Academical dress consists of a gown, a hood and a cap (mortarboard or bonnet).
The different styles of gown indicate the levels of award of undergraduate, postgraduate and research.
Similarly the different colours and bindings on hoods indicate the different types of award such as Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Laws, Bachelor of Engineering etc and the corresponding categories at Masters level.
Students attending graduation are known as graduands and are required to wear full academical dress comprising gown, hood and cap (mortarboards for those graduating with a taught course award or bonnets for those graduating with a research course award).
The University has its own stock of academical dress and the cost of hire is included in the graduation fee. Graduands collect their academical dress at the venue prior to the graduation ceremony.
Details of the type of gown and hood appropriate to each award is contained in the Scheme of Academical Dress.
What to wear at graduation
Gowns come in four sizes and you will be given a gown based on your height. It is best not to wear silky material immediately under the gown as it will tend to slip off the shoulders.
Hoods normally require to be pinned or buttoned to a shirt/blouse or jacket. The Registry Office provides pins at graduation to enable graduands to pin the hood in place if necessary.
While the University does not prescribe what style of clothes should be worn under the gown, graduation is a formal ceremonial occasion marking an important achievement and stage in a student's life. Graduands should, therefore, dress appropriately.
Jeans, tee-shirts, trainers and other casual items of clothing are not considered appropriate to be worn at graduation ceremonies.
We recommend securely fitting shoes with a suitable heel height should be worn as Graduands are required to walk up and down ramps and/or steps to the platform to receive their award.