete the application.
  • February 24, 2018 Spring Comp Exams (8:30am-1pm)
  • May 1, 2018 Deadline to register for summer comps (summer graduates only). Review the details and instructions at the center of this page and complete the application.
  • May 2018 WKU graduation ceremony (5-7pm, Diddle Arena).
  • Jun 2, 2018 Summer Comp Exams (8:30am-1pm)
  • Sep 1, 2018 Deadline to register for fall comps (fall grads only). Review the details and instructions at the center of this page and complete the application.
  • Sep 29, 2018 Fall Comp Exams (8:30am-1pm)

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 Last Modified 1/3/18