What happens on the day?
You and your guests are invited to meet in the Garden Room where the Master and Praelector will welcome you. If you are graduating at General Admission, or in July, a buffet lunch will be served. On all other occasions, a formal lunch or afternoon tea (depending on the timetable for the day) will be served in the dining hall.
You are required to attend a rehearsal in the College chapel after lunch or afternoon tea, where the Praelector will explain the ceremony to you. The Praelector will then lead you to the Senate House for the ceremony.
You should arrive fully robed. For more information on the dress code, please click here.
For more on the ceremony, see below.
What happens during the ceremony?
The Praelector will present you with a small group of graudands to the Vice-Chancellor or a Deputy, together with Proctors (who are elected representatives of the Regent House). The Praelector then extends his right hand, and you will follow by holding one of his fingers in your right hand. Then, kneeling before the Vice-Chancellor or the Deputy, you will be awarded your appropriate degree.
The Congregation ceremony is one of the oldest traditions in the University, with its origins dating back to almost 800 years ago.
Can I take photographs during the ceremony?
Personal photography is not permitted in Senate House. However, an official photograph of your degree being awarded will be taken; you can purchase it immediately after the ceremony from the lawn marquee. For more information, click here.
When will I receive my degree certificate?
Your degree certificate will be handed to you as you leave the Senate House. If you graduated in absentia, your degree certificate will be posted to you after the ceremony.
You can access digital copies of your official transcript through the University Digitary service. For more information, please click here.
For information regarding COVID-19 updates to certificates and transcripts, see here.
What if I am taking two degrees?
You will be presented for the higher degree first (e.g. PhD), and then you will join the group waiting to receive the lower degree (e.g. MPhil). You must wear the gown and hood appropriate to your highest degree.
For more information on the dress code, please click here.
What does Praelector mean?
The College Praelector is responsible for presenting students at graduation. Our Praelector is Fr Alban McCoy (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Are ‘Congregation’ and ‘graduation’ the same?
Yes, both ‘Congregation’ and ‘graduation’ are when you are awarded your degree – which is also known as having your degree “conferred”.
What if I do not wish to kneel during the ceremony?
You must notify Jess Bartley (Praelector’s Secretary) at email@example.com at least three weeks before the ceremony.
What does ‘Trinitarian formula’ mean?
The traditional formula for the admission of candidates is in the name of the Trinity. If your religious beliefs do not permit you to be admitted in this way, you must notify Jess Bartley (Praelector’s Secretary) at firstname.lastname@example.org at least three weeks before graduation.