Final Oral Exam

Early in the semester in which you plan to graduate, you must contact your Graduate Committee and Ann Bugler ( in order to set up a date and time to hold your final oral exam. Ann will help schedule the room and facilitate all technology needs for your exam.

You will be using Adobe Connect, a webinar service, to connect with your faculty members on campus if you are unable to make it to campus for your final oral exam.  You will set up a time to test your connection with Ann Bugler prior to your exam.

Program-specific final exam information

The following programs have additional final exam information:

MFCS - Comprehensive

MFCS - Family Financial Planning

MFCS - Gerontology

MFCS - Youth Development

Scheduling the date

Many students find it helpful to use a Doodle poll to find the best time for your oral exam that works for your graduate committee and Ann Bugler, who will all need to be present for your final oral exam.

Once a date has been agreed upon, send your completed Request for Final Oral form to your major professor, who signs it and submits it to the Graduate College.  

Forms for distance exam

Complete the following forms if you or any of your committee members will be attending the final exam from an off-campus location:

  • Master’s Final Exam with Student at a Distance — Form #5
  • Preliminary or Final Oral Exam with Committee Member at a Distance - Form #6

Both forms are available on the Forms page.


The Request for Final Oral form must be submitted to the ISU Graduate College 3 weeks prior to the exam date.

See deadlines the ISU Graduate College calendar.


Following the question and answer portion, your committee will deliberate in a closed session. This deliberation generally takes a half hour or less.

The decision the committee returns to you will be one of the following:

  • Pass: be granted the degree sought
  • Conditional Pass: Be granted the degree sought upon satisfying the conditions set by the committee
  • Not Pass - degree denied, but be given the opportunity to retake the examination: Two month must elapse before the examination may be retaken.

Not Pass - degree denied. The exam may not be retaken at a future date.