General Information

Earning your degree from Bristol Community College is a momentous and memorable occasion in your life! Here at Bristol, we want to make sure you are recognized for your achievement and applauded for your hard work and dedication toward your program or certificate of study. Are you preparing for the big day? Below, you will find important information that will help guide and support you through the graduation process. If you do not find what you are looking for here, please visit our commencement page for more information.

Ready to apply to graduate…keep reading!

Students who are applying to graduate should visit the application to graduate found in your accessBCC account. You can view more information on the Apply to Graduate page.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, all students who wish to be awarded their degree or certificate must complete the application to graduate. We do not want to assume that you want to receive your degree or certificate in case you plan to change majors, request academic forgiveness or repeat coursework. Once a student graduates in a degree or certificate, we will not rescind the awarding of the degree or certificate. The degree or certificate awarded is considered final.

Bristol Community College has three graduation dates, Summer Term - August 31st, Fall Term - December 31st, and Spring Term – Date is based on Commencement Ceremony. Students should apply to graduate in the term they are eligible to complete all degree requirements with the exception being our spring term. Please see dates below for when the application to graduate opens each graduation term.

  • Summer: June 1
  • Fall: October 1
  • Spring: February 1 


  • Students expecting to complete all degree requirements in a summer term and have less than 8 credits to graduate should apply in the spring term IF they would like to participate in the spring ceremony.
  • Students who are earning a Certificate of Achievement (CTACH) must have all credits completed in the spring term if they would like to participate in the Spring ceremony.

Bristol offers three types of certificates. A Certificate of Recognition (CTREC) is less than 15 credits. A Certificate of Accomplishment (CTACC) is a certificate that has anywhere between 15 and 23 credits. A Certificate of Achievement (CTACH) is a certificate that has 24 or more credits. Only students earning a Certificate of Achievement (CTACH) are eligible to participate in the Commencement Ceremony.

Bristol Community College has one Commencement Ceremony each year which is held at the end of the spring semester. The date changes based on the Academic Calendar. You can view more information on our Commencement page or refer to the Academic Calendar in the semester you expect to graduate.

At Bristol, we want all our students to have the opportunity to participate in the Commencement Ceremony! Students who complete all their courses in the fall term are invited to participate in the following spring ceremony. For example, if a student completes coursework in Fall of 2022, these students will be able to participate in the spring 2023 ceremony. Students who expect to finish courses in the summer (8 or less credits remaining to graduate) are invited to the ceremony in the spring before they finish coursework.

While we invite students who will finish courses in the summer term to walk in the spring commencement ceremony, you will not receive your diploma until all coursework and program/certificate requirements have been met.

Your official transcript is the document you should request to be sent to your current or future employer. You can send the document electronically at no cost through our electronic transcript services with Parchment.

Your college transcript will note “Degree or Certificate Awarded” approximately 2 weeks after the last day of the semester. Once the semester ends, the Registrar’s Office will complete all final degree audits for any student who applied to graduate. The process takes approximately two weeks as we manually review all student degree requirements to ensure that final courses were successfully completed, and all program requirements have been met. We begin this process once all final grades have been submitted for the term.

Diplomas are usually received between 4-6 weeks after the graduation date. It is important to remember that the diploma is not an official document. Students who require proof of graduation should request an official transcript through our electronic Parchment services.

This message may indicate that you have not finished all your coursework or have more than 8 credits remaining to graduate if you are applying during the spring term. Our system includes all courses that are in progress that semester. Please look at Degree Works or speak with your advisor to ensure all program/certificate requirements have been met. You can also contact the advising center at or 774.357.2777. If all requirements have been met, please reach out to the Registrar's Office at or at 774.357.2240.

Students wishing to continue enrollment at the college after graduation should complete a new application for a new program/certificate of study.

You may be eligible to earn your degree from Bristol if you complete your final degree requirements at a Massachusetts public four-year institution. Please see the MASSTransfer requirements and eligibility requirements.

To learn more about our honors designations and opportunities please visit our commencement awards page.