Skip to main content

This version of GitHub Enterprise Server was discontinued on 2024-01-04. No patch releases will be made, even for critical security issues. For better performance, improved security, and new features, upgrade to the latest version of GitHub Enterprise Server. For help with the upgrade, contact GitHub Enterprise support.

Approving a pull request with required reviews

If your repository requires reviews, pull requests must have a specific number of approving reviews from people with write or admin permissions in the repository before they can be merged.

For more information about required reviews, see "About protected branches."

You can comment on a pull request, approve the changes, or request improvements before approving. For more information, see "Reviewing proposed changes in a pull request."

You can find a pull request where you or a team you're a member of is requested for review with the search qualifier review-requested:[USERNAME] or team-review-requested:[TEAMNAME]. For more information, see "Searching issues and pull requests."

Tip: If a pull request you approved has changed significantly, you can dismiss your review. The pull request will need a new review before it can be merged. For more information, see "Dismissing a pull request review."

  1. Under your repository name, click Pull requests.

    Screenshot of the main page of a repository. In the horizontal navigation bar, a tab, labeled "Pull requests," is outlined in dark orange.

  2. In the list of pull requests, click the pull request you'd like to review.

  3. On the pull request, click Files changed.

    Screenshot of the tabs for a pull request. The "Files changed" tab is outlined in dark orange.

  4. Review the changes in the pull request, and optionally, comment on specific lines. For more information, see "Reviewing proposed changes in a pull request."

  5. Above the changed code, click Review changes.

    Screenshot of the "Files changed" tab of a pull request. The "Review changes" button is outlined in dark orange.

  6. Type a comment summarizing your feedback on the proposed changes.

  7. Select Approve to approve merging the changes proposed in the pull request.

  8. Click Submit review.


  • If a collaborator with admin, owner, or write access to the repository submits a review requesting changes, the pull request cannot be merged until the same collaborator submits another review approving the changes in the pull request.
  • Repository owners and administrators can merge a pull request even if it hasn't received an approving review, or if a reviewer who requested changes has left the organization or is unavailable.
  • If both required reviews and stale review dismissal are enabled and a code-modifying commit is pushed to the branch of an approved pull request, the approval is dismissed. The pull request must be reviewed and approved again before it can be merged.
  • When several open pull requests each have a head branch pointing to the same commit, you won’t be able to merge them if one or both have a pending or rejected review.
  • If your repository requires approving reviews from people with write or admin permissions, then any approvals from people with these permissions are denoted with a green check mark, and approvals from people without these permissions have a gray check mark. Approvals with a gray check mark do not affect whether the pull request can be merged.
  • Pull request authors cannot approve their own pull requests.

Further reading